Thursday, May 06, 2010

Where'd the Neanderthals go? Ask Your Great Great Ever so Great Granny

Yep NewScientist online mag writes that the Neanderthal genome does in fact reveal interbreeding with our early human ancestors. Even more startling is that scientists are now saying that the two species are so closely related as to be grouped as a single species!

The common ancestor of both groups migrated out of Africa about 500,000 years ago where as our more closely related ancestors remained in Africa to about 100,000 years ago when they also began spreading out. This second expansion might have put pressure on the already exsisting Neanderthal groups which died out about 28,000 years ago.

But in recent DNA sequencing project using material from Neanderthals reveals
  • Any human whose ancestral group developed outside Africa has a little Neanderthal in them – between 1 and 4 per cent of their genome.....
This recombining of the DNA must have taken place about 45,000 years ago because all non African populations have the same amount of material in their genomes.

From the article:
read complete Newscientist article here> and Boing boing here


Anonymous said...

So now I know why my old boss was such a jerk, he was part Neanderthal, and looked it too.

Beam Me Up said...

There is plenty of speculation that Neanderthal was a fairly laid back group. But them rowdy Cro-magnons...there was a group of near do wells if I ever saw one...