Navigation Links
Ancient 'Nutcracker Man' challenges ideas on evolution of human diet
Date:4/30/2008

Tiny marks on the teeth of an ancient human ancestor known as the "Nutcracker Man" may upset current evolutionary understanding of early hominid diet.

Using high-powered microscopes, researchers looked at rough geometric shapes on the teeth of several Nutcracker Man specimens and determined that their structure alone was not enough to predict diet.

Peter Ungar, professor of anthropology at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville, contends the finding shows evolutionary adaptation for eating may have been based on scarcity rather than on an animal's regular diet.

"These findings totally run counter to what people have been saying for the last half a century," says Ungar. "We have to sit back and re-evaluate what we once thought."

Ungar and his colleagues, Frederick E. Grine of State University of New York at Stony Brook and Mark F. Teaford of Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Md., reported their findings last week in the Public Library of Science One, a peer-reviewed, international, online journal. The research was funded in part by the National Science Foundation.

The researchers examined the teeth of Paranthropus boisei, an ancient hominin that lived between 2.3 and 1.2 million years ago and is known popularly as the "Nutcracker Man" because it has the biggest, flattest cheek teeth and the thickest enamel of any known human ancestor.

"Ungar and colleagues' work on Paranthropus boisei diet is extremely important," says Joanna Lambert, physical anthropology program director at NSF. "Understanding what and how early hominins ate sheds light not only onto the feeding biology of our fossil ancestors, but also onto the very evolution of our own species."

Scientists long have believed that P. boisei fed on nuts and seeds or roots and tubers found in the savannas throughout eastern Africa because the teeth, cranium and mandible appear to be built for chewing and crunching hard objects.

But
'/>"/>

Contact: Bobbie Mixon
bmixon@nsf.gov
703-292-8485
National Science Foundation
Source:Eurekalert  

Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Ancient sunflower fuels debate about agriculture in the Americas
2. Ancient ecosystems organized much like our own
3. Synchrotron light unveils oil in ancient Buddhist paintings from Bamiyan
4. Ancient DNA: reconstruction of the biological history of Aldaieta necropolis
5. Ancient reptile rises from Alberta oil sands
6. Ancient lemurs little finger poses mystery
7. Floating a big idea: MIT demos ancient use of rafts to transport goods
8. Ancient mystery solved
9. New dinosaur from Mexico offers insights into ancient life on West America
10. Scientists rebuild ancient proteins to reveal primordial Earths temperature
11. Avian origins: new analysis confirms ancient beginnings
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Ancient 'Nutcracker Man' challenges ideas on evolution of human diet
(Date:8/29/2014)... 29, 2014) Scientists at the Barshop Institute for ... Medicine at the UT Health Science Center at San ... tissues of the longest-lived rodent, the naked mole rat. ... cells of naked mole rats protects and alters the ... and obsolete proteins. , The factor also protects proteasome ...
(Date:8/29/2014)... in German . ... natural nitrogen cycle on Earth and in biological wastewater ... to depend on nitrite as their source of energy. ... a microbiologist at the University of Vienna, has now ... alternative source of energy. The oxidation of hydrogen with ...
(Date:8/29/2014)... Tibetan plateau -- the largest topographic anomaly above sea ... profound effect on climate and its reflection of continental ... , Katharine Huntington and colleagues employ a cutting-edge geochemical ... fossil snail shells to investigate the uplift history of ... range widely on the timing of surface uplift of ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Factor in naked mole rat's cells enhances protein integrity 2Hydrogen powers important nitrogen-transforming bacteria 2Hydrogen powers important nitrogen-transforming bacteria 3Snails tell of the rise and fall of the Tibetan Plateau 2Snails tell of the rise and fall of the Tibetan Plateau 3Snails tell of the rise and fall of the Tibetan Plateau 4Snails tell of the rise and fall of the Tibetan Plateau 5Snails tell of the rise and fall of the Tibetan Plateau 6Snails tell of the rise and fall of the Tibetan Plateau 7
... pondered at least since the phrase "nature versus nurture" was ... modern genomic sequencing tools, it was hard to measure the ... Now, researchers with the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute at Virginia ... a unique natural environment known as "Evolution Canyon" show that ...
... NASA scientists have revealed the inner workings of the ... that declining chlorine in the stratosphere has not yet ... than 20 years after the Montreal Protocol agreement limited ... area of the annual ozone hole and watched it ...
... Sciences faculty members whose research has resulted in ... startup companies have been named fellows of the ... Wittwer, M.D., Ph.D., professor of pathology and research ... of internal medicine and chief of the Division ...
Cached Biology News:Environment drives genetics in 'Evolution Canyon'; discovery sheds light on climate change 2Environment drives genetics in 'Evolution Canyon'; discovery sheds light on climate change 3NASA reveals new results from inside the ozone hole 2NASA reveals new results from inside the ozone hole 3Researchers named to National Academy of Inventors 2Researchers named to National Academy of Inventors 3Researchers named to National Academy of Inventors 4
(Date:8/28/2014)... Lawrence, MA (PRWEB) August 28, 2014 “This ... single test to screen from 0 to 150 ppb,” said ... test is a significant benefit to plant owners and USDA-GIPSA ... corn and other commodities. Testing can take place in a ... Not only can the plant test the feed and grain ...
(Date:8/28/2014)... BOSTON , Aug. 28, 2014  Next month, executives ... at three key industry events beginning with Patient-Centered Clinical ... Hotel in Boston , September 4-5. Patient ... , and Aaron Fleishman will share insights on ... how a variety of tactics – from media to mobile ...
(Date:8/28/2014)... USA (PRWEB) August 27, 2014 Scientists, ... month for SPIE Laser Damage 2014 symposium. ... materials for high-power lasers will run 14-17 September. The ... for optics and photonics . , The premier conference ... understanding laser damage to optical materials will engage researchers ...
(Date:8/28/2014)... August 28, 2014 Whitehouse Laboratories is ... term partnership with PTI Inspection Systems that ... state of the art leak testing method development and ... instruments currently available. As part of this agreement, Whitehouse ... Voltage Leak Detection Instrument developed and manufactured by ...
Breaking Biology Technology:BBK Worldwide Leads Sessions at Key September Events 2Laser Damage to Draw Researchers, Engineers, Scientists to 46th Annual Conference 2Laser Damage to Draw Researchers, Engineers, Scientists to 46th Annual Conference 3Whitehouse Labs Renews Partnership with PTI Inspection Systems 2Whitehouse Labs Renews Partnership with PTI Inspection Systems 3
... MISSISSAUGA, ON, March 3 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ - Vasogen Inc.,(NASDAQ: VSGN ... a clinical,trial which is being planned to support an ... the treatment of patients with New,York Heart Association (NYHA) ... December that the FDA was examining its,internal jurisdiction over ...
... of premium-priced products, including resurfacing hips and, alternative ... ... Research Group, WALTHAM, Mass., March 3 Millennium Research ... almost,10% in 2007. Data from MRG,s US Orthopedic Reconstructive Marketrack(TM),indicates ...
... NicOx S.A.,(Euronext Paris: COX) today announced the ... United States, which will assess the blood,pressure profile ... the Ambulatory Blood Pressure Monitoring (ABPM) technique. These,separate ... together recruit a,total of around 420 osteoarthritis patients ...
Cached Biology Technology:Vasogen Provides Update on ACCLAIM II Program 2Vasogen Provides Update on ACCLAIM II Program 3Vasogen Provides Update on ACCLAIM II Program 4US Large-Joint Reconstructive Implant Market Grew 10% in 2007 2NicOx Initiates Two Large ABPM Studies for Naproxcinod in Hypertensive Patients with Osteoarthritis 2NicOx Initiates Two Large ABPM Studies for Naproxcinod in Hypertensive Patients with Osteoarthritis 3NicOx Initiates Two Large ABPM Studies for Naproxcinod in Hypertensive Patients with Osteoarthritis 4NicOx Initiates Two Large ABPM Studies for Naproxcinod in Hypertensive Patients with Osteoarthritis 5
... short years since publication of the best-selling ... acclaimed Protein Protocols Handbook, there have been ... In recognition of the level of attention ... of new methodologies directed to study them, ...
... Pan-Caspase In Situ Assay Kit, Fluorescein is ... caspases in cells undergoing apoptosis. The kit ... use in diagnostic or therapeutic procedures. CHEMICON®s ... a novel approach to detect active caspases. ...
... CaspaTag™ Pan-Caspase In Situ Assay Kit is ... caspases in cells undergoing apoptosis. The kit ... use in diagnostic or therapeutic procedures. CHEMICON®s ... a novel approach to detect active caspases. ...
...
Biology Products: