Modern Humans Couldn’t Have Survived Without Having Sex With Neanderthals!

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Talk about sexy beasts! Could modern humans have survived with having sex with them? Neanderthals and modern humans last had sex about 47,000 years ago according to research published by PLoS Genetics. They estimate that the last exchange genes of genes was between 37,000 and 86,000 years ago, and most likely 47,000 to 65,000 years ago. The place the last act in the Upper Paleolithic a time when modern man had begun using stone tools, such as knife blades, spear points, and engraving and drilling implements.

Modern humans left Africa about 100,000 years ago

When the first modern humans left Africa about 100,000 years ago, they walked not only against new and unknown continents. On their journey north they, of course, encountered new diseases and soon discovered that their immune system could not fight. It turns out that sex between Homo Sapiens and Neanderthals was good for survival. . The Neanderthals had existed for 200 000 years and their immune system was adapted to the local circumstances. The “modern” humans received new genes that helped them survive in the new environment. Mating with Neanderthals was good for survival.

Scientists have for a number of years that Homo sapiens mated with Neanderthals, but it was not clear how important this cross-fertilization had for the modern human evolution. Peter Parham, a professor of microbiology at Stanford University, has examined. He has analyzed exactly which genes of Homo sapiens was supplied from Neanderthals and other archaic humans. He has done by comparing the present-day populations DNA with the earlier human species fossil DNA. Parham focused on human leukocyte antigens – also called HLA antigens.There is a group of 200 genes are on chromosome 6 and that are essential to the immune system. Of the approximately 200 HLA antigens studied Peter Parham just three: HLA-A, HLA-B and HLA-C.

Three genes encode

These three genes encode different types of HLA proteins, which sits on the surface of including white blood cells, from where they stimulate the immune system’s response to infections. Globally, there are several hundred different variations of HLA-A, HLA-B and HLA-C, and each individual inherits its variants from both mother and father.This means that every individual has six different variants, and people who are not related to each other can have vastly different combinations of HLA variants.”This ensures the HLA genes that a person’s immune system is individual,” said Peter Parham.

How much sex?

How much sex did modern man have with Neanderthals is still the subject of scientific speculation. “We present evidence for three to five cases of interbreeding among four distinct hominin populations,” the paper says. “Clearly the real population history is likely to have been even more complex … our analyses show that that hominin groups met and had offspring on many occasions in the Late Pleistocene, but that the extent of gene flow between the groups was generally low. We performed simulations of several inbreeding scenarios and discovered that the parents of this Neanderthal individual were either half siblings who had a mother in common, double first cousins, an uncle and a niece, an aunt and a nephew, a grandfather and a granddaughter, or a grandmother and a grandson,” said Montgomery Slatkin, a University of California, Berkeley graduate student.

Neanderthals, our closet relative had been around for about 30,000 years when modern humans appeared in the fossil record about 200,000 years ago and over time they co-mingled. However for reasons not fully understand, the Neanderthals disappeared about 30,000 year ago.

By studying the DNA extracted from fossils, and an examination of the Neanderthal genetic material suggested that modern humans’ ancestors occasionally successfully interbred with Neanderthals. The study done in 2010 revealed that the distinctive Neanderthal DNA is present in about 1 percent to 4 percent of modern Eurasian genomes. There is some evidence that the Neanderthal DNS endowed some people with the robust immune systems they enjoy today.

Via: PLoS Genetics, Peter Parham

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