The accretion model of Neandertal evolution

Citation
Jd. Hawks et Mh. Wolpoff, The accretion model of Neandertal evolution, EVOLUTION, 55(7), 2001, pp. 1474-1485
Citations number
39
Language
INGLESE
art.tipo
Article
Categorie Soggetti
Biology,"Experimental Biology
Journal title
EVOLUTION
ISSN journal
0014-3820 → ACNP
Volume
55
Issue
7
Year of publication
2001
Pages
1474 - 1485
Database
ISI
SICI code
0014-3820(200107)55:7<1474:TAMONE>2.0.ZU;2-I
Abstract
The Accretion model of Neandertal evolution specifies that this group of La te Pleistocene hominids evolved in partial or complete genetic isolation fr om the rest of humanity through the gradual accumulation of distinctive mor phological traits in European populations. As they became more common, thes e traits also became less variable, according to those workers who develope d the model. Its supporters propose that genetic drift caused this evolutio n, resulting from an initial small European population size and either comp lete isolation or drastic reduction in gene flow between this deme and cont emporary human populations elsewhere. Here, we test an evolutionary model o f gene flow between regions against fossil data from the European populatio n of the Middle and Late Pleistocene. The results of the analysis clearly s how that the European population was not significantly divergent from its c ontemporaries, even in a subset of traits chosen to show the maximum differ ences between Europeans and other populations. The pattern of changes, over time within Europe of the traits in this subset, does not support the Accr etion model, either because the characters did not change in the manner spe cified by the model or because the characters did not change at all. From t hese data, we can conclude that special phenomena such as near-complete iso lation of the European population during the Pleistocene are not required t o explain the pattern of evolution in this region.