Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Mammoths and Neanderthals

We all have the image of neanderthals hunting mammoths with big spears. And that was definitely the case, but new research shows that mammoth and neanderthals were actually more genetically similar then previously thought. Science Daily reports that a new study from Tel Aviv University suggests that mammoths and neanderthals shared molecular characteristics for cold adaption. The study was led by Professor Ran Barkai and Meidad Kislev. In the study they looked at three cases of gene variants and alleles.

The first was the mutual appearance of LEPR which is related to thermogenesis and the regulation of fat tissue and storage. The second looked at genes related to keratin. And finally the third focused on the genes MC1R and SLC7A11, which are skin and hair pigments. The researchers believe that these findings are great supporting evidence for convergent evolution and can be valuable in future evolutionary research. It is interesting that two distinct animals would evolve the game genes for cold adaption.


  1. I would have never thought that neanderthals and mammoths would share one gene, never mind three. This is a really good study in regards to learning how other species survived harsh climates so many years ago. It's interesting that they had the same gene adaptations in order to stay warm.

  2. It is known that the Neanderthals and mammoths lived during the same period of time during the ice age in Europe. I always thought that these were two completely different mammals. Personally, I think that it is very interesting how they share genes that helped them to survive in the cold environment.