The Natural History Museum of London has been conducting an archaeological study in Siberia led by Chris Stringer . He has reported that the chance finding of a bone on the banks of a Siberian river has yielded the oldest modern human genome ever found.,
This study, he believes, is going to assist in shedding light on precisely when modern humans people left Africa and indeed first began breeding with Neanderthal tribes found in Asia and Europe.
That bone was from a 45,000 year old male had DNA fragments ago related to both humans and Neanderthals. This helped the team conclude that the two humanoid species must have begun interbreeding around sixty thousand years ago. .
The Siberian male to whom the bone fragment belonged was part of a population that closely linked to ancient ancestors of modern Asian and European populations. His DNA when tested had only a small amount more Neanderthal material within it though this was still some three times the amount found in the modern human genome.
Stringer commented that he believed the pieces of Neanderthal DNA had become less important with each succeeding generation. Together with his team he noted the rate of change over the intervening years. Today anyone who is non African will have around two per cent Neanderthal DNA. Their conclusions were that interbreeding with Neanderthals took place no more than 60,000 years ago.
This might suggest that modern humans – Homo sapiens- left Africa at around that time but this is disputed. Since anthropologists discovered 100,000-year-old Homo Sapien skeletons in the Israel it seems likely that the move from Africa occurred in two waves some 40,000 years apart. The older wave made no headway in establishing themselves but the younger wave had no such trouble and are indeed the forebears of all modern non-African people.
Other recent finds including the bone from the Siberian man seem to support the idea that no interbreeding with the Neanderthals can have happened on any large scale much before 60,000 years ago so that all of the descendants of the Asian wave of migrants from ancient Africa are now those people populating Australasia.
These people have all been tested as well for DNA ancestry and are almost exactly similar to the modern European peoples. Although it is perfectly feasible that Homo Sapiens was wandering around the rest of the world for a long time before interbreeding began the evidence to date seems to indicate that they kept very much to themselves in the beginning.
I have been writing for pleasure for half a century, but only started writing for money around 1994. Since then I have had a few thousand articles, stories and poems published on line and in print all round the world.
I am now 63 years old, male, from Burnley in the UK, and apart from writing, I love to read - mainly crime thrillers, conspiracy theory books and science fiction, though I also love films, gardening and chatting with my wife who is also my best friend.
I enjoy feedback from readers, and interaction with fellow writers. Anyone who gets in touch with me will get a reply. I am always happy to read and comment upon the work of others, as I think we writers are something of a definite sub-species of humanity!