The scientists have discovered a curious kinship between the Native Indians and their ancestors who inhabited East Asia. The subject that revealed that connection was a tooth, that age is about 14 thousand years. It belonged to one of the closest direct relatives of modern Native Americans. And it was discovered by paleontologists at a great distance from the territory that once connected Eurasia and America. Jennifer Ruff who is a geneticist from the University of Kansas, called that discovery incredible.
The scientists could not even imagine that the Indians could connect kinship with the inhabitants of Beringia - a zone that connected Siberia and Alaska. Almost 20 thousand years ago, people began to inhabit Siberia. But science have remained in the dark for a long time, not knowing where these people came from.
A new study, which revealed unexpected details, was carried out using genetic analysis. One of the authors of this work, geneticist Johannes Krause, believes that the first settlement could have formed much further from Berengiya. In the 70s, archaeologists from the USSR discovered the Ust-Kyakhta site, it is located between the southern coastline of Lake Baikal and the Mongolian border.
A large number of antiquities were discovered on this site. There were tools made of stone and bone, fragments of ceramic products, bones of deer and fish among them. In addition, a fragment of a tooth belonging to a man was found. At that time, research technologies have not been as high as they are now.
Having determined that the tooth belonged to a person, the researchers sent it to a storage. And only a year later, RAS specialists drew attention to it. Archaeologist Svetlana Schneider suggested that a tooth fragment could bring to the family ties of the ancient settlers of the shores of Lake Baikal. It was decided to conduct a genetic study.
The cold and dry environment of Siberia helped to preserve the DNA, and scientists were able to sequence the human genome from tooth pulp. It turned out that it was at least 14 thousand years old. The genome helped to establish that the person had the distinctive characteristics of East Asian and Eurasian origin, as in modern Native Americans.
The man who owned the tooth was one of the direct relatives of the American Indians who settled far beyond America. The scientists also found that today people who live near Lake Baikal have virtually no genetic signs of an ancient population. And this indicates that they were replaced by the migrants, mainly from North-East Asia, about 10 thousand years ago.