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Date Limit Set On First Americans
BBC ^ | 7-22-2003 | Paul Rincon

Posted on 07/22/2003 6:11:50 PM PDT by blam

Date limit set on first Americans

By Paul Rincon
BBC Science

A new genetic study deals a blow to claims that humans reached America at least 30,000 years ago - around the same time that people were colonising Europe.

Kennewick Man, a 9,300-year-old American

The subject of when humans first arrived in America is hotly contested by academics.

On one side of the argument are researchers who claim America was first populated around 13,000 years ago, toward the end of the last Ice Age. On the other are those who propose a much earlier date for colonisation of the continent - possibly around 30,000-40,000 years ago.

The authors of the latest study reject the latter theory, proposing that humans entered America no earlier than 18,000 years ago.

Great migration

They looked at mutations on the form of the human Y chromosome known as haplotype 10.

This is one of only two haplotypes carried by Native American men and is thought to have reached the continent first. Haplotype 10 is also found in Asia, confirming that the earliest Americans came from there.

The scientists knew that determining when mutations occurred on haplotype 10 might reveal a date for the first entry of people into America.

Native Americans carry a mutation called M3 on haplotype 10 which is not found in Asia. This suggests it appeared after people settled in America, making it useless for assigning a date to the first migrations.

But a mutation known as M242 looked more promising. M242 is found in Asia and America, suggesting that it appeared before the first Americans split from their Asian kin.

Contentious claim

Knowing the rate at which DNA on the Y chromosome mutates - errors occur - and the time taken for a single male generation, the scientists were able to calculate when M242 originated. They arrived at a maximum date of 18,000 years ago for its appearance.

This means the first Americans were still living in Asia when M242 appeared and could only have begun their migration eastwards after this date.

"I would say that they entered [America] within the last 15,000 years," said Dr Spencer Wells, a geneticist and author who contributed to the latest study.

In 1997, a US-Chilean team uncovered apparent evidence of human occupation in 33,000-year-old sediment layers at Monte Verde in Chile.

They claimed that burned wood found at the site came from fires at hunting camps and that fractured pebbles found there were used by humans to butcher meat. But the interpretation of these remains has been questioned by several experts.

Bone returns

The debate over the biological origins of the first Americans has wide-ranging political and racial implications.

In the US, the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (Nagpra) has resulted in the handover of many scientific collections to claimants.

Some archaeologists argue that the remains of early Americans are sufficiently different from their descendents to be exempt from Nagpra.

For example, a 9,300-year-old skull from Washington State known as Kennewick Man has been interpreted as looking European due to its long, narrow (dolichocephalic) skull shape. More recent American populations tend to have short, broad skulls.

Dr Wells said individuals such as Kennewick Man looked this way because Europeans and early Americans had a common origin around 35,000-40,000 years ago in south-central Asia.

Record erased

"[Dolichocephaly] is a general feature of very early skulls," Dr Wells told BBC News Online.

He said a later migration into America from East Asia 6,000-10,000 years ago associated with the spread of Y chromosome haplotype 5 could have been responsible for the Asiatic appearance of many present-day Native Americans.

But Dr Wells acknowledged the possibility that even more ancient American populations carrying unidentified Y chromosome haplotypes could have been swamped by later migrations, resulting in their genetic legacy being erased.

"We can't rule that out," he said, "but in science we have to deal with what's extant."


TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: americans; archaeology; clovis; date; first; ggg; gigo; godsgravesglyphs; history; limit; mtdna; preclovis; precolumbian
I notice they didn't mention one word about the dental study don ASU professor Christy Turner. It shows a distinct difference.
1 posted on 07/22/2003 6:11:51 PM PDT by blam
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To: blam

Spirit Cave Man is the oldest, 9,400 years old, mummy ever found in the Americas, he died in his mid-40's in a cave in Nevada.

