Scientists have unearthed a new type of ancient human who lived more than 7,000 years ago. The remains belonged to a young female buried in a cave on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, according to the recent study.
The international team mapped the girl’s complete DNA from a sample of skull bone. Study lead author Selina Carlhoff, a doctoral candidate at the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History, isolated it from the base of the braincase (the petrous bone), the hardest in the body. It is the oldest genome from the idyllic archipelago, shedding fresh light on our evolution.
“It was a major challenge, as the remains had been strongly degraded by the tropical climate,” Carlhoff says in a university release.