Y-STR genetic structure of the most common surnames in Korea

Soon Hee Kim, Jongwoo Jung, Nam Soo Cho, Jung Ho Hwang, Seong Yeon Yoo, Ki Min Seong, Myun Soo Han, Won Kim

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4 Scopus citations


The genetic pattern of the Y-chromosomal short tandem repeat (Y-STR) haplotypes of 542 unrelated males having the five most common surnames was analyzed to evaluate their usefulness for Korean forensic science and to provide the basic information for Korean genetic genealogy. We identified 439 Y-STR haplotypes, with 385 (87.7%) being found once. Each of the most common Korean surnames examined here showed high haplotype diversity (> 0.9949), indicating that Y-STR haplotypes are very heterogeneous within each surname. Population genetic analysis showed that there are little genetic difference among five surnames due to the genetic heterogeneity within each surname and the various kinds of non surname-specific haplotypes (33.6%: 182 / 542) distributed among five surnames. Surname prediction may not be adequate for narrowing down the suspect list in Korean forensic science, and additional Y-STR haplotype data of the bon-gwans are needed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)243-249
Number of pages7
JournalGenes and Genomics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2009


  • Genealogy
  • Korean
  • Population genetics
  • Surnames
  • Y-STRs


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