Arsenal should sign the ‘outstanding’ Yaya Toure, talkSPORT told

first_imgArsene Wenger should try bring Yaya Toure to Arsenal in the summer, according to Stuart Pearce.The four-time African Player of the Year, 32, looks set to leave the Etihad in the summer, despite having a year remaining on his contract.The midfielder’s agent Dimitry Seluk suggested in January that his client is unlikely to stay at the club if Pep Guardiola is manager.The Barcelona legend was later appointed as Manuel Pellegrini’s replacement and Spanish football expert Graham Hunter told talkSPORT Toure has ‘no chance’ of staying at the club.With his future in doubt, reports have suggested Toure would be interested in staying in the Premier League.Arsenal have plenty of flair in midfield, but they have faltered in the title race due to their lack of presence and power, and Pearce believes the Man City powerhouse would be a good signing for the north Londoners.“On his day Yaya Toure is outstanding,” he said on the Colin Murray show.“Arsenal need an old head within the team.“Petr Cech has proved a fantastic success this year at Arsenal, and to have a player like Toure at the centre of midfield, as that holding type of player, I think he’d give one or two of the youngsters a bit of a lift.“I think he’d be a good signing for them.”last_img read more

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COMMUNITY NEWS: RAPHOE FAMILY RESOURCE CENTRE LAUNCH PROGRAMME FOR SUICIDE PREVENTION

first_imgRAPHOE NOTES: Raphoe Family Resource Centre:  ‘Connecting With Young Men’ TrainingThe Family Resource Centre and the Men’s Health Forum in Ireland (MHFI) are hosting a free one day workshop on engaging with young men on Monday 30th November 2015.The workshop has been developed by MHFI, a new Unit within the highly successful ‘Engage’ National Men’s Health Training Programme. It has been funded by the HSE’s National Office for Suicide Prevention.From March 2011 to October 2012, the Men’s Health Forum in Ireland coordinated an all-island action learning project which sought to identify a range of possible means to promote positive mental health among young men. The final report made 12 key proposals with number 10 outlining the need to develop a training programme for frontline staff on how to effectively engage with young men. The Workshop content/format is based upon follow-up research which MHFI conducted to identify the training needs of a wide variety of organisations, how the training might be delivered and the content of the package. The Workshop will focus on the WHY and HOW to build relationships with young men and the objectives are to demonstrate why it is important to work with young men as a specific group; help participants reflect on their own value base, experience, attitudes towards, and expectations of young men; explore the world of young men, the issues that they face, and the opportunities that exist to engage with them; consider the practicalities of what works; increase the confidence of participants in relation to working with young men.The workshop will be of interest to a broad range of service providers and practitioners who wish to connect in more meaningful ways with young men. To book a place please contact Tony on 074-9145796 or on 087-3641503.Junior JivingThe Family Resource Centre is intending to run jiving classes for children and young people commencing on Friday 6th November from 4.14-5.15pm in the Volt House Hall. Cost €2 per class. The jiving will only start if there are sufficient numbers so please contact us on 087 3641503 or through Facebook to register your child/young person.Halloween HamperThe lucky winner of the Family Resource Centre’s Halloween Hamper is James Johnston Junior from Raphoe. Congratulations James! We would like to thank everyone who purchased lines for the hamper; we greatly appreciate your generous support. Our sincere thanks are extended to Coyle’s Centra, Raphoe for permission to locate the hamper in the Post Office and to the staff of the Post Office for their kindness in safeguarding the subscriptions. Annual General MeetingThe Annual General Meeting of Raphoe Family Resource Centre will take place at 7.30pm on Wednesday 18th November 2015 in the Volt House. Everyone welcome.Women’s GroupThe next meeting of the Family Resource Centre’s Women’s Group will take place on Monday 9th November at 8.00pm in the Volt House. Parents Plus – RaphoeParents Plus-Raphoe is starting in the beginning of November 2015. Have you a child / children aged from 6 -11 years old?Does it ever feel like world war 3 is breaking out in your home when it’s time to get homework started or when bedtime is mentioned?Do you find it hard to get your child’s attention and end up getting becoming more frustrated?Do you ever feel just at a loss as to what to do next (who hasn’t?)Now is the time to make the changes!Raphoe Family Resource Centre in conjunction with Springboard Family Support Project is now taking names for a free Parents Plus 8 week programme.The Parents Plus Children’s Programme offers parents an opportunity to come together in a relaxed and friendly environment to share ideas and learn new techniques to help children be more co-operative and maintain boundaries, help them learn and reach their full potential. Topics include:· Being a responsive parent;· Encouraging and supporting children;· Promoting children’s language and development;· Helping children concentrate and learn;· Building co-operation in young children;· Managing tantrums, misbehaviour and problems;This programme is free of charge.For further information please contact Melanie @Raphoe FRC on 0749145796 / 0873641503 or Claire@ Springboard Family Support Project on 0749173918Little Smiles with Big DreamsLittle Smiles with Big Dreams is a parent and toddler group that meets every Wednesday morning at 10:30am – 12 noon in the Family Resource Centre.  Anyone who is in care of a child whether an aunt / uncle/ child-minder or grandparent is welcome.  The kiddies can get involved in messy play, free play, story time and music time where the adult can enjoy a cuppa tea and meet other adults.  Parent and Toddler Groups are a great way to enhance your little one’s confidence and meet others of their age.Raphoe Walking GroupThe Walking Group meets every Thursday morning at 10.30am.  All abilities are catered for. And an important element of the group is coming in afterwards to have a chat and a cuppa! New members are always welcome so please feel free to join us on Thursday mornings!Raphoe Boxing ClubFinal preparations are now in place for the Club’s forthcoming major boxing tournament that will take place in the Deele College Sports Pavilion on Saturday 7th November when the local Club will have as their guests Tenbury Wells Boxing Club from Ludlow, England. There will be 14 quality contests down for decision featuring many Ulster, Irish and English Champions. The first bell will be at 8pm sharp and as a big crowd is expected patrons are advised to be in their seats early. Avery special thanks goes to our main sponsor Marcus Roulston of Brown’s Restaurants and to all the generous business people of Raphoe and surrounding areas for their continued financial support for without it the local Boxing Club would fail to exist. Boxercise classes under the guidance of Gary Mc Cullagh take place in the Boxing Gym on Tuesday and Thursday mornings from 10-11am and on Thursday night from 7-8pm, and anyone looking to improve their fitness is welcome to attend. Contact Gary on 087-9285108.Social EveningRaphoe Presbyterian Church Kurling Club is hosting a Social Evening inRaphoe Presbyterian Church Hall on Friday 6th November 2015 from 8.00 -10.30pm. Music by Leslie Matthews. Join us for an evening of fun, storytelling, dancing and much more. Meet our mystery guest. Admission: €8.00 includes light refreshments and door prizes.ThanksRaphoe Senior Citizens Committee would like to say a huge thanks to the Members of the Northern Star Masonic Lodge who recently held ‘A Night at the Races’ and presented us with a cheque for €1,686.50, which will go towards our Annual Senior Citizens Party this year.Please note that items for the Raphoe Notes should be placed in the box provided in the Post Office on or before 12 noon on Fridays. Items can also be emailed to raphoefrc@eircom.net or handed in to the Family Resource Centre, William Street. Items should be submitted at least one week in advance of publication of local press.COMMUNITY NEWS: RAPHOE FAMILY RESOURCE CENTRE LAUNCH PROGRAMME FOR SUICIDE PREVENTION was last modified: October 30th, 2015 by Mark ForkerShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:Featuresnewslast_img read more

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HARPS LEAD AT HALF-TIME IN FAI CUP THRILLER

first_imgMcHugh scored for HarpsFAI CUP QUARTER-FINAL: KEVIN McHUGH has scored a stunning goal to give Finn Harps an incredible half-time lead here at Finn Park over Drogheda United.The Louth side are favourites to progress here – and you could have got 8/1 on Harps before kick-off.But a goal in the 22nd minute by striker McHugh after great work by Thomas McMonagle has Harps ahead. The cheers at half-time told you that the Donegal men and their fans are very happy at the break.HARPS LEAD AT HALF-TIME IN FAI CUP THRILLER was last modified: September 13th, 2013 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Drogheda Unitedfinn harpslast_img read more

