Feeds

Native Americans were actually European - BEFORE the Europeans arrived!

Columbus et al invaded relatives who went via Siberia

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Security for virtualized datacentres

DNA from a prehistoric Siberian boy could reveal exactly where Native Americans - the people who occupied the American continents before Europeans crossed the Atlantic - actually came from.

Everybody's pretty clear that the Native Americans arrived across the ancient land bridge from Asia, the location of the present-day Bering Strait. But where the generations before that had lived on their way from the birthplace of humanity in Africa is far from certain, and is a hotly debated topic among scientists.

DNA samples taken from modern day Native Americans include genetic signatures known to originate from Western Eurasia - broadly speaking, European ancestry. But many scientists say that these must have been added to the mixture since Columbus arrived. They would say that the original Native Americans, moving through Siberia on their way to America, were not at all closely related to the groups who would one day become Europeans and then - many of them in the last few centuries - Conquistadores and colonists and huddled masses and so on, and thus the various flavours of European-American.

But now some new information has appeared. DNA analysis has sequenced the genome of a Siberian lad who died some 24,000 years ago when the land bridge was still there and the migration into what would become Alaska was in full flow. A full test has also been carried out on another Siberian of 17,000 years back. In both cases, it appears that the Siberians of the time had a much heftier dose of genetic signatures similar to proto-Europeans, and that in all likelihood they took those with them to America.

The investigating scientists write in hefty boffinry mag Nature:

Our findings reveal that western Eurasian genetic signatures in modern-day Native Americans derive not only from post-Columbian admixture, as commonly thought, but also from a mixed ancestry of the First Americans.

So it appears that the Native Americans were in part merely an earlier wave of European colonisation, later to find most of their conquests taken away by Johnny-come-latelies from across the water. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Boffins say they've got Lithium batteries the wrong way around
Surprises at the nano-scale mean our ideas about how they charge could be all wrong
Thought that last dinosaur was BIG? This one's bloody ENORMOUS
Weighed several adult elephants, contend boffins
Europe prepares to INVADE comet: Rosetta landing site chosen
No word yet on whether backup site is labelled 'K'
India's MOM Mars mission makes final course correction
Mangalyaan probe will feel the burn of orbital insertion on September 24th
City hidden beneath England's Stonehenge had HUMAN ABATTOIR. And a pub
Boozed-up ancients drank beer before tearing corpses apart
'Duck face' selfie in SPAAAACE: Rosetta's snap with bird comet
Probe prepares to make first landing on fast-moving rock
Archaeologists and robots on hunt for more Antikythera pieces
How much of the world's oldest computer can they find?
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.