According to the article, researched by two Korean scholars and a British, the conclusion is that modern-day Koreans are descended primarily from Altaic-Tungus tribes from Siberia/Manchuria BUT with a considerable amount of south-east Asian DNA strains. Today's Korean male population has a high frequency of Y-haplotype O2b (with origins in Manchuria and also prevalent in modern Japan). There are also a moderate frequency of Korean males with the NO and N haplotype which researchers have found to be originated just east of the Aral Sea region (found also among Japanese males and other northern Asiatics).
What is also interesting is the moderate frequency of Y-haplotype C3 among modern Korean males (possibly from the Koguryo-Buyo peoples). This is also found widely among Mongols, Tungusics, Buryats, and other Altaic ethnic groups. There were also a considerable number of male Koreans who had the typical Han Chinese O3 marker (possibly due to repeated Chinese invasion over the centuries).
The most interesting of all is that the female mtDNA markers have a significantly higher Altaic-Tungusic origin than the male haplotype markers. Which is interesting because many researchers consider O2b, N, and C3 as having a northerly origin (unless they consider O2b as a southern genetic marker, which is highly dubious).
Anyway, this seems to correspond to my own personal observations of the way modern-day Koreans physically look. Though they predominately look Altaic you can also detect a considerable southern Han genetic phenotype. In fact, some Koreans today look much more Han Chinese than Altaic. For example, if you go to certain regions of Korean you will find that the southern phenotype is recognizable (e.g., south Jeolla or south Gyeongsang provinces). If you look at pictures of some Koreans from Hamgyong Province you can easily detect a Altaic-Tungus being primary (you can detect a lot of Altaic looking Koreans in any major city in Korea).
Just found this interesting, and hope this lays to rest constant battles of where modern Koreans descended from.
Edited by kagemusha, 19 December 2010 - 03:23 AM.