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LARGE CROWDS TURN OUT FOR LETTERKENNY PARADE – PICTURE SPECIAL

first_imgMarty Bond makes sure the floats don’t go on fire!Large crowds thronged Letterkenny’s Main Street today for the town’s annual St Patrick’s Day parade.Despite threats of torrential downpours, it managed to stay dry for most of the afternoon in the Cathedral Town.A number of community groups, schools, companies and clubs went the extra mile to make it a great day for young and old alike. There was dogs. vintage cars, tractors and even a miniature horse on display.The only complaint was that the day ended so quickly!Results of the Letterkenny St.Patrick’s Day ParadeBest Float (Overall winner) – Letterkenny CDP Best Band – Letterkenny Senior Accordian BandBest Business –  Letterkenny Shopping CentreCommunity –  Mary’s MealsIndividual – Tom Giblin, Lifetime Video (Miniature Pony & Cart)Youth – Letterkenny Gaels Sport – Termon GAACarnival – Orchard BarThe Letterkenny Senior Accordian Band are back doing the business!One of the many vintage cars on display in Letterkenny.John Gildea and son Fionn enjoy the parade this afternoonOne of the many marching bands in the Letterkenny parade this afternoonOne of the most colourful floats on display todayTermon GAA club do their parish proud in LetterkennyNobody knew how much ‘horse power’ this little fella had!It was a tiring day for some particpantsWell-known solicitor Cathal Quinn almost got to ‘lead’ the parade!Fr Eamon Kelly never feels blue – even on Paddy;s Day!LARGE CROWDS TURN OUT FOR LETTERKENNY PARADE – PICTURE SPECIAL was last modified: March 17th, 2013 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:Letterkenny paradepictureslast_img read more

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€1,500 DONATIONS ORDERED FOR DUO IN ‘GAY SHIRT’ NIGHTCLUB PUNCH-UP

first_imgTWO men who fought inside a Co Donegal nightclub in a row over a ‘gay shirt’ have been ordered to hand over €750 each by a judge.One of the men suffered a broken jaw and the other man bruising after a punch-up at The Grill in Letterkenny on August 15, 2012.Both had contested charges against them at a previous hearing at Letterkenny District Court. The court heard an investigation was launched when Michael McDevitt, Drury Road, Kerrykeel, made a formal complaint of assault to officers at Letterkenny on August 24, 2012.He had suffered a serious blow in the incident nine days earlier and was later transferred from Letterkenny General Hospital to Altnagelvin in Derry where he underwent surgery to repair a broken jaw.A metal plate and six bolts had to be inserted into his jaw.Adam O’Donnell, a 22-year-old apprentice toolmaker from Castlewray, Letterkenny, later admitted punching McDevitt, but insisted it was in self defence, and only to protect his younger brother Mark who had been accosted by McDevitt who had made references to his clothes and his “gay shirt.”After hearing evidence from both men, Judge Paul Kelly convicted McDevitt of disorderly conduct in a public place, relating to his comments to Mark O’Donnell.He also convicted both McDevitt and Adam O’Donnell on assault charges, the latter on assault causing harm.Inspector Michael Harrison told the trial that on the evidence given to the court it was clear that Adam O’Donnell saw that his brother was frightened and he went to look after him.Michael McDevitt was throwing insults at the young man Mark, he said, and his brother went over and intervened and an altercation took place.Judge Paul Kelly agreed. He said the disorder in a public place – the insults to Mark O’Donnell – was proved.He said there was some type of lunge by McDevitt on Adam O’Donnell in which he received a minor injury. Adam had retaliated resulting in life-changing injuries for Mr McDevitt, a 20-year-old driver with Marine Harvest in Kerrykeel.Judge Paul Kelly said the incident was started by McDevitt “who must have been in a state of considerable intoxication” having consumed two pints of bulmers  and a half a bottle of vodka before going to The Grill and then six vodkas and two Jagemeisters on the premises.“He subjected Mark O’Donnell to extremely offensive insults and his brother Adam had intervened. The incident escalated almost instantly and I am satisfied they struck each other,” said the judge.Today ‘favourable’ probation reports were handed in to Judge Kelly.Solicitors Niall Sheridan, for O’Donnell, and Ciaran McLaughlin for McDevitt, pleaded that both men had suffered as a result of the incident.They asked that no conviction be recorded and that the men be given a chance.Both men did not want the other to “suffer any further punitive” actions, said Mr Sheridan.Judge Paul Kelly said the fight was “an all too common tale around here.”He added: “The Courts are constantly dealing with cases fuelled by drink where young men get too much on board and the next thing there is violence and serious injury.”The judge said the courts would always deal in a certain way with young men on first offences but that both of them had contested the charges at a trial.However he said in the circumstances he would order each man to pay €750 into court.He said €250 would be used to pay State expenses in the case and €500 would be donated to the Donegal Youth Service.Judge Kelly ordered that the fees be paid by September 15 and that both men should appear in court again on that date.€1,500 DONATIONS ORDERED FOR DUO IN ‘GAY SHIRT’ NIGHTCLUB PUNCH-UP was last modified: June 16th, 2014 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Adam O’DonnellassaultLetterkenny CourtMichael McDevittThe Grilllast_img read more

