Origin of human being that is the question. New research publicized in Nature can shed some light on the origin of European population and show that is not so easy how we thought.

How look our ancestors?

Picture 1 Life of hunter-gatherers. (author Zdeněk Burian)

Till now the DNA remains have showed that our European genome had its origin from the ancient hunter-gatherers living in European continent for thousands of years (since 45 000 years ago) and the first farmers which came from Near East (area of modern Syria, Iraq and Israel) around 7500 years ago – from the place where the first agriculture has occurred. The parts of their DNA could be found till now in our genetic information. It shows how has agriculture changed and influenced prehistoric lifestyle, but this is not enough.

The third missing piece of puzzle

Prof David Reich from the Harvard Medical School and colleagues studied the genomes of seven hunter-gatherers from Scandinavia, one hunter whose remains were found in a cave in Luxembourg (  ̴8000-years-old),  and another early farmer from Stuttgart, Germany (  ̴7000-years-old) and compare the data with 2,354 present day people. And they found, that there is something missing – the third population.

Another discover of ancient remains of  24,000 year old boy buried near the Lake Baikal in Siberia and comparation of his genome with modern Europeans showed that Siberians are the missing piece of puzzle in genetic richness of European population.  This people called ancient north Eurasians are probably also the brave adventures, which crossed the frozen sea and founded the population of Native Americans around 15,000 years ago.

When did they come to the Europe?

Answer for this question is also suggested by this researchers group. They looked for the signs of Siberian genome in ancient remains from Europe but they couldn’t find them. It shows that their arrival to Europe was later, after farming was already established in Europe.

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Picture 2  Possible ways of migration of the ancient people to Europe

Now are modern Europeans various mixes of the three populations. For example Sardinians are more than 80% early European farmer, with less than 1% of their genetic contribution coming from the ancient north Eurasians. Or the modern English get around 50% of their genes from early European farmers, 36% from western European hunter-gatherers, and 14% from the ancient north Eurasians.

What happened at that time? Hom and why migrated these people to Europe? Who are our ancestors? There still remain a lot of questions but some of them are already answered.

Refereneces:

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v513/n7518/full/nature13673.html

http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-29213892

http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/09/17/us-science-europeans-idUSKBN0HC20H20140917

http://www.theguardian.com/science/2014/sep/18/ancient-ancestors-europeans-dna-study

Picture 1 http://www.praha.eu/public/5c/e8/a9/1329300_221801_burian_lovci_mamutu.jpg

Picture 2

http://news.bbcimg.co.uk/media/images/77640000/gif/_77640634_europe_ancient_farmers_20140917-01.gif

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