2 posted on 07/22/2003 6:14:43 PM PDT by blam
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To: blam
looks like they're talking about this guy
3 posted on 07/22/2003 6:21:06 PM PDT by agitator (Ok, mic check...line one...)
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To: blam
Why do they keep saying "swamped" when "eaten" is probably more appropriate.
4 posted on 07/22/2003 6:22:51 PM PDT by muawiyah
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To: blam
mtDNA is much more reliable than looking at bones or their fossils. I remember posting an article a while back that seemed to prove a Euro origin for the lake Indians. I'm sure you were on that thread. I will have to withold my judgement...
5 posted on 07/22/2003 6:25:14 PM PDT by Pharmboy (Dems lie 'cause they have to...)
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To: blam
"The scientists knew that determining when mutations occurred on haplotype 10 might reveal a date for the first entry of people into America. "

And that sentence would fit freakishly well into any Star Trek episode..
6 posted on 07/22/2003 6:26:14 PM PDT by Monty22
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To: Monty22
There's not just Monte Verde, there's also a Brazilian site I believe.
7 posted on 07/22/2003 6:41:35 PM PDT by FastCoyote
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To: blam
I notice they didn't mention one word about the dental study don ASU professor Christy Turner. It shows a distinct difference..

Also I notice that there is no mention of the "African Eve" DNA fiasco.
For whatever reason, these Einsteins just won't give up.

I believe the true picture will emerge only long after the PC BS is long gone and buried; Including the "noble savage" we-copied-out-constitution-from-stone-age-savage-cannibals delusional mindless extrapolations.

8 posted on 07/22/2003 6:48:35 PM PDT by Publius6961 (Californians are as dumm as a sack of rocks)
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To: blam
Captain Picard was the first American!!!!????
9 posted on 07/22/2003 6:50:43 PM PDT by Tribune7
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To: FastCoyote
"There's not just Monte Verde, there's also a Brazilian site I believe."

Yes, there are a number of other older sites. You're probably talking about Pedra Furada 32,000-48,000 years old in Brazil.

10 posted on 07/22/2003 7:00:27 PM PDT by blam
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To: blam
But Dr Wells acknowledged the possibility that even more ancient American populations carrying unidentified Y chromosome haplotypes could have been swamped by later migrations, resulting in their genetic legacy being erased.

There's your answer! Otherwise, all the latest discoveries; Spirit Cave, Topper, Monte Verde, Big Eddy, Meadow Cave, etc, are all wrong on their dates.

11 posted on 07/22/2003 7:02:18 PM PDT by Alas Babylon!
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To: blam
BUMP!


I LOVE these articles you post! Bookmarking for later reading.
12 posted on 07/22/2003 7:09:15 PM PDT by EggsAckley ( ....I kind of miss Tanya Harding.......life was so simple then.........)
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To: Publius6961
The PC police are desperate to damage the real science of these bones. This seems more an effort to protect indian casinos than to find out if the North American continent was a little more diverse than the PC nazis would like.
13 posted on 07/22/2003 7:09:31 PM PDT by longtermmemmory (Vote!)
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To: Alas Babylon!
"Spirit Cave, Topper, Monte Verde, Big Eddy, Meadow Cave"

Sounds like part of tomorrow's line at Belmont! My pick of the day: Topper! (of course!)
14 posted on 07/22/2003 7:12:13 PM PDT by jocon307
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To: Alas Babylon!
"There's your answer! Otherwise, all the latest discoveries; Spirit Cave, Topper, Monte Verde, Big Eddy, Meadow Cave, etc, are all wrong on their dates."

Yup, you get it.

I haven't read anything about the Topper site for a couple years now.

15 posted on 07/22/2003 7:15:37 PM PDT by blam
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To: jocon307; blam
New theory on the peopling of America from Europe (Clovis --Solutrean link)! Click here! (new article in Mammoth Trumpet)
16 posted on 07/22/2003 7:16:26 PM PDT by Alas Babylon!
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To: agitator
Oh Wait, I'm getting a concept here....Star Trek episode....Picard must go back in time to stop the Borg.....winds up in N. America 10K years ago...stops the Borg but is killed in the process...bones become Spirit Cave Man.....Enterprise retreves the fossils, and extracts DNA to make new Picard, then implants clone with all his memories, which were saved in Cmdr. Data's memory banks before the mission....


