Ancient Baby DNA Suggests Tie to Native Americans

Wed, 02/12/2014 - 3:08pm
Malcolm Ritter - AP Science Writer - Associated Press

               This undated photo provided by researcher Sarah L. Anzick shows a nearly-complete projectile point, top, a mid-stage point made of translucent quartz and an end-beveled rod of bone from a Clovis-era burial site found in 1968 in western Montana. Scientists have recovered and analyzed the DNA of an infant who died more than 12,000 years ago and was buried at the site where these artifacts were found. By comparing the boy’s genome to those of present-day people, the research showed that many of today’s Native Americans are direct descendants of the population the boy belonged to, and that he is closely related to all indigenous American populations, especially in Central and South America, the researchers said. The DNA analysis was reported online Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2014 in the journal Nature. (AP Photo/Sarah L. Anzick)

The DNA of a baby boy who was buried in Montana more than 12,000 years ago has been recovered, and it provides new indications of the ancient roots of today's American Indians and other native peoples of the Americas.

The boy was part of the Clovis culture, which existed in North America from about 13,000 years ago to about 12,600 years ago.

The boy's DNA is the oldest genome ever recovered from the Americas.

It shows his people were closely related to native peoples of the Americas, closer to those in Central and South America than those in Canada. The scientists said they had no American Indian DNA for comparison, but that they assume the results would be similar.

The findings are reported Wednesday in the journal Nature.



Share this Story

You may login with either your assigned username or your e-mail address.
The password field is case sensitive.