An Increase In UV Light May Have Contributed To The Extinction Of The Neanderthals, Study Suggests

Homo neanderthalensis is an extinct species of archaic humans that lived in Eurasia until roughly 40,000 years ago. The cause of their extinction is an ongoing matter of debate. Now a new study has suggested that the weakening of Earth’s magnetic field may have been what pushed them over the edge.

The magnetic field of our planet protects us directly from the solar wind, high-energy particles that flow outward from the Sun, and indirectly from the Sun’s ultraviolet light (UV). The ozone layer, our shield against the UV, is susceptible to high-energy particles (among other things) so a period of lower magnetic field strength could lead to a thinning of the ozone layer, allowing more UV to reach the surface.

As reported in Reviews of Geophysics, the researchers claim that changes to Earth’s magnetic field, specifically when it has appeared weakest, coincides with the extinctions of mammals across the world.

Recommended For You

SociChief - Upgrade

Cloud-Based Software Tool Automates YOUR Marketing and Gets YOU Unlimited FREE Traffic - Mass Scheduler!

Fast Traffic Bot Unlimited Traffic System

As long as your computer is on, it can be getting subscribers, traffic, and income while youand#39;re off doing who knows what.

WP Master Developer - Code Editor for WordPress

With WP Master Developer code editor for WordPress, you get to easily create plugins, add-ons and themes. 7 new built-in tools for rapid WP development: templates, Intellisense, auto-complete, 2500+ auto-popping WordPress function lists, and instant help.

Roughly 41,000 years ago, the magnetic field of the planet reversed for a few hundred years. This is known as the Laschamp event, and it’s thought the magnetic field fell to just 5 percent of its current strength. According to the researchers’ genetic analysis, Neanderthals were particularly susceptible to ultraviolet radiation, and being exposed to the harmful UV that got through could have led to health problems that may have contributed to their decline.

Not only that, but they posit changes in the magnetic field over the last 200,000 years could possibly be linked to other episodes in our human ancestors’ family tree by damaging DNA and leading to mutations that were not beneficial to their survival.

“This tells us more about how our ancestors evolved within the mammal population,” lead author Professor James Channell, from the University of Florida, said in a statement. “Ultra-violet radiation was an important influence on mammal evolution.”

“The effect was not a blitzkrieg, but a process that affected the genome over time,” Channell added.

The claim UV radiation played a part in hominins’ evolutionary history will certainly start a debate. Most mammals have developed ways to protect themselves from the harmful UV rays, fur being one of them. It’s also not as straightforward as genetic mutations in the skin being passed on to the next generation. We know so little when it comes to Neanderthals, there is much to consider. 

We have their genome, but the interpretation of it, just like the interpretation of modern genomes, rests on understanding that is often inadequate, and occasionally contradictory. For example, other researchers have found evidence in regards to UV light that demonstrates the opposite property in Neanderthals. This study published in 2013, showed that a gene related to the UV response in modern Euroasians was lost when their ancestors moved out of Africa and then it was reintroduced by interbreeding with Neanderthals and another species of ancient humans called Denisovan. The authors argued that Neanderthals’ genes played a role in protecting modern Eurasians from UV damage.

It’s also important to consider that the Laschamp event was not the only dramatic change that our planet was experiencing when the Neanderthals died out. Earth was experiencing a complex climate pattern with dramatic temperature fluctuations, and the disappearance of Neanderthals also coincides with a particularly cold period. That might have been too much for a species who is believed to have already been in decline.

Original Article : HERE ; This post was curated & posted using : RealSpecific

Recommended For You

LaunchShark Volume 2 Downsell

5 Quick Start Marketing Page Templates and training so you can deploy your first high converting squeeze page (perfect for building your first list if you don’t have one yet)...

VideoMate PRO single site license

100% automated video marketing. Get automated content Get automated traffic Get automated list building Get automated social followers Get automated PROFITS All using the power of VIDEO

Thank you for taking the time to read our article.

If you enjoyed our content, we'd really appreciate some "love" with a share or two.

And ... Don't forget to have fun!

Recommended

Sellosity - The Smart Commerce Platform

Sellosity is the ultimate ecommerce platform for smart marketers who know the power of selling physical goods online...

Three For One Hosting Unlimited Plan PowerSSD Upgrade

Three For One Hosting Unlimited Plan PowerSSD Upgrade - PowerSSD Hosting add-on

The Internet Marketer’s Toolkit - Downsell

The Internet Marketer’s Toolkit PLR Downsell

Leave a Reply