So, remember a few weeks ago when new genetics research challenged the accepted idea that humans and neanderthals had never knocked boots? Back then, I mentioned that we were waiting to hear from Svante Pääbo, a hominid genetics expert who was due to publish his findings from sequencing the neanderthal genome. The Pääbo data would be the key to clearing up this ancient soap-operatic mystery.
This week, Pääbo weighed in and the answer looks pretty clear: If your ancestors are from anyplace other than Africa, you've got a little neanderthal in you. And so did your great-great-etc. grandma.
In fact, researchers can actually narrow down the location where at least some of this hanky panky happened.
all non-Africans - be they from France, China or Papua New Guinea - share the same amount of Neanderthal DNA, suggesting that interbreeding occurred before those populations split. The timing makes the Middle East the likeliest place where humans leaving Africa and resident Neanderthals did the deed.
Interestingly, there's not any one trait or even genetic sequence that seems to come from the neanderthals. Everybody (except Africans) is a little bit neanderthal, but it's not the same little bit.
Got questions? This New Scientist feature has answers.
Image courtesy Flickr user erix, via CC
When Zoe Stavri woke up with a yeast infection, she had a strange and intriguing idea: what about adding some of her vaginal candida to sourdough starter?
Nick Sousanis, who delivered his doctoral dissertation in comic book form, has a new comic in the current Nature magazine, explaining the last 25 years’ worth of climate talks, as a primer in advance of the Paris climate talks next week.
Randall “XKCD” Munroe’s Thing Explainer: Complicated Stuff in Simple Words arrives in stores today: it combines technical diagrams and wordplay in pure display of everything that makes XKCD brilliant and wonderful in every way.
Celebrate Cyber Monday with some brain food. Save on any eLearning deal in the Boing Boing Store today using coupon code: CYBERMONDAY25. Below are a couple of our favorite eLearning offers: eduCBA Tech Training Bundle: Lifetime Subscription:Welcome to your personal online classroom, where you can finally study at your own pace, on your own time (and […]
This minimalist multi-tool will see to it that instead of rocking a tool belt, you’ll carry just one. It’s shaped slightly like a key and weighs less than an ounce, so it plays nice with your keychain. The strong surgical-grade stainless steel blade will last, and is handy for everyday tasks like opening boxes and […]
The Code Black is our top-selling drone of all time—and for good reason. This powerful, palm-size drone is not only insanely fun to fly, but can capture some serious video footage from up above. With a flight time of about 10 minutes and an ultra-smooth ride, it’s a great introductory drone for anyone looking to […]