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Keyword: neandertal

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  • Why tiny Neanderthal brains are now growing in petri dishes

    06/27/2018 1:36:25 PM PDT · by Oldeconomybuyer · 42 replies
    NBC ^ | June 27, 2018 | by Laura Geggel
    Scientists hope the pea-sized blobs can help explain the rise of modern humans. Neanderthals went extinct about 40,000 years ago, but thanks to cutting-edge science, there is now a lab in California that has petri dishes filled with pea-sized versions of the cavemen's brains. Why are researchers cultivating and studying these minibrains? The reason, they say, is that these small neural lumps may reveal why Neanderthals died out and Homo sapiens went on to conquer much of the planet. "Neanderthals are fascinating because they shared Earth with us, and there is now genetic evidence we actually bred with them," study...
  • A human fossil species in western Europe could be close to a million years old

    06/07/2018 7:13:23 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 28 replies
    phys.org ^ | June 7, 2018 | CORDIS
    Credit: Mathieu Duval ========================================================================= First direct dating of an early human tooth confirms the antiquity of Homo antecessor, western Europe's oldest known human fossil species. A previous find from the unit TD6 of Atapuerca Gran Dolina archaeological site in northern Spain has yielded more information about our early human lineage. An international team of researchers from Australia, China, France and Spain has conducted the first direct dating study of a fossil tooth belonging to Homo antecessor (H. antecessor), the earliest known hominin species identified in Europe. The study shows that H. antecessor probably lived somewhere between 772 000 and 949...
  • Are these Neanderthal etchings a long-lost message?

    05/16/2018 10:21:01 AM PDT · by ETL · 79 replies
    FoxNews.com/Science ^ | May 8, 2018 | Laura Geggel, Senior Writer | LiveScience
    A Neanderthal seems to have left a message etched in stone about 35,000 years ago, a new study finds. An analysis of the slanted, zigzag lines — engraved on a piece of flint discovered at a Neanderthal site in Crimea — reveals that they likely weren't made willy-nilly. Rather, the Neanderthal artist would have needed excellent fine motor skills and attention to detail to etch the lines, which may carry symbolic meaning, the researchers said. If this new interpretation is correct, the engraved piece of flint will join a growing list of artifacts showing that Neanderthals were likely complex beings...
  • Neandertals, Stone Age people may have voyaged the Mediterranean

    05/05/2018 9:08:13 PM PDT · by Theoria · 55 replies
    Science ^ | 24 April 2018 | Andrew Lawler
    WASHINGTON, D.C.—Odysseus, who voyaged across the wine-dark seas of the Mediterranean in Homer’s epic, may have had some astonishingly ancient forerunners. A decade ago, when excavators claimed to have found stone tools on the Greek island of Crete dating back at least 130,000 years, other archaeologists were stunned—and skeptical. But since then, at that site and others, researchers have quietly built up a convincing case for Stone Age seafarers—and for the even more remarkable possibility that they were Neandertals, the extinct cousins of modern humans. The finds strongly suggest that the urge to go to sea, and the cognitive and...
  • Found the oldest Neanderthal wooden tools in the Iberian Peninsula

    04/06/2018 4:46:23 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 24 replies
    Phys dot org ^ | April 4, 2018 | Centro Nacional de Investigacion sobre la Evolucion Humana
    Archaeological excavations at the Aranbaltza site in the Basque Country coast (Northern Spain) have revealed several episodes of neandertal occupations with preserved wooden remains... In 2015, the excavation revealed two very well preserved wooden tools, one of which is a 15 cm-long digging stick... The detailed analysis of this tool and the luminescence dating of the sediment that bears the wooden remains indicate that the objects were deposited around 90,000 years ago, and thus were made by neandertals. The Micro-CT analysis and a close examination of the surface have shown that a yew trunk was cut longitudinally into two halves....
  • A New Batch of Neanderthal Genome Provides Insights Into Their Complex History

    03/26/2018 3:35:09 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 51 replies
    Seeker ^ | Wednesday, March 21, 2018 | Jen Viegas
    People today of Native American, European, Asian, and North African heritage have Neanderthal DNA in their genomes, with percentages estimated between 1-4 percent. As a result, the majority of people alive today are related to these humans that, as a distinct population, are thought to have gone extinct 39,000-41,000 years ago. An international team of researchers led by scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology has just overcome the problem, allowing for whole genome sequencing of five Neanderthals who lived 39,000-47,000 years ago. The findings, reported in the journal Nature, provide important insights into Neanderthal history before and...
  • Compassion Helped Neanderthals To Survive, Study Reveals