I'll shut up now.
17 posted on 07/22/2003 7:20:02 PM PDT by Ahban
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To: jocon307; Alas Babylon!
The Topper Site: Pre-Clovis Suprise.
18 posted on 07/22/2003 7:20:39 PM PDT by blam
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To: Alas Babylon!
"New theory on the peopling of America from Europe (Clovis --Solutrean link)! Click here! (new article in Mammoth Trumpet)"

Good Article. These (Solutreans) seems to be the folks linked with the Topper site, (and others) on the east coast of the US.

19 posted on 07/22/2003 7:29:23 PM PDT by blam
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To: Tribune7
Sure! Didn't you see Star Trek XV?
20 posted on 07/22/2003 7:39:18 PM PDT by Reverend Bob (Emoticons are for people that can't handle irony.)
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To: Alas Babylon!; blam
Wow, great links. Thanks guys, for seeking to educate me and impart pure information, just because I made a silly joke.

I did used to want to be an archeologist when I was pretty little. I guess I'm glad I didn't chose that path, but there is soooo much controversy in the field, maybe I should have gone for it. Nothing like an old bone to pick. (Sorry for that really bad joke, but you know, I couldn't resist).

The article about Dr. Sandford was particularly intersting, it is true, people do sometimes make extraordinary sea journeys by ACCIDENT!

I'm glad Kennewick man hasn't been consigned to the bone yard, is he safe for sure yet?
21 posted on 07/22/2003 8:11:36 PM PDT by jocon307 (Who doesn't LOVE FR?)
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To: blam
Blam, my mind is clouded a bit by Cabernet and I'm tired, but this seems like a bit more BBS.

Most of us who have studied much about this think it's likely a migration by boat occurred 30,000+ years ago and leapfrogged to Mesoamerica and South America because of the inhospitable North American climate during the glacial period. Certainly Siberian nomads crossed the Bering Strait at a later date, populating the now ice-free north. They would certainly carry the Asian haploid.

How does the writer define "America?" He mentions Monte Verde but doesn't cite any direct evidence of haploid studies from South America. The "Native American" study seems restricted to North America only unless I missed something in the article. If so it's only natural he'd find the evidence he cites. Add the fact that migrations probably occurred in pulses, over time, and this "evidence" seems a lot more suspect to me. But maybe it's just the Cabernet.
22 posted on 07/22/2003 8:18:52 PM PDT by Bernard Marx
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To: Bernard Marx
Yup. The BBC is just spouting the academic party line, they left out a lot.

'First Americans Were Australians' ...also from the BBC.

23 posted on 07/22/2003 8:25:28 PM PDT by blam
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To: Bernard Marx
"Most of us who have studied much about this think it's likely a migration by boat occurred 30,000+ years ago and leapfrogged to Mesoamerica and South America"...

We have also have concluded that Archaeologists do not own boats. They are not sailors and they don't have a clue as to the mobility of a culture that is based upon boats and shoreline activities. I suspect that there were many routes that were filled with boats in prehistory, and one of them may have been the Bering strait.

I also think it is likely that Europeans found their way to these shores very early, whether it was due to accident or intent.

"Sailors sail: That's what they do because that's who they are."

24 posted on 07/22/2003 8:52:18 PM PDT by TexanToTheCore
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To: TexanToTheCore; blam
It's interesting that one of the oldest human remains found in North America turned up on one of the Channel Islands off the California coast -- maybe 40 miles from where I sit as I write this. What were Very Early People doing out in the Channel Islands? And why did the Chumash Indians have such sophisticated boats? There are petroglyphs of an amazing Chumash boat rescue just a few miles from where I am right now.

