Genetic Archaeology
Recent News |  Archives |  Tags |  About |  Newsletter |  Submit News |  Links |  Subscribe to GeneticArchaeology.com RSS Fee Subscribe


More Articles
New material steals oxygen from the airNew material steals oxygen from the air

'Programmable' antibiotic harnesses an enzyme to attack drug-resistant microbes'Programmable' antibiotic harnesses an enzyme to attack drug-resistant microbes

Origin of moon's 'ocean of storms' revealedOrigin of moon's 'ocean of storms' revealed

More physical activity improved school performanceMore physical activity improved school performance

Building a bridge from basic botany to applied agricultureBuilding a bridge from basic botany to applied agriculture

Shape up quickly -- applies to fish, too!Shape up quickly -- applies to fish, too!

Engineering new vehicle powertrainsEngineering new vehicle powertrains

Stunning finds from ancient Greek shipwreckStunning finds from ancient Greek shipwreck

All directions are not created equal for nanoscale heat sourcesAll directions are not created equal for nanoscale heat sources

Pressing the accelerator on quantum roboticsPressing the accelerator on quantum robotics

Active aging is much more than exerciseActive aging is much more than exercise

Making oxygen before lifeMaking oxygen before life

Protecting our processorsProtecting our processors

Gut bacteria, artificial sweeteners and glucose intoleranceGut bacteria, artificial sweeteners and glucose intolerance

Are the world's religions ready for ET?Are the world's religions ready for ET?

Study: New device can slow, reverse heart failureStudy: New device can slow, reverse heart failure

Researchers demonstrate direct fluid flow influences neuron growthResearchers demonstrate direct fluid flow influences neuron growth

Recreating the stripe patterns found in animals by engineering synthetic gene networksRecreating the stripe patterns found in animals by engineering synthetic gene networks

Communication without detoursCommunication without detours

Chicxulub didn't do it all by itselfChicxulub didn't do it all by itself

First pictures of BRCA2 protein show how it works to repair DNAFirst pictures of BRCA2 protein show how it works to repair DNA

Laying the groundwork for data-driven scienceLaying the groundwork for data-driven science

Hold on, tiger momHold on, tiger mom

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

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'

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

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

Complete Neandertal mitochondrial genome sequenced from 38,000-year-old bone (8/8/2008)

Tags:
neandertals, genomics

A study reported in the August 8th issue of the journal Cell, a Cell Press publication, reveals the complete mitochondrial genome of a 38,000-year-old Neandertal. The findings open a window into the Neandertals' past and helps answer lingering questions about our relationship to them.

"For the first time, we've built a sequence from ancient DNA that is essentially without error," said Richard Green of Max-Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Germany.

The key is that they sequenced the Neandertal mitochondria-powerhouses of the cell with their own DNA including 13 protein-coding genes-nearly 35 times over. That impressive coverage allowed them to sort out those differences between the Neandertal and human genomes resulting from damage to the degraded DNA extracted from ancient bone versus true evolutionary changes.

Although it is well established that Neandertals are the hominid form most closely related to present-day humans, their exact relationship to us remains uncertain, according to the researchers. The notion that Neandertals and humans may have "mixed" is still a matter of some controversy.

Analysis of the new sequence confirms that the mitochondria of Neandertal's falls outside the variation found in humans today, offering no evidence of admixture between the two lineages although it remains a possibility. It also shows that the last common ancestor of Neandertals and humans lived about 660,000 years ago, give or take 140,000 years.

Of the 13 proteins encoded in the mitochondrial DNA, they found that one, known as subunit 2 of cytochrome c oxidase of the mitochondrial electron transport chain or COX2, had experienced a surprising number of amino acid substitutions in humans since the separation from Neandertals. While the finding is intriguing, Green said, it's not yet clear what it means.

"We also wanted to know about the history of the Neandertal's themselves," said Jeffrey Good, also of the Max-Planck Institute. For instance, the new sequence information revealed that the Neandertal's have fewer evolutionary changes overall, but a greater number that alter the amino acid building blocks of proteins. One straightforward interpretation of that finding is that the Neandertal's had a smaller population size than humans do, which makes natural selection less effective in removing mutations.

