Fossil Science
Recent News |  Archives |  Tags |  About |  Newsletter |  Submit News |  Links |  Subscribe to FossilScience.com RSS Feed Subscribe


More Articles
Two new species of carabid beetles found in EthiopiaTwo new species of carabid beetles found in Ethiopia

Mechanized human hands: System designed to improve hand function lost to nerve damageMechanized human hands: System designed to improve hand function lost to nerve damage

Hold on, tiger momHold on, tiger mom

2014 Arctic sea ice minimum sixth lowest on record2014 Arctic sea ice minimum sixth lowest on record

Snail shells show high-rise plateau is much lower than it used to beSnail shells show high-rise plateau is much lower than it used to be

Sandia magnetized fusion technique produces significant resultsSandia magnetized fusion technique produces significant results

Can tapioca replace corn as the main source for starch sweeteners?Can tapioca replace corn as the main source for starch sweeteners?

Antifreeze proteins in Antarctic fish prevent both freezing and meltingAntifreeze proteins in Antarctic fish prevent both freezing and melting

Penn team studies nanocrystals by passing them through tiny poresPenn team studies nanocrystals by passing them through tiny pores

Violent origins of disc galaxies probed by ALMAViolent origins of disc galaxies probed by ALMA

Compound protects brain cells after traumatic brain injuryCompound protects brain cells after traumatic brain injury

Mice and men share a diabetes geneMice and men share a diabetes gene

Slimy fish and the origins of brain developmentSlimy fish and the origins of brain development

Microbes evolve faster than ocean can disperse themMicrobes evolve faster than ocean can disperse them

Two-dimensional electron liquidsTwo-dimensional electron liquids

American-made wind turbine bladesAmerican-made wind turbine blades

Nature's designs inspire research into new light-based technologiesNature's designs inspire research into new light-based technologies

When rulers can't understand the ruledWhen rulers can't understand the ruled

Hey1 and Hey2 ensure inner ear 'hair cells' are made at the right time, in the right placeHey1 and Hey2 ensure inner ear 'hair cells' are made at the right time, in the right place

Is a gluten-free diet enough to control the complications of celiac disease?Is a gluten-free diet enough to control the complications of celiac disease?

X-ray imaging paves way for novel solar cell productionX-ray imaging paves way for novel solar cell production

Missing piece found to help solve concussion puzzleMissing piece found to help solve concussion puzzle

Biologists delay the aging process by 'remote control'Biologists delay the aging process by 'remote control'

Bombarded by explosive waves of information, scientists review new ways to process and analyze Big DataBombarded by explosive waves of information, scientists review new ways to process and analyze Big Data

Program earns kudos for improving grades, retaining studentsProgram earns kudos for improving grades, retaining students

Geography matters: Model predicts how local 'shocks' influence U.S. economyGeography matters: Model predicts how local 'shocks' influence U.S. economy

A healthy lifestyle adds years to lifeA healthy lifestyle adds years to life

Identified for the first time what kind of explosive has been used after the detonationIdentified for the first time what kind of explosive has been used after the detonation

Copied from nature: Detecting software errors via genetic algorithmsCopied from nature: Detecting software errors via genetic algorithms

Skulls of early humans carry telltale signs of inbreeding, study suggests (3/22/2013)

Tags:
xujiayao 11
This is a view of the Xujiayao site (below) and internal and external view of the Xujiayao 11 skull piece with its position indicated on the drawing of a complete skull (above). -  Erik Trinkaus/WUSTL
This is a view of the Xujiayao site (below) and internal and external view of the Xujiayao 11 skull piece with its position indicated on the drawing of a complete skull (above). - Erik Trinkaus/WUSTL

Buried for 100,000 years at Xujiayao in the Nihewan Basin of northern China, the recovered skull pieces of an early human exhibit a now-rare congenital deformation that indicates inbreeding might well have been common among our ancestors, new research from the Chinese Academy of Sciences and Washington University in St. Louis suggests.

The skull, known as Xujiayao 11, has an unusual perforation through the top of the brain case -- an enlarged parietal foramen (EPF) or "hole in the skull" -- that is consistent with modern humans diagnosed with a rare genetic mutation in the homeobox genes ALX4 on chromosome 11 and MSX2 on chromosome 5.

These specific genetic mutations interfere with bone formation and prevent the closure of small holes in the back of the prenatal braincase, a process that is normally completed within the first five months of fetal development. It occurs in about one out of every 25,000 modern human births.

Although this genetic abnormality is sometimes associated with cognitive deficits, the older adult age of Xujiayao 11 suggests that any such deficits in this individual were minor.

Traces of genetic abnormalities, such as EPF, are seen unusually often in the skulls of Pleistocene humans, from early Homo erectus to the end of the Paleolithic.

"The probability of finding one of these abnormalities in the small available sample of human fossils is very low, and the cumulative probability of finding so many is exceedingly small," suggests study co-author Erik Trinkaus, the Mary Tileston Hemenway Professor of Anthropology in Arts & Sciences at Washington University in St. Louis.

"The presence of the Xujiayao and other Pleistocene human abnormalities therefore suggests unusual population dynamics, most likely from high levels of inbreeding and local population instability." It therefore provides a background for understanding populational and cultural dynamics through much of human evolution.

Note: This story has been adapted from a news release issued by the Washington University in St. Louis

Post Comments:

Search
New Articles
New hadrosaur noses into spotlightNew hadrosaur noses into spotlight

Firelight talk of the Kalahari BushmenFirelight talk of the Kalahari Bushmen

Capturing ancient Maya sites from both a rat's and a 'bat's eye view'

If hippopotamuses can't swim, how can some be living on islands?If hippopotamuses can't swim, how can some be living on islands?

'Jaws' lived in Doncaster'Jaws' lived in Doncaster

How an ancient vertebrate uses familiar tools to build a strange-looking headHow an ancient vertebrate uses familiar tools to build a strange-looking head

The creation of the Vuoksi River preceded a significant cultural shiftThe creation of the Vuoksi River preceded a significant cultural shift

Scientists report first semiaquatic dinosaur, Spinosaurus

Study ties groundwater to human evolution

Researchers discover 3 extinct squirrel-like speciesResearchers discover 3 extinct squirrel-like species

Ancient swamp creature had lips like Mick Jagger

New digital map reveals stunning hidden archaeology of Stonehenge

New species of extinct dolphin sheds light on river dolphin historyNew species of extinct dolphin sheds light on river dolphin history

Testing the fossil recordTesting the fossil record

Paleontologists discover new species of titanosaurian dinosaur in Tanzania



Archives
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007


Science Friends
Agricultural Science
Astronomy News
Biology News
Biomimicry Science
Cognitive Research
Chemistry News
Tissue Engineering
Cancer Research
Cybernetics Research
Electonics Research
Forensics Report
Genetic Archaeology
Genetics News
Geology News
Microbiology Research
Nanotech News
Parenting News
Physics News


  Archives |  Submit News |  Advertise With Us |  Contact Us |  Links
Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. All contents © 2000 - 2015 Web Doodle, LLC. All rights reserved.