DNA retrieved from a child’s worn-down fossil tooth shows an Ancient connection of Denisovans, our extinct cousins from the Neanderthal, which is according to the study is providing an insight into our Ancestors and our evolution.
Scientists discovered the worn baby tooth in 1984 when they were exploring the Denisova Cave in the Altai Mountains. Its origin were a mystery but recent DNA analysis showed that it belongs to a species of extinct cousin of Neanderthals also known as Denisovans.
They found that the child lived 100,000 years ago and the tooth is at least 20,000 years older than the oldest of the three previously discovered Denisovan fossils. The scientists said the four fossil individuals attributed to the ancient population displayed relativelt low levels of diversity when compared to Neanderthals.
The DNA results were compared with that of the three other Denisovans to find out exactly when the child lived. it also includes 10 Neanderthals, five ancient humans, a chimp and a 400,000 year old member of Homo genus from Spain.
Slon of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany drilled into the tooth and he finally extracted a complete set of mitochondrial DNA, which passes from mother to Child.
These findings will show the diversity of alike human species that once inhabited Earth at the same time.