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Nov 6, 2014 4:59 PM

DNA study narrows Eurasian split from East Asians

The Associated Press

BERLIN (AP) A study of ancient DNA suggests the human populations now predominant in Eurasia and East Asia split between 36,200 and 45,000 years ago.

Researchers used new techniques to analyze genetic samples from a young man who died at least 36,200 years ago near Kostenki-Borshchevo in what is now western Russia.

According to the study published Thursday in the journal Science, the Kostenki sample shares genetic sequences with contemporary Europeans, but not East Asians.

A recent study in the journal Nature determined that a 45,000-year old sample found elsewhere contained sequences seen in modern East Asians and Europeans.

Co-author Eske Willerslev, evolutionary biologist at the University of Copenhagen, Denmark, said the findings challenge previous theories that modern Europeans emerged only when hunter-gatherers mixed with a farming population some 8,000 years ago.


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