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The national bestseller that reveals how we are descended from seven prehistoric women.
In 1994 Bryan Sykes was called in as an expert to examine the frozen remains of a man trapped in glacial ice in northern Italy for over 5000 years—the Ice Man. Sykes succeeded in extracting DNA from the Ice Man, but even more important, writes Science News, was his "ability to directly link that DNA to Europeans living today." In this groundbreaking book, Sykes reveals how the identification of a particular strand of DNA that passes unbroken through the maternal line allows scientists to trace our genetic makeup all the way back to prehistoric times—to seven primeval women, the "seven daughters of Eve."
From the best-selling author of The Seven Daughters of Eve, a perfect book for anyone interested in the genetic history of Britain, Ireland, and America.
One of the world's leading geneticists, Bryan Sykes has helped thousands find their ancestry in the British Isles. Saxons, Vikings, and Celts, which resulted from a systematic ten-year DNA survey of more than 10,000 volunteers, traces the true genetic makeup of the British Isles and its descendants, taking readers from the Pontnewydd cave in North Wales to the resting place of the Red Lady of Paviland and the tomb of King Arthur. This illuminating guide provides a much-needed introduction to the genetic history of the people of the British Isles and their descendants throughout the world.
From the best-selling author of The Seven Daughters of Eve, an eye-opening work no dog lover or ancestry aficionado should be without.
How did wolves evolve into dogs? When did this happen, and what role did humans play? Oxford geneticist Bryan Sykes used the full array of modern technology to explore the canine genetic journey when our ancestors first learned to hunt together with wolves. In the process, he discovered that only a handful of genes have created the huge range of shapes, sizes, and colors in modern dogs. Providing insight into these adaptive stages in “prose both scientific and poetic” (Booklist), Once a Wolf also focuses attention on how human evolution was enhanced by this most improbable ally. Whether examining our obsession with canine purity or delving into the prehistoric past to answer the most fundamental question of all—Why do we love our dog so much?—this book is “a must read for anybody who has ever wondered about the origins of human’s best friend” (Library Journal).
Crisscrossing the continent, a renowned geneticist provides a groundbreaking examination of America through its DNA.
The best-selling author of The Seven Daughters of Eve now turns his sights on the United States, one of the most genetically variegated countries in the world. From the blue-blooded pockets of old-WASP New England to the vast tribal lands of the Navajo, Bryan Sykes takes us on a historical genetic tour, interviewing genealogists, geneticists, anthropologists, and everyday Americans with compelling ancestral stories. His findings suggest:
• Of Americans whose ancestors came as slaves, virtually all have some European DNA.
• Racial intermixing appears least common among descendants of early New England colonists.
• There is clear evidence of Jewish genes among descendants of southwestern Spanish Catholics.
• Among white Americans, evidence of African DNA is most common in the South.
• European genes appeared among Native Americans as early as ten thousand years ago.
An unprecedented look into America's genetic mosaic and how we perceive race, DNA USA challenges the very notion of what we think it means to be American.
"...you're talking about a yeti or bigfoot or sasquatch. Well now, you'll be amazed when I tell you that I'm sure they exist." —Jane Goodall on NPR
This is "The Big Book of Yetis." What the reader gets here is a world-class geneticist's search for evidence for the existence of Big Foot, yeti, or the abominable snowman.
Along the way, he visits sites of alleged sightings of these strange creatures, attends meetings of cryptozoologists, recounts the stories of famous monster-hunting expeditions, and runs possible yeti DNA through his highly regarded lab in Oxford. Sykes introduces us to the crackpots, visionaries, and adventurers who have been involved in research into this possible scientific dead-end over the past 100 years. Sykes is a serious scientist who knows how to tell a story, and this is a credible and engaging account.
Almost, but not quite human, the yeti and its counterparts from wild regions of the world, still exert a powerful atavistic influence on us. Is the yeti just a phantasm of our imagination or a survivor from our own savage ancestry? Or is it a real creature? This is the mystery that Bryan Sykes set out to unlock.
Wie kommt es, dass der Mensch eine derartig besondere Beziehung zu einem Wesen eingegangen ist, das auf den ersten Blick ein vollkommen ungeeigneter Verbündeter zu sein scheint? Und wo liegt der Ursprung der tiefen Verbindung über die Grenzen der Spezies hinweg? Der renommierte Humangenetiker Bryan Sykes zeigt, dass alle modernen Hunderassen, die wir heute kennen – von Deutscher Dogge bis Chihuahua –, vom Wolf abstammen und belegt, wie eng verwoben die Entwicklung der Vierbeiner mit der des Menschen ist. Denn erst als früher Homo sapiens und Wolf sich vor Zehntausenden Jahren zusammentaten und begannen, gemeinsam zu jagen, waren sie wirklich erfolgreich. Diese einzigartige Koevolution war für beide Spezies entscheidend. Sykes verfolgt die genetische Entwicklung bis zur Domestizierung und modernen Züchtung verschiedener Hunderassen nach und erläutert, wie der Homo sapiens die Position unangefochtener Herrschaft erlangen konnte, in der wir uns heute befinden. Denn neben der Fähigkeit, Feuer zu kontrollieren, Sprachen zu entwickeln und den Ackerbau zu kultivieren, gibt es einen vierten entscheidenden Faktor: die Verwandlung des Wolfs zum ultimativen Gefährten.
"Faszinierend. Sykes schreibt mit der geduldigen Klarheit eines guten Lehrers."
Rachel Campbell-Johnston, The Times