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A Middle Pleistocene Denisovan molar from the Annamite Chain of northern Laos

Abstract : The Pleistocene presence of the genus Homo in continental Southeast Asia is primarily evidenced by a sparse stone tool record and rare human remains. Here we report a Middle Pleistocene hominin specimen from Laos, with the discovery of a molar from the Tam Ngu Hao 2 (Cobra Cave) limestone cave in the Annamite Mountains. The age of the fossil-bearing breccia ranges between 164-131 kyr, based on the Bayesian modelling of luminescence dating of the sedimentary matrix from which it was recovered, U-series dating of an overlying flowstone, and U-series-ESR dating of associated faunal teeth. Analyses of the internal structure of the molar in tandem with palaeoproteomic analyses of the enamel indicate that the tooth derives from a young, likely female, Homo individual. The close morphological affinities with the Xiahe specimen from China indicate that they belong to the same taxon and that Tam Ngu Hao 2 most likely represents a Denisovan.
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https://hal-insu.archives-ouvertes.fr/insu-03824801
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Submitted on : Friday, October 21, 2022 - 4:49:52 PM
Last modification on : Saturday, November 5, 2022 - 3:58:00 AM

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Fabrice Demeter, Clément Zanolli, Kira E. Westaway, Renaud Joannes-Boyau, Philippe Duringer, et al.. A Middle Pleistocene Denisovan molar from the Annamite Chain of northern Laos. Nature Communications, 2022, 13, ⟨10.1038/s41467-022-29923-z⟩. ⟨insu-03824801⟩

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