Blam, did you catch the National Geographic piece last week or the week before about the migration from South Africa to Australia via India? I think it was NG - may have been Discover. Whichever, I want to get a videotape. This was due to ocean levels receding due to heavy glaciation. It's beginning to make a lot of sense to me.
25 posted on 07/22/2003 9:31:26 PM PDT by Bernard Marx
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To: Bernard Marx
"It's interesting that one of the oldest human remains found in North America turned up on one of the Channel Islands off the California coast "

'Arlington Springs Woman',13,000 Year Old Human Skeleton, California Island

This skeleton will beat out Luzia as the oldest skeleton ever found in anywhere in the Americas.

"Blam, did you catch the National Geographic piece last week or the week before about the migration from South Africa to Australia via India? I think it was NG - may have been Discover."

No, I missed that one. It'll be back.

26 posted on 07/22/2003 9:46:52 PM PDT by blam
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To: Bernard Marx
You ought to read this book, Earlier Than You Think, by Dr George Carter. You'd be amazed at all the things found in your area by this guy.
27 posted on 07/22/2003 9:55:10 PM PDT by blam
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To: blam
Just as we found that carbon dating isn't the be-all and end-all of dating materials, it is similarly way too early to claim that title for any DNA gobbledygook. Don't mean to offend you earthlings but your science is primitive compared to....whoops, nevermind!
28 posted on 07/22/2003 10:11:50 PM PDT by thegreatbeast (Quid lucrum istic mihi est?)
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To: thegreatbeast
Just as we found that carbon dating isn't the be-all and end-all of dating materials...

Hell, I always thought Tanqueray martinis straight up were the finest dating material known to man.

29 posted on 07/22/2003 10:20:48 PM PDT by Bernard Marx
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To: blam
I'm obviosuly not a geneticist, and may have misunderstood some of the "facts" of the article, but why would only the DNA of the Asians that migrated to the Americas mutate? Wouldn't the DNA of the Asians that stayed behind mutate the same way?

It seems to me what happened is the Asians that migrated to the Americas interbred with others who were either already here, or came later. That combination with a completely different line of DNA contributed more to the change in the "Asian" DNA than did mutations.
30 posted on 07/22/2003 10:52:59 PM PDT by Auntie Dem (Hey! Hey! Ho! Ho! Terrorist lovers gotta go!)
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To: blam; Alas Babylon!
Does this mean all europeans are entitled to have casinos now.

BLACKJACK!
31 posted on 07/22/2003 11:36:24 PM PDT by longtermmemmory (Vote!)
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To: jocon307
"I'm glad Kennewick man hasn't been consigned to the bone yard, is he safe for sure yet?"

Safe for now, I believe the case is back in court on appeal though.

32 posted on 07/23/2003 7:23:55 AM PDT by blam
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To: Auntie Dem
"That combination with a completely different line of DNA contributed more to the change in the "Asian" DNA than did mutations."

I think we probably have numerous cases of 'founders effect.'

33 posted on 07/23/2003 7:25:10 AM PDT by blam
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To: blam
Already added this to the GGG homepage, not pinging the list, just posting links to the GGG.
Please FREEPMAIL me if you want on, off, or alter the "Gods, Graves, Glyphs" PING list --
Archaeology/Anthropology/Ancient Cultures/Artifacts/Antiquities, etc.
The GGG Digest
-- Gods, Graves, Glyphs (alpha order)

34 posted on 10/05/2004 11:11:11 PM PDT by SunkenCiv ("All I have seen teaches me trust the Creator for all I have not seen." -- Emerson)
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· join list or digest · view topics · view or post blog · bookmark · post a topic ·

 
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Just updating the GGG info, not sending a general distribution.

To all -- please ping me to other topics which are appropriate for the GGG list.
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35 posted on 09/19/2008 1:31:34 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/_______Profile hasn't been updated since Friday, May 30, 2008)
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