Woodland Indians Forum

You are not logged in.

Announcement

  • Index
  •  » Genealogy
  •  » DNA shows Native Americans descend from Clovis people

#1 Feb-13-2014 07:38:am

sschkaak
Moderator
Registered: Sep-17-2007
Posts: 4299
Website

DNA shows Native Americans descend from Clovis people

http://www.scientificamerican.com/artic … americans/

Ancient Genome Suggests Native Americans Really Did Descend from the First Americans

The new analysis of "Clovis boy" DNA also stirs an ethics debate about the handling of tribal remains

Feb 12, 2014|By Ewen Callaway and Nature magazine


Humans from the Clovis culture used characteristic stone points (brown) and rod-shaped bone tools.

The remains of a young boy, ceremonially buried some 12,600 years ago in Montana, have revealed the ancestry of one of the earliest populations in the Americas, known as the Clovis culture.

Published in this issue of Nature, the boy’s genome sequence shows that today’s indigenous groups spanning North and South America are all descended from a single population that trekked across the Bering land bridge from Asia (M. Rasmussen et al. Nature 506, 225–229; 2014). The analysis also points to an early split between the ancestors of the Clovis people and a second group, whose DNA lives on in populations in Canada and Greenland (see page 162).

But the research underscores the ethical minefield of studying ancient Native American remains, and rekindles memories of a bruising legal fight over a different human skeleton in the 1990s.

To avoid such a controversy, Eske Willerslev, a paleobiologist at the University of Copenhagen who led the latest study, attempted to involve Native American communities. And so he embarked on a tour of Montana’s Indian reservations last year, talking to community members to explain his work and seek their support. “I didn’t want a situation where the first time they heard about this study was when it’s published,” he says.

Construction workers discovered the Clovis burial site on a private ranch near the small town of Wilsall in May 1968 (see ‘Ancient origins’). About 100 stone and bone artefacts, as well as bone fragments from a male child aged under two, were subsequently recovered.

The boy’s bones were found to date to the end of the Clovis culture, which flourished in the central and western United States between about 13,000 and 12,600 years ago. Carved elk bones found with the boy’s remains were hundreds of years older, suggesting that they were heirlooms. The ranch, owned by Melvyn and Helen Anzick, is the only site yet discovered at which Clovis objects exist alongside human bones. Most of the artefacts now reside in a museum, but researchers returned the human remains to the Anzick family in the late 1990s.

At that time, the Anzicks’ daughter, Sarah, was conducting cancer and genome research at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland, and thought about sequencing genetic material from the bones. But she was wary of stoking a similar debate to the one surrounding Kennewick Man, a human skeleton found on the banks of the Columbia River in Kennewick, Washington, in July 1996. Its discovery sparked an eight-year legal battle between Native American tribes, who claimed that they were culturally connected to the individual, and researchers, who said that the roughly 9,000-year-old remains pre-dated the tribes.

The US government sided with the tribes, citing the federal Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA). The act requires that human remains discovered on federal lands — as Kennewick Man was — are returned to affiliated tribes for reburial. But a court ruled that the law did not apply, largely because of the age of the remains, and ordered that Kennewick Man be stored away from public view in a museum.

Sarah Anzick sought the advice of local tribes over the Clovis boy, but she could not reach a consensus with the tribes on what to do. She gave up on the idea, stored the bones in a safe location and got on with her other research.

In 2009, archaeologist Michael Waters, of Texas A&M University in College Station, contacted Anzick with the idea of sending the remains to Willerslev’s lab. (In early 2010, the lab published one of the first genome sequences of an ancient human, a 4,000-year-old resident of Greenland; see M. Rasmussen et al. Nature 463, 757–762; 2010.) “I said, ‘I will allow you guys to do this, but I want to be involved,’” recalls Anzick, who has published more than a dozen papers in leading journals.

In Copenhagen, she extracted DNA from fragments of the boy’s skull ready for mitochondrial genome sequencing, which offers a snapshot of a person’s maternal ancestry. Back in Montana months later, she received the sequencing data and discovered that the genome’s closest match was to present-day Native Americans. “My heart just stopped,” she says.
Right to remains

After Willerslev’s team confirmed the link by sequencing the boy’s nuclear genome (a more detailed indicator of ancestry), Willerslev sought advice from an agency that handles reburial issues. He was told that, because the remains were found on private land, NAGPRA did not apply and no consultation was needed. Despite this, Willerslev made his own attempt to consult local tribes. This led to a meeting in September at the burial site, with Anzick, Willerslev and their co-author Shane Doyle, who works in Native American studies at Montana State University in Bozeman, and is a member of the Crow tribe.

“That place is very special to me, that’s my ancestral homeland,” says Doyle. He told Willerslev and Anzick that they should rebury the child where he was found. “I think you need to put the little boy back where his parents left him,” Doyle recalls telling them.