    03/13/2018 11:05:35 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 28 replies
    University of York ^ | Tuesday, March 13, 2018 | Alistair Keely
    They have an unwarranted image as brutish and uncaring, but new research has revealed just how knowledgeable and effective Neanderthal healthcare was. The study, by the University of York, reveals that Neanderthal healthcare was uncalculated and highly effective -- challenging our notions that they were brutish compared to modern humans. The researchers argue that the care provided was widespread and should be seen as a "compassionate and knowledgeable response to injury and illness." It is well known that Neanderthals sometimes provided care for the injured, but new analysis by the team at York suggest they were genuinely caring of their...
  • Neanderthals Were Artistic Like Modern Humans, Study Indicates

    03/13/2018 10:41:28 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 25 replies
    Eurekalert! ^ | February 22, 2018 | University of Southampton
    A new study led by the University of Southampton and the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology shows that paintings in three caves in Spain were created more than 64,000 years ago - 20,000 years before modern humans arrived in Europe. This means that the Palaeolithic (Ice Age) cave art - including pictures of animals, dots and geometric signs - must have been made by Neanderthals, a 'sister' species to Homo sapiens, and Europe's sole human inhabitants at the time. It also indicates that they thought symbolically, like modern humans. Published today in the journal Science, the study reveals how...
  • Wooden tools hint at fire use by early Neanderthals

    02/16/2018 9:34:56 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 21 replies
    Popular Archaeology ^ | Monday, February 05, 2018 | editors
    A study suggests that early Neanderthals in southern Tuscany may have used fire to manufacture wooden tools used for foraging. In 2012, excavations for constructing thermal baths at Poggetti Vecchi, nestled at the foot of a hill in Grosseto in southern Tuscany, turned up a trove of wooden implements and fossil bones of the straight-tusked elephant Palaeoloxodon antiquus. The site was radiometrically dated to the late Middle Pleistocene, around 171,000 years ago, when early Neanderthals inhabited the region. Biancamaria Aranguren and colleagues report that most of the wooden implements were hewn from boxwood branches and likely used as digging sticks....
  • New Fossil Found In Israel Suggests A Much Earlier Human Migration Out Of Africa

    01/26/2018 5:20:54 AM PST · by SMGFan · 30 replies
    npr ^ | January 25, 2018
    Archaeologists in Israel have discovered the oldest fossil of a modern human outside Africa. The fossil suggests that humans first migrated out of the continent much earlier than previously believed. The scientists were digging in a cave called Misliya, on the slopes of Mount Carmel on the northern coast of Israel. "The cave is one of a series of prehistoric caves," says Mina Weinstein-Evron of the Zinman Institute of Archaeology at the University of Haifa, who led the team. "It's a collapsed cave, but people lived there before it collapsed." The cave had been occupied for several hundred thousand years,...
  • Scientists discover oldest known modern human fossil outside of Africa

    01/25/2018 2:19:08 PM PST · by Red Badger · 20 replies
    phys.org ^ | 01/25/2018 | http://www.binghamton.edu/
    The left hemi-maxilla with teeth. Credit: Rolf Quam _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ A large international research team, led by Israel Hershkovitz from Tel Aviv University and including Rolf Quam from Binghamton University, State University of New York, has discovered the earliest modern human fossil ever found outside of Africa. The finding suggests that modern humans left the continent at least 50,000 years earlier than previously thought. "Misliya is an exciting discovery," says Rolf Quam, Binghamton University anthropology professor and a coauthor of the study. "It provides the clearest evidence yet that our ancestors first migrated out of Africa much earlier than we...
  • Ancient Eurasian DNA sequencing is revealing links with modern humans

    01/25/2018 11:51:25 AM PST · by BenLurkin · 18 replies
    phys.org ^ | 01/25/2018
    In a review published in the journal Trends in Genetics on January 25, scientists at the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing discuss what we know about the genetics of ancient individuals from Eurasia (Europe and Western Asia) between 45,000-7,500 years ago. The authors summarized work that investigated the genomes of more than 20 ancients in the Eurasian family tree, including the 45,000-year-old Ust'-Ishim individual from Central Siberia... ..."But with the information from the several individuals available for ancient DNA sequencing we do have hints at interesting population structure, migration and interaction in East Asia." The researchers learned that in...
  • Here's What Happened When Neanderthals And Ancient Humans Hooked Up 80,000 Years Ago

    01/29/2014 3:14:52 PM PST · by blam · 64 replies
    BI ^ | 1-29-2014 | Dina Spector
    Here's What Happened When Neanderthals And Ancient Humans Hooked Up 80,000 Years Ago Dina Spector Jan. 29, 2014, 1:49 PM     Neanderthal REUTERS/Nikola Solic Hyperrealistic face of a neanderthal male is displayed in a cave in the new Neanderthal Museum in the northern Croatian town of Krapina February 25, 2010 By comparing the Neanderthal genome to modern human DNA, the authors of two new studies, both published on Wednesday, show how DNA that humans have inherited from breeding with Neanderthals has shaped us. Modern humans, Neanderthals, and their sister lineage, Denisovans, descended from a common ancestor. The...
  • Neanderthal bones show signs of cannibalism

    07/07/2016 1:18:52 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 41 replies
    The remains that were found were radiocarbon-dated to be about 40,500 to 45,500 years old, and it was determined that Neanderthals butchered and used the bones of their peers as tools, according to a press release from the Eberhard Karls University of Tübingen. The findings were published in the journal Scientific Reports. The team identified 99 "uncertain" bone fragments as belonging to Neanderthals, which would make this the greatest trove of Neanderthal remains ever found north of the Alps. The findings also shed light on the genetics of this lost human species, adding to previously collected data on Neanderthal genes....
  • Could the first Maltese have been Neanderthals?

