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Meet the first Neandertal family

Ancient genomes of thirteen Neandertals provide a rare snapshot of their community and social organization

For the first time, an international team led by researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology have managed to sequence multiple individuals from a remote Neandertal community in Siberia. Among these thirteen individuals, the researchers identified multiple related individuals – among these a father and his teenage daughter. The researchers were also able to use the thirteen genomes to provide a glimpse into the social organization of a Neandertal community. They appear to have been a small group of close relatives, consisting of ten to twenty members, and communities were primarily connected through female migration.

© Tom Bjorklund