Current Neolithic News and Events

Current Neolithic News and Events, Neolithic News Articles.
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Researchers show Irish soil can offer more hope in fight against antibiotic resistance
Scientists who highlighted the bug-busting properties of bacteria in Northern Irish soil have made another exciting discovery in the quest to discover new antibiotics. (2021-01-14)

Ancient DNA analysis reveals Asian migration and plague
Ancient DNA reveals a history of migrations, continuity, and diseases in northeastern Asia. (2021-01-07)

Evidence for a massive paleo-tsunami at ancient Tel Dor, Israel
Underwater excavation, borehole drilling, and modelling suggests a massive paleo-tsunami struck near the ancient settlement of Tel Dor between 9,910 to 9,290 years ago, according to a study published December 23, 2020 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Gilad Shtienberg, Richard Norris and Thomas Levy from the Scripps Center for Marine Archaeology, San Diego CA, USA, and colleagues from Utah State University and the University of Haifa. (2020-12-23)

Biologists from RUDN University discovered the secret of flaxseed oil with long shelf life
Biologists from RUDN University working together with their colleagues from the Institute of Molecular Biology of the Russian Academy of Sciences and the Institute of Flax studied the genes that determine the fatty acid composition in flaxseed oil and identified polymorphisms in six of them. The team also found out what gene variations could extend the shelf life of flaxseed oil. This data can be used to improve the genetic selection of new flax breeds. (2020-12-04)

Middle Stone Age populations repeatedly occupied West African coast
In a study published in the Journal of Archaeological Science Reports, researchers from the Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar, Senegal, the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History (MPI-SHH), and the University of Sheffield, reveal evidence of Middle Stone Age occupations of the West African coast. Ranging from 62 to 25 thousand years ago, the largest well-dated assemblages from the region clearly document technological continuity across almost 40,000 years in West Africa. (2020-11-20)

New funerary and ritual behaviors of the Neolithic Iberian populations discovered
This finding opens new lines of research and anthropological scenarios, where human and animal sacrifice may have been related to ancestral cults, propitiatory rituals and divine prayers in commemorative festivities (2020-09-25)

Domestic horses probably did not originate in Anatolia
Domestic horses likely did not originate in Anatolia as previously suspected, according to a new study of ancient horse remains dating as far back as 9000 BCE. Instead, they may have been introduced to the peninsula -- which makes up most of modern-day Turkey -- and the nearby Caucasus region from the Eurasian Steppe by about 2000 BCE, during the Bronze Age. (2020-09-16)

Vast stone monuments constructed in Arabia 7,000 years ago
In a new study published in The Holocene, researchers from the Max Planck Society in Jena together with Saudi and international collaborators, present the first detailed study of 'mustatil' stone structures in the Arabian Desert. These are vast structures made of stone piled into rectangles, which are some of the oldest large-scale structures in the world. They give insights into how early pastoralists survived in the challenging landscapes of semi-arid Arabia. (2020-08-25)

Remains of 17th century bishop support neolithic emergence of tuberculosis
In a recent study published in Genome Biology, researchers from the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History, Lund University and the Swedish Natural Historical Museum present analysis of the highest quality ancient Mycobacterium tuberculosis genome to date, suggesting the pathogen is much younger than previously believed. (2020-08-14)

The oldest known cremation in the near east dates to 7000 BC
Ancient people in the Near East had begun the practice of intentionally cremating their dead by the beginning of the 7th millennium BC, according to a study published August 12, 2020 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Fanny Bocquentin of the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) and colleagues. (2020-08-12)

Most of Stonehenge's large boulders share origin in west woods, Wiltshire
Most of the hulking sandstone boulders -- called sarsens - that make up the United Kingdom's famous Stonehenge monument appear to share a common origin 25 kilometers away in West Woods, Wiltshire, according to an analysis of the stones' chemical composition. The findings support the theory that the stones were brought to Stonehenge at around the same time, (2020-07-29)

5,000 years of history of domestic cats in Central Europe
The history of human and cat relationships began 10,000 years ago. Its origins, however, still remain a mystery mainly due to scarcity of research material. Gaps in our knowledge in the subject are successfully filled by a group of researchers from the Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toru?. Dr Magdalena Krajcarz has made an attempt to find ancestors of domestic cats in Neolithic Central Europe. An article discussing the topic has recently been published in PNAS. (2020-07-13)

Mixture and migration brought food production to sub-Saharan Africa
A new interdisciplinary study published in the journal Science Advances reports on 20 newly sequenced ancient genomes from sub-Saharan Africa, including the first genomes from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Botswana, and Uganda. The study documents the coexistence, movements, interactions and admixture of diverse human groups during the spread of food production in sub-Saharan Africa. (2020-06-12)

