SCI Bulgarian cave remains reveal surprises about earliest Homo sapiens in Europe

mzkitty

I give up.
Interesting, but I've never really believed humans all came out of Africa.


April 7, 2021,5:46 PM Updated 5 hours ago

Bulgarian cave remains reveal surprises about earliest Homo sapiens in Europe
By Will Dunham
4 Min Read

(Reuters) - DNA extracted from remains found in a Bulgarian cave of three people who lived roughly 45,000 years ago is revealing surprises about some of the first Homo sapiens populations to venture into Europe, including extensive interbreeding with Neanderthals and genetic links to present-day East Asians.

Slideshow ( 5 images )

Scientists said on Wednesday they sequenced the genomes of these three individuals - all males - using DNA obtained from a molar and bone fragments discovered in Bacho Kiro Cave near the town of Dryanovo, as well as one female who lived roughly 35,000 years ago at the same site.

Our species first appeared in Africa approximately 300,000 years ago and later trekked to other parts of the world, sometimes encountering Neanderthals - our close cousins - already inhabiting parts of Eurasia. The three Bacho Kiro Cave males represent the oldest securely dated Homo sapiens individuals from Europe.

They had 3% to 3.8% Neanderthal DNA, and had Neanderthal ancestors about five to seven generations back in their family histories, evidence of interbreeding, said geneticist Mateja Hajdinjak of the Francis Crick Institute in London, lead author of the study published in the journal Nature.

Interbreeding, known as admixture, between Homo sapiens and Neanderthals before the extinction of Neanderthals sometime after 40,000 years ago has been previously shown, with present-day human populations outside Africa bearing a small percentage of Neanderthal DNA.

The prevalence of this interbreeding and the relationship and power dynamics between Homo sapiens and Neanderthals has been harder to understand - including any role our species played in the demise of the Neanderthals. The new study suggests interbreeding was more common than previously known for the first Homo sapiens in Europe.

It is an “amazing observation” that all three individuals had Neanderthal ancestors in their recent family history, said geneticist and study co-author Svante Pääbo, director of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Germany.

“This makes it likely that the earliest modern humans frequently mixed with Neanderthals when they met. It may even be the case that part of the reason Neanderthals disappeared is that they were simply absorbed into larger modern human groups. It may be just part of the reason they disappeared but the data supports such a scenario,” Pääbo said.

The researchers detected a genetic contribution among present-day people from the group that included these three, but unexpectedly it was found particularly in East Asia, including China, rather than Europe. This suggested that some people from this group eventually headed east.

“This study shifted our previous understanding of early human migrations into Europe in a way that it showed how even the earliest history of modern humans in Europe may have been tumultuous and involved population replacements,” Hajdinjak said.

The notion of population replacement was illustrated by the fact that the 35,000-year-old individual from Bacho Kiro Cave belonged to a group genetically unrelated to the site’s earlier inhabitants.

Another study published on Wednesday in the journal Nature Ecology & Evolution shed more light on Europe’s early Homo sapiens populations.

Scientists sequenced the genome of a Homo sapiens female using DNA extracted from a skull found at a site southwest of Prague in the Czech Republic. She is believed to have lived more than 45,000 years ago, though radiocarbon dating efforts to determine a firm date were unsuccessful.

This woman carried 3% Neanderthal ancestry and bore genetic traits suggesting she had dark skin and dark eyes, said geneticist Kay Prüfer of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, the study’s lead author.

“Her skull shows evidence of gnawing by a predator, possibly a hyena,” Prüfer said.

Her group, distinct from the one in Bulgaria, appears to have died out without leaving genetic ancestry among modern-day people.

 

Melodi

Disaster Cat
I have thought for decades that part of the "Neanderthal story" was one of simply breeding with "modern" people along with the eventual loss of their own identity. Like a lot of the human story, it is probably a bit more complicated than that, there are plenty of "lost" tribes that still have people alive today that carry their DNA, it isn't just the Neanderthals.

I'm glad you posted this story as I missed it, and I try to pay attention to this constantly updating background on early people in Eurasia
 

mzkitty

I give up.
I'd like to know if they can really dig back eons ago into all races' DNA and positively say they originate in Africa. I mean, do Neanderthals really have African DNA? Do we white people? Show me that.
 

