HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Anthropologist challenges species identification of ancient child skeleton found in Ethiopia

According to University of Pittsburgh anthropology professor Jeffrey Schwartz, author of the four-volume The Human Fossil Record (Wiley-Liss, 2002-05), "the discovery of any largely complete skeleton of an ancient human relative would be unique. The fact that it is a child makes it even more exciting because of what its bones and teeth might reveal that an adult's cannot."

However, Schwartz said, there are questions about the species this specimen represents. He explained that the problem is that "Lucy" and this child specimen from Dikika have been placed in Australopithecus afarensis, which is not from Ethiopia but from Laetoli, a site in Tanzania thousands of kilometers to the south. But while other specimens from Laetoli are similar to this specimen, defined as A. afarensis, a recent study of virtually all the fossils from Lucy's region of Hadar by Schwartz and Ian Tattersall, curator of anthropology at the American Museum of Natural History in New York, has revealed that none is similar in detail to the fossils from Laetoli.

"This means, of course, that no Hadar specimen is A. afarensis," said Schwartz, a fellow of the prestigious World Academy of Arts and Science.

Just as Donald Johanson, discoverer of the 3.2 million-year old Lucy, initially suggested, Schwartz and Tattersall found there is more than one kind of hominid represented in the Hadar material.

"Since the chewing surfaces of the Dikika child's teeth have not yet been exposed, one cannot compare it with any of the Hadar specimens or with the type specimen of A. afarensis from Laetoli," Schwarz explained. "Until this can be done, one cannot tell whether the Dikika child really is the first specimen of Ethiopian A. afarensis or, if not, whether it compares favorably with one of the hominids from Hadar or it represents a different taxon altogether."


'"/>

Contact: Patricia Lomando White
laer@pitt.edu
412-624-9101
University of Pittsburgh
2-Oct-2006


Page: 1

Related biology news :

1. Anthropologist given one of nations top scientific honors
2. Anthropologists find 4.5 million-year-old hominid fossils in Ethiopia
3. FDA sees nanotech challenges in every product category it regulates
4. Europe struggles to meet the challenges posed by PGD patients travelling abroad
5. Neuroblastoma expert reviews progress and challenges in fighting difficult pediatric cancer
6. Replacement warhead program poses challenges for weapons complex
7. Study challenges idea that schizophrenia is distinct in developing and developed regions
8. Paper challenges 1491 Amazonian population theories
9. ALTRAN: Industry experts address technology challenges at Altran Innovation Conference
10. New study challenges critical period in childhood vision development
11. Speak, memory: Research challenges theory of memory storage

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:4/19/2016)... UAE, April 20, 2016 The ... as a compact web-based "all-in-one" system solution for all ... fingerprint reader or the door interface with integration authorization ... access control systems. The minimal dimensions of the access ... into the building installations offer considerable freedom of design ...
(Date:4/14/2016)... , April 14, 2016 ... Malware Detection, today announced the appointment of Eyal ... new role. Goldwerger,s leadership appointment comes at ... heels of the deployment of its platform at several ... biometric technology, which discerns unique cognitive and physiological factors, ...
(Date:3/31/2016)... , March 31, 2016  Genomics firm Nabsys ... founding CEO, Barrett Bready , M.D., who returned ... of the original technical leadership team, including Chief Technology ... of Product Development, Steve Nurnberg and Vice President of ... to the company. Dr. Bready served as ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/25/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... May 25, 2016 , ... ... for information (RFI) issued by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health ... experience, and determines if clinically relevant data were available when and where it ...
(Date:5/25/2016)... ... May 25, 2016 , ... Lady had been battling arthritis ... cruciate ligament in her left knee. Lady’s owner Hannah sought the help of Dr ... veterinary surgeon, to repair her cruciate ligament and help with the pain of Lady’s ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... , May 24, 2016   MedyMatch Technology Ltd ... with artificial intelligence, real-time decision support tools in the emergency ... at the 2016 Israeli Advanced Technology Industries (IATI) BioMed Conference. ... Israel,s 15th National Life Sciences and Technology ... the David Intercontinental Hotel in Tel Aviv, Israel ...
(Date:5/23/2016)... ... May 23, 2016 , ... The need for blood donations in South Texas and ... the South Texas Blood & Tissue Center, blood donations are on the decline. In fact, ... they are down 21 percent in South Texas in the last four years alone. , ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: