We sequenced the cave bear genome using a 360,000-year-old ear bone and had to rewrite their evolutionary history
By Axel Barlow, Lecturer in Molecular Biosciences , Nottingham Trent University
Johanna L.A. Paijmans, Honorary Fellow, Palaeontology, University of Leicester
Cave bears were giant plant eating bears that roamed Europe and northern Asia, and went extinct around 25 thousand years ago. They hibernated in caves during the winter. This was a dangerous time, as those which had failed to fatten up enough during the summer would not survive hibernation.
As a result, many caves across Europe and northern Asia are now filled with the bones of cave bears, each one containing potentially thousands of individuals. In our new study, we analysed a bone from a cave in the Caucasus Mountains.
Our team recovered the genome from a 360,000-year-old…
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- Friday, February 26, 2021