Friday, March 26, 2010

A new human species?!

Yesterday, 'high impact factor' journal Nature published an article concerning the discovery of Hominid remains. The most exciting finding is that the mitochondrial DNA of the fossils is distinct from modern humans and Neanderthals, even though this animal would have lived contemporaneously with both. That means this is either a new species, or at least a distinct genetic lineage from Africa which probably left no offspring (males of the group may have contributed some genetic information to modern humans- and this would be undetectable using mitochondrial DNA). It seems every time I turn around a new major discovery in our lineage is made! The Russian cave where the famous finger bone was found:

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