miércoles, 20 de febrero de 2013

Polish archaeologists in Sudan claim 'unique' human settlement discovery

Polish archaeologists working in Sudan have found remains of human settlements that appear to date back as far as 70,000 years.

If confirmed, the discovery in the Affad Basin of northern Sudan will challenge existing theories that our distant ancestors only began building permanent residences on leaving Africa and settling in Europe and Asia.

“The Middle Palaeolithic discoveries in Affad are absolutely unique,” enthused Dr Marta Osypinska, one of the members of the team, in an interview with the Polish Press Agency (PAP).

“Last season, we came across a few traces of a light wooden construction. But it's only with ongoing research that we have been able to locate the settlement precisely and identify other utility areas: a large workshop for processing flint... and an area for cutting up the carcasses of dead animals.”

The team will be cooperating at the site in the Nile Valley with academics from Oxford University, in a bid to further unravel the geological history of the area.

More information on the project, which is funded by Poland's National Science Centre, can be found at web site archeosudan.org / thenews.pl/

Actualización 20-07-14: 70,000 year-old African settlement unearthed
During ongoing excavations in northern Sudan, Polish archaeologists from the Institute of Archaeology and Ethnology in Poznań, have discovered the remains of a settlement estimated to 70,000 years old. This find, according to the researchers, seems to contradict the previously held belief that the construction of permanent structures was associated with the so-called Great Exodus from Africa and occupation of the colder regions of Europe and Asia...


Un viaje por la prehistoria

Libro: Un viaje por la prehistoria
José María Bermúdez de Castro (Autor)
Tapa blanda: 88 páginas
Editor: Ediciones Akal, S.A.; Edición: 1 (14 de febrero de 2013)

En este libro aprenderemos de la mano de José M.ª Bermúdez de Castro lo que la ciencia ha podido averiguar hasta el momento sobre los procesos evolutivos que han conducido al hombre desde las densas selvas de África hasta la colonización de los cinco continentes. El llamado «proceso de hominización» trata de explicar tanto los cambios evolutivos como sus causas...

Prehistoric Porn: Chinese petroglyphs from the Bronze Age feature some of the world’s oldest depictions of sexual copulation

Discovered in the late 1980s, the Kangjiashimenji Petroglyphs in the Xinjiang region of Northwest China offer a startlingly sexual artistic vision of what archeologists was a fertility ritual. Believed to have been carved before 1000 B.C., the carvings contain graphic images of sexual copulation. [...] nydailynews.com/ / Link 2

Actualización 22-02-13. Petroglifos de 4000 años en el Noroeste de China podrían ser la primera pornografía del mundo
Los científicos habrían descubierto que los petroglifos Kangjiashimenji en Xinjiang al noroeste de China, representaría un ritual intenso de fertilidad y el que sería único en el mundo antiguo...

3rd annual meeting of the European Society for the study of Human Evolution (ESHE)

20-21 septembre 2013
Vienne (Autriche)

"The meeting will be hosted by the local organizer Professor Gerhard Weber, from the Department of Anthropology at the University of Vienna.

On Thursday 19 September, the eve of the opening of the meeting, a special keynote presentation will be given by Professor Tecumseh Fitch, from the University of Vienna, on the evolution of speech, language and music. The meeting will be held on Friday 20 and Saturday 21 September in the spectacular Großer Festsaal and Kleiner Festsaal at the University of Vienna. Each day will be composed of plenary podium sessions in the morning, specialized workshops in the afternoon and poster sessions in the early evening [...] eshe.eu/ via Laboratoire Méditerranéen

Origins of alcohol consumption traced to ape ancestor

Eating fermented fruit off the ground may have paved way for ability to digest ethanol

... Chemist Steven Benner of the Foundation for Applied Molecular Evolution in Gainesville, Fla., reached that conclusion by “resurrecting” the alcohol-metabolizing enzymes of extinct primates. Benner and his colleagues estimated the enzymes’ genetic code, built the enzymes in the lab and then analyzed how they work to understand how they changed over time.

“It’s like a courtroom re-enactment,” said biochemist Romas Kazlauskas of the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis. Benner “can re-enact what happened in evolution.”

Benner proposed the idea February 15 at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. [...] Science News

Actualización 23-02-13. Científicos descubren que el "gen del alcohol" se remonta a 10 millones de años
Un estudio al ADN indicaría que las personas pueden digerir alcohol gracias a una enzima que se desarrolló cuando nuestros primeros antepasados dejaron de vivir en los árboles.

... El químico Steven Benner, de la Fundación de Evolución Molecular Aplicada en Gaineville, Florida (Estados Unidos), llegó a esta conclusión luego de analizar la enzima metabolizadora de alcohol de primates extintos. Benner y sus colegas estimaron el código genético de las enzimas, lo reconstruyeron en el laboratorio y analizaron cómo funcionaría para entender su evolución en el tiempo...