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14,000-Year-Old Ancestor of Native Americans Identified in Russia

Thursday, May 21, 2020

Siberia Paleolithic ToothJENA, GERMANY—He Yu of the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History and her colleagues analyzed DNA extracted from a 14,000-year-old tooth fragment unearthed by archaeologists in south-central Russia in the 1970s, and found that its mixture of ancient North Eurasian and Northeast Asian ancestry matches that of today’s Native Americans, according to a Science Magazine report. Ust-Kyakhta, the Siberian site where the tooth was found, is situated between Lake Baikal and the Mongolian border, or about 2,800 miles from Beringia, a land bridge that connected eastern Siberia to the Americas until it was submerged by glacial melt around 11,000 years ago. Some 2,000 miles away from Ust-Kyakhta, in northeastern Siberia, researchers have found the remains of a Mesolithic woman whose genome shares about two-thirds of its DNA with living Native Americans. When combined, the information suggests that Native American ancestors came from a wider region than previously thought. Yu said the study reveals the deepest known link between Upper Paleolithic Siberians and the First Americans. For more, go to "First American Family Tree."

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