To verify the possibility that the Y-chromosome C3* star-cluster attributed to Genghis Khan and his patrilineal descendants is relatively frequent in the Kereys, who are the dominant clan in Kazakhstan and in Central Asia as a whole, polymorphism of the Y-chromosome was studied in Kazakhs, represented mostly by members of the Kerey clan. The Kereys showed the highest frequency (76.5%) of individuals carrying the Y-chromosome variant known as C3* star-cluster ascribed to the descendants of Genghis Khan. C3* star-cluster haplotypes were found in two subclans, Abakh-Kereys and Ashmaily-Kereys, diverged about 20–22 generations ago according to the historical data. Median network of the Kerey star-cluster haplotypes at 17 STR loci displays a bipartite structure, with two subclusters defined by the only difference at the DYS448 locus. Noteworthy is a strong correspondence of these subclusters with the Kerey subclans affiliation. The data obtained suggest that the Kerey clan appears to be the largest known clan in the world descending from a common Y-chromosome ancestor. Possible ways of Genghis Khan's relationship to the Kereys are discussed.
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Vol. 84 • No. 1