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Keyword: neandertal

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  • Bigger brains are smarter, but not by much

    12/02/2018 1:29:38 PM PST · by ETL · 11 replies
    phys.org/news ^ | Nov 30, 2018 | Katherine Unger Baillie, University of Pennsylvania
    The English idiom "highbrow," derived from a physical description of a skull barely able to contain the brain inside of it, comes from a long-held belief in the existence of a link between brain size and intelligence. For more than 200 years, scientists have looked for such an association. Begun using rough measures, such as estimated skull volume or head circumference, the investigation became more sophisticated in the last few decades when MRIs offered a highly accurate accounting of brain volume.Yet the connection has remained hazy and fraught, with many studies failing to account for confounding variables, such as height...
  • Neanderthals and humans were hooking up way more than anyone thought

    11/29/2018 2:49:48 PM PST · by ETL · 64 replies
    FoxNews.com/Science ^ | Nov 29, 2018 | Charles Q. Choi Live Science Contributor
    Way more sex happened between Neanderthals and the ancestors of modern humans across Europe and Asia than scientists originally thought, a new study finds. Scientists initially thought that interbreeding among the two groups was more isolated to a particular place and time — specifically, when they encountered each other in western Eurasia shortly after modern humans left Africa. This idea stemmed from the fact that the genomes of modern humans from outside Africa are only about 2 percent Neanderthal, on average. Subsequent research, however, has found that Neanderthal ancestry is 12 to 20 percent higher in modern East Asians compared...
  • In praise of… Neanderthal man (we have all been guilty of defaming them as half-wits)

    01/15/2010 6:13:45 PM PST · by SeekAndFind · 20 replies · 778+ views
    The Guardian ^ | 01/15/2010
    It seems we have all been guilty of defaming Neanderthal man. Research by a team based at the University of Bristol suggests that, far from being a lumbering, witless no-hoper, he was capable, 50,000 years ago, of producing forms of cosmetic adornment and even of primitive jewellery. In 1985, finds in Murcia, Spain, had suggested that this might be so; and now an expedition led by Professor João Zilhão of Bristol has uncovered a shell which shows "a symbolic dimension in behaviour and thinking that cannot be denied". All of which suggests some decent equivalence with the hitherto far more...
  • Human ancestors interbred with related species

    09/08/2011 5:17:24 PM PDT · by Renfield · 69 replies · 2+ views
    Naturenews ^ | 09-05-2011 | Matt Kaplan
    Our ancestors bred with other species in the Homo genus, according to a study published today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences1. The authors say that up to 2% of the genomes of some modern African populations may originally come from a closely related species. Palaeontologists have long wondered whether modern humans came from a single, genetically isolated population of hominins or whether we are a genetic mix of various hominin species. Last year, an analysis comparing the Neanderthal genome sequence to that of modern H. sapiens showed that some interbreeding did take place between the two...
  • New Virtual Reconstruction Of A Neanderthal Thorax Suggests Another Breathing Mechanism

    11/18/2018 1:56:47 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 24 replies
    EurekAlert! ^ | November 14, 2018 | University of the Basque Country
    While some of the anatomical regions of these extinct humans are well known, others, such as the vertebral column and the ribs, are less well known because these elements are more fragile and not well preserved in the fossil record. In 1983 a partial Neanderthal skeleton (known officially as Kebara 2, and nicknamed "Moshe") belonging to a young male Neanderthal individual who died some 60,000 years ago was found in the Kebara site (Mount Carmel, Israel). While this skeleton does not preserve the cranium because some time after burial the cranium was removed, probably as a consequence of a funerary...
  • 115,000-Year-Old Bones Found In Poland Reveal Neanderthal Child Eaten By Gigantic Prehistoric Bird

    11/12/2018 8:17:05 AM PST · by Gamecock · 26 replies
    Hasan Jasmin ^ | 11/9/2018
    A few years ago, a team of researchers in Poland came across a pair of Neanderthal bones that held a grisly secret: Their owner had been eaten by a giant bird. The two finger bones belonged to a Neanderthal child who had died roughly 115,000 years before, making those bones the oldest known human remains from Poland, according to Science In Poland. Once the bones were analyzed, the scientists concluded that the hand bones were porous because they had passed through the digestive system of a large bird. It is unclear if the bird killed the child and then ate...
  • A need for music even in cave era ('Neanderthal conservatives')

