Navigation Links
Fossilized Teeth Hold Clues to Early Human Species' Diet
Date:6/27/2012

WEDNESDAY, June 27 (HealthDay News) -- New research suggests that human ancestors who lived 2 million years ago had a diet that was devoted to harder foods than other early humans.

"It is an important finding because diet is one of the fundamental aspects of an animal, one that drives its behavior and ecological niche," study co-author Paul Sandberg, a University of Colorado at Boulder doctoral student, said in a university news release. "As environments change over time because of shifting climates, animals are generally forced to either move or to adapt to their new surroundings."

The ancestor in question is a hominid called Australopithecus sediba, or Au. sediba, an upright species that was short and gangly and lived in what's now South Africa. Unlike its counterparts, Au. sediba ate tree bark, bushes and fruits instead of softer foods such as grasses and similar plants, the researchers believe.

An international team of investigators, led by the Max Planck Institute of Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany, gained insight into the diet of Au. sediba by analyzing fossilized teeth from two sets of remains with the help of a laser that freed carbon from the tooth enamel. The carbon, in turn, reveals what the species ate, the study authors explained in the report published online June 27 in the journal Nature.

The researchers concluded that these two Au. sediba individuals ate very differently than all 81 previously tested hominids.

"What fascinates me is that these individuals are oddballs," study co-author Matt Sponheimer, a professor at the University of Colorado at Boulder, said in the news release. "I had pretty much convinced myself that after 4 million years ago most of our hominid kin had diets that were different from living apes, but now I am not so sure."

Sponheimer added that the small sample size used in this study doesn't provide conclusive evidence, but as more fossils are discovered, scientists "won't have to wait another 2 million years" to perform additional research.

More information

The Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History has more about Australopithecus sediba.

-- Randy Dotinga

SOURCE: University of Colorado at Boulder, news release, June 27, 2012


'/>"/>
Copyright©2012 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. TeetheMe.com Partners with SwaddleDesigns
2. Aurora Dentist Gives Patients Big Savings With Teeth in a Day Implants
3. Researchers at IRB Barcelona uncover new clues about the origin of cancer
4. Amazon Tribe Gives Clues to Heart-Healthy Lifestyles
5. New Clues to the Evolution of the Human Brain
6. Geisel researchers sift through junk to find colorectal cancer clues
7. Clues to Slacker Behavior Found in Brain, Study Says
8. Research yields new clues to how brain cancer cells migrate and invade
9. Ice Cream Headaches Might Offer Clues to Migraines
10. Study of half siblings provides genetic clues to autism
11. JCI early table of contents for June 18, 2012
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
 Fossilized Teeth Hold Clues to Early Human Species' Diet 
(Date:4/28/2016)... ... 29, 2016 , ... Sublime Beauty® is offering a special deal on its webstore. , Buy ... discount is applied to the product with lesser value. In addition, a free bonus ... or more in products. , "So many women (men, too) love our products and get ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... , ... April 28, 2016 , ... ... the world stage this week. A group of researchers and leaders from Sanford ... Progress of Regenerative Medicine and Its Cultural Impact ” and receive the 2016 ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... ... April 28, 2016 , ... La Sirena Foods provides premium ... Central America and is looking to grow their market share in the USA. , ... brand as La Sirena Foods and indirectly with Otis McAllister , ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... ... , ... Head Over Heels Athletic Arts’ gymnast, Brooklyn Varize, has qualified to ... at the University of Montana on April 28-May 1. Varize will compete on Saturday ... order to qualify, Varize needed to place top seven all-around in her respective age ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... ... April 28, 2016 , ... ... availability of a new CDISC standard, Clinical Trial Registry (CTR) XML. Clinical ... innovative standard will make it possible to build applications that generate submissions ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:4/27/2016)... PARIS , le 27 Avril 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... chiffre d,affaires a progressé de +5% sur le ... ventes récurrentes de consommables  Croissance de ... Mauna Kea Technologies (Euronext : ... multidisciplinaire d,endomicroscopie confocale laser, annonce aujourd,hui son chiffre ...
(Date:4/27/2016)... 2016   Zillion Group today announced ... platform, which specializes in live video consultation. Turning ... products, Zillion enables companies to realize the true ... take control of their health. ... including one-to-one, group and webcast scheduled or on-demand ...
(Date:4/27/2016)... , April 27, 2016 ... of the  "Global Anesthesia Disposables Market 2016-2020" ... http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160330/349511LOGO ) ,The global anesthesia disposables ... CAGR of 4.03% during the period 2016-2020.  ... major threat to patients, safety. Organizations like ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: