Ancient human ancestor – DNA from Denisovan may have been discovered in a Tibetan cave that may be only 45,000 years old, scientists say.
Ancient Denisovan mitochondrial DNA was recovered in silt from the Baishia Karst Cave, a limestone cave in the northeastern desert of the Tibetan Plateau, 3,260 meters above sea level.
Examples suggest that the Denisovans occupied the high-altitude cave about 100,000 to 60,000 years ago and probably 45,000 years ago.
If DNA was actually only 45,000 years old, the species could have lived alongside modern humans in Northeast Central Asia.
Vaishya Karst cave site, a Tibetan Buddhist sanctuary and a high-altitude Paleontherological site for researchers
Denisovans, a group of extinct hominins that split from Neanderthals about 40,000 years ago, may be more widespread than previously thought by scientists in Northeast Central Asia.
Polly’s samples were analyzed by an international team, including Charles Perrellt of Arizona State University.
“When we started developing this project about 10 years ago, none of us expected the Vaishya Cave to be such a rich site,” he said.
‘We’ve just scratched the surface – three small excavation units have found hundreds of stone tools, animals and ancient DNA. There is still a lot to do. ”
‘Future work in the Caucasus cave can truly give us a unique access to Denisvan behavior and reinforce the emerging image that Denisovans, like Neanderthals, were not offset by the human family tree.
‘They were now part of an endangered population that contributed to the current human gene pool and shaped the evolution of our species in a way that we are just beginning to understand.’
Researchers examined the sediments of the Vaishya Karst Cave on an elevated plateau in Tibet and identified ancient mitochondrial DNA from the Denisovans, probably identifying their presence 45,000 years ago.
A 1,000,000-year-old fossil fossil (‘Jiahe Mandible’) from the same cave was previously identified as Denisovan based on its single amino acid location.
This new study of DNA leaves no doubt that the Denisovans occupied the cave, the researchers said.
Evidence of these archaeological hominins well above sea level is unusual due to the severity of the conditions at high altitudes.
Life on the plateau is harsh due to the thin winds and people can develop illnesses at altitudes anywhere above 2,500 meters above sea level.
The presence of DNA suggests that the Denisovans can adapt to much higher altitudes, much like the Tibetans.
Mandatory in the 1,000,000-year-old Zia, including dates of sediments with mitochondrial DNA, the Denisovans have been continuously on the plateau for thousands of years.
Pictured, Zia remains compelled. The Denisovan Jababon was originally discovered in 1980 by a local monk
It would take a long time for genetic adaptations in Denisovn to help them survive the adverse effects of high altitude.
This discovery was first discovered in the Vaisya Karst Cave, where Denisovan DNA was recovered from somewhere outside the Denisova Cave in Siberia, Russia.
This Siberian cave was previously the only location on Earth where the bones of a Denisovan fossil carrying several major DNA were found.
In 2010, a finger belonging to a previously unknown hominin species was found in the Denisova Cave in the Russian Altai Mountains.
Evidence of this new species forced anthropologists to revise their model of human evolution outside of Africa.
Scientists thought that modern humans left Africa about 1,000,000 years ago, and as they colonized West Eurasia, they found a world that was devoid of any other archaeological hominin species.
However, the idea arose from the fact that the prehistoric concept of Asia is less well known than that of Africa and Europe.
The researchers suspected that Denisovans were widespread in Asia based on Denisovan genomic signals among current Asians.
The new study is published in the journal Science.
It is thought that the partnership of Denisovans and Neanderthals, which is unknown in the fossil record, was probably split from the ancestors of modern humans about 800,000 years ago.
Who was Dennisvan?
The Denisovan is an endangered species that seems to live in Siberia and even as far as Southeast Asia.
Although the remains of these mysterious early humans were discovered on only one site – the Denisova caves in the Altai Mountains of Siberia, DNA analysis showed that they were extensive.
The DNA of these early humans was found in the genomes of modern humans across vast regions of Asia, indicating that they were once covered extensively.
DNA analysis of a pink finger bone fragment in 2010, (pictured) showing that the Danisovans were a species related to Neanderthals, but different.
They are thought to be a sister species of Neanderthals, who lived in West Asia and Europe at about the same time.
The two species seem to have separated from a common ancestor about 200,000 years ago, they were separated from the modern human Homo sapiens dynasty about 600,000 years ago.
The bones and ivory beads found in the Denisova cave were discovered at the same sedimentary level as the Denisovan fossils, suggesting that they had sophisticated equipment and jewelry.
In 2010, DNA analysis of a fifth-digit finger bone fragment, which included a young girl, revealed that they were species-related, but different than Neanderthals.
Subsequent genetic studies suggested that ancient human species became extinct from Neanderthals about 4,000,000,000 to 190,000 years ago.
Anthropologists have since wondered whether the cave was a temporary refuge for a group of Denisovans or whether it created a more permanent settlement.
DNA from the teeth of two other people, an adult male and a young female, show that they died in a cave at least 655,000 years ago.
In other tests, a young woman’s teeth may be 1,170,000 years old.
A third molasses is thought to belong to an adult male who died about 7,500 years before his pink discovery.