Entire Genome from 35,00-Year-Old Human Female Skull (Peştera Muierii 1) Sequenced; Suggests Greatest Loss of Human Genetic Diversity Occurred During Last Ice Age (Ending ~10,000 Years Ago) Not During Out-of-Africa Migration (~80,000 Years Ago)

For the first time, researchers have successfully sequenced the entire genome from the skull of Peştera Muierii 1, a woman who lived in today's Romania ~35,000 years ago. Her high genetic diversity shows that the out-of-Africa migration was not the great bottleneck in human development, but rather this occurred during and after the most recent Ice Age. This is the finding of a new study led by Mattias Jakobsson, PhD, at Sweden’s Uppsala University and published online on May 18, 2021 in Current Biology. The open-access article is titled “Genome of Peştera Muierii Skull Shows High Diversity and Low Mutational Load in Pre-Glacial Europe.” "She is a bit more like modern-day Europeans than the individuals in Europe 5,000 years earlier, but the difference is much less than we had thought. We can see that she is not a direct ancestor of modern Europeans, but she is a predecessor of the hunter-gathers that lived in Europe until the end of the last Ice Age," says Mattias Jakobsson, Professor at the Department of Organismal Biology at Uppsala University and head of the study.

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