Genetics may affirm Irish nobility claims
Bradley and colleagues at Trinity College in Dublin found 20 percent of men in northwestern Ireland carry a distinctive genetic signature on their Y chromosomes, possibly inherited from Niall of the Nine Hostages -- a 5th century A.D. king who some historians have regarded as more myth than fact, The New York Times reported Wednesday.
Bradley says about 1-in-50 New Yorkers of European origin carry the genetic signature linked with Niall and northwestern Ireland. He said he reached that conclusion after surveying the Y chromosomes in a genetic database that included New Yorkers.
About 400,000 New York City residents say they are of Irish ancestry, according to a 2004 Census Bureau survey, the Times said.
The report appears in the January issue of The American Journal of Human Genetics.
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