Oldest Known Human Viruses Discovered In 50000 Year Old Neanderthal Bones

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Scientists are constantly trying to find out about our ancestors and how they became extinct. Neanderthals are considered to be the closest to modern humans. But Neanderthals became extinct. Now researchers have found some evidence about a 50 thousand year old virus. This evidence has been found in the bones of Neanderthals who lived 50 thousand years ago.

Prior to this, scientists believed that infectious diseases Neanderthals must have played an important role in the elimination of the species. But the researchers did not have any concrete evidence for this. Because the ancient DNA Extracting and sequencing it was a very difficult task. Now a new team led by molecular biologist Marcelo Braones has developed a new genome. Study DNA samples from Neanderthal skeletons found in Russia’s Chagyrskaya cave have been analyzed.

Briones’ team then found that some fragments found in the bones matched three modern-day viruses: adenovirus (common cold), herpes virus (cold sores), and papillomavirus (genital warts).

However, this discovery is still very preliminary. The fragments of the virus found in them suggest that they must have contained old viruses. The research also says that it cannot be said yet what effect these viruses might have had on Neanderthals. But this discovery has opened the doors for further investigation in this regard. Along with this, this discovery weakens all those theories which have been saying that Neanderthals must have been extinct due to changes in the environment or human-to-human conflict.

Researchers also admit that many factors may have been involved in the extinction of Neanderthals. Further study of these viruses discovered in the bones and other responsible factors will take us closer to the truth that relates to a very big event in the history of the human species.



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