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Mechta skull excavated at Constantine, Algeria.

Mechta-Afalou (Mechtoid) or Paleo-Berber are a population that inhabited parts of North Africa during the late Paleolithic and Mesolithic.[1] They are associated with the Iberomaurusian archaeological culture.

Mechtoids are believed to have been assimilated during the Neolithic and early Bronze Age by the makers of the ensuing Capsian culture.[2] Craniometric analysis indicates that these Iberomaurusians were closely related to the early Holocene Capsians of the Maghreb (Tamazgha), as well as the early Holocene Kiffians of the Sahara.[3]

Iberomaurusian fossils excavated at the Afalou site were found to carry the mtDNA haplogroups H or U (3/9; 33%), J (2/9; 22%), H103 (1/9; 11%), H14b1 or JT (1/9; 11%), R0a1a (1/9; 11%), and T2b (1/9; 11%).[4] All of these are Eurasian Haplogroups.

Iberomaurusian fossils excavated at the Ifri N'Ammar site were found to carry the Y-DNA haplogroups E-M35*(1/2; 50%) and E-L19*(1/2; 50%). All individuals carried the mtDNA haplogroup U6.[5]

Iberomaurusian fossils excavated at the Taforalt site were found to carry the Y-DNA haplogroups E-M78*(4/6; 66%), E-L618*(1/6; 16%), and E-M215*(1/6; 16%). All individuals carried the mtDNA haplogroups U6(6/7; 85%) and M1(1/7; 14%).[6]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Wendorf, Fred; Schild, Romuald (1986-01-01). The Wadi Kubbaniya skeleton: a Late Paleolithic burial from southern Egypt. Southern Methodist University Press. p. 68. ISBN 9780870742163.
  2. ^ P. Sheppard & D. Lubell (1991). "Early Holocene Maghreb prehistory: an evolutionary approach" (PDF). Sahara. 3: 63–9. Retrieved 4 August 2016.CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)
  3. ^ Sereno PC, Garcea EAA, Jousse H, Stojanowski CM, Saliège J-F, Maga A, et al. (2008). "Lakeside Cemeteries in the Sahara: 5000 Years of Holocene Population and Environmental Change". PLoS ONE. 3 (8): e2995. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0002995. PMC 2515196. PMID 18701936.
  4. ^ Kefi, Rym; et al. (2016). "On the origin of Iberomaurusians: new data based on ancient mitochondrial DNA and phylogenetic analysis of Afalou and Taforalt populations". Mitochondrial DNA Part A: 1–11.
  5. ^ Fregel, Rosa; Mendez, Fernado L.; Bokbot, Youssef; Martin-Socas, Dimas; Camalich-Massieu, Maria D.; Santana, Jonathan; Morales, Jacob; Avila-Arcos, Maria C.; Underhill, Peter A. (2018-02-20). "Ancient genomes from North Africa evidence prehistoric migrations to the Maghreb from both the Levant and Europe". bioRxiv: 191569. doi:10.1101/191569.
  6. ^ Loosdrecht, Marieke van de; Bouzouggar, Abdeljalil; Humphrey, Louise; Posth, Cosimo; Barton, Nick; Aximu-Petri, Ayinuer; Nickel, Birgit; Nagel, Sarah; Talbi, El Hassan (2018-03-15). "Pleistocene North African genomes link Near Eastern and sub-Saharan African human populations". Science. 360 (6388): 548–552. doi:10.1126/science.aar8380. ISSN 0036-8075. PMID 29545507.


  • Physical Anthropology of European Populations, Mouton, 1980.

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