The Genetic Evidence for the Origin of Homo Sapiens

Peter K.A. Jensen will deliver an updated version of what is known about the origin of the modern human being with emphasis on the genetic aspect (molecular anthropology), including what is known about a possible mixing of the modern gene pool with the gene pool of various archaic human types (ex neanderthals)

Abstract

Especially three disciplines contribute with knowledge about the origin of the modern human being and propagation on the globe: The physical anthropology (fossils), the archaeology and the genetics (the molecular anthropology).

The physical anthropology reconstructs the development with help from similarities and differences on morfology and behavior, while the molecular anthropology reconstructs the development with help from similarities and differences in the genome. It can generally be said for both of them that huge resemblances point to close kinship (a common ancestor of recent date), while huge differences point to a distant kinship (a common ancestor in a distant past).

The genetic variation between different species can be used to analyze the relationship between these species and it can be used to reconstruct their development (ex the kinship between the human and the big human apes). The genetic variation between different populations within the same species can be used to analyze the relationship between these populations and it can be used to reconstruct the development of the species (ex. the development of Homo Sapiens).  

When people migrate, they take their genes with them and pass them on to their descendants in the new home. Thus, every contemporary population has traces of the ancient roots. A common origin can be confirmed, and migrations in the past can be traced back by comparing the genome from the contemporary population. In this way, humanity's ancient migratory routes can be surveyed. For instance, it will be possible to see how the agriculture has been disseminated since the end of the last ice age. It will also be possible to visualize the historic and prehistoric paths, which attach us all in spite of more or less obvius physical, cultural and geografical differences between the contemporary populations.

The lecture will be held in Danish, and all are welcome!

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