Neanderthal news, according to the ABC, BBC, New Scientist and ScienceNOW. A study of Neanderthal DNA reported in ScienceNOW 18 October 2007 and ABC News in Science 19 Oct ober2007, has revealed that Neanderthals had a version of a gene named FOXP2 that is only found in humans and is linked with the ability to speak. The gene was found by a team of researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany. Svante Pääbo, one of the scientists involved, commented “If there was one single gene I really wanted to see in Neanderthals, it was this one.”

These scientists were also asked to analyse DNA from bones found in a cave in Siberia. According to New Scientist News 30 September 2007, they found a short stretch of mitochondrial DNA that was identical to DNA extracted from Neanderthal bones found in Belgium. Jeffrey McKee at Ohio State University commented: “It means that Neanderthals were a bit more adaptable than some people give them credit for”.

Meanwhile, another group of scientists have also been studying Neanderthal genes, according to BBC News 25 Octoner 2007. Carles Lalueza-Fox and colleagues at University of Barcelona have found a gene named MC1R in DNA taken from Neanderthal specimens found in a cave in Spain. The scientists inserted the gene into a human melanocyte, a pigment producing cell found in skin and hair. The Neanderthal gene caused changes in the melanocyte function that are seen in modern people with red hair and pale skin. Lalueza-Fox commented to the BBC: “In Neanderthals, there was probably the whole range of hair colour we see today in modern European populations, from dark to blond right through to red”.

ABC, BBC, New Scientist

Editorial Comment: Bit of a shock isn’t it – now the Museum can have models of fair skinned, red haired Neanderthals so very different from the black apish looking ones we have grown up with. The evolutionist’s original Neanderthal is now so far from the picture based on the latest research, perhaps they need to consider the alternative i.e. an account of a group of ancient people with varying skin colours who could speak, and went wandering far and wide, and who were able to cope with different living conditions.

Sounds familiar? Try reading Genesis 10 and 11.

In spite of constant claims that Neanderthals were less than human, all indicators of how they functioned, including a larger brain size on average, fit with them being fully human, and fit into the Biblical history of the human race. In the beginning the earth and human bodies were “very good” so humans were probably a mid brown skin colour – enough pigment to protect their skin from the sun, but allow in enough light to stimulate the production of vitamin D. This even balance was starting to break down by the time of Noah’s sons – Ham, whose name means “dark”, and Japheth, whose name means “fair”. Therefore, after the Flood the descendents of Noah’s sons would have had a variety of skin colours. Genesis also tells us that humans were created with speech built in and spoke the same language, until they defied God’s instructions to spread out and fill the earth. Genesis 11 records that God gave them different languages and forced them to spread out. This judgement occurred at Babel, in the Middle East, so people could easily spread into both Europe and Russia from there. This event occurred a couple of centuries after Noah’s Flood.

Meanwhile, as part of the aftermath of the flood, the earth’s climate was degenerating rapidly and would have gone through a period of cold caused by changes in the atmospheric carbon dioxide and water vapour. As people spread out they found themselves in harsh conditions, and the effects of a poor diet and scarce resources resulted in disease and deformities, as seen in the Neanderthal bones. If anything, the light skinned red headed people would have had some advantage in northern Europe and Siberia, as they could make more vitamin D, so maybe more of them survived and ‘fair’ became a common skin colour in the post flood Neanderthal population, and instead of dying out, they simply disappeared through intermarriage in the post flood world. (Ref. anthropology, genetics, degeneration)

Evidence News 28 November 2007