And my own as well.
Haplogroup V first appeared in Iberia toward the end of the Ice Age, about 16,000 years ago, when Europe’s human population was mostly restricted to a few temperate enclaves in the southern part of the continent. Aside from a branch that established itself in Sardinia during the period, haplogroup V was mostly confined to the Iberian peninsula until the Ice Age had ended.
The haplogroup began expanding once consistently warmer conditions arrived about 11,500 years ago. One migration carried it northward along the Atlantic to a low-lying coastal plain rich in game and marine food sources such as seals and sea birds. Known as Doggerland, that region lies under the North Sea today – because so much water was locked up in the polar ice sheets during and immediately after the Ice Age, sea level was lower in the past than it is today.
Doggerland slipped beneath the waves about 9,000 years ago, but haplogroup V remains at levels of about 5% in countries that border the Atlantic and especially the North Sea. It is most abundant today in Scotland and northern Germany.
A separate post-Ice Age migration carried haplogroup V through central Europe to western Russia and the Scandinavian Arctic.
Haplogroup V tends to be most common today in isolated populations on Europe’s fringes, from the Finns and Saami in the north to the Sardinians and Basques in the south.
V reaches levels of 12% among the Basque. But its complete absence in ancient DNA samples from their homeland suggests that wherever the haplogroup originated in the Iberian peninsula, it wasn’t in the Basque country.
The Saami, also known as the Lapps or Laplanders, are an indigenous ethnic group of northern Scandinavia and Russia’s Kola peninsula. Because their language belongs to the Finno-Ugric linguistic group, which appears to have originated in Russia, they were previously thought to have come from northern Asia or the Urals. But genetic analysis, including the detection of haplogroup V among the Saami, indicates that they probably migrated to their homeland from southern Europe after the Ice Age.
Haplogroup V appears at levels of about 40% in the Saami, and like the other two common haplogroups in the population, H1 and U5b1b1, it clearly originated in Europe. The haplogroup appears to have expanded from Iberia through central Europe after the Ice Age. It is found today at levels of about 10% percent in the Maris, an ethnic group living along the Volga in Russia, which suggests the Saami may have approached their Arctic homeland by traveling up that river and its tributaries toward the Baltic.
The high frequency of V in the Saami is due to the population shrinking to a small size several thousand years ago, then subsequently expanding. It is not known why this occurred. However, when this happens, some lineages randomly become more frequent while others disappear. Because of this V is more common in the Saami than other Europeans, including their Scandinavian neighbors.
A distinctive archaeological site – a cemetery on an island in a lake near St. Petersburg – suggests that ancestors of the Saami may have reached the Baltic region as much as 8,500 years ago. Saami groups in far northwestern Russia buried their dead on lake islands until the mid-19th century.
Find out more about the genetics of Finland at the 23andMe blog.
I ran mom’s raw mitochondrial data through James Lick’s Haplogroup Analysis and it revealed that we do have the defining G7444A mutation of the subclade. We have those 3 extra mutations I have previously written about here (where you can also see that my sample does have the 72C and 93G mutations and a screencap from PhyloTree). I really wish FTDNA would accept mitochondrial raw data transfers from 23andMe.