Postcranial evidence from early Homo from Dmanisi, Georgia

David Lordkipanidze, Tea Jashashvili, Abesalom Vekua, Marcia S.Ponce De León, Christoph P.E. Zollikofer, G. Philip Rightmire, Herman Pontzer, Reid Ferring, Oriol Oms, Martha Tappen, Maia Bukhsianidze, Jordi Agusti, Ralf Kahlke, Gocha Kiladze, Bienvenido Martinez-Navarro, Alexander Mouskhelishvili, Medea Nioradze, Lorenzo Rook

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

398 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The Plio-Pleistocene site of Dmanisi, Georgia, has yielded a rich fossil and archaeological record documenting an early presence of the genus Homo outside Africa. Although the craniomandibular morphology of early Homo is well known as a result of finds from Dmanisi and African localities, data about its postcranial morphology are still relatively scarce. Here we describe newly excavated postcranial material from Dmanisi comprising a partial skeleton of an adolescent individual, associated with skull D2700/D2735, and the remains from three adult individuals. This material shows that the postcranial anatomy of the Dmanisi hominins has a surprising mosaic of primitive and derived features. The primitive features include a small body size, a low encephalization quotient and absence of humeral torsion; the derived features include modern-human-like body proportions and lower limb morphology indicative of the capability for long-distance travel. Thus, the earliest known hominins to have lived outside of Africa in the temperate zones of Eurasia did not yet display the full set of derived skeletal features. ©2007 Nature Publishing Group.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)305-310
JournalNature
Volume449
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 20 Sep 2007

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