Ancient Infant’s DNA Reveals New Clues to How the Americas Were Peopled

//Ancient Infant’s DNA Reveals New Clues to How the Americas Were Peopled

YONG, ED. (2018, Jan). Ancient Infant’s DNA Reveals New Clues to How the Americas Were Peopled. The Atlantic. Retrieved from https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2018/01/upward-sun-river-infants-genome-peopling-americas/549572/?utm_source=twb

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Ancient Infant's DNA Reveals New Clues to How the Americas Were Peopled

Her 11,500-year-old remains suggest that all Native Americans can trace their ancestry to the same founding population.

Around 11,500 years ago, at a place that is now called the Upward Sun River, in the region that has since been named Alaska, two girls died. One was a late-term fetus; the other, probably her cousin, was six weeks old. They were both covered in red ochre and buried in a circular pit, along with hunting weapons made from bones and antlers. “There was intentionality in the burial ceremony,” says Ben Potter from the University of Alaska at Fairbanks, who uncovered their skeletons in 2013. “These were certainly children who were well-loved.”

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Some of the scientists involved in sequencing the Ancient One’s genome also worked on the Upward Sun River study. “They’ve made progress in doing more consultative and consensual research,” says Kim TallBear from the University of Alberta, who studies the intersection of race and genetics and is a member of the Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate tribe. But she’s also disinterested in the questions they are asking. “This type of research is done largely for the benefit of nonindigenous peoples,” she says. They center a “settler-colonial narrative” about a “largely one-way migration story into the Americas and the idea that everyone is in some form an immigrant.”

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By |2018-01-21T22:43:26+00:00January 3rd, 2018|Categories: Media|0 Comments

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