    06/19/2016 7:15:34 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 34 replies
    The Times of Malta ^ | June 19, 2016 | Ivan Martin
    Maltese prehistory may have just been extended by 30,000 years. The verdict of experts from the London Natural History Museum has revived the theory that a tooth discovered in Għar Dalam in 1917 may prove Neanderthals once roamed the island. The claim is not new. It was made in the 1920s by two British anthropologists, but four decades later the theory no longer had credence. “Anyone who wrote a history book from 1964 till today will say there were never any Neanderthals on Malta. According to them, the first people to come here were Sicilian farmers around 7,000 years ago,”...
  • Neanderthals built mysterious cave structures 175,000 years ago

    06/13/2016 1:51:05 PM PDT · by JimSEA · 27 replies
    The Guardian. ^ | 5/25/2016 | Ian Sample
    Mysterious structures found deep inside a French cave are the work of Neanderthal builders who lived in the region more than 100,000 years before modern humans set foot in Europe. The extraordinary constructions are made from nearly 400 stalagmites that have been yanked from the ground and stacked on top of one another to produce rudimentary walls on the damp cave floor. The most prominent formations are two ringed walls, built four layers deep in places, which appear to have been propped up with stalagmites wedged in place as vertical stays. The largest of the walls is nearly seven metres...
  • The work of Neanderthals: Ancient ring-like structures from 176,000 years ago

    05/25/2016 7:10:46 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 26 replies
    l a times ^ | 05/25/2016 | Deborah Netburn
    Deep in a dark cave in southwestern France lie half a dozen mysterious structures that scientists believe were built by Neanderthals 176,000 years ago -- about 140,000 years before the first modern humans arrived in Europe. The structures, described Wednesday in the journal Nature, are located in what is known as the Bruniquel Cave. They are made of roughly 400 pieces of stalagmites, all roughly, almost eerily, the same size. Archaeologists say these mineral formations were probably broken off the cave floor by ancient hands and then deliberately arranged into two large rings and a series of four round piles...
  • Prehistoric Hand Stencils In Spanish Caves Not Randomly Placed, Say Researchers

    04/23/2016 11:54:33 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 44 replies
    Popular Archaeology ^ | Sunday, April 17, 2016 | editors
    Prehistoric cave occupants paid attention to cave wall morphology and touch when creating hand stencils. Human occupants of two caves in Northern Spain put some thought into where they placed their hand stencils on cave walls as much as 37,000 years ago, during Palaeolithic times. The topography and physical characteristics of the walls in the low light conditions of the caves seem to have mattered to them, suggest a team of researchers... What they found was a pattern that indicated selection or attention to certain types of natural cave wall features for placement of the stencils. "In total 80% of...
  • OU anthropologists reconstruct mitogenomes from prehistoric dental calculus

    04/17/2016 2:17:48 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 20 replies
    EurekAlert ^ | March 28, 2016 | U of Oklahoma
    ...In recent years, dental calculus has emerged as an unexpected, but valuable, long-term reservoir of ancient DNA from dietary and microbial sources... Very little dental calculus was required for analysis--fewer than 25 milligrams per individual. This makes it possible to obtain high quality genetic ancestry information from very little starting material, an important consideration for archaeological remains... Although dental calculus preserves alongside skeletal remains, it is not actually a human tissue. Dental calculus, also known as tartar, is a calcified form of dental plaque that acquires human DNA and proteins passively, primarily through the saliva and other host secretions. Once...
  • Neanderthal Bone Fragment Identified in Denisova Cave

    04/02/2016 2:37:38 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 12 replies
    Archaeology ^ | Tuesday, March 29, 2016 | editors
    Scientists from the University of Oxford and the University of Manchester have used a new technique, "Zooarchaeology by Mass Spectrometry," or ZooMS, to identify more than 2,000 bone fragments recovered from Russia's Denisova Cave. ZooMS analyzes the collagen peptide sequences in bone, which can then be used to identify its species. Among the remains of mammoths, woolly rhino, wolf, and reindeer, the researchers found one Neanderthal bone. "When the ZooMS results showed that there was a human fingerprint among the bones I was extremely excited. ...The bone itself is not exceptional in any way and would otherwise be missed by...