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One of the biggest science stories of the last decade: The Descent of Man gets crowdsourced

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A science writer reflects on ten years of changes in the life sciences:

In 2010, an international group of scientists published the first draft of the Neanderthal genome. And three years later, another large group of coauthors published a high-coverage, complete Neanderthal genome, sequenced from DNA they pulled from a centuries-old bone fragment found in a Siberian cave. Ancient DNA, combined with good, old-fashioned paleoanthropology, would reveal many more surprises that helped rewrite human history throughout the decade. New species were added to our family tree (Denisovans in 2010, Homo naledi in 2014, and H. luzonensis in 2019). And a new hybrid between ancient human species (a Neanderthal/Denisovan hybrid) was described in 2018. Researchers also redrew the map of human migration and interbreeding across the planet by sequencing ancient DNA and comparing it to that of extant populations.

Bob Grant, “What A Long, Strange Decade It’s Been” at The Scientist


Those old Descent of Man charts were sometimes fun, showing a bacterium ending up as some poor slob hunched over a workstation. Some sort of moral was always pounded into us by these tales. usually not an uplifting one. But real history is always better and more interesting.

See also: Human evolution at your fingertips

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One Reply to “One of the biggest science stories of the last decade: The Descent of Man gets crowdsourced

  1. 1
    Silver Asiatic says:

    Some sort of moral was always pounded into us by these tales. usually not an uplifting one. But real history is always better and more interesting.

    I didn’t understand why you wanted us to read that. They looked as DNA. Found some things. There’s a hybrid.
    The evolutionary tale seems pretty safe and well-protected.
    Did subhumans turn into humans?

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