Not all paleolithic research happens in the field! In fact, nowadays a lot of it happens in laboratories hidden away in university buildings and research institutes. Leakey Foundation grantee Frido Welker studies ancient proteins preserved in archaeological bone in order to learn more about human evolution.
Ancient DNA research has revolutionized the study of human evolution, but some time periods and geographic regions have not yet yielded usable DNA. Leakey Foundation grantee Frido Welker is a postdoctoral researcher who is testing new methodologies for breaking down and extracting ancient proteins.
Together with their sister group the Neanderthals, Denisovans are the closest extinct relatives of currently living humans. Now researchers have discovered a tiny fossil from an individual who is the offspring of a Neanderthal mother and a Denisovan father.