Ancient genomes link subsistence change and human migration in northern China
Northern China is among the first centers in the world where agriculture developed, but its genetic history remains largely unknown. In a new study published in Nature Communications, the eurasia3angle research group analyses 55 ancient genomes from China, finding new correlations between the intensification of subsistence strategies and human migration. This work provides a comprehensive archaeogenetic overview of northern China and fuels the debate about the archaeological and linguistic signatures of past human migration. (2020-06-01)

Heightened interaction between neolithic migrants and hunter-gatherers in Western Europe
This study reports new genome-wide data for 101 prehistoric individuals from 12 archaeological sites in today's France and Germany, dating from 7000-3000 BCE, and documents levels of admixture between expanding early Neolithic farmers and local hunter-gatherers seen nowhere else in Europe. (2020-05-29)

Information technology played key role in growth of ancient civilizations
A new paper in Nature Communications shows the ability to store and process information was as critical to the growth of early human societies as it is today. (2020-05-27)

ADHD: genomic analysis in samples of Neanderthals and modern humans
The frequency of genetic variants associated with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) has decreased progressively in the evolutionary human lineage from the Palaeolithic to nowadays, according to a study published in the journal Scientific Reports. (2020-05-27)

7,000 years of demographic history in France
A team led by scientists from the Institut Jacques Monod (CNRS/Université de Paris)1 have shown that French prehistory was punctuated by two waves of migration: the first during the Neolithic period, about 6,300 years ago, the second during the Bronze Age, about 4,200 years ago. (2020-05-25)

Earliest evidence of Italians' genetic diversity dates back to end of last glacial period
Around 19,000 years ago, after the Late Glacial Maximum, the surprisingly heterogeneous diversity of Italians' genomic background started to develop. It is the first time that a group of scientists manages to go that back in time in retracing Italians' genetic history. (2020-05-21)

Ancient DNA reveals genetic history of China
An analysis of 26 newly sequenced ancient genomes from across China helps to fill crucial gaps in the poorly known genetic history of East Asia, including to reveal one major episode of admixture. (2020-05-14)

Ancient DNA unveils important missing piece of human history
Newly released genomes from Neolithic East Asia have unveiled a missing piece of human prehistory, according to a study conducted by Professor FU Qiaomei's team from the Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology (IVPP) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. (2020-05-14)

Geometry guided construction of earliest known temple, built 6,000 years before Stonehenge
Researchers at Tel Aviv University and the Israel Antiquities Authority have now used architectural analysis to discover that geometry informed the layout of Göbekli Tepe's impressive round stone structures and enormous assembly of limestone pillars, which they say were initially planned as a single structure. (2020-05-12)

Demographic expansion of several Amazonian archaeological cultures by computer simulation
Expansions by groups of humans were common during prehistoric times, after the adoption of agriculture. Among other factors, this is due to population growth of farmers which was greater than of that hunter-gatherers. We can find one example of this during the Neolithic period, when farming was introduced to Europe by migrations from the Middle East. (2020-05-05)

Study reveals rich genetic diversity of Vietnam
In a new paper, Dang Liu, Mark Stoneking and colleagues have analyzed newly generated genome-wide SNP data for the Kinh and 21 additional ethnic groups in Vietnam, encompassing all five major language families in MSEA, along with previously published data from nearby populations and ancient samples. (2020-04-28)

Study traces spread of early dairy farming across Western Europe
An international team of scientists, led by researchers at the University of York, analysed the molecular remains of food left in pottery used by the first farmers who settled along the Atlantic Coast of Europe from 7,000 to 6,000 years ago. (2020-04-27)

Technological progress peaked in 2018
New calculations by HSE University researchers show that technological growth passed its peak in the early 21st century and will soon obtain new acceleration, although it will be followed by a new slowdown in the second half of the century. The researchers believe these progress rate fluctuations are largely due to a global demographic transition--the ageing of the planet's population, which many developed countries have already faced. (2020-04-22)

Neolithic genomes from modern-day Switzerland indicate parallel ancient societies
Genetic research throughout Europe shows evidence of drastic population changes near the end of the Neolithic period, as shown by the arrival of ancestry related to pastoralists from the Pontic-Caspian steppe. But the timing of this change and the arrival and mixture process of these peoples, particularly in Central Europe, is little understood. In a new study published in Nature Communications, researchers analyze 96 ancient genomes, providing new insights into the ancestry of modern Europeans. (2020-04-20)

Papua New Guinea highland research redates Neolithic period
A new report published in Science Advances on the emergence of agriculture in highland Papua New Guinea shows advancements often associated with a later Neolithic period occurred about 1,000 years' earlier than previously thought. (2020-04-17)

