Wide Disparity in Genetic Admixture Among Mexican Americans from San Antonio, TX

Joke Beuten, Indrani Halder, Sharon P. Fowler, Harald HH Goring, Ravindranath Duggirala, Rector Arya, Ian M Thompson, Robin J. Leach, Donna M. Lehman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


We studied 706 participants of the San Antonio Family Diabetes Study (SAFDS) and 586 male samples from the San Antonio Center for Biomarkers of Risk of Prostate Cancer (SABOR) and used 64 ancestry informative markers to compare admixture proportions between both groups. Existence of population substructure was demonstrated by the excess association of unlinked markers. In the SAFDS sample, ancestral proportions were estimated at 50.2 ± 0.6% European, 46.4 ± 0.6% Native American, and 3.1 ± 0.2% West African. For the SABOR sample, the proportions were 58.9 ± 0.7%, 38.2 ± 0.7%, and 2.9 ± 0.2%, respectively. Additionally, in the SAFDS subjects a highly significant negative correlation was found between individual Native American ancestry and skin reflectance (R2= 0.07, P= 0.00006). The correlation was stronger in males than in females but clearly showed that ancestry only accounts for a small percentage of the variation in skin color and, conversely, that skin reflectance is not a robust surrogate for genetic admixture. Furthermore, a substantial difference in substructure is present in the two cohorts of Mexican American subjects from the San Antonio area in Texas, which emphasizes that genetic admixture estimates should be accounted for in association studies, even for geographically related subjects.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)529-538
Number of pages10
JournalAnnals of Human Genetics
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2011


  • Admixture
  • Mexican Americans
  • Skin reflectance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics(clinical)
  • Genetics


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