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Whole-genome analyses resolve early branches in the tree of life of modern birds
TLDR
A genome-scale phylogenetic analysis of 48 species representing all orders of Neoaves recovered a highly resolved tree that confirms previously controversial sister or close relationships and identifies the first divergence in Neoaves, two groups the authors named Passerea and Columbea.
Dynamics of Pleistocene Population Extinctions in Beringian Brown Bears
TLDR
Researchers studied genetic change in the brown bear, Ursus arctos, in eastern Beringia over the past 60,000 years using DNA preserved in permafrost remains to investigate the evolutionary impact of climatic and environmental changes associated with the last glaciation.
Rise and Fall of the Beringian Steppe Bison
TLDR
A detailed genetic history of bison throughout the late Pleistocene and Holocene epochs is reconstructed using ancient DNA and Bayesian techniques to reconstruct a large diverse population living throughout Beringia until around 37,000 years before the present, when the population's genetic diversity began to decline dramatically.
The earliest evidence for anatomically modern humans in northwestern Europe
TLDR
It is shown, using stratigraphic, chronological and archaeological data, that a fragment of human maxilla from the Kent’s Cavern site, UK, dates to the earlier period, and represents the oldest known anatomically modern human fossil in northwestern Europe, fills a key gap between the earliest dated Aurignacian remains and the earliest human skeletal remains.
Complete Mitochondrial Genomes of Ancient Canids Suggest a European Origin of Domestic Dogs
TLDR
The findings imply that domestic dogs are the culmination of a process that initiated with European hunter-gatherers and the canids with whom they interacted, and molecular dating suggests an onset of domestication there 18,800 to 32,100 years ago.
Recalibrating Equus evolution using the genome sequence of an early Middle Pleistocene horse
TLDR
Thealyses suggest that the Equus lineage giving rise to all contemporary horses, zebras and donkeys originated 4.0–4.5 million years before present, twice the conventionally accepted time to the most recent common ancestor of the genus Equus, and supports the contention that Przewalski's horses represent the last surviving wild horse population.
The evolutionary history of the extinct ratite moa and New Zealand Neogene paleogeography
TLDR
This work synthesizes mitochondrial phylogenetic information from 263 subfossil moa specimens from across NZ with morphological, ecological, and new geological data to create the first comprehensive phylogeny, taxonomy, and evolutionary timeframe for all of the species of an extinct order.
Metagenomics to Paleogenomics: Large-Scale Sequencing of Mammoth DNA
TLDR
The high percentage of endogenous DNA recoverable from this single mammoth would allow for completion of its genome, unleashing the field of paleogenomics.
Diverse Plant and Animal Genetic Records from Holocene and Pleistocene Sediments
TLDR
Genetic analyses of permafrost and temperate sediments reveal that plant and animal DNA may be preserved for long periods, even in the absence of obvious macrofossils, and may contain unique, and widespread, genetic records of paleoenvironments.
Genomic Evidence for Island Population Conversion Resolves Conflicting Theories of Polar Bear Evolution
TLDR
It is posited that the enigmatic ABC Islands brown bears derive from a population of polar bears likely stranded by the receding ice at the end of the last glacial period, which has gradually converted these bears into an admixed population whose phenotype and genotype are principally brown bear, except at mtDNA and X-linked loci.
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