The Neanderthal genome included harmful mutations that made the hominids around 40% less reproductively fit than modern humans, according to estimates published in the latest issue of the journal GENETICS.
The Asian melting pot: WE MAY have lived alongside an archaic human species just 10,500 years ago in China. Controversial bone discoveries suggest we even interbred with and cannibalised these mystery hominins.
Site: Tautavel, France Date of discovery: 1971 Discovered by: Henry and Marie Antoinette de Lumley Age: About 450,000 years old Species: Homo heidelbergensis The features of this cranium are most similar to much larger specimens of Homo heidelbergensis. Its small size suggests that it is a female of this early human species.
Map of eastern Africa migration Homo erectus first left Africa around 1.8 million years ago (green arrow). Our species, Homo sapiens, made the journey about 120,000 years ago (orange arrow). But stone tools such as this one from Jebel Faya may indicate a separate group of humans migrated from eastern Africa (red arrow) around the same time. (EPA/Bernd Weissbrod)
Scientists have determined that a variation of a gene that increases the risk of a person developing type 2 diabetes by 25 percent was was likely introduced into human populations by Neanderthals more than 60,000 years ago.