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K-Selected Maternal Genetic Lineage

© Lori Lappin, the Witch of WITCHCRAFTS ARTISAN ALCHEMY®


My maternal genetic lineage, namely U5b1b1 (U5b1b1-T16192C!), is a very rare, K-selected mtDNA (mitochondrial DNA) haplogroup.

"The U5b haplogroup is considered to be rare in modern populations - all of the reported carriers are of European ancestry and from Spain, Portugal, England, Ireland, Scotland, the US, and Germany. As professor Matisoo-Smith told Phys.org: “It is remarkably rare in modern populations today, found in Europe at levels of less than one per cent." [Source].

Evolutionary r/K-selection processes influence the characteristics of human populations in a myriad of important ways. One very important indicator of K-selection operating through an organism or lineage is female egg production. Females of K-selected organisms (and lineages) produce fewer eggs than do r-selected organisms (and lineages). Thus, K-lineages produce fewer offspring than do r-lineages.

It is known that mtDNA (and thus, maternal lineage) directly effects female egg production (and likely other related r/K selected biological characteristics as well). Generally, K-selected organisms have evolved according to a quality over quantity evolutionary paradigm, while r-selected organisms have evolved according to a quantity over quality evolutionary paradigm.

"In humans, the mature egg cell, or oocyte, contains the highest number of mitochondria among human cells, ranging from 100,000 to 600,000 mitochondria per cell, but each mitochondrion contains only one copy of mtDNA. In human embryonic development, the number of mitochondria, the content of mtDNA in each mitochondrion, and the subsequent mtDNA activity affects the production of the oocytes, fertilization of the oocytes, and early embryonic growth and development." [Source]

Here are some videos which explain in detail r/K selection theory and its application to human gene wars:

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3