News / Science & Technology

Neanderthal Genome Data Sheds Light on Human Ancestors

Scientists at Germany's Max Planck Institute have released a final version of a high-quality sequencing of a Neanderthal genome.Scientists at Germany's Max Planck Institute have released a final version of a high-quality sequencing of a Neanderthal genome.
x
Scientists at Germany's Max Planck Institute have released a final version of a high-quality sequencing of a Neanderthal genome.
Scientists at Germany's Max Planck Institute have released a final version of a high-quality sequencing of a Neanderthal genome.
VOA News
Scientists at Germany's Max Planck Institute have released a final version of a high-quality sequencing of a Neanderthal genome, which could shed light on why humans survived and earlier hominid species did not.

"The genome of a Neanderthal is now there in a form as accurate as that of any person walking the streets today," Svante Paabo, a geneticist, told the Associated Press. Paabo led the research project as part of the Institute’s Evolutionary Anthropology department.

Neanderthals are the closest relative to humans and existed as recently as 30,000 years ago. It is believed by many scientists that modern humans, Homo sapiens, drove them to extinction. Humans and Neanderthals became divergent branches on the evolutionary tree more than 300,000 years ago.

The DNA for the sequencing came from a toe bone found in a Siberian cave is far more detailed than a previous "draft" Neanderthal genome sequenced three years ago by the same team.

The DNA confirmed speculation that humans, interbred with Neanderthals as they spread from the African plains to the Middle East and northern Africa, but that it happened about 80,000 years ago, much earlier than previously thought.

The research team hopes to compare the new genome sequence to that of other Neanderthals, modern humans and Denisovans, another extinct hominid group, the genome of which was extracted from remains in the same cave.

Wil Roebroeks, an archaeologist at Leiden University in the Netherlands who wasn't involved in the Leipzig study, told the AP it was "exciting times" for comparative studies of humans and our closest extinct relatives.

You May Like

Sydney Hostage-taker Failed to Manipulate Social Media

Gunman forced captives to use personal Facebook, YouTube accounts to issue his demands; online community helped flag messages, urged others not to share them More

UN Seeks $8.4 Billion to Help War-Hit Syrians

Effort aimed at helping Syrians displaced within their own country and those who've fled to neighboring ones More

Who Are the Pakistani Taliban?

It's an umbrella group of militant organizations whose objective is enforcement of Sharia in Pakistan 'whether through peace or war' More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: ramalingam venkatraju from: india coimbatore641001
March 22, 2013 6:53 AM
very rare news, but unneglibale, because it reveals about humans,


by: Paul Levinson
March 22, 2013 2:48 AM
for more on Neanderthal - modern human connections, see The Silk Code


by: Anonymous
March 21, 2013 8:48 PM
The DNA confirmed speculation that humans
{no comma}
interbred with Neanderthals as they spread from the African plains to the Middle East and northern Africa, but that it happened about 80,000 years ago, much earlier than previously thought.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Putin: Russian Economy to Rebound in 2 Yearsi
X
December 18, 2014 5:13 PM
Russian President Vladimir Putin held his annual end-of-the-year news conference Thursday, tackling questions on the Russian economy, the crisis in Ukraine and Russian relations with the west. VOA's Jeff Custer reports.
Video

Video Putin: Russian Economy to Rebound in 2 Years

Russian President Vladimir Putin held his annual end-of-the-year news conference Thursday, tackling questions on the Russian economy, the crisis in Ukraine and Russian relations with the west. VOA's Jeff Custer reports.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Detained Turkish Journalists Follow Teachings of US-Based Preacher

The Turkish government’s jailing of critical journalists has sparked international condemnation and is being seen as an effort to undermine the followers of an ailing Turkish preacher based in the United States. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video Will Pakistan School Shooting Galvanize Pakistan Against Extremism?

The attack on a military school in Pakistan’s northwest city of Peshawar left 141 dead, including 132 children. Strong statements of condemnation poured in from across the world. The country announced three days of mourning, and the leadership, both political and military, promised retribution. VOA's Ayesha Tanzeem looks at how likely the Pakistani government is to clamp down on all extremist groups.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.
Video

Video Turkey's Authoritarianism Dismays Western Allies

The Turkish government has been defiant in the face of criticism at home and abroad for its raids targeting opposition media. The European Union on Monday expressed dismay after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan lashed out at Brussels for criticizing his government's action. Turkey's bid to be considered for EU membership has been on hold while critics accuse the NATO ally of increasingly authoritarian rule. Zlatica Hoke reports.

All About America

AppleAndroid