Home / Science / The oldest modern human genome was reconstructed using DNA from a 45,000-year-old skull.

The oldest modern human genome was reconstructed using DNA from a 45,000-year-old skull.

The human skull from the golden horse

The skulls from the Zlatýkůň Cave near Prague belong to Europe’s most known modern man.Credits: Marek Jantač.

The Czech female skull fossils have provided the oldest yet reconstructed modern human genome representing populations that formed before the ancestors of modern Europeans and Asians.

In articles published in Natural ecology and evolutionAn international team of researchers analyzed the almost complete skull genome, first discovered in ZlatýKůň, Czech Republic in the early 1950s and is now stored in the National Museum in Prague. Group of Neanderthals DNA Its genome is longer than that of Ust’-Ishim, the oldest earlier modern human person from Siberia, indicating that modern humans lived in the heart of Europe more than 45,000 years ago.

Golden Horse Human Skull

A side view of ZlatýKůň’s skull, the most complete.Credit: Martin Frouz.

Ancient DNA from Neanderthals and early modern humans recently showed that this group tended to breed somewhere in the Near East after modern humans left Africa some 50,000 years ago. Outside of Africa, there are approximately 2% to 3% of Neanderthal DNA in the Neanderthal genome, while those Neanderthal DNA will become shortened over time, and their length can be used to determine the size of the Neanderthals. About the time when each person was able to live Archaeological data released last year also suggest that modern humans already existed in southeastern Europe 47-43,000 years ago, but because of the relatively complete human fossils and lack of genome DNA, it is little understood. Who were the early human colonists – or their relationship with ancient and modern humans?

In a new study published in Natural ecology and evolutionAn international team of researchers reports what is the oldest reconstructed modern human genome to date. First discovered in Czech Republic, a woman known as Zlatýkůň. (The Golden Horse in Czech) Show Neanderthal DNA longer than 45,000-year-old Ust’-Ishim from Siberia, the oldest modern human genome. The analysis suggested she was part of the population that formed before the population split the Europeans and Asians today.

A recent anthropological study looking at the shape of Zlatýkůň’s skull showed similarities with people who lived in Europe before the last Ice Age at least 30,000 years ago. OCAR produced sporadic results, some 15,000 years ago, until Jaroslav Brůžek of the Prague Faculty of Science and Petr Velemínský of the Prague National Museum collaborated with the Genetics Laboratory of the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History to get a clear picture. up

Golden horse skull

The first attempt at dating ZlatýKůň following the shape of her skull indicates that she is at least 30,000 years old.Currently, researchers believe she lived more than 45,000 years ago.Credits: Martin Frouz.

“We found evidence for bovine DNA contamination in the analyzed bone showing that the glues used in the past to integrate the skull exhibited radiocarbon dates that were younger than their actual age. ”Cosimo Posth, co-author of the study. Posth was previously head of research group at the Max Planck Institute for the Science of the Science of Human History and is now a professor of Archaeo- and Palaeogenetics at the University of Tübingen.

However, it was the Neanderthal DNA that led the team to important conclusions about the age of the fossils. Zlatýkůň contains the same amount of Neanderthal DNA in her genome as Ust Ishim or other modern humans outside of Africa. But the group with the average Neanderthal ancestor was much longer.

“Our DNA analyzes show that Zlatýkůň lives closer to mixed events with Neanderthals,” said Kay Prüfer, co-author of the study.

Scientists were able to estimate that Zlatýkůň was about 2,000 years old after the last blending. Based on this discovery, the team determined that Zlatýkůň represents the oldest human genome to date, roughly the same age as – if not more than a few hundred years old – Ust’-Ishim.

“It is quite interesting that the earliest humans in Europe were ultimately unsuccessful! Like Ust’-Ishim and the earliest European skull from Oase 1, Zlatýkůň shows no genetic continuity with modern humans who lived in Europe 40,000 years ago, ”said Johannes Krause, senior author of the study and director. Says Max Planck, Institute of Evolutionary Anthropology.

One possible explanation for the discontinuity was the Campanian Ignimbrite volcanic eruption some 39,000 years ago, which severely affected the northern hemisphere climate and could reduce the chances of survival for Neanderthals and Most of the ice age modern humans in Europe

Golden Horse Skull Sampling

Sampling of ZlatýKůň tiny bones from the base of the skull in a clean room at the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History, Jena.Credit: Cosimo Posth.

As advances in ancient DNA reveal more of the story of our species, future genetic studies of other early European individuals will help rebuild the history and decline of the earliest modern humans. From Africa and to Eurasia before the formation of the modern era Non-african population

Reference: “Genome sequence from 45,000-year-old modern human skull from Zlatýkůň in Czechia” by Kay Prüfer, Cosimo Posth, He Yu, Alexander Stoessel, Maria A. Spyrou, Thibaut Deviese, Marco Mattonai, Erika. Ribechini, Thomas Higham, Petr Velemínský, Jaroslav Brůžek, and Johannes Krause April 7, 2021. Natural ecology and evolution.
DOI: 10.1038 / s41559-021-01443-x

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