Thursday, October 30, 2008

New Human Extinction Mystery ?


Recent studies of mitochondrial DNA (genetic material passed on solely through the mother) from the Tyrolean Iceman, a 5,000-year-old mummy found in an Alpine glacier, revealed something astonishing about this recent human ancestor. He is from a distinct genetic group that mysteriously disappeared. It is likely that no modern humans shares his genetic lineage. The scientists that are sequencing the iceman's dna say that there are significant genetic differences. Apparently, this genetic group is no longer present. We don't know whether it is extinct or it has become extremely rare.

1 comment:

Shaun said...

Perhaps he was just an unlucky tourist who got left behind or stranded...