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Scientists Map Cheddar Man’s Genome

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Cheddar Man reconstructionLONDON, ENGLAND—According to a BBC News report, a team of University College London scientists led by Mark Thomas and Yoan Diekmann have mapped the genome of Cheddar Man, the skeletal remains discovered in Gough’s Cave at the beginning of the twentieth century. Cheddar Man stood about five feet, five inches tall, and died some 10,000 years ago in his early twenties. His DNA, which was extracted from bone powder drilled from his skull, revealed that he probably had blue eyes, dark brown skin, and dark hair that may have been curlier than average. In addition, the genetic study revealed he was lactose intolerant, and was related to migrants who walked across Doggerland, a landmass that connected Britain to mainland Europe, about 11,000 years ago, making him an ancestor of present-day Britons. He was also related to other Mesolithic hunter-gatherers living in Spain, Luxembourg, and Hungary. Dutch artists Alfons and Adrie Kennis integrated the genetic information and skull measurements to create a sculpture of Cheddar Man’s face.  

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