Who were they?
The Denisovans are an extinct human species that appear to have inhabited Siberia and even Southeast Asia.
Individuals belonged to a genetically distinct group of humans who had a distant relationship with the Neanderthals, but even more distantly with us.
These mysterious early human debris were found primarily in the Denisova Cave in the Altai Mountains of Siberia, but DNA analysis shows that ancient people had spread throughout Asia.
Scientists were able to analyze DNA from tooth and finger bones excavated in the Denisova Cave in southern Siberia.
This discovery was described as “nothing but sensational.”
In 2020, scientists reported the DNA of the Denisovans at the Baisha Karst Cave in Tibet.
This discovery was the first time that Denisova DNA had been recovered from a location outside the Denisova Cave.
How popular were they?
Researchers are now beginning to see how big they have played in our history.
DNA from these early humans has been found in the modern human genome in large parts of Asia, suggesting that it once covered a wide range.
They are believed to have been Neanderthal sisters who lived in West Asia and Europe at about the same time.
The two species appear to have separated from their common ancestor about 200,000 years ago, but from the modern human Homo sapien lineage about 600,000 years ago.
Last year, researchers even claimed that they might have reached Australia first.
Indigenous peoples of Australia, like most humans, contain both Neanderthal DNA and Denisovan DNA.
This latter genetic trace is now present in Aboriginal people in far greater quantities than any other person in the world.
How far have they been?
Bone and ivory beads found in the Denisova Cave were found in the same sedimentary layer as the Denisova fossils, suggesting that they possess sophisticated tools and jewelery.
Professor Chris Stringer, an anthropologist at the Natural History Museum in London, said: Usually associated with modern people.
“But the direct dating work by the Oxford radiocarbon unit reported at the ESHE conference is that the fossils of Denisowa are more than 50,000 years old, and the oldest” advanced “relics are about 45,000 years ago. In Siberia, it is of a date that matches the appearance of modern humans elsewhere. “
Did they breed with other species?
Yes. Today, about 5% of the DNA of some Australasians, especially those of Papua New Guinea, is Denisovan.
Researchers have now discovered that two different modern human genomes, Oceania and East Asia, both have different Denisovan ancestry.
The genomes are also completely different, suggesting that there were at least two separate waves of prehistoric mixing 200,000 to 50,000 years ago.
Researchers already knew that the people living on the islands of the South Pacific today have Denisovan ancestry.
But what they didn’t expect to find was that East Asian people have a unique and different type.
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