Humans '150,000 years old' over lots of spacey

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The Independent Online
Human pre-history's most remarkable event - the movement of Homo sapiens to the four corners of the world - began less than 150,000 years ago, a mere blink in evolutionary time, according to research published today, writes Steve Connor.

A genetic analysis of 14 human populations living in different parts of the world provides powerful evidence in favour of the ''out-of-Africa'' theory on human origins which proposes that our species is far more recent than previously supposed, the researchers say.

The new research, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, is a further blow to the idea that Homo sapiens arose far earlier, perhaps a million years ago, by evolving simultaneously in several parts of the world.

Scientists from the universities of Stanford and Pennsylvania State in the US and the University of Antioquia, Colombia, studied the DNA of present-day people who have had no inter-breeding for thousands of years.

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