BAMAD no.22

 DNA and 
 Anthropology Updates 

Updates in DNA studies along with Anthropological Notes of general interest with a particular emphasis on points pertinent to the study of Ancient Israelite Ancestral Connections to Western Peoples as explained in Brit-Am studies.


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BAMAD no. 22
Brit-Am Anthropology and DNA Update


1. The Discovery of "Dwarf" People and Brit-Am Note
Discovery Challenges Finding of a Separate Human Species
2.Six Women Ancestors to Most Amerindians
3. Amerindians from Siberia?

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1. The Discovery of "Dwarf" People and Brit-Am Note
Discovery Challenges Finding of a Separate Human Species
Discovery Challenges Finding of a Separate Human Species

More bones of unusually small-bodied people who lived long ago have been found on another Pacific island, and some scientists say this calls into question claims that the first such specimens, from Indonesia, represent a separate human species.

In a report released Monday, Lee Berger, a paleoanthropologist at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, described finding the skulls and bones of at least 25 individuals in two caves in Palau, in the Western Caroline Islands of Micronesia. The people apparently lived there 1,400 to 3,000 years ago.

Palau is more than 1,000 miles north of the Indonesian island of Flores, where in 2003 scientists discovered bones of several individuals who were only a little more than three feet tall and one surviving skull indicating a brain the size of a chimpanzee?s.

Australian and Indonesian scientists who made the discovery said those "little people" had lived on Flores until 13,000 years ago and were sufficiently distinct from modern humans to be a separate species, Homo floresiensis. That started a heated debate in which critics contended that those people were only dwarfed or malformed Homo sapiens.

Writing in the online journal PloS One,, Dr. Berger and colleagues from Duke and Rutgers University said the Palau specimens were modern humans about four feet tall, possibly dwarfs. They shared characteristics with the Flores specimens, but probably had larger, almost normal-size modern braincases.

The scientists said the one complete braincase and other fragments indicated a brain size "possibly at the very low end or below that typically observed in modern, small-bodied humans."

"Based on the evidence from Palau," Dr. Berger's team concluded, "we hypothesize that reduction in the size of the face and chin, large dental size and other features noted here may in some cases be correlates of extreme body size reduction in H. sapiens"

The Palau samples, the scientists continued, support "at least the possibility that the Flores hominids are simply an island adapted population of H. sapiens, perhaps with some individuals expressing congenital abnormalities."

That has been a point made by other scientists in contesting the application of a new species name to the Flores bones on the strength of only one fairly complete skeleton.

Robert B. Eckhardt, a professor of developmental genetics at Pennsylvania State University who has argued that the Flores specimens are malformed humans, said in an interview that the Palau discovery was "most important and timely" in the debate and is "strong support from an independent source" that the small-bodied individuals are somehow abnormal, not a separate species.

Dr. Berger said by e-mail that he "doesn't mean that Flores isn't actually a different species." But he noted that if the little people of Palau were afflicted with a variety of genetic and pathological disorders, they "would probably look a lot like, but not identical to, the little people of Flores."

Brit-Am Note:
The article itself is interesting.
It is saying that in effect the later discovery showed people very similar to those in the first one, looking the same, the same size,
and more or less from the same general area and a similar environment.
The first one was considered a "separate" species and was dated 13,000 years ago.
The second one  was considered a pathological variation of otherwise normal human beings and was dated 1,300 to 4000 years ago.

2.Six Women Ancestors to Most Amerindians

Friday, March 14, 2008

(03-14) 04:00 PDT New York - --

Nearly all of today's Native Americans in North, Central and South
America can trace part of their ancestry to six women whose
descendants immigrated around 20,000 years ago, a DNA study suggests.

Those women left a particular DNA legacy that persists today in about
95 percent of Native Americans, researchers said.

The finding does not mean that only these six women gave rise to the
migrants who crossed into North America from Asia in the initial
populating of the continent, said study co-author Ugo Perego.

The women lived between 18,000 and 21,000 years ago, though not
necessarily at exactly the same time, he said.

rest at

3. Amerindians from Siberia?
The article, which is published in tomorrow's issue of the journal Science, shows that the first Americans came from a single Siberian population and ventured across the Bering land bridge connecting Asia and North America about 22,000 years ago.

See also:
BAMAD Archives
DNA Refuted. The "Cohen Gene"
R1b The Western Japhet?? or not?
haplogroup I
Brit-Am DNA
Queries about Race

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