    06/25/2009 12:40:34 AM PDT · by james500 · 5 replies · 598+ views
    Boston Globe ^ | 6/25/2009 | Carolyn Y. Johnson
    We all knew that Stone Age humans were hunters and gatherers. But sculptors and flutists? Archeologists said yesterday that they had unearthed the oldest musical instruments ever found - several flutes that inhabitants of southwestern Germany laboriously carved from bone and ivory at least 35,000 years ago. The find suggests just how integral artistic expression may be to human existence: Music apparently flourished even in prehistoric days when mere survival was a full-time endeavor. Fragments of the instruments were found in a cave, amid bones from bears and mammoths and flakes of flint from a prehistoric tool shop. “There were...
  • Earliest hominin migrations into the Arabian Peninsula required no novel adaptations

    11/02/2018 11:24:36 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 8 replies
    EurekAlert! ^ | October 29, 2018 | Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History
    A new study... suggests that early hominin dispersals beyond Africa did not involve adaptations to environmental extremes, such as to arid and harsh deserts. The discovery of stone tools and cut-marks on fossil animal remains at the site of Ti's al Ghadah provides definitive evidence for hominins in Saudi Arabia at least 100,000 years earlier than previously known. Stable isotope analysis of the fossil fauna indicates a dominance of grassland vegetation, with aridity levels similar to those found in open savanna settings in eastern Africa today. The stable isotope data indicates that early dispersals of our archaic ancestors were part...
  • Study reconstructs Neandertal ribcage, offers new clues to ancient human anatomy

    11/02/2018 10:57:55 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 24 replies
    EurekAlert! ^ | October 30, 2018 | Kim Eckart, University of Washington
    An international team of scientists has completed the first 3D virtual reconstruction of the ribcage of the most complete Neandertal skeleton unearthed to date, potentially shedding new light on how this ancient human moved and breathed. The team, which included researchers from universities in Spain, Israel, and the United States, including the University of Washington, focused on the thorax -- the area of the body containing the rib cage and upper spine, which forms a cavity to house the heart and lungs. Using CT scans of fossils from an approximately 60,000-year-old male skeleton known as Kebara 2, researchers were able...
  • Neanderthal-like features in 450,000-year-old fossil teeth from the Italian Peninsula

    10/13/2018 4:10:00 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 26 replies
    EurekAlert! ^ | October 3, 2018 | PLOS
    Zanolli and colleagues examined dental remains from the sites of Fontana Fanuccio, located 50km southeast of Rome, and Visogliano, located 18km northwest of Trieste. At around 450,000 years old, these teeth join a very short list of fossil human remains from Middle Pleistocene Europe. Using micro-CT scanning and detailed morphological analyses, the authors examined the shape and arrangement of tooth tissues and compared them with teeth of other human species. They found that the teeth of both sites share similarities with Neanderthals and are distinct from modern humans. There has been much debate over the identities and relationships of Middle...
  • Neanderthal healthcare practices crucial to survival

    10/13/2018 2:32:03 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 38 replies
    Eurekalert! ^ | October 4, 2018 | University of York
    "We have evidence of healthcare dating back 1.6 million years ago, but we think it probably goes further back than this. We wanted to investigate whether healthcare in Neanderthals was more than a cultural practice; was it something they just did or was it more fundamental to their strategies for survival? "The high level of injury and recovery from serious conditions, such as a broken leg, suggests that others must have collaborated in their care and helped not only to ease pain, but to fight for their survival in such a way that they could regain health and actively participate...
  • Grisly discovery: Bones reveal Neanderthal child was eaten by large bird

    10/09/2018 4:16:15 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 47 replies
    foxnews.com ^ | 10/09/2018 | James Rogers
    Tiny holes in the bones indicate that they passed through a large bird’s digestive system, according to Professor Pawel Valde-Nowak of the Jagiellonian University in Krakow. It’s not clear, however, whether the bird attacked and ate the young Neanderthal or scavenged the remains of a dead child. Believed to be about 115,000 years old, the bones are the oldest human remains ever discovered in Poland. Experts from the Jagiellonian University and Washington University in St. Louis confirmed that the remains are digital bones from a child’s hand. The Archaeological Museum of Krakow and the Polish Academy of Sciences also participated...
  • Iberia’s Neolithic Farmers Linked to Modern-Day Basques

    09/08/2015 12:40:13 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 8 replies
    archaeology.org ^ | Tuesday, September 08, 2015
    DNA samples were obtained from eight early Iberian farmers whose remains were discovered in Spain’s El Portalón cave in Atapuerca. Like populations in central and northern Europe, the Iberian farmers had traveled from the south and mixed with local hunter-gatherer groups. “The genetic variation observed in modern-day Basques is significantly closer to the newly sequenced early farmers than to older Iberian hunter-gatherer samples,” “Parts of that early farmer population probably remained relatively isolated since then (which we can still see in the distinct culture and language of Basques)
  • History of modern man unravels as German scholar is exposed as fraud

