HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Ethiopian fossil skull indicates Homo erectus was single, widespread species 1 million years ago

Berkeley - A million-year-old Homo erectus skull found in Ethiopia indicates that this human ancestor was a single species scattered widely throughout Asia, Europe and Africa, not two separate species, according to an international group of scientists who discovered the skull in 1997.

Some archaeologists and anthropologists have argued that African and European populations were a different species, Homo ergaster, distinct from the strictly Asian Homo erectus.

It took University of California, Berkeley, researchers and their colleagues more than two years to clean and reassemble the crushed skull, which is described by the Ethiopian and American team in the March 21 issue of Nature. The fossil was described by Berhane Asfaw of the Rift Valley Research Service in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, paleoanthropologist Tim D. White, professor of integrative biology and co-director of UC Berkeley's Laboratory for Human Evolutionary Studies, and UC Berkeley graduate student W. Henry Gilbert, who found the skull.

"This fossil is a crucial piece of evidence showing that the splitting of Homo erectus into two species is not justified," said White. "This African fossil is so similar to its Asian contemporaries that it's clear Homo erectus was a truly successful, widespread species throughout the Old World."

The Ethiopian and American scientists also conclude in their paper that the onset of the Ice Ages about 950,000 years ago likely split the Homo erectus populations and led to their divergent evolution. The African population of Homo erectus probably gave rise to modern Homo sapiens, the European branch perhaps became the Neandertals, or Homo neanderthalensis, while the Asian population went extinct.

Homo erectus first appeared about 1.8 million years ago and, based on the fossil evidence, quickly populated Africa, Asia and Europe. Though it is unclear whether the species arose in Africa or Asia, a million years later the
'"/>

Contact: Robert Sanders
rls@pa.urel.berkeley.edu
510-643-6998
University of California - Berkeley
20-Mar-2002


Page: 1 2 3 4

Related biology news :

1. Rabies vaccinations could help save Ethiopian wolf
2. New fossil sheds light on old mystery
3. Evolution of whale hearing unfolds in fossil record
4. A picture is worth a thousand miles not traveled to measure the fossil of an ancient sea creature
5. Dinosaur fossil record compiled, analyzed
6. Scientist challenges interpretation of new find, the oldest primate fossil ever discovered
7. Ghost crab fossils haunt area beaches
8. 160,000-year-old fossilized skulls from Ethiopia are oldest modern humans
9. Scientists debate meaning of 40-million-year-old primate fossils in Nature
10. Dinosaur, crab fossils reveal ecosystem secrets
11. Rutgers Tanzanian fossil reshuffles the deck on early human ancestry

Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/6/2014)... a predator. Except when that predator runs so fast that ... its size, is the fastest creature on Earth. Some of ... (at about five miles per hour). The fastest human can ... from the tiger beetle, a person would have to hit ... a problem. At peak speeds, everything becomes a blur. They ...
(Date:11/5/2014)... Fidel Santamaria, associate professor of biology in the ... researchers in the nation selected to receive a ... Grant for Exploratory Research (EAGER). The funding supports ... support researchers to create new technology that will ... Santamaria, complex behaviors in neuroscience are broken into ...
(Date:11/5/2014)... great diversity in their ability to identify scents and ... in their perceptual evaluation of odors, with women outperforming ... , Sex differences in olfactory detection may play a ... to one,s perception of smell, which is naturally linked ... has been suggested to be cognitive or emotional, rather ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):The tiger beetle: Too fast to see 2UTSA biology professor awarded $300,000 NSF grant for brain research 2UTSA biology professor awarded $300,000 NSF grant for brain research 3The female nose always knows: Do women have more olfactory neurons? 2
(Date:11/22/2014)... (PRWEB) November 21, 2014 CannLabs, ... cloud based analytics and scientific testing methodologies relating to ... for a $750,000 line of credit from an existing ... pleased to have secured this commitment from one of ... Officer of CannLabs. “This capital will help accelerate our ...
(Date:11/22/2014)... Respiratory therapy students will soon ... of life-like respiratory ailments using the latest in ... Rapids-based, Michigan Instruments Inc. developers of the world-renowned ... respiratory simulation units to the pro-gram, which cost ... Muskegon Community College are collaborating to offer Muskegon’s ...
(Date:11/21/2014)... , Nov. 21, 2014   TRU-D SmartUVC LLC ... their superbug-killing UVC automated disinfection robot, TRU-D SmartUVC, at FIS ... from Nov. 23 to 26 at Stand 23. ... United Kingdom,s largest infection-related event of ... societies to one of the leading events of its type ...
(Date:11/21/2014)... November 20, 2014 The ... policy research organization representing leading California academic institutions, ... PwC US today released a report ... sciences industry growth. The trend shows a 4 ... 2015 California Biomedical Industry Report indicates that, ...
Breaking Biology Technology:CannLabs Secures $750,000 Line Of Credit 2Michigan Instruments Donates Two Respiratory Simulation Training and Test Lung (TTL) Devices to Grand Valley State University 2Michigan Instruments Donates Two Respiratory Simulation Training and Test Lung (TTL) Devices to Grand Valley State University 3TRU-D SmartUVC to Showcase Superbug-Killing Robot at FIS 2014 2TRU-D SmartUVC to Showcase Superbug-Killing Robot at FIS 2014 3California Healthcare Institute and PwC Report Boom in California’s Biomedical Industry 2California Healthcare Institute and PwC Report Boom in California’s Biomedical Industry 3California Healthcare Institute and PwC Report Boom in California’s Biomedical Industry 4
Cached News: