Our most common male ancestor walked the earth 209,000 years ago – earlier than scientists commonly thought – according to new research from the University of Sheffield.
The pioneering study conducted by Dr Eran Elhaik dates our most common male ancestor ‘Adam’ in his rightful place in evolutionary history.
Results showed that this is 9,000 years earlier than scientists originally believed.
“We can say with some certainty that modern humans emerged in Africa a little over 200,000 years ago,” said Dr Elhaik.
“It is clear that there was no single ‘Adam’ and ‘Eve’ but rather groups of ‘Adams and Eves’ living side by side and wandering together in our world.”
The research contradicts another recent US study which claimed the human Y chromosome originated in a different species through interbreeding.
Dr Elhaik added: “We have shown that the University of Arizona study lacks any scientific merit.
“In fact, their hypothesis creates a sort of ‘space-time paradox’ whereby the most ancient individual belonging to homo sapiens species has not yet been born.
“Think of the movie Back to the Future, when Marty was worried that his parents would not meet and as a result he wouldn’t be born - it’s the same idea.
“The question to what extent our human forbears interbred with their closest relatives is one of the hottest questions in anthropology and remains open.”