Doyle and Willerslev then set off on a 1,500-kilometer road trip to meet representatives of four Montana tribes; Doyle later consulted another five. Many of the people they talked to had few problems with the research, Doyle says, but some would have preferred to have been consulted before the study started, and not years after.

Willerslev says that researchers studying early American remains should assume that they are related to contemporary groups, and involve them as early as possible. But it is not always clear whom to contact, he adds, particularly when remains are related to groups spread across the Americas. “We have to engage with Native Americans, but how you deal with that question in practice is not an easy thing,” he says.

Hank Greeley, a legal scholar at Stanford University in California who is interested in the legal and ethical issues of human genetics, commends the approach of Willerslev’s team. But he says that there is no single solution to involving Native American communities in such research. “You’re looking to try to talk to the people who might be most invested in, or connected with, particular sets of remains,” he advises.

Dennis O’Rourke, a geneticist at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, who studies ancient DNA from populations native to the islands around Alaska, notes that indigenous groups have varying concerns: some want remains reburied, others do not, for instance.

The Montana tribes overwhelmingly wanted the Clovis boy’s bones interred. Plans for a reburial ceremony, possibly at an undisclosed site, are now being hashed out, with the Crow Nation playing a lead role. It is expected to take place in the spring, after the ground thaws.

This article is reproduced with permission from the magazine Nature. The article was first published on February 12, 2014.

Offline

 

#2 Feb-13-2014 08:41:pm

Chevy
Member
Registered: Aug-01-2007
Posts: 1577

Re: DNA shows Native Americans descend from Clovis people

Very interesting!

Offline

 

#3 Feb-25-2014 09:41:pm

NeoPaleo
Visitor
Registered: Oct-07-2013
Posts: 135

Re: DNA shows Native Americans descend from Clovis people

Just about the time this information is "accepted" something else will come along.
Like maybe we didn't migrate from Africa.
They just keep building castles in sand and call it civilized.


What color corn do you grow?

Offline

 

#4 Feb-26-2014 06:57:am

sschkaak
Moderator
Registered: Sep-17-2007
Posts: 4299
Website

Re: DNA shows Native Americans descend from Clovis people

As scientific techniques advance, the picture becomes clearer and clearer.  There is nothing in this finding that does anything but add to the probability that the indigenous populations of the Western Hemisphere first migrated here from Asia, circa 15,000 to 20,000 years ago--as the Bering Strait theory originally proposed.  There has been no accepted scientific discoveries to refute this.  There have been variations of the theory put forth--some suggesting that the people followed large herds to get here; or, followed the coastline in boats; or, even crossed the ocean, somehow.  But, the "out of Asia" theory has only been continually supported by any new evidence that has come to light.  And, the migration of human beings out of Africa is purported to haven taken place tens of thousands of years prior to the migration into the Americas, so there is nothing in that that contradicts the Bering Strait theory. 

People once thought the Sun revolved around the Earth, but once scientific evidence showed that it is the Earth which revolves around the Sun, we now know the truth of the matter.  Science can be, and has been, wrong; but, it is always self-correcting, in the end.  We obviously don't know every detail of the Bering Strait migration, but that it happened, in some form, appears irrefutable, to me.

Offline

 

#5 Feb-26-2014 10:50:am

NeoPaleo
Visitor
Registered: Oct-07-2013
Posts: 135

Re: DNA shows Native Americans descend from Clovis people

I trust the scientific method, no doubt. But it's main flaw is a lack of multidisciplinary studies.
Just because some people could have migrated accross the land bridge, doesn't mean they did, or that all of America's people did.
Just because the oldest human remains were found in Africa  doesn't mean we all came from that spot.
That very notion of we don't have a better answer yet, so we teach it
is scientifically opposed to the scientific method.
They hate teaching doubt, it lingers on everything.
When the majority culture evolved from Middle East it's science was based on an understanding of reality as written in the bible. Pretty secure fetters in my opinion.


What color corn do you grow?

Offline

 

#6 Feb-26-2014 11:23:am

sschkaak
Moderator
Registered: Sep-17-2007
Posts: 4299
Website

Re: DNA shows Native Americans descend from Clovis people

"That very notion of we don't have a better answer yet, so we teach it
is scientifically opposed to the scientific method."


Scepticism is one of the basic underpinnings of the scientific method.  It teaches theories based on the evidence at hand--not on evidence which "might someday be found."  Our ideas about good nutrition, for example, are always being updated, based on whatever new positive or negative findings about particular foods come to light.  That doesn't mean smoking or chewing tobacco, or drinking alcoholic beverages, excessively, might be good for us!  (At one time, we did think that.)  And, it doesn't mean that we should consider eating fresh green vegetables is bad for us--simply because that may be found to be the case, in the future.  Of course, we have to go on what we actually understand, at this time.

"They hate teaching doubt, it lingers on everything."

Who does?  As stated, scepticism is pervasive in science--especially when new evidence or new theories emerge.