BadMedicine

Would *I* Lie???
I'd like to know if they can really dig back eons ago into all races' DNA and positively say they originate in Africa. I mean, do Neanderthals really have African DNA? Do we white people? Show me that.
Yes, all races have the DNA of the khoisan (also called bushmen) of southern africa. From this group ALL RACES, including the 4 found in Africa, evolved. So MOST africans you see, and blacks in america, are DIVERGENT evolution with whites and asians.. they evolved during the same time period from the same stock BUT IN DIFFERENT DIRECTIONS, based on environment and selective pressures.


If you look at the khoisan you will see the faces of asians, whites, and blacks in them. They are lighter skinned-yellow/brown, have little body hair, including on the scalp, and are nomadic, fairly peaceful people. They have been persecuted and pushed out of most of their range by the hering bantus who came from the west coast coast with goats and cattle, and thus being herders, had more resources, larger families/ clans/ and able to push the nomads out of the better areas.

 

Melodi

Disaster Cat
I'd like to know if they can really dig back eons ago into all races' DNA and positively say they originate in Africa. I mean, do Neanderthals really have African DNA? Do we white people? Show me that.
Most Africans South of the Sahara have no Neanderthal DNA, in North Africa, there has been so much mixing (including a lost earlier migration that shows in the DNA records) that many people do have some.

Remember, many of the civilizations of the ancient world, from the Bronze Age Greeks to the Roman Empire and even the Migration Age Germanic people not only included North Africa, in the case of Rome (and to a lesser degree Greece) they went all around the Mediterranean Sea.

Most Europeans and Asians have some Neanderthal DNA about 2 percent to as high as 5 or 6 percent (and that is changing as more people are tested). I am waiting for a real scientific study to get mine tested if I can, I suspect I have high levels given that "perfect Neanderthal skull" that my professor in college said "should have dropped out of the human race 40,000 years ago," and the fact I have a whole set of Neanderthal characteristics (including a bun on the back on my skull and flat ear canals).

Anyway, Densovian DNA is yet another group and many Asians and Austro-Asians have some of their DNA, but few Westen/Northern Europeans have it.

To make things more interesting, there seem to be markers for at least two more "species X" in our DNA (at least) that haven't been found yet and to throw monkey wrenches into the African mix, there have been finds of some very early humans in Asia.

This has created a quiet firestorm among people doing this sort of research because it suggests that while it may still be that the original "ancestors" of Neanderthals, Denisovans, "Hobbits," and modern humans may have popped up in Africa, there might have been a lot of things going on in Asia (China area) as well.

I think the "human" story is a lot more complex than was previously believed and also that people tended to mate (voluntarily or involuntarily) when anyone that looked enough like them to be considered human.

We now know that so far-all all those groups had some matings that were cross fertile and their genes live on to this day.

Another piece of the "Africa" puzzle may be that the known early modern humans in Europe had darker skins and hair but the Neanderthals tended to pale white skin with red or blond hair.

The Neanderthals had been in Europe for at least 300,000 years and the light skin is highly adaptable there, then flip to light skin among modern Europeans may very well have occurred after many matings with Neanderthals, with the lighter skin become the dominant one both because it is more adaptive to a Northern Climate and probably personal preferences in selecting marriage partners.

Lots we don't know yet, but the original German scientists that did the Neanderthal in modern Human DNA research ran the experiments something like 40,000 times (I forget exactly) before publishing the data because it was so groundbreaking and being German, he wanted the evidence to be a perfect as possible.
 

BadMedicine

Would *I* Lie???
one of the ways they know we evolved in south east africa is by the wide range of DIFFERENT DNA found in that area. The longer dna is in an area the longer it has to diverge in every acceptible/viable configuration, and outlyers belong to one group within the group rather than a mixture of all groups moving to and doing well in a new area.

The khoisan are the most genetically diverse humans on earth and have HUGE genomes showing they are evolved from a wide array of genetics, whereas more 'homogenous' groups such as the Japanese, Polynesians Scandinavians, (though vikings well mixed their blood.. not as much as centuries of neighboring genetics) and other groups that have become very bottlenecked as far as genetics go because their founding groups were possibly only a few dozen or few hundreds 'related' individuals
 

raven

Has No Life - Lives on TB
i have ceased the process of believing scientists
and that goes for the out of Africa story line.
particularly when it is totally "not relevant" to present history or daily life.
It has become simply another "emotional" appeal to white guilt.
 

BadMedicine

Would *I* Lie???
...and the part about 2-6% neanderthal DNA.. this is EXCLUSIVE, KNOWN neandethal DNA.... Meaning DNA not found in other homosapians, meaning, DNA that had evolved IN neanderthals, due to selective preassures, after leaving africa 500k years ago as Homo robustis....

