Photo: Trustees of the Natural History Museum
Researchers from the Museum of natural history max Planck Institute of evolutionary anthropology max Planck was first extracted DNA from Neanderthal remains (the palaeoanthropes), found in Gibraltar. The age of these fossils is still uncertain, however, it was believed that these ancient people were the last of their kind. About it reported in a press release on Phys.org.
The specialists used a method of preparing DNA, which decreases the degree of contamination of the samples, followed by their sequencing, i.e. determination of the primary structure (sequence of nucleotides) of the genome. The samples were selected from parts of fossilized skulls of Neanderthals, found in Forbes Quarry in 1848, and Devil’s Tower in 1926.
It turned out that the remains in the Tower of the Devil belonged to a child 3-5 years male, and the bones of the Career of Forbes — an adult woman who were genetically similar to early Neanderthals who lived in Europe and Western Asia 60-120 thousand years ago, but not later palaeoanthropes. Thus, although Gibraltar is considered the last area of natural habitat Neanderthal fossils actually older than previously thought.
Fossils of the last Neanderthals date back to 37-42 thousands of years ago and was found in Belgium, France and Russia.
Video, photo All from Russia.