"When the majority culture evolved from Middle East it's science was based on an understanding of reality as written in the bible. Pretty secure fetters in my opinion."

I don't know what human pursuit has done more than science to refute the factual historicity of the Bible--from Galileo to today!

Last edited by sschkaak (Feb-26-2014 11:23:am)

Offline

 

#7 Feb-26-2014 12:34:pm

NeoPaleo
Visitor
Registered: Oct-07-2013
Posts: 135

Re: DNA shows Native Americans descend from Clovis people

Very stimulating discussion.
You have made some very good points that I would like to address in another post.
For now I will just answer your question, "Who does?"
The scientific method requires taking things apart to "understand them"
When it is "you" that your taking apart, it makes the task pretty difficult to accomplish without some  unknown elements. I believe we all ultimately come from a tribal mindset and we expect our leaders "teachers" to "know all".
If they don't know it all, they are rejected, or the message is.
So they teach certainty, with upgrades spaced far enough apart so as to not upset the balance.


What color corn do you grow?

Offline

 

#8 Feb-27-2014 08:38:pm

Chevy
Member
Registered: Aug-01-2007
Posts: 1577

Re: DNA shows Native Americans descend from Clovis people

http://phys.org/news/2013-01-sweet-pota … sians.html

Sweet potato DNA indicates early Polynesians traveled to South America
Jan 22, 2013 by Bob Yirka

Offline

 

#9 Mar-01-2014 06:07:pm

NeoPaleo
Visitor
Registered: Oct-07-2013
Posts: 135

Re: DNA shows Native Americans descend from Clovis people

Well I don't want to ruffle any feathers in the game, but while updating myself about clovis people I found Pedra Furada.
I also found a new term to me, Pre-Clovis.

sweet potato;
Also, I read the Kon Tiki a few years ago, and I firmly believe that we have been plying the ocean for many many moons.
I read that the Hopi believe that they came from across the sea in small boats.
While driving through the southwest years ago, i imagined a dried up ocean when looking at the islands in the desert.


What color corn do you grow?

Offline

 

#10 Mar-01-2014 06:26:pm

sschkaak
Moderator
Registered: Sep-17-2007
Posts: 4299
Website

Re: DNA shows Native Americans descend from Clovis people

All they found at Pedra Furada were stone flakes that can occur naturally (and do), then called them "tools."  Same thing they did with the Meadowcroft site in Pennsylvania.  When they find a recognizable implement (like a spearhead or semi-lunar knife, etc.) and/or human bones at one of these so-called "pre-Clovis" sites, we can start to re-think things.

Offline

 

#11 Mar-01-2014 08:21:pm

NeoPaleo
Visitor
Registered: Oct-07-2013
Posts: 135

Re: DNA shows Native Americans descend from Clovis people

sschkaak wrote:

All they found at Pedra Furada were stone flakes that can occur naturally (and do), then called them "tools."  Same thing they did with the Meadowcroft site in Pennsylvania.  When they find a recognizable implement (like a spearhead or semi-lunar knife, etc.) and/or human bones at one of these so-called "pre-Clovis" sites, we can start to re-think things.

http://archive.archaeology.org/online/f … rose1.html

I guess I should have used the accepted "site" as the example.
Monte Verde and it's many esteemed supporters are enough for me.
I don't and have never thought the land bridge is the only way humans could have migrated.


What color corn do you grow?

Offline

 

#12 Mar-01-2014 08:41:pm

sschkaak
Moderator
Registered: Sep-17-2007
Posts: 4299
Website

Re: DNA shows Native Americans descend from Clovis people

The 12,500 BP carbon dating at Monte Verde I is the one that's accepted--NOT the 33,000 BP date at MV II.  This is "slightly" before Clovis, but nobody is arguing that Clovis is the earliest site (or culture) in the Western Hemisphere.

You write: "I don't and have never thought the land bridge is the only way humans could have migrated."

Who does?  I repeat what I wrote above:  "There is nothing in this finding that does anything but add to the probability that the indigenous populations of the Western Hemisphere first migrated here from Asia, circa 15,000 to 20,000 years ago--as the Bering Strait theory originally proposed.  There has been no accepted scientific discoveries to refute this.  There have been variations of the theory put forth--some suggesting that the people followed large herds to get here; or, followed the coastline in boats; or, even crossed the ocean, somehow.  But, the "out of Asia" theory has only been continually supported by any new evidence that has come to light."  Monte Verde does nothing to refute this.

Last edited by sschkaak (Mar-01-2014 08:41:pm)

Offline

 

#13 Oct-23-2016 05:54:pm

NeoPaleo
Visitor
Registered: Oct-07-2013
Posts: 135

Re: DNA shows Native Americans descend from Clovis people


What color corn do you grow?

Offline

 
  • Index
  •  » Genealogy
  •  » DNA shows Native Americans descend from Clovis people

Board footer

Powered by PunBB
© Copyright 2002–2005 Rickard Andersson