In reality we are 98% chimpanzee-shared DNA.. and that 2 percent is the divergent evolution from our common ancestor some 6-8million years ago... we RETAINED most of what the chimps have and they retained most of what we have.

So in reality, neanderthals being (if we use 500k for neanders and 8million for chimp/human divergence) then we are 16 times closer to neanders than chimps. and we're 98% chimp. So take 2% and divide by 16 and you get 8-parts per percent, or 12% of a percent of us that ISN"T neandethal....

So THOUGH we have 2-6% of DISTINCT Neander EXCLUSIVE -post- afrika-DNA...we are actually 99.88% shared dna with neanderthals... they. were. human.
 

Melodi

Disaster Cat
i have ceased the process of believing scientists
and that goes for the out of Africa story line.
particularly when it is totally "not relevant" to present history or daily life.
It has become simply another "emotional" appeal to white guilt.
So you will reject any real medical advances that come about from the understanding of the human genome past and present.

Things like people with higher levels of Neanderthal DNA have a greater tendency towards arthritis and Type II but are protected from some other physical issues and that is just one example.

This does affect our everyday life in profound ways, it is unfortunate that the word "science" has been highjacked in an attempt to justify a political agenda, but that does not make all science or all medicine is wrong or unhelpful (remember that next time you step on a rusty nail or a relative survives and heart attack).

Another example, while it won't "cure" my personal situation, learning that my ear canal problems for which I have had three failed surgeries are probably the result of my DNA (my ear canals are identical to those found in excavations) means that eventually a way may be found to treat the condition. If that doesn't help me, it may help someone further down the road and prevent them from repeated infections and hearing loss (which show up in older Neanderthal skulls - infections can mark the skull).
 

packyderms_wife

Neither here nor there.
i have ceased the process of believing scientists
and that goes for the out of Africa story line.
particularly when it is totally "not relevant" to present history or daily life.
It has become simply another "emotional" appeal to white guilt.
thread drift, it's this prevailing attitude as to why history is no longer taught in public schools, specifically the history of the nazis and communists in the early 1900's. Most believe it's irrelevant to present history and daily life.
 

Chapulin

Senior Member
Back to the 3 individuals in the cave. Were these blood relatives/family unit or distinctly separate individuals? The story makes comments about the consistency of the DNA, but doesn't rule out family as the reason. If we are going to assume the Neanderthals merged into the human pool we need to find the bone records showing a high Neanderthal percentage with a low human percentage. So far it looks like the early humans out competed or the Neanderthals were selectively killed by a disease.
 

packyderms_wife

Neither here nor there.
So far it looks like the early humans out competed or the Neanderthals were selectively killed by a disease.
Probably both are correct. IIRC there was a cave of bones found in Iran or someplace like that but they would not allow the removal of any bones, for testing, due to religious grounds.
 

Melodi

Disaster Cat
I have just read an article that suggests the folks coming into Europe in the last wave about four thousand years ago may have had some resistance to Ysernia Pestis (The Black Death) and if so, that could explain with the majority of Neolethic farmers (and their DNA) goes away.

Disease, can have a huge effect on history....


ANCIENT DNA OFFERS CLUES TO OUR GENOMIC FUTURE
Dave Mellert, Ph.D.

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Ancient DNA

While most of the Human Genome Meeting focused on applying the latest advances in genomic technology to advance human health for the future, one of the Monday morning sessions looked to the past. Talks by two prominent researchers of genome evolution — Johannes Krause of the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History and Joshua Akey of the University of Washington — showed how investigations of our genomic history might provide clues that contribute to tomorrow’s cures.

First, Johannes Krause discussed his work with “ancient” human DNA, part of a broader area of research called paleogenetics. Compared to other biological compounds that are prone to degradation, DNA is remarkably stable, and short stretches of sequence can survive for thousands of years. This stability is enhanced by certain environmental conditions such as desiccation and freezing, which often occur in mummified human remains. This means that we can directly compare DNA sequences from modern humans to those of our ancient ancestors by using sophisticated statistical techniques to determine how similar or different those sequences are. By making such comparisons, paleogeneticists like Krause can reconstruct the geographic distribution of early human populations and discover how they mixed and combined over time to create modern populations.

