Friday, December 6, 2019
Contact us    |    Advertise    |   Help    |   Cookie Policy    |   Privacy Policy    RSS icon Twitter icon Facebook icon
    Home  ·  News  ·  Forum  ·  Stories  ·  Image Gallery  ·  Columns  ·  Encyclopedia  ·  Videos
Find: in

Fossil tooth sheds light on world's largest ape


Posted on Thursday, 14 November, 2019 | Comment icon 4 comments

That is one enormous ape. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 4.0 Luis guardiola 816
Standing up to three meters tall, Gigantopithecus was the largest ape to ever walk the face of the Earth.
More than twice the size of today's great apes, this enormous primate was a veritable King Kong - a gargantuan hulking beast that would have put even the legendary Bigfoot to shame.

The species lived across parts of what is now Southern Asia and roamed the planet from around nine million years ago until its disappearance somewhere around 100,000 years ago.

Now scientists have succeeded in learning more about this prehistoric giant thanks to the discovery of a two million-year-old fossil tooth in a cave in China.

Incredibly, they were able to obtain skeletal protein samples from the tooth despite its extreme age.
It turns out that Gigantopithecus was actually related to today's orangutans.

"It would have been a distant cousin (of orangutans), in the sense that its closest living relatives are orangutans, compared to other living great apes such as gorillas or chimpanzees or us," said Dr Frido Welker from the University of Copenhagen.

It is hoped that tooth protein analysis could help scientists learn more from other fossils as well.

"This study suggests that ancient proteins might be a suitable molecule surviving across most of recent human evolution even for areas like Africa or Asia and we could thereby in the future study our own evolution as a species over a very long time span," said Dr Welker.

Source: BBC News | Comments (4)

Tags: Gigantopithecus

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by Piney on 13 November, 2019, 21:10
They pretty much determined that by the dental structure itself, didn't they? 
Comment icon #2 Posted by Carnoferox on 13 November, 2019, 23:03
Yes, a relationship with orangutans has been the consensus for a long time based on the dental morphology. However, since convergent evolution frequently occurs in hominid teeth this wasn't 100% certain. Now with this proteomic analysis there is little room for doubt.
Comment icon #3 Posted by Ernest on 24 November, 2019, 11:26
Hope they r able to clone it for the zoo. Would be such an awesome sight
Comment icon #4 Posted by Carnoferox on 24 November, 2019, 21:22
No preserved DNA has yet been recovered from Gigantopithecus, only proteins, so cloning is currently impossible.


Please Login or Register to post a comment.


  On the forums
Forum posts:
Forum topics:
Members:

6606752
276124
182842

 
Planet found orbiting white dwarf in world first
12-5-2019
Astronomers have discovered a huge planet orbiting the burnt-out husk of a star that was once like the Sun.
Can your dreams predict a person's death ?
12-5-2019
A 25-year study has looked into the correlation between precognitive death dreams and a person actually dying.
Navy officer saw 'two-mile-wide UFO' over base
12-5-2019
Lee Adams, who once served aboard the USS Nimitz, recalls witnessing a huge object over a base in Virginia.
NASA reveals Parker Solar Probe discoveries
12-4-2019
The groundbreaking solar probe has sent back its first observations from the edge of the Sun's atmosphere.
Stories & Experiences
My reptilian encounter
11-24-2019 | Ireland and Australia
 
The day I found out I am immortal
11-24-2019 | Hialeah
 
Recent activity in my home
11-24-2019 | Kansas City, MO USA
 
The houndsman
10-26-2019 | Michigan, USA
 
Birthday balloon
10-26-2019 | Usa
 
Devil man in a suit
10-26-2019 | Ohio
 
I accidentally called myself ?
9-28-2019 | United States
 
Giant wolf in my basement
9-28-2019 | Connecticut
 
I saw a shadow figure...
9-26-2019 | Australia
 
A haunting in Iowa
9-26-2019 | Central City, Iowa
 

         More stories | Send us your story
Featured Videos
Gallery icon 
Interview with Sophia the robot
Posted 11-21-2019 | 12 comments
The popular robot recently made an appearance on 'This Morning' in the UK.
 
Coke and butane
Posted 11-17-2019 | 0 comments
The Slo Mo Guys return with another dangerous slow-motion stunt.
 
Origins of the Kraken
Posted 11-15-2019 | 0 comments
A look at the origin of the legendary multi-tentacled sea monster.
 
 View: More videos
 
Top   |  Home   |   Forum   |   News   |   Image Gallery   |  Columns   |   Encyclopedia   |   Videos   |   Polls
UM-X 10.712 Unexplained-Mysteries.com (c) 2001-2019
Terms   |   Privacy Policy   |   Cookies   |   Advertise   |   Contact   |   Help/FAQ