Three hundred years of low non-paternity in a human population

Show simple item record Greeff, Jaco M. (Jacobus Maree) Erasmus, J.C. (Johannes Christoff) 2015-11-30T11:15:44Z 2015-11
dc.description.abstract When cuckoldry is frequent we can expect fathers to withhold investment in offspring that may not be theirs. Human paternal investment can be substantial and is in line with observations from tens of thousands of conceptions that suggest that cuckoldry is rare in humans. The generality of this claim seems to be in question as the rate of cuckoldry varies across populations and studies have mostly been on Western populations. Two additional factors complicate our conclusions, 1) current estimates of the rate of cuckoldry in humans may not reflect our past behaviour as adultery can be concealed by the use of contraceptives; and 2) it is difficult to obtain samples that are random with respect to their paternity certainty. Studies that combine genealogies with Y-chromosome haplotyping are able to circumvent some of these problems by probing into humans’ historical behaviour. Here we use this approach to investigate 1273 conceptions over a period of 330 years in 24 families of the Afrikaner population in South Africa. We use haplotype frequency and diversity and coalescent simulations to show that the male population did not undergo a severe bottleneck and that paternity exclusion rates are high for this population. The rate of cuckoldry in this Western population was 0.9% (95%CI 0.4 – 1.5%) and we argue that given the current data on historical populations we have to conclude that, at least for Western human populations, cuckoldry rate is probably in the range of 1%. en_ZA
dc.description.embargo 2016-05-31
dc.description.librarian hb2015 en_ZA
dc.description.sponsorship National Research Foundation (NRF) grants 65696, 72737 and 77256 to JMG. JCE was supported by a free-standing NRF scarce skills grant. en_ZA
dc.description.uri en_ZA
dc.identifier.citation Greeff, JM & Erasmus, JC 2015, 'Three hundred years of low non-paternity in a human population', Heredity, vol. 115, no. 5, pp. 396-404. en_ZA
dc.identifier.issn 0018-067X (print)
dc.identifier.issn 1365-2540 (online)
dc.identifier.other 10.1038/hdy.2015.36
dc.language.iso en en_ZA
dc.publisher Nature Publishing Group en_ZA
dc.rights Nature Publishing Group en_ZA
dc.subject Non-paternity en_ZA
dc.subject Cuckoldry en_ZA
dc.subject Extra-pair paternity en_ZA
dc.subject Human en_ZA
dc.subject Historical en_ZA
dc.subject Genealogy en_ZA
dc.title Three hundred years of low non-paternity in a human population en_ZA
dc.type Postprint Article en_ZA

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