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Your dog descended from Late Stone Age wolves, study says

(CNN) {Your pet|Your dog|Your furry friend} dog — and {every other|almost every other|every single other} dog {in the world|on the planet|on earth} — {most likely|probably|almost certainly} descended {from a|from the} single {population|populace|citizenry} of wolves that lived 20, 000 to 40, 000 {years ago|years back}, according to a new study in the journal Nature Communications . The study marks that time frame as the period when dogs and wolves diverged evolutionarily.

Researchers analyzed {the whole|the complete|the entire} genome sequence of the fossils of dogs {found in|within|present in} Germany that date to 7, 000 and 5, 000 {years ago|years back}, as well as that of a dog that lived about 5, 000 years ago in Ireland.
The Irish fossil was has been used in previous studies. The skull of the 5, 000-year-old dog was {found in|within|present in} 2010 in the excavation of a cave in Bavaria, while part of the skull of the 7, 000-year-old dog was found {by accident|unintentionally|accidentally} when Trinity College Dublin professor Dan Bradley was screening bones dating to the Neolithic period, or the New Stone Age.

These aren’t the oldest fossils of domesticated dogs; one jawbone dating to 14, 700 {years ago was|years back was} {found in|within|present in} Germany, and older fossils seem dog-like, but lack confirmation.
But they {shed light on|reveal|highlight} the fact that domesticated dogs living 7, 000 years ago, {alongside|along with|along side} some of the first European farmers, are the ancestors of the dogs kept as pets around the world today, said Krishna Veeramah, study author and genetics professor at Stony Brook University.

Dogs and humans may have had a similar relationship as far back as 14, 000 {years ago|years back} in hunter-gatherer communities.
About 7, 000 {years ago|years back}, these farming communities had just {arrived in|found its way to} Europe, replacing hunter-gatherer societies and creating denser {groups of|sets of|categories of} people. {This would|This might|This could} have probably altered the dogs’ behavior {as well|aswell}, as they adapted to be around {more people|more folks|more individuals}.
{Rather than|Instead of|As opposed to} being kept as house pets, these dogs probably roamed {close to|near|near to} or within villages. And food-wise, {they may|they could|they might} have {needed to|had a need to|needed seriously to} fend for themselves and scavenge, {according to|in accordance with|based on} Adam Boyko, assistant professor at Cornell University’s department of biomedical sciences, {who was|who was simply|who had been} not {associated with the|from the|linked to the} study.
Unlike modern dogs, they wouldn’t have yet adapted {to eat|to consume} foods {that were|which were|that have been} rich in starch. But they also wouldn’t have looked like wolves. Some of the same hallmarks we associate with modern dogs were present in these Neolithic dogs, like floppy ears and skulls {that were|which were|that have been} smaller than those of wolves.
The 5, 000-year-old dog contained an “additional component” more similar to dogs originating from Central and South Asia, {and it was|also it was|plus it was} found close to skeletons of people from the migrating Indo-European Corded Ware culture during the Neolithic period. The researchers believe this component is due to the herders bringing their own dogs, which then {mixed with|blended with|combined with} the local farming dogs.
The researchers were also {able to|in a position to} determine that the genome of {a modern|today’s|a contemporary} dog was very similar to the genome {of these|of the|of those} ancient dogs, further suggesting this single origin.
The fact that these, as well as the oldest known remains, have all been {found in|within|present in} Europe {suggests that|shows that|implies that} the location {is important|is essential|is very important} for future studies {as the|because the|since the} researchers {try to|make an effort to|attempt to} nail down where {domestication|domesticity} took place.
Europe also plays {a part|a component|part} in {the history|the annals|the real history} of domesticated dogs because most of the breeds we know and love today came about {due to|because of|as a result of} selective breeding during England’s Victorian period.
The new study is {in contrast to|as opposed to|contrary to} one released last year in the journal Science , in which the genome of the 5, 000-year-old Irish dog was sequenced. Combined with other data, the University of Oxford group suggested that dogs were independently domesticated twice from gray wolves during the Old Stone Age, once in Asia {and once|as soon as|and when} in Europe. The researchers said {that a|a|that the} sub-population of the dogs from Asia moved to Europe {during the|through the|throughout the} New Stone Age and replaced the Old Stone Age European dogs but that the ancestry was preserved in the fossil.
“By sequencing two ancient dogs from Germany, one 7, 000 years old {and one|and something|plus one} 5, 000 years old, and reanalyzing the Irish dog, we {found that|discovered that|unearthed that} this claim was not supported, ” Veeramah said. “Instead, we {found that|discovered that|unearthed that} the dogs present in Europe 7, 000 years ago, {and perhaps|as well as perhaps|and maybe} even 14, 000 {years ago|years back}, were essentially same dogs present in Europe today. We found no evidence of {a replacement|an upgraded|an alternative}, and {instead|alternatively|as an alternative} we {found that|discovered that|unearthed that} the current data still support a scenario that dogs were domesticated just once, {sometime|some time} between 20, 000 to 40, 000 years ago. ”
Veeramah and his research team will turn their focus {next to|close to|alongside} what happened to dogs after the New Stone Age and how their relationships with humans evolved.
They also {want to know|wish to know|need to know} where {domestication|domesticity} actually {took place|occurred|happened}. “This {is likely to be|may very well be|will probably be} the big question answered by [University of Oxford professor] Greger Larson’s marvelous project (involved in the 2016 Oxford study), as they are {looking to|seeking to|trying to} sequence the genomes of much older specimens from other regions such as East Asia and the Americas, ” Veeramah said.

Read more: http://www.cnn.com/2017/07/19/world/ancient-dog-evolution-study/index.html

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