The first ever genetic analysis of mummies found that ancient Egyptian kings were more closely related to West Asians than Africans, according to a study published Tuesday by scientists at the Max Planck Institute.
The research found that ancient Egyptians were most closely related to Neolithic Levantine, Anatolian and European populations. The mummies tested did not share strong genetic links to Africa often found in modern Egyptians.
“This suggests that an increase in Sub-Saharan African gene flow into Egypt occurred within the last 1,500 years,” Wolfgang Haak, who led the research team, said in a statement.
“The genetics of the Abusir el-Meleq community did not undergo any major shifts during the 1,300 year timespan we studied, suggesting that the population remained genetically relatively unaffected by foreign conquest and rule,” Haak said.
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