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New DNA analysis shows Neanderthals and Denisovans mated

New DNA analysis shows Neanderthals and Denisovans mated

Posted August. 23, 2018 07:35,   

Updated August. 23, 2018 07:35


Svante Pääbo, director of the genetics department at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Germany, successfully cracked the Neanderthal genome that was discovered in the Denisova cave in 2012 and released research results in Nature on Wednesday. This technology, which is an improvement of the DNA test used to confirm‎ biological child or ancestor to the maximum precision, can accurately identify the ancestor of a fossil from tens of thousands of years ago.

“According to the analysis, it has been identified that the genes of Neanderthal and Denisovans were mixed in an almost identical ratio in the girl’s DNA,” said the research team. “This means that the genes of this girl were from her immediately former generation, which is her parents.” This was the first time to identify genome given to a child by the parents of different species.

The research team also studied the history of the two parents through genes within the genome. As a result, the mother was a descendant of a Neanderthal from far away west Europe some 120,000 years ago while the father was a mixed blood Denisovan, with at least one Neanderthal among his distant ancestors. There were at least two "love stories that transcended species" in this girl’s family tree. “Neanderthals and Denisovans left offspring more than we think,” said Pääbo. “It is possible that inbreeding between mankind was universal back then.”