    02/21/2005 9:44:35 AM PST · by FNU LNU · 106 replies · 1,858+ views
    The Guardian ^ | February 19, 2005 | Luke Harding
    History of modern man unravels as German scholar is exposed as fraud Flamboyant anthropologist falsified dating of key discoveries Luke Harding in Berlin Saturday February 19, 2005 The Guardian It appeared to be one of archaeology's most sensational finds. The skull fragment discovered in a peat bog near Hamburg was more than 36,000 years old - and was the vital missing link between modern humans and Neanderthals. This, at least, is what Professor Reiner Protsch von Zieten - a distinguished, cigar-smoking German anthropologist - told his scientific colleagues, to global acclaim, after being invited to date the extremely rare skull....
  • Ancient Italian Skeletons Had Hemp In Their Teeth, Archaeologists Discover

    09/04/2018 4:51:29 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 47 replies
    Forbes ^ | August 30, 2018 | Kristina Killgrove
    In a new analysis of thousands of teeth from ancient skeletons buried at a site near Naples, Italy, archaeologists have discovered that people were using their mouths to help with their work -- occupations that likely involved processing hemp into string and fabric. We all use our teeth as tools -- to open bottles, hold pieces of paper, or even smoke a pipe. When we do this, we open ourselves up to the possibility of cracking our teeth but also create microscopic grooves and injuries to the enamel surface. Since teeth don't remodel like bones do, these tiny insults remain...
  • Study: Climate Change Contributed to Neanderthal Demise

    08/31/2018 12:18:13 PM PDT · by ETL · 47 replies
    Sci-News.com ^ | Aug 30, 2018 | News Staff / Source
    Neanderthals were skilled hunters and had learned how to control fire, but they had a less diverse diet than modern humans, living largely on meat from the animals they had successfully pursued. These food sources would naturally become scarce during colder periods, making Neanderthals more vulnerable to rapid environmental change. In comparison, modern humans had incorporated fish and plants into their diet alongside meat, which supplemented their food intake and potentially enabled their survival. ..." Dr. Ersek and colleagues examined stalagmites in two caves in the Carpathian Mountains, which revealed more detailed records of climate change in continental Europe than...
  • Climate change killed off Neanderthals, study says

    08/31/2018 11:13:35 AM PDT · by BenLurkin · 49 replies
    Fox ^ | Chris Ciaccia |
    The evidence is there that Europe experienced stark cold and dry spells, putting a strain on Neanderthals' food supply and ability to survive. Thanks to a group of researchers looking at stalagmites in Romania, we may have proof this was indeed the case. Dr. Ersek and his team looked at the stalagmites—rocks that gather in caves for long stretches of time —to look at the climate. Stalagmites contain rings, similar to trees, which can give an indication of how extreme weather patterns, occurring over thousands of years, impacted Neanderthals. The study was published in the scientific journal Proceedings of the...
  • Cave girl was half Neanderthal, half Denisovan

    08/22/2018 1:34:01 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 57 replies
    bbc ^ | 08/22/2018 | Helen Briggs
    DNA extracted from bone fragments found in the cave show the girl was the offspring of a Neanderthal mother and a Denisovan father. The discovery, reported in Nature, gives a rare insight into the lives of our closest ancient human relatives. Neanderthals and Denisovans were humans like us, but belonged to different species. "We knew from previous studies that Neanderthals and Denisovans must have occasionally had children together," says Viviane Slon, researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology (MPI-EVA) in Leipzig, Germany. "But I never thought we would be so lucky as to find an actual offspring of...
  • ‘Denisova 11’ Had Neanderthal Mother and Denisovan Father

    08/27/2018 6:30:25 AM PDT · by ETL · 14 replies
    Sci-News.com ^ | Aug 23, 2018 | News Staff / Source
    “An interesting aspect of the Denisova 11 genome is that it allows us to learn things about two populations — the Neanderthals from the mother’s side, and the Denisovans from the father’s side,” said co-author Dr. Fabrizio Mafessoni, from the Department of Evolutionary Genetics at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology.The researchers found that Denisova 11’s father, whose genome bears traces of Neanderthal ancestry, came from a population related to a later Denisovan found in the cave.The mother came from a population more closely related to Neanderthals who lived later in Europe than to an earlier Neanderthal found in...
  • Found the oldest Neanderthal wooden tools in the Iberian Peninsula

    08/24/2018 3:34:06 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 14 replies
    Phys dot org ^ | April 4, 2018 | Centro Nacional de Investigacion sobre la Evolucion Humana
    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. One of this halves was scraped with a stone tool and treated with fire to harden it and to facilitate the scraping to obtain a pointed morphology. Use-wear analysis revealed that it was used for digging in search of food, flint, or simply to...