That notion is consistent with arguments made by other scientists based upon the geological record, said co-author Johannes Krause. "Most argue there were a few thousand Neandertals that roamed over Europe 40,000 years ago." That smaller population might have been the result of the smaller size of Europe compared to Africa. The Neandertals also would have had to deal with repeated glaciations, he noted.

"It's still an open question for the future whether this small group of Neandertals was a general feature, or was this caused by some bottleneck in their population size that happened late in the game?" Green said. Ultimately, they hope to get DNA sequence information for Neandertals that predated the Ice Age, to look for a signature that their populations had been larger in the past.

Technically, the Neandertal mitochondrial genome presented in the new study is a useful forerunner for the sequencing of the complete Neandertal nuclear genome, the researchers said, a feat that their team already has well underway.

The researchers include Richard E. Green, Max-Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig, Germany; Anna-Sapfo Malaspinas, University of California, Berkeley, CA; Johannes Krause, Max-Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig, Germany; Adrian W. Briggs, Max-Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig, Germany; Philip L.F. Johnson, University of California, Berkeley, CA; Caroline Uhler, University of California, Berkeley, CA; Matthias Meyer, Max-Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig, Germany; Jeffrey M. Good, Max-Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig, Germany; Tomislav Maricic, Max-Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig, Germany; Udo Stenzel, Max-Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig, Germany; Kay Prüfer, Max-Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig, Germany; Michael Siebauer, Max-Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig, Germany; Hernán A. Burbano, Max-Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig, Germany; Michael Ronan, 454 Life Sciences, Branford, CT; Jonathan M. Rothberg, The Rothberg Institute for Childhood Diseases, Guilford, CT; Michael Egholm, 454 Life Sciences, Branford, CT; Pavao Rudan, Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts, Zagreb, Croatia; Dejana Brajkovic, Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts, Institute for Quaternary Paleontology and Geology, Zagreb, Croatia; Željko Kucan, Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts, Zagreb, Croatia; Ivan Gušic, Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts, Zagreb, Croatia; Mårten Wikström, University of Helsinki; Liisa Laakkonen, University of Helsinki; Janet Kelso, Max-Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig, Germany; Montgomery Slatkin, University of California, Berkeley, CA; and Svante Pääbo, Max-Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig, Germany.

Note: This story has been adapted from a news release issued by the Cell Press

Post Comments:

Search

New Articles
Treasure trove of ancient genomes helps recalibrate the human evolutionary clock

Around the world in 400,000 years: The journey of the red foxAround the world in 400,000 years: The journey of the red fox

GIANT study reveals giant number of genes linked to height

Ancient protein-making enzyme moonlights as DNA protectorAncient protein-making enzyme moonlights as DNA protector

Semen secrets: How a previous sexual partner can influence another male's offspringSemen secrets: How a previous sexual partner can influence another male's offspring

Research confirms controversial Darwin theory of 'jump dispersal'Research confirms controversial Darwin theory of 'jump dispersal'

DNA signature found in ice storm babies

Ancient human genome from southern Africa throws light on our originsAncient human genome from southern Africa throws light on our origins

Human genome was shaped by an evolutionary arms race with itselfHuman genome was shaped by an evolutionary arms race with itself

Genetic, developmental and anatomical basis of natural selection for sensory structuresGenetic, developmental and anatomical basis of natural selection for sensory structures

New analysis of human genetic history reveals female dominance

Research shows alcohol consumption influenced by genes

Project launched to study evolutionary history of fungiProject launched to study evolutionary history of fungi

Termites evolved complex bioreactors 30 million years ago

Institute receives single-largest investment in human origins researchInstitute receives single-largest investment in human origins research



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
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
June 2005
October 2004
July 2001


Science Friends
Agricultural Science
Astronomy News
Biology News
Biomimicry Science
Cognitive Research
Chemistry News
Tissue Engineering
Cancer Research
Cybernetics Research
Electonics Research
Forensics Report
Fossil News
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.