Authors:Edit Nádasi, P. Gyűrűs, Márta Czakó, Judit Bene, Sz. Kosztolányi, Sz. Fazekas, P. Dömösi, and B. Melegh
Hungarians are unique among the other European populations because according to history, the ancient Magyars had come from the eastern side of the Ural Mountains and settled down in the Carpathian basin in the 9th century AD. Since variations in the human mitochondrial genome (mtDNA) are routinely used to infer the histories of different populations, we examined the distribution of restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) sites of the mtDNA in apparently healthy, unrelated Hungarian subjects in order to collect data on the genetic origin of the Hungarian population. Among the 55 samples analyzed, the large majority belonged to haplogroups common in other European populations, however, three samples fulfilled the requirements of haplogroup M. Since haplogroup M is classified as a haplogroup characteristic mainly for Asian populations, the presence of haplogroup M found in approximately 5% of the total suggests that an Asian matrilineal ancestry, even if in a small incidence, can be detected among modern Hungarians.