Discovered evidence for the existence of an unknown ancient people

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2020-02-14 23:40:07

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Scientists found evidence of the existence of the mysterious "population of ghosts" — who lived in Africa about half a million years ago. Traces of an unknown ancestor came when the researchers analyzed the genomes of West African populations and found that up to a fifth of them , apparently, was descended from relatives of the missing. Geneticists suspect that the ancestors of modern West Africans interbred with more archaic humans discovered thousands of years ago, just like the ancient Europeans once mixed their genes with Neanderthals. The results published in the journal .

We — the only surviving members of genus Homo

Unlike today, our planet was once home to many kindred or human subspecies. As a result, modern Europeans are carriers of a small number of genes of Neanderthals, while indigenous Australians, Polynesians and Melanesians inherited genes from the denisovans — another group of ancient people. Previous studies hinted that Africa was wandering, and other ancient people, safe to say this was impossible, as no fossils, no DNA was found.

According to the publication, the study's lead author Sriram of Sankararaman from the University of California, practically all the genes of West Africans who participated in the study, they got in the inheritance from this unknown archaic population.

once on our planet, there were different types of ancient people

In the course of research scientists have obtained the genome of four West African populations and used statistical methods to figure out, could the influx of genes from interbreeding to take place in the distant past. The analysis showed that such interbreeding was observed in each case. In the future, scientists have managed to sequence DNA, which is likely inherited from an ancient relative. Comparing the results obtained with the genes of Neanderthals and the denisovans, the researchers came to the conclusion that DNA had to come from the population of ghosts.

The authors note that the population of ghosts has had a significant impact on the genome of modern humans. The obtained results are far from final, but according to the best estimates, the population of ghosts broke off from the Neanderthals and modern humans somewhere between 360 000 and 1 million years ago.

the Authors hope that in the future will be able to detect the remains of a population of ghosts

However, what was the population of scientists is not known. Moreover, the authors do not exclude that there might be other explanations for the obtained results. The opening is remarkable that we can learn about human ancestors is much more than expected. Scientists believe that the results obtained in the future help to detect the fossil population of ghosts.

Perhaps our knowledge about the evolution of Homo Sapiens is much less than we used to believe

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