An international team of scientists, headed by Chinese scientists from the Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology at Chinese Academy of Sciences, in a new study, revealed that a 104,000-year-old ancient human found in China, in the northern part of the country, had a modern dental growth.
According to the study issued yesterday in the journal Science Advances, unveiled that ancient people who lived across what is today known as China were much similar to modern humans than the scientists previously thought. More specifically, they were having a slow life history and a prolonged childhood.
“It is the first systematic assessment of dental growth in a fossil known as the Xujiayao juvenile, living between 104,000 and 248,000 years ago. Its growth lines in the teeth showed that the juvenile was about six and half years old, according to the study,” said Xinhua, the leading Chinese news agency.
The study was led by Xing Song and his co-workers from the Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology at the Chinese Academy of Sciences.
Ancient Human Found in China Presents Modern Dental Growth
The researcher said that the so-called Xujiayao juvenile was “a strange mosaic.” The scientists found that besides the modern dental growth, the ancient human found in China was not presenting any other modern features.
“It has some affinities to archaic human relatives like the Denisovans and Neanderthals but with some modern features,” explained Xing Song, the study’s leading author. He added that the teeth of modern-day humans take longer to develop in comparison with their prehistoric ancestors. However, the so-called Xujiayao juvenile presented the same feat.
In addition to all that, the ancient human found in China also presented perikymata (the pits around the elongated prisms of tooth enamel) like modern humans. Also, there were some differences that the researchers noted. Accordingly, the teeth roots of the Xujiayao juvenile were growing faster than those of modern-day humans.