Navigation Links
Even Ancient Men Seemed to Like Their Man Caves
Date:6/1/2011

By Maureen Salamon
HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, June 1 (HealthDay News) -- The concept of the "man cave" has been entrenched in the human lineage for far longer than thought, according to new research that analyzed teeth from early humans to determine their geographic movement.

Scientists from the University of Colorado at Boulder found that males of two hominid species that roamed the South African savanna more than a million years ago stayed close to home -- which often included caves -- while females tended to move away.

The study, published in the June 2 issue of the journal Nature, suggests that fossils can reveal clues to early humans' social and gender-related behavior, said Jeffrey Laitman, director of the Center for Anatomy and Functional Morphology at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City.

"This is strong and beautiful science," Laitman said. "It at least is giving us a glimpse that some of the behaviors we see today have roots going into the past. It may well be in our lineage that [males] liked their man caves."

Study author Sandi Copeland and her team studied teeth from a group of extinct Australopithecus africanus and Paranthropus robustus individuals from two adjacent cave systems in South Africa, finding that more than half of the female teeth were from outside the local area. But only about 10 percent of the male hominid teeth were from elsewhere, the study said, suggesting they likely grew up and died in the same area.

Using a high-tech analysis known as laser ablation, the researchers zapped the hominid teeth with lasers to measure isotope ratios of strontium found in tooth enamel, which helped identify specific areas of landscape use. Strontium is a naturally occurring element found in rocks and soils that is absorbed by plants and animals.

Copeland, an adjunct assistant professor of anthropology at UC-Boulder, said she was surprised when results initially found no significant disparities in how the two early human species used the landscape. When males were compared to females, however, noticeable differences emerged.

"Our study is the first to directly test the dispersal pattern that might have [existed] in early hominids," she said.

The strontium isotope ratios reflected their locations, and therefore what foods were available, Copeland said. The team tested 19 teeth dating from approximately 1.8 million to 2.2 million years ago, determining that male teeth were larger than those from females. They also compared them to teeth and jaw fossils from five early hominid sites in South Africa.

The "million-dollar question," Copeland said, is why males from these groups stayed closer to home while females roamed. Among most other primates, including gorillas, this pattern is reversed.

Determining the reasons "is very hard," Laitman said. "I think they're going to have to extrapolate a bit, but at least we have the beginnings of the story. I don't think this is by chance -- I think their data is real, and they're cracking open the behaviors of our ancestors."

Copeland noted that future technology may make it possible to move beyond this knowledge to learn why this geographic movement pattern existed among early humans. "I think there's hope for doing something like that," she said.

More information

The Smithsonian Institution has more information on early humans and evolution.

SOURCES: Sandi Copeland, Ph.D., adjunct associate professor, anthropology, University of Colorado, Boulder; Jeffrey Laitman, Ph.D., professor and director, Center for Anatomy and Functional Morphology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York City; June 2, 2011, Nature


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Scans of Egyptian Mummies Show Heart Disease Was Ancient Malady
2. Mummies Show Heart Disease Is an Ancient Problem
3. Conceptualizing cancer cells as ancient toolkit
4. Ancient Toolkit Holds Clues to Migration of Early Man
5. Ancient Chinese medicine may help chemotherapy patients
6. Ancient Chinese herbal recipe eases side effects of chemotherapy
7. Is Frequency the Future of Medicine or an Ancient Mystery Revealed?
8. Action of modern drug demonstrates how 2 ancient human systems interact
9. A new view of fossils: The behavior of ancient life forms
10. A Must-Hear Free Summer Seminar - Dr. Sherrill Sellman Reveals "Secrets for Getting in 'Summer Shape' with Ancient Herbs"
11. Strange Artifact Identified as Ancient Anti-Snoring Device
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Even Ancient Men Seemed to Like Their Man Caves
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... , ... Lori R. Somekh, founder of the Law Office of Somekh ... law and special needs planning attorneys. “Membership in ElderCounsel helps our office remain up ... network with elder law attorneys nationwide,” said Somekh. , ElderCounsel was ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... Global Healthcare Management’s 4th ... Park in Milford, NJ. This free event, sponsored by Global Healthcare Management’s CEO, ... The fun run is geared towards children of all ages; it is a non-competitive, ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... , ... October 13, 2017 , ... “America On The ... identity. “America On The Brink” is the creation of published author, William Nowers. ... great-grandchildren. As a WWII veteran, he spent thirty years in the Navy. ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... ... IsoComforter, Inc. ( https://isocomforter.com ), one of the Nation’s premier ... of the shoulder pad. The shoulder pad provides optimal support and full contact ... using cold therapy. By utilizing ice and water that is circulated from an insulated ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... , ... HMP , a leader in healthcare events and education, today announced ... Award for ‘Best B-to-B Healthcare Website.’ Winners were announced during the Eddie & Ozzie ... competition recognizes editorial and design excellence across a range of sectors. This year’s program ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/22/2017)... , Sept. 22, 2017 AVACEN Medical (AVACEN) ... is now successfully helping those with the widespread pain ... Fibromyalgia diagnosed Amanda in Essex, England ... washing my hair, experiencing no sleep at all, tremendous ... spasm… I cannot recommend [the AVACEN 100] enough, how ...
(Date:9/19/2017)... ZirMed Inc ., a recognized leader in cloud-based revenue cycle ... ranked #1 by its users for the seventh consecutive year ... ZirMed was recognized as the top-ranked end-to-end revenue cycle management ... 200 beds and holds one of the longest #1 ranking ... ...
(Date:9/18/2017)... PROVIDENCE, R.I. , Sept. 18, 2017 ... in the fields of bioinformatics and immune ... to develop a protective avian influenza A (H7N9) vaccine. ... is distantly related to seasonal influenza and ... approaches, which rely on prior exposure to be ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: