50,000 years agoEuropeans like to believe they have evolved on their own continent. That's nonsense. All European populations came from Asia (all current racial types) or Africa (just the Cro-Magnon), but always via Asia.
In fact, the famous Cro-Magnon people were by no means white but very black (not exactly the African Black type but rather the Australian Black type), despite the fact they are falsely represented as tall and blond-haired (the first Indo-European blonds settled on the continent 5-6,000 years ago over a black-haired white pre-Indo-European population and they evolved later than 40,000 years ago, during the age of the Cro-Magnon).
In fact, a new research shows that Australian Aborigines and Europeans evolved from the same wave of African migrants that went out of Africa more than 50,000 years ago.
The research led by Toomas Kivisild of the University of Cambridge revealed the same founders for both racial types, European and Australian Black. This discovery proves once again that Africa is the source of the evolution of Homo sapiens.
The researchers made DNA analyses from modern Aborigines and South Asian populations. The family tree could be traced backwards through their mitochondrial DNA (the female lineage) and Y chromosome DNA (the male lineage).
"We could trace back to where the branches join by counting mutations in the DNA," said study co-author Phillip Endicott of the University of Oxford.
The DNA mutation rate indicated the time amount since the populations split. The Black Australian DNA could be assigned in four lineages, linked to the migration of Homo sapiens from Africa between 50,000 and 70,000 years ago.
Those African populations moved on foot to Southwest Asia (Arabia first) as there was no Red Sea by that time.
They migrated along southern Asia (through India) till Indonesia, which due to the low sea level (it was full Ice Age, and large amounts of water were stored in huge polar glaciers) was not an archipelago but a land mass connected to the Indochina.
A narrow sea strait that separated Indonesia from the joined Australia-New Guinea could have been easily passed by humans 50,000 years ago.
Previously it was believed that the change in skeletal traits depicted in Aborigine fossils, from slender about 40,000 years ago to stocky about 13,000 years ago, represented a mixture with more ancient human species (like Neanderthals) but DNA analysis found no evidence of that.
The research also contributes to the debate whether Asian groups entered Australia more recently than 50,000 years ago or not.
Till 10,000 years ago, all Southern Asia (India, Indochina, Indonesia) was populated by Asian Blacks, racially similar to the Aborigines, Melanesians and Papuans of New Guinea, thus a mix with such populations would have been not so conspicuous.
There were significant changes on Australia in the last 10,000 years, like the appearance of the dingo dog (very close to wolf races from South Asia) and new stone tool industries, "which (may) represent the intrusion of new human migrations into the continent," said Endicott.
But the distinctiveness of the Aborigine DNA points to a continuously relatively isolated population, discarding the possibility of later influxes into Australia from Asia: those contacts could have been just for trade, but not a migration.
"If there had been Asian migrations, we would have expected to see regional specific subgroups in the Aboriginal DNA. But they were completely absent." said Kivisild.