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James Brody February 14th, 2009 12:40 PM

Neandertal Genome Done
"In 2006, two research teams working on the same Neanderthal sample published their results, "Green et al." in Nature,[3] and "Noonan et al." in Science.[4] The results were received with some criticism, mainly surrounding the issue of a possible admixture of Neanderthals into the modern human genome.[5] The speech-related gene FOXP2 with the same mutations as in modern humans was discovered in ancient DNA in the El Sidron 1253 and 1351c specimens,[6] suggesting Neanderthals might have shared some basic language capabilities with modern humans.

"In February 2009, the research team, led by geneticist Svante Pääbo announced that they had completed the first draft of the Neanderthal genome, which covers about 63% of the entire base pairs. New results suggested that adult Neanderthals were lactose intolerant. As for the possibility of cloning a Neanderthal, Pääbo commented, "Starting from the DNA extracted from a fossil, it is and will remain impossible."

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