Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

11/21/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Evidence from genetic tracking suggesting early North Americans were two groups of people who interbred

What are the origins of Native Americans? Thanks to the genome of a young boy who died 24,000 years ago in south-central Siberia, scientists are closer to answering that question. The said genetic sequencing is the oldest genome performed on a human to date.

The bones in question belonged to a boy who died as a toddler some 24,000 years ago. Discovered at the Mal'ta archeological site, which sits near Lake Baikal in Siberia and which was excavated between 1928 and 1958.

The bones in question belonged to a boy who died as a toddler some 24,000 years ago. Discovered at the Mal'ta archeological site, which sits near Lake Baikal in Siberia and which was excavated between 1928 and 1958.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

11/21/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Technology

Keywords: DNA, genetic sequencing, genome, skeltal remains, St. Petersburg, North Americans


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) -  DNA extracted from the bones of the prehistoric boy, who died while only a toddler, proved that he shared genetic traits with Western Europeans and native Americans - but none with East Asians. The discovery has surprised and perplexed the lead scientist conducting the research.

"At first I thought it was contamination, to be honest. It was just so unexpected," Eske Willerslev, director of the Center for GeoGenetics at the University of Copenhagen says.

AFTER THE UNSPEAKABLE, WE SPEAK HOPE. Support Catholic Online's response to Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines. DONATE NOW ...

Native Americans are genetically associated with East Asians. Many believe that the first Americans were descendents of Asian groups who arrived via Siberia and the Beringia land bridge. There has been no specific, contemporary East Asian population that modern native Americans can be linked to.

The discovery in Washington's Beringia land bridge of Kennewick Man in 1996, which was a complete 9,500-year-old skeleton with non-Asian features ignited years of controversy. North American archeological finds further compounded that uncertainty.

The X haplogroup, a trait that some native Americans and Europeans share is believed to be the result of post-colonial contact or prior ancestry. One theory, the Solutrean hypothesis, even held that the first people in America were Europeans who came by boat.

Willerslev along with American colleague Kelly Graf wondered if a very old and very rare skeleton housed at a museum in St. Petersburg, Russia might hold clues to these questions.

The bones in question belonged to a boy who died as a toddler some 24,000 years ago. Discovered at the Mal'ta archeological site, which sits near Lake Baikal in Siberia and which was excavated between 1928 and 1958. It was believed that the human remains may contain answers.

Willerslev's team received permission to sample 150 milligrams of the Mal'ta boy's arm bone and sequence his DNA in 2009. They believe it is the oldest genome from an anatomically modern human ever reported.

Mitochondrial DNA showed that the boy belonged to haplogroup U, which was found with high frequency among Stone Age European hunter-gatherers.

Willerslev at first thought it must be a mistake. Further testing showed more genetic signatures shared with Western Europeans and with native Americans.

Willerslev and his co-authors now estimate that modern native Americans share between 14 and 38 per cent of their DNA with this boy and the population he belonged to. The other two-thirds can be traced back to East Asian groups.

Inconclusively, this suggests that the people who first populated this continent were the result of intermixing between two groups, if not more.

"It shows that native Americans, as a group, are not just a branch of East Asians, but were formed in their own right by the meeting of different peoples," Willerslev says.

A birth foretold: click here to learn more!

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for March 2015
Universal:
Scientists: That those involved in scientific research may serve the well-being of the whole human person.
Evangelization: Contribution of women: That the unique contribution of women to the life of the Church may be recognized always.


Rosaries, Crosses, Prayer Cards and more... by Catholic Shopping .com


Comments


More Technology

Invisibility achieved with innovative 3D virtual reality headset Watch

Image of The sensation of invisibility, as the researchers found, can cause people to be less socially anxious.

By Nikky Andres (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Have you ever imagined what it would be like to be invisible? At the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden, the neuroscientists came up with an experiment that appeared to be straight from an H.G. Wells novel. The participants were given the opportunity to use a 3D ... continue reading


FOUNTAIN OF YOUTH? Next step in human evolution could lead to eternal youth Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Humanity's life expectancy has grown over the years, thanks to medical advances. However, this does not necessarily translate into quality of life. Living longer sometimes means living in increasingly reduced circumstances due to infirmity and old age. ... continue reading


NASA's top scientist believes signs of alien life will be discovered 'within a decade' Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

"I think we're going to have strong indications of life beyond Earth within a decade, and I think we're going to have definitive evidence within 20 to 30 years," NASA chief scientist Ellen Stofan said. The proclamation was made during a panel discussion that ... continue reading


From battle weapons to photographers, drones now cleverly used as advertisement model Watch

Image of

By Hannah Raissa Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Over the past few years, drones have become efficient in making deliveries, serving as waiters and even doing photography on sporting events. Now, drones are starting to fly with advertisements. According Eugene Stark, founder of the company Hoovy, drones have ... continue reading


Removing human error: Planes without pilots new, viable option Watch

Image of Some advocates for air safety say that current advances in sensor technology, computing and artificial intelligence are making human pilots less necessary than ever in the cockpit.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Following the Germanwings tragedy, when a distraught copilot slammed a plane into the French Alps in a suicide that cost the lives of 150 other people on board, many are questioning the validity of pilots on planes. Some argue that human pilots are in fact ... continue reading


Is Facebook changing? Facebook plans to conquer the virtual world this year Watch

Image of

By Hannah Raissa Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Facebook's chief technology officer, Mike Schroepfer promised that the Virtual Reality (VR) program will come into life within the year. The Oculus headset, which was on their top secret list before, was announced to be available soon, but the exact release date is not ... continue reading


Smartphones and Internet may be putting your child's mental health in jeopardy Watch

Image of

By Hannah Raissa Marfil

The number of young people being admitted for mental treatments since 2010 has rapidly increased. Julie Lynn Evans, a psychotherapist for over 25 years now, is grateful for the additional funding being sent into mental health services, but she believes the dilemma ... continue reading


Stealth fighter jets in U.S. set to get massive upgrades Watch

Image of Pentagon officials have stressed the importance of developing the new long-range strike bomber calling it critical to national security and nuclear deterrence.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A mainstay of United States military defense, stealth bombers have been around since the Seventies. The Air Force's aging fleet is now ready for an expensive makeover. The Pentagon intends to develop a high-priority, super-classified, next-generation bomber. ... continue reading


Will you say 'hello' to Barbie? Mattel's new Barbie doll is 'creeping out' parents, raising concerns of privacy Watch

Image of Hello Barbie will allow its owner to carry on a conversation through recorded audio and WiFi.

By Hannah Raissa Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Classic toy doll, Barbie, has been reinvented after the makers, Mattel received numerous requests for a Barbie doll that kids can talk to, according to a spokesperson of the toy company. Mattel's response is WiFi connected "Hello Barbie" that comes with an installed ... continue reading


Scientists find way to eliminate inherited diseases with genetically modified human eggs Watch

Image of

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

New gene-editing techniques are being improved and could soon eliminate inherited diseases from future generations by modifying the DNA of human egg cells. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Although the idea of editing chromosomes in human eggs or sperm is feared, ... continue reading


All Technology News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Acts 11:1-18
1 The apostles and the brothers in Judaea heard that ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 42:2-3; 43:3, 4
2 I thirst for God, the living God; when shall I go ... Read More

Gospel, John 10:1-10
1 'In all truth I tell you, anyone who does not enter ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for April 27th, 2015 Image

St. Zita
April 27: St. Zita was born into a poor but holy Christian family. Her ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter