The study of fossils from the Denisova cave has changed our understanding of the origin of Homo sapiens.
Number of publications devoted to the fate of the Neanderthals, in fact, always been pretty tight. But in the past year, this background information has changed, not only quantitatively but also qualitatively. One of the sensational — in the journal Science (from 26.08.11, v. 333): "Who were Denisovtsy? '. In it, American researchers say that by mixing with Neanderthal Man Altai (Denisovans), whose remains were found in Denisova Cave in the Altai in 2008, there were genes that to this day to help people cope with the different viruses.
In July 2011, a book dedicated to the Neanderthals of the cave Okladnikova 100 km from the Denisova Cave — "post-cranial morphology and taxonomy of the genus Homo from a cave in the Altai Okladnikova." Its author — Doctor of Historical Sciences, a leading researcher at the Institute of Archaeology RAS Maria Mednikova. According to her, 40 thousand years ago in the Altai unique situation. It contained the remains of people who have evolved from some ancient group denisovtsy — people with very relict genome. But they have made their contribution to the genetic makeup of modern man. True, this contribution has been very selective.
It turned out that almost all modern humanity has in his genes Denisovskoye heritage. But the Melanesians, the people of Papua — New Guinea, they Denisovskoye these genes have.
For decades, scientists from the Novosibirsk Institute of Archaeology and Ethnography, which is headed by Academician Anatoly Panteleevich Derevyanko incredibly scrutinized Altai caves. Many caves. Excavations at the Denisova cave, which last year attracted huge attention of paleontologists from around the world, headed by the Deputy Director of the Institute of Archeology and Ethnography of the Academy of Sciences Mikhail Shunkov.
Thus, about 300 thousand years ago Altai populated a group of people. And then, this group developed in isolation. Before the period of 50 thousand years ago, she lived in isolation in favorable conditions. Their stone industry is changing. Denisovtsy, for example, created a polished jade bracelet. This is a unique thing.
But who were these people, what kind of belong — is not clear! Analysis of the DNA obtained from the children's little finger bones from the Denisova cave, showed that this hitherto unknown DNA. Academician Derevyanko proposes a denisovtsev a separate species of fossil hominids — Homo denisovans.
It was a unique time in the history of the Earth: coexist on the same planet, and most likely interact, crossed several kinds of people … And the most curious thing is that this time period extends to 40 thousand years ago. Then there was an even more unique situation. And in our country.