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Ancient DNA Reveals the World's Oldest Family Tree

23 Dec 2021 11:26 AM | Anonymous

Analysis of ancient DNA from one of the best-preserved Neolithic tombs in Britain has revealed that most of the people buried there were from five continuous generations of a single extended family.

By analyzing DNA extracted from the bones and teeth of 35 individuals entombed at Hazleton North long cairn in the Cotswolds-Severn region, the research team was able to detect that 27 of them were close biological relatives. The group lived approximately 5700 years ago—around 3700-3600 BC—around 100 years after farming had been introduced to Britain.

Published in Nature, it is the first study to reveal in such detail how prehistoric families were structured, and the international team of archaeologists and geneticists say that the results provide new insights into kinship and burial practices in Neolithic times.

You can read the full story at https://phys.org/news/2021-12-ancient-dna-reveals-world-oldest.html.

My thanks to newsletter reader Dean McLeod for telling me bout this story.

Two other newsletter readers also sent links to a DIFFERENT and more comprehensive article that describes (partially) the above story at https://phys.org/news/2021-12-harvard-geneticists-ancient-britain-insights.html


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