One great example of how ancient DNA can be used to study human history comes from Ötzi the Iceman, whose surprisingly well-preserved corpse was discovered in the Alps in 1991. Because of the quality of his body’s preservation, Ötzi, who lived around 5000 years ago, has provided a remarkably clear genomic glimpse into Europe’s past. In 2012, geneticists sequenced and analyzed Ötzi’s genome sequence, comparing it to modern Europeans. The team found that Ötzi’s genome is similar to modern Sardinians, which is interesting because it suggests that the people of Sardinia, an island in the Mediterranean sea, have experienced less genetic “mixing” than other European populations (i.e. they are more similar to an ancient European than other modern populations).

Krause discussed analyses similar to those in the Ötzi example, but drawing from many more modern and ancient DNA samples. These studies found genetic evidence that modern Europeans come from three separate core populations that started to mix roughly 4800 to 3000 years ago. During this time, there was a massive influx of a Near East peoples called the Yamnaya. The resulting genetic impact on the rest of Europe was so large that, to cause a similar change today, there would have to be an influx of several billion people!

What enabled the Yamnaya to reshape the genetic landscape of Europe? Krause pointed to DNA evidence that a bacterium, Yersinia pestis, provided the key. It seems that Y. pestis was endemic in the Yamnaya population, and they very likely harbored a natural resistance to this bug, which is famous for causing the bubonic plague. This would mean that the ability of the Yamnaya to sweep into Europe was aided by disease. By studying ancient Yamnaya genomes and looking at their remnants in modern humans, we might find clues for how they were able to develop resistance to the plague — findings that could have a major impact on how we think about bacterial outbreaks.

Joshua Akey described a very different approach for genomic time travel. Rather than dealing with the technical difficulty of collecting and analyzing ancient DNA from mummified remains, he “excavates” it computationally. Specifically, Akey looks for Neanderthal DNA. To find it, he explores the genome sequence variation present in today’s human populations. By examining patterns of variation in the population, it is possible to find large blocks of sequence that most likely entered the gene pool around the time Neanderthals would have mixed with early humans. Because these candidate Neanderthal sequence blocks can be validated through comparisons to known sequences that have been recovered from ancient remains, Akey has been able to tweak this computational approach to be highly accurate.

Although any one individual may only have a small fraction Neanderthal DNA in their genome, by looking at many people, Akey has been able to obtain population-level info about Neanderthal genomes. This opens the door for many conventional population genetic techniques that provide very valuable information about genetic history. For example, the sequence data suggest that early Europeans experienced two separate “pulses” of intermixing with Neanderthals, whereas East Asian peoples experienced only one pulse.

Akey was further able to use the in silico reconstructed Neanderthal populations to explore the potential adaptive value of Neanderthal sequences for human evolution. Such adaptive sequences were enriched for immune- and skin-related genes, suggesting that Neanderthal mixing was beneficial for protection from disease and the environment. By contrast, some regions of the genome seemed to be entirely free of Neanderthal DNA across the population, so it is likely these regions did not provide any adaptive value and might have been harmful. Akey also noted that Neanderthal variants tended to impact the regulation of genes — adjusting the level of their activity — rather than gene function.

Through the efforts of Krause, Akey, and other evolutionary geneticists, we are developing a much richer—and surprising — picture of human genetic history than previously possible. And while the talks may have initially seemed a little out of place in a conference titled “From Genomics to Therapy,” it’s a vital topic. The genetic variability between individuals and between populations remains a significant obstacle to realizing the promise of clinical genomics. Therefore, a thorough understanding of our own evolution and derivation of genomic traits that vary between geographic regions and ethnicities provides an essential foundation for progress.
 

raven

Has No Life - Lives on TB
thread drift, it's this prevailing attitude as to why history is no longer taught in public schools, specifically the history of the nazis and communists in the early 1900's. Most believe it's irrelevant to present history and daily life.
Big difference between 80 years ago and 80000 years before written history.
And one must factor in the educated guesswork, much of which leans heavily on imposing present day cultural norms on aboriginal peoples.

Not thread drift because the OP started the post with:
Interesting, but I've never really believed humans all came out of Africa.
I am in agreement.
 
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packyderms_wife

Neither here nor there.
Big difference between 80 years ago and 80000 years before written history.
And one must factor in the educated guesswork, much of which leans heavily on imposing present day cultural norms on aboriginal peoples.
You have the freedom to scroll past articles that you find uninteresting... same as me... I've scrolled past the article on migrant children being sexually abused because reading it would probably really upset me.
 

gunnersmom

Veteran Member
I believe the Bible version of the rise of nations from Ham, Shem and Japheth. There's even a great book I've been reading with a lot of WRITTEN History of the English line of Kings and how far back that written history goes and how much it ties into. Not trying to argue, and I don't care who believes what but when more evidence points to a world wide flood, and the Bible has a narrative of it that dates back thousands of years, I prefer to believe the Bible and wait for more light to be shed on the subject after I'm dead and gone.

 

bassgirl

Veteran Member
I believe the Bible version of the rise of nations from Ham, Shem and Japheth. There's even a great book I've been reading with a lot of WRITTEN History of the English line of Kings and how far back that written history goes and how much it ties into. Not trying to argue, and I don't care who believes what but when more evidence points to a world wide flood, and the Bible has a narrative of it that dates back thousands of years, I prefer to believe the Bible and wait for more light to be shed on the subject after I'm dead and gone.

That. Is exactly what I thought when I saw the statement about coming from 3 lines. Then mixing or lack of, would be the Tower of Babel. They scattered, so the DNA starts to change. Not a coincidence.
 

gunnersmom

Veteran Member
Oh, yes. And then.... there was the Tower of Babel. How we love to invent new words from Biblical root words, but will not pay homage to the meaning of the lessons. Sorry, I babble!
 

CaryC

Veteran Member
That. Is exactly what I thought when I saw the statement about coming from 3 lines. Then mixing or lack of, would be the Tower of Babel. They scattered, so the DNA starts to change. Not a coincidence.
Oh, yes. And then.... there was the Tower of Babel. How we love to invent new words from Biblical root words, but will not pay homage to the meaning of the lessons. Sorry, I babble!

Did you notice who put forth the ....study?

Francis Crick Institute in London
Ring any bells?

It ought to. Dr. Crick won the Noble prize for discovering the double helix DNA strand, in, I think it was 1952.

He was also a radical anti-Christian atheist evolutionist. Said something along the lines of.....Christians need to get out of the way so we can proceed with real science. And we're still here.

So does any one think that those that work at the Institute have a different philosophy? Just wondering.

Also it should be noted that upon realizing his discovery demolished evolution. He proffered a new theory, panspermia, in 1973. Which simply states that the earth was seeded by aliens. (The big greys, not those from Mexico)

It should also be noted that originally Neanderthals were a stepping stone in the evolution of homo-sapiens. Like the monkey. But that too has changed.

Is it possible that humans and Neanderthals had sex together? Sure it's possible, likely in fact. But all the other stuff they gathered from that fact is merely speculation.

Just saying believe who you will.
 

Melodi

Disaster Cat
Yep the idea that Neadnerthals was a "stepping stone" died the moment it was discovered that vast numbers of modern human beings are part Neanderthal - just like I predicted would happen here on Timebomb several years before it happened.

I also predicted (with no psychic ability) that suddenly a lot of objects buried in basements because they didn't fit the narrative (as in they were found at Neanderthal sites) would come bursting out of the woodwork and that happened too.

Dozens of finds containing things like jewelry, musical instruments, and other forms of art were suddenly "found" and "realized" as Neanderthal.

The only reason they had been dumped in basements in the first places was a narrative that said "the Neanderthal didn't do that."

Plenty of Doctors, including Christian ones, use DNA technology to diagnose various diseases and childhood disorders, I don't think that DNA science is some sort of Atheistic plot.
 

CaryC

Veteran Member
Plenty of Doctors, including Christian ones, use DNA technology to diagnose various diseases and childhood disorders, I don't think that DNA science is some sort of Atheistic plot.
Of course not, and if you will read my reply carefully I never said that.

Is it possible that humans and Neanderthals had sex together? Sure it's possible, likely in fact. But all the other stuff they gathered from that fact is merely speculation.
You interested in Global warming? Flat earth? It's all science ya know.

And considering the source of that speculation do you think they will come to a Biblical conclusion?
 

raven

Has No Life - Lives on TB
So, the category of "Modern Human" bred with the category "Neanderthal".
This appears to be scientific fact.
And the category of "Caucasoid" and category of "Negroid " and the category of "Mongoloid"
inter breed.

However, they are also quick to point out that Caucasoid, Negroid, and Mongoloid are not actually three races.
They are only one race placed into different categories based on scientifically derived criteria.

If so, then wouldn't Modern Humans and Neanderthals also be one race simply based on the ability to breed, bearing offspring which carry the DNA code of both and who are also able to breed?

Modern Humans have 23 pairs of chromosomes. It is believed that Neanderthals and Denisovans also had 23 pairs of chromosomes.

Unless of course it was like a horse and a donkey which have different number of chromosomes and are able to breed and produce offspring. However, the ability of those offspring to breed is limited.
 
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