Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Snail genetic tracks reveal ancient human migration: Mesolithic humans may have carried snail species from France to Ireland

Date:
June 19, 2013
Source:
Public Library of Science
Summary:
Some snails in Ireland and the Pyrenees are genetically almost identical, perhaps because they were carried across the Atlantic during an 8000-year-old human migration. The snail genetics tie in with studies of human genetics and the colonization of Ireland, according to new research.

Genetic markers in banded wood snails in Ireland and France reveal ancient human migrations.
Credit: Lauren Holden

Some snails in Ireland and the Pyrenees are genetically almost identical, perhaps because they were carried across the Atlantic during an 8000-year-old human migration. The snail genetics tie in with studies of human genetics and the colonization of Ireland, according to the research published June 19 in the open access journal PLOS ONE by Angus Davison and colleagues from the University of Nottingham, UK.

Despite being thousands of miles apart, one variety of banded wood snails from Ireland and southern France share similar shell patterns and mitochondrial genes that are rarely seen in other areas of Europe. Davison explains, "There is a very clear pattern, which is difficult to explain except by involving humans. If the snails naturally colonized Ireland, you would expect to find some of the same genetic type in other areas of Europe, especially Britain. We just don't find them."

He adds, "There are records of Mesolithic or Stone Age humans eating snails in the Pyrenees, and perhaps even farming them. The highways of the past were rivers and the ocean -- as the river that flanks the Pyrenees was an ancient trade route to the Atlantic, what we're actually seeing might be the long lasting legacy of snails that hitched a ride, accidentally or perhaps as food, as humans travelled from the South of France to Ireland 8,000 years ago."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Public Library of Science. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Adele J. Grindon, Angus Davison. Irish Cepaea nemoralis Land Snails Have a Cryptic Franco-Iberian Origin That Is Most Easily Explained by the Movements of Mesolithic Humans. PLoS ONE, 2013; 8 (6): e65792 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0065792

Cite This Page:

Public Library of Science. "Snail genetic tracks reveal ancient human migration: Mesolithic humans may have carried snail species from France to Ireland." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 June 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130619195131.htm>.
Public Library of Science. (2013, June 19). Snail genetic tracks reveal ancient human migration: Mesolithic humans may have carried snail species from France to Ireland. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130619195131.htm
Public Library of Science. "Snail genetic tracks reveal ancient human migration: Mesolithic humans may have carried snail species from France to Ireland." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130619195131.htm (accessed September 22, 2014).

Share This



More Fossils & Ruins News

Monday, September 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Iconic 'Easy Rider' Chopper Bike to Go on Auction Block

Iconic 'Easy Rider' Chopper Bike to Go on Auction Block

AFP (Sep. 19, 2014) The iconic Harley-Davidson motorbike ridden by Peter Fonda in the 1969 classic "Easy Rider" is to go under the hammer in California, and auctioneers predict it will make at least $1 million. Duration: 01:09 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Chocolate Museum Opens in Brussels

Chocolate Museum Opens in Brussels

AFP (Sep. 19, 2014) Considered a "national heritage" in Belgium, chocolate now has a new museum in Brussels. In a former chocolate factory, visitors to the permanent exhibition spaces, workshops and tastings can discover derivatives of the cocoa bean. Duration: 01:00 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
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

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:

More Coverage


Snail Trail Reveals Ancient Human Migration

June 20, 2013 Geneticists have used snails to uncover evidence of an ancient human migration from the Pyrenean region of France to ... read more
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