Boleh dibilang tiap hari para ahli diberbagai bidang melengkapi dan
menyempurnakan teori evolusi...
Three Subgroups of Neanderthals Identified
By Clara Moskowitz, LiveScience Staff Writer
posted: 14 April 2009 08:17 pm ET
A Neanderthal Family. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech
We tend to think of Neanderthals as one species of cavemen-like creatures, but
now scientists say there were actually at least three different subgroups of
Using computer simulations to analyze DNA sequence fragments from 12
Neanderthal fossils, researchers found that the species can be separated into
three, or maybe four, distinct genetic groups.
The evidence points to a subgroup of Neanderthals in Western Europe, another in
Southern Europe near the Mediterranean, a third in Eastern Europe and the
Middle East, and possibly a fourth in Western Asia. These groups have been
postulated before, but this is the first study analyzing DNA data to look for
genetic variations differentiating the subgroups.
Neanderthals are a hominid species that lived between about 130,000 and 30,000
years ago. They coexisted with humans for a while, and may even have interbred
"Because the Neanderthals lived in a very vast territory, and their evolution
took place over a very long time, we wonder if there were sub-populations, or
if it was a unique population," said researcher Silvana Condemi, a
paleoanthropologist at the Universite de la Mediterranee-CNRS-EFS in France.
"Other studies show differences between Neanderthals and modern humans. For the
first time we are working just within Neanderthals and taking into account the
diversity within that group."
Condemi and Virginie Fabre and Anna Degioanni, also of the Universite de la
Mediterranee, describe their findings in the April 13 issue of the journal PLoS
The researchers tested various hypotheses, including that all Neanderthals
belonged to a single homogeneous population, or that Neanderthals could be
divided into two, three, or more subgroups. They found that the three- and
four-group model best fit the data by accounting for the genetic discrepancies
seen in the samples.
The authors admit that their categorization is based on limited data, since
they only have fragments of mitochondrial DNA sequences from a small sample of
Princeton University paleoanthropologist Alan Mann agreed, and said it's too
early to draw bounds around sub-populations because we don't have any data from
individuals outside of the bounds, such as from Neanderthals in Africa or
"My view is this is very interesting research but it's very premature in our
study to be able to draw any but the most generalized and preliminary
conclusions," he said in a phone interview. "I like the data they present. But
at the moment we have to be extremely careful about exactly what we make of
In the future, the researchers would like to compare their genetic data to what
is known about physical distinctions among Neanderthals from different regions,
as well as cultural differences, such as unique tool use among various
"What is nice is that there are some variations in the genetics, and we see
also from the bones and teeth that there is some variation," Condemi told
LiveScience. "We give a confirmation that the Neanderthals are not one
It is not known for sure what eventually caused Neanderthals to die out, while
we Homo sapiens have survived to this day. Likely reasons for their demise are
competition with humans and climate change.
© Imaginova Corp. All rights reserved.
Jusfiq Hadjar gelar Sutan Maradjo Lelo
Allah yang disembah orang Islam tipikal dan yang digambarkan oleh al-Mushaf itu
dungu, buas, kejam, keji, ganas, zalim lagi biadab hanyalah Allah fiktif.