Navigation Links
Ancient DNA, not fossilized bones, shows late survival of Ice Age megafauna
Date:12/14/2009

University of Alberta researchers are part of an international team that has used DNA samples from frozen dirt, not fossilized bones, to revise the history of North America's woolly mammoths and ancient horses.

The work of U of A Earth and Atmospheric Sciences professor Duane Froese and his colleagues counters an important extinction theory, based on radiocarbon dating of bones and teeth. That analysis concluded that more than half of the large mammals in North America (the 'megafauna') disappeared about 13,000 years ago.

In the new research, DNA samples recovered from Alaskan permafrost showed that woolly mammoths and ancient horses were still roaming through central Alaska about 10,000 years ago, and possibly as recently as 7600 years ago. That predates the established record from fossil bones and teeth by at least 3,000 years.

The DNA samples were recovered from permafrost near the central Alaskan community of Stevens Village, on the banks of the Yukon River. Analysis of the samples from soils that formed between 10,000 and 7600 years ago showed the presence of mammoth and horse DNA together with animals typically found in the region today, such as moose and arctic hare.

The challenge of dating extinction events is finding fossilized remains from the last animal left standing of any given species. The chances of finding those exact bones are remote. But animals are constantly leaving behind tell-tale samples of DNA in the form of skin cells and feces in the environment. That's what Froese and the other researchers found in the permafrost, at a depth and time line that radically changes the extinction date for two members of North America's megafauna in the late Pleistocene.


'/>"/>

Contact: Brian Murphy
brian.murphy@ualberta.ca
780-492-6041
University of Alberta
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1

Related biology news :

1. Studying hair of ancient Peruvians answers questions about stress
2. Californias ancient kelp forest
3. Ancient penguin DNA raises doubts about accuracy of genetic dating techniques
4. A new wrinkle in ancient ocean chemistry
5. Volcanoes played pivotal role in ancient ice age, mass extinction
6. Genetic sex determination let ancient species adapt to ocean life
7. Biologists discover death stench is a universal ancient warning signal
8. Ancient oceans offer new insight into the origins of animal life
9. Scientists help explain effects of ancient Chinese herbal formulas on heart health
10. Climate-caused biodiversity booms and busts in ancient plants and mammals
11. Scary ancient spiders revealed in 3-D models, thanks to new imaging technique
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/23/2017)... Research and Markets has announced the addition of the "Global ... 2025" report to their offering. ... The Global Vehicle Anti-Theft System Market is ... next decade to reach approximately $14.21 billion by 2025. ... all the given segments on global as well as regional levels ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... Optimove , provider of the ... as 1-800-Flowers and AdoreMe, today announced two new ... Using Optimove,s machine learning algorithms, these features allow ... recommendations to their customers based not just on ... intent drawn from a complex web of data ...
(Date:3/20/2017)... 20, 2017 At this year,s CeBIT Chancellor Dr. ... manufacturer DERMALOG. The Chancellor came to the DERMALOG stand together with the ... year,s CeBIT partner country. At the largest German biometrics company the two ... face and iris recognition as well as DERMALOG´s multi-biometrics system.   ... ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/19/2017)... ... May 19, 2017 , ... In response to the strong ... Biodex Medical Systems, Inc. announces the release of their Gait Trainer 3 with an ... with a biomedical system to aid in rehabilitating individuals with cerebral palsy, traumatic brain ...
(Date:5/18/2017)... , ... May 18, 2017 , ... ... The Tapas Cooking Challenge is a two-hour team-building package designed for groups ... created by Chef Jodi Abel, which include items, such as Blackened Shrimp with ...
(Date:5/18/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... May 17, ... ... CRO standards with psychonneuroendocrine stress expertise, and further enhances its scientific power ... researcher, Douglas A. Granger, Ph.D., has agreed to join the scientific advisory ...
(Date:5/18/2017)... ... May 17, 2017 , ... ... varying industries, including food and dairy, munitions, and pharmaceutical/biotech, recently introduced The Revolution ... ease of use. The improvement in technology comes on the heels of HOLLOWAY’s ...
Breaking Biology Technology: