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Red Hair…Believe It or NOT…Comes From Neanderthal’s Genetic Mutation

Ancient DNA studied by researchers has found that a mutation resulted in red hair and light skin among Neanderthals, according to the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History. In the study two Neanderthals, one from Spain and one from Italy, had a mutation in the gene that controls hair and skin color.  “The mutation changes an amino acid, making the resulting protein less efficient. Modern humans have other MCR1 variants that are also less active, resulting in red hair and pale skin. The less active Neanderthal mutation probably also resulted in…

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Biggest Known Genetic Difference Between Humans and Neanderthals May Be Related to Autism

A recent study says that a genetic change suddenly arose in the primate family tree about about 280,000 years ago. The researchers claim it is responsible for the largest genetic difference between humans and Neanderthals. The unique genetic structure also is believed to predispose humans to autism. The genetic alteration is said to have arose approximately 80,000 years before Homo sapiens showed up in the fossil record. The Daily Mail reports that researchers from the University of Washington came to these results by comparing “the genome of modern humans with the…

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Why Did Neanderthals Visit A Special Cave In Jersey For Over 100,000 Years?

Archaeologists excavating in Jersey have discovered that despite globally significant changes in climate and landscape Neanderthals kept visiting La Cotte de St Brelade, a costal cave for over 100,000 years. Why was this particular cave so important to our ancestors? The first time these ancient people visited the cave was about 180,000 years ago and they kept coming back until 40,000 years ago. Obviously the cave was of great importance to the Neanderthals and it was considered a special place. La Cotte de St Brelade – Image credit: Jersey Heritage…

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