Molecular & isotopic evidence of milk, meat & plants in prehistoric food systems
A team of scientists, led by the University of Bristol, with colleagues from the University of Florida, provide the first evidence for diet and subsistence practices of ancient East African pastoralists. (2020-04-13)

Revolutionary new method for dating pottery sheds new light on prehistoric past
A team from University of Bristol developed a new method to date archaeological pottery using fat residues remaining in the pot wall from cooking. The method means prehistoric pottery can be dated with remarkable accuracy, sometimes to the window of a human life span. Pottery found in Shoreditch, London proven to be 5,500 years old and shows the vibrant urban area was once used by established farmers who ate cow, sheep and goat dairy products as a central part of their diet. (2020-04-08)

Prehistoric artifacts suggest a Neolithic era independently developed in New Guinea
New artifacts uncovered at the Waim archaeological site in the highlands of New Guinea -- including a fragment of the earliest symbolic stone carving in Oceania -- illustrate a shift in human behavior between 5,050 and 4,200 years ago in response to the widespread emergence of agriculture, ushering in a regional Neolithic Era similar to the Neolithic in Eurasia. (2020-04-01)

Study offers new insight into the impact of ancient migrations on the European landscape
Scientists from the University of Plymouth and the University of Copenhagen led research tracing how the two major human migrations recorded in Holocene Europe -- the northwestward movement of Anatolian farmer populations during the Neolithic and the westward movement of Yamnaya steppe peoples during the Bronze Age -- unfolded. (2020-04-01)

Prehistoric artifacts suggest a neolithic era independently developed in New Guinea
New artifacts uncovered at the Waim archaeological site in the highlands of New Guinea -- including a fragment of the earliest symbolic stone carving in Oceania -- illustrate a shift in human behavior between 5,050 and 4,200 years ago in response to the widespread emergence of agriculture, ushering in a regional Neolithic Era similar to the Neolithic in Eurasia. (2020-03-25)

Each Mediterranean island has its own genetic pattern
A Team around Anthropologist Ron Pinhasi from the University of Vienna -- together with researchers from the University of Florence and Harvard University -- found out that prehistoric migration from Africa, Asia and Europe to the Mediterranean islands took place long before the era of the Mediterranean seafaring civilizations. For their analysis they used the DNA of prehistoric individuals from Sicily, Sardinia and the Balearic Islands. The results have been published in Nature Ecology & Evolution. (2020-02-26)

Ancient DNA from Sardinia reveals 6,000 years of genetic history
A new study of the genetic history of Sardinia, a Mediterranean island off the western coast of Italy, analyzed genome-wide DNA data for 70 individuals from more than 20 Sardinian archaeological sites spanning roughly 6,000 years from the Middle Neolithic through the Medieval period. (2020-02-24)

Late Neolithic Italy was home to complex networks of metal exchange
During the 4th and 3rd millennia BC, Italy was home to complex networks of metalwork exchange, according to a study published Jan. 22, 2020, in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Andrea Dolfini of Newcastle University (UK), and Gilberto Artioli and Ivana Angelini of the University of Padova (Italy). (2020-01-22)

Anthropologists confirm existence of specialized sheep-hunting camp in prehistoric Lebanon
Anthropologists at the University of Toronto have confirmed the existence more than 10,000 years ago of a hunting camp in the mountains along the modern-day border between Lebanon and Syria -- one that straddles the period marking the transition from nomadic hunter-gatherer societies to agricultural settlements at the onset of the last stone age. Analysis of decades-old data collected from Nachcharini Cave shows it was a short-term hunting camp and that sheep were the primary game. (2020-01-22)

Always counterclockwise
Human behavior is influenced by many things, most of which remain unconscious to us. One of these is known among perception psychologists as 'pseudo-neglect.' This refers to the observation that healthy people prefer their left visual field to their right and therefore divide a line regularly left of center. A study published on Friday, Jan. 10, shows for the first time what effect this inconspicuous deviation had in the prehistoric past. (2020-01-10)

Ancient 'chewing gum' yields insights into people and bacteria of the past
Researchers from the University of Copenhagen have succeeded in extracting a complete human genome from a thousands-of-years old 'chewing gum.' According to the researchers, it is a new untapped source of ancient DNA. (2019-12-17)

Rare find: human teeth used as jewellery in Turkey 8,500 years ago
At a prehistoric archaeological site in Turkey, researchers have discovered two 8,500-year-old human teeth, which had been used as pendants in a necklace or bracelet. Researchers have never documented this practice before in the prehistoric Near East, and the rarity of the find suggests that the human teeth were imbued with profound symbolic meaning for the people who wore them. (2019-12-13)

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