Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Part of the genome of two hunter-gatherers from 7,000 years ago

Date:
June 28, 2012
Source:
Spanish National Research Council (CSIC)
Summary:
A team of scientists has recovered part of the genome of two individuals who were alive in the Mesolithic Period, 7,000 years ago. The remains were found at La Braña-Arintero site, located at Valdelugueros (León), Spain. The study results indicate that current Iberian populations do not come from these recently discovered humans.

This is a reconstruction of individual Braña 1, whose skeleton was almost complete and in good condition.
Credit: Alberto Tapia

A team of scientists, led by researcher Carles Lalueza-Fox from CSIC (Spanish National Research Council), has recovered part of the genome of two individuals who were alive in the Mesolithic Period, 7000 years ago.  The remains were found at La Braña-Arintero site, located at Valdelugueros (León), Spain.

The study results, published in the Current Biology, indicate that current Iberian populations do not come from these recently discovered humans.

The Mesolithic Period, framed between the Paleolithic and Neolithic Periods, is characterized by the advent of agriculture, coming from the Middle East.

The genome found is the oldest from Prehistory, 1,700 years before Ötzi, the Iceman lived.

Researchers have also recovered the complete mitochondrial DNA of one of these individuals, through which they could determine that European populations from Mesolithic Period were very uniform genetically. Carles Lauleza-Fox, from the Institute of Evolutionary Biology (CSIC-UPF), states: "These hunters-gatherers shared nomadic habits and had a common origin. Despite their geographical distance, individuals from the regions corresponding to the current England, Germany, Lithuania, Poland, and Spain, shared the same mitochondrial lineage."

The DNA data, which represent the 1.34% and the 0.5% of both individuals total genome, show that they are not directly connected to current populations of the Iberian Peninsula. Iberians from the Mesolithic Period were closer to current populations of northern Europe, who could have assimilated part of the genetic legacy of these hunters-gatherers.

La Braña-Arintero site was discovered in 2006 by chance. Juan Manuel Vidal Encinas, archeologist from the Regional Government of Castilla y León, who has also participated in the study, has excavated it at a later date. The cave, due to its location in a cold and mountainous area, is a suitable place for the good preservation of the DNA of these two individuals, found inside it.

The oldest remains from Prehistory

CSIC researcher emphasizes: "So far, we only had one genome of the European Prehistory, that of Ötzi [also known as the Iceman], from the Neolithic Period. His mummy, belonging to a man who lived 5300 years ago, was found in the Tyrolean Alps, on the border between Austria and Italy. La Braña-Arintero site offers a unique opportunity to obtain pre-Neolithic genomes."

According to Lalueza-Fox, this is only a first result since the intention of the team is to recover the complete DNA of these individuals, and to compare it with that of the modern humans. CSIC researcher discloses: "The arrival of the Neolithic Period brought about a replacement of populations, and could cause genetic changes in genes associated with new infectious diseases, and in metabolic genes linked to changes in diet. Therefore, all the information extracted from this genome will be absolutely important."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Spanish National Research Council (CSIC). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Federico Sánchez-Quinto, Hannes Schroeder, Oscar Ramirez, María C. Ávila-Arcos, Marc Pybus, Iñigo Olalde, Amhed M.V. Velazquez, María Encina Prada Marcos, Julio Manuel Vidal Encinas, Jaume Bertranpetit, Ludovic Orlando, M. Thomas P. Gilbert, Carles Lalueza-Fox. Genomic Affinities of Two 7,000-Year-Old Iberian Hunter-Gatherers. Current Biology, 2012; DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2012.06.005

Cite This Page:

Spanish National Research Council (CSIC). "Part of the genome of two hunter-gatherers from 7,000 years ago." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 28 June 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/06/120628164428.htm>.
Spanish National Research Council (CSIC). (2012, June 28). Part of the genome of two hunter-gatherers from 7,000 years ago. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/06/120628164428.htm
Spanish National Research Council (CSIC). "Part of the genome of two hunter-gatherers from 7,000 years ago." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/06/120628164428.htm (accessed September 17, 2014).

Share This



More Fossils & Ruins News

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Egypt Denies Claims Oldest Pyramid Damaged in Restoration

Egypt Denies Claims Oldest Pyramid Damaged in Restoration

AFP (Sep. 17, 2014) — Egypt's antiquities minister denied Tuesday claims that the Djoser pyramid, the country's first, had been damaged during restoration work by a company accused of being unqualified to do such work. Duration: 00:56 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
King Richard III's Painful Cause Of Death Revealed

King Richard III's Painful Cause Of Death Revealed

Newsy (Sep. 17, 2014) — King Richard III died in the Battle of Bosworth in 1485, and now researchers examining his skull think they know how. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researchers Explore Shipwrecks Off Calif. Coast

Researchers Explore Shipwrecks Off Calif. Coast

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) — Federal researchers are exploring more than a dozen underwater sites where they believe ships sank in the treacherous waters west of San Francisco in the decades following the Gold Rush. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Museum Traces Fragments of Star-Spangled Banner

Museum Traces Fragments of Star-Spangled Banner

AP (Sep. 12, 2014) — As the Star-Spangled Banner celebrates its bicentennial, Smithsonian curators are still uncovering fragments of the original flag that inspired Francis Scott Key's poem. (Sept. 12) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

    Technology News



    Save/Print:
    Share:  

    Free Subscriptions


    Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

    Get Social & Mobile


    Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

    Have Feedback?


    Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
    Mobile iPhone Android Web
    Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
    Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
    Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins