DNA based evidence reveals Neanderthal face

September 18th, 2008 - 12:43 pm ICT by ANI  

National Geographic

Washington, September 18 (ANI): Artists, working along with scientists, have created the first model of a Neanderthal based in part on ancient DNA evidence, and have named her as Wilma, after the redheaded Flintstones character.

The team created Wilma using analysis of DNA from 43,000-year-old bones that had been cannibalized.

Announced in October 2007, the findings had suggested that at least some Neanderthals would have had red hair, pale skin, and possibly freckles.

Created for an October 2008 National Geographic magazine article, Wilma has a skeleton made from replicas of pelvis and skull bones from Neanderthal females.

Copies of male Neanderthal bones, which were resized to female dimensions, filled in the gaps.

For the first time, anthropologists can go beyond fossils and peer into the actual genes of an extinct species of human, said National Geographics senior science editor, Jamie Shreeve, who oversaw the project.

We saw an opportunity to literally embody this new science in a full-size Neanderthal female, reconstructed using the latest information from genetics, fossil evidence, and archaeology, he added. (ANI)

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