Scientists: one-fifth of the Russians were relatives of the Queen of Britain

© AP Photo / Chris Abkarov Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh. Archival photoScientists: one-fifth of the Russians were relatives of the Queen of Britain© AP Photo / Chris Ison

. Approximately 20% of Russians were genetically related to modern representatives of the house of Windsor, which belongs to the Queen of Britain and the children of Nicholas II and Marie de Medici, Queen of France, the press service of the company.

«Three years ago we did a DNA test for Vladimir Zhirinovsky, and the results showed that it has common ancestors with Napoleon and Einstein. Haplogroup E1b1b1 Vladimir Zhirinovsky is quite interesting — it also includes Adolf Hitler, Vlad Tepes and Benito Mussolini,» — says Valery Ilinsky, geneticist and General Director of Genotek.

Such insights allows you to make the so-called mitochondrial DNA – a small segment of the genome, contained in the «power plants» of the cell, the mitochondria. This DNA is passed along with mitochondria from a mother to her children, allowing you to set the relationship between the human populations and the use of mtDNA to study the history of their migrations, as well as build a single «family tree» of humanity.

Similarly, kinship can be set by studying sets of mutations in the Y chromosome, transmitted through the male line, from father to his sons. People with similar mtDNA or Y-chromosome are highlighted in so-called haplogroups, which can be divided into smaller groups or to enter into a larger group with a common history of formation.

As emphasized by scientists, the existence of such links does not mean that such people are the direct descendants of, for example, Genghis Khan or the kings of old. Common haplogroup in the male or female line is just a Testament to the fact that their representatives are descended from a common father or mother, who could live for thousands or tens of thousands of years before the advent of famous rulers and their modern «relatives».

Ilyinskiy and other scientists from Genotek decided to find out what haplogroups belongs to the population of Russia, analyzing the genomes of which the company received in the last two years from people trying to learn about his origins with the help of genetic tests.

In total they managed to perform over 2.5 thousand genomes, about half of which belonged to the men. Most of the DNA samples came from Moscow, Saint-Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, Sochi, Krasnodar, Rostov-on-don, Vladivostok, Novosibirsk, Simferopol and Kiev.

As it turned out, the majority of Russians through the maternal line belong to mitochondrial group H, which appeared on the Middle East and South-West Asia, about 30 thousand years ago and entered Europe around 25-20 thousand years ago. Today most of the Europeans, about 41% of the population of the subcontinent, is the carrier of this variant mtDNA that suggests that the Russians are full-fledged Europeans.

In addition to the 20% of Russians, to this haplogroup are many famous persons, including Elizabeth II, Queen of great Britain, and Marie de Medici, wife of Henry IV of Bourbon, king of France in the late 16th century. It also included the children of Nicholas II, the last Tsar of Russia, who inherited like mitochondrial DNA from Empress Alexandra Feodorovna, granddaughter of the famous Queen Victoria.

From the male side the situation is somewhat the reverse, about 25% of Russians belongs to the haplogroup R1a1, arose, according to various theories, or in the steppes of the Caspian sea about 10 thousand years ago, or in the Altai and in Central Asia about 35-30 thousand years ago. It includes Tom Hanks, Francis Drake, king of the Netherlands William Alexander, Nikolai Przewalski, and Nikita Mikhalkov.

Both of these groups, as do historians and paleogenetic, came to Europe in the last interglacial period when the ice retreated temporarily, and later they were almost extinct after the beginning of the repeated glaciation. The remnants of their populations were able to survive in southern Europe and to recover their numbers much later, and today their descendants make up the majority of the indigenous inhabitants of Europe.