Dogs have been man’s best friend for more than 10,000 years, but a new study shows it has been a doggone tough road to get here: their ancestors in the Americas likely came from Siberia, and these early dog populations almost totally disappeared, but not before leaving a cancerous tumor that is still found in their canine descendants today.
A team of international researchers who worked on the study includes Anna Linderholm, assistant professor of anthropology at Texas A&M University, and their work is in the current issue of Science magazine.
The team collected genetic information from 71 ancient dog remains from the Americas and found that early dogs arrived alongside people who eventually settled throughout North, Central and South America.
But closer study of the ancient dog genomes shows that they almost completely disappeared following the arrival of European settlers, leaving little or no trace in more modern American dogs. The researchers also found that a cancerous condition spread through the mating of dogs thousands of years ago is still present today and is the last remaining trace of these early dog populations that arrived in the Americas. …Click here to read full news