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Biochemists Mutate Protein, Make a Catalyst

first_img“Enzymes are among the most proficient catalysts known,” wrote three Duke University scientists, “and they catalyze a wide variety of reactions in aqueous solutions under ambient conditions with exquisite selectivity and stereospecificity.”  The team set out to rationally design their own enzyme.  Their work is reported in the June 25 issue of Science.1  Building on a non-enzymatic ribose-binding protein, they introduced 18 to 22 mutations at specific points, imitating the active site of triose phosphate isomerase (TIM).  They succeeded in getting a million-fold increase in catalytic activity, and showed their NovoTim invention to be biologically active in E. coli bacteria.  To them, not only does this demonstrate scientists’ ability to understand and imitate “naturally evolved” enzymes, but the “introduction of TIM activity into RBP is therefore equivalent to convergent evolution by computational design.”  Their enzyme was less thermally stable than the wild type, however, and the reaction rate was 220 times lower.1Dwyer, Looger and Hellinga, “Computational Design of a Biologically Active Enzyme,” Science, Vol 304, Issue 5679, 1967-1971, 25 June 2004, [DOI: 10.1126/science.1098432].We hate to have to award these clever inventors the Stupid Evolution Quote of the Week prize, but listen to what they said.  They just called themselves blind, deaf and dumb.  Here they used intelligence, ingenuity, know-how, knowledge, and supervision to design a working enzyme, then said it was equivalent to “convergent evolution,” a blind, purposeless process that has none of those things.  Their work has nothing to do with evolution, convergent, divergent, invergent, subvergent or otherwise.  It was an exercise in reverse engineering.  By emphasizing the specificity of contact points in a simple enzyme that leads to efficient catalysis, their work underscores the necessity of rational design.  How come Charlie keeps getting credit for intelligent design work?  Unfair.(Visited 7 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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Cape Town a top 15 bicycle-friendly city

first_img30 May 2011Cape Town is one of the 15 most bike-friendly destinations in the world, according to a CNN feature on 15 cities around the world “where drivers use all five fingers when they wave at you”.African cities “aren’t the first that spring to mind for bike friendliness, but Cape Town is doing its best to change that,” CNN noted in an article earlier this month featuring South Africa’s “Mother City” among the likes of Amsterdam and Barcelona in Europe, Chicago and San Francisco in North America, and Beijing and Bogota in “Elsewhere”.“The South African hub is committed to creating cycling lanes, dedicated bike parking and public commuter showers,” CNN said.Cape Town Partnership MD Bulelwa Makalima-Ngewana said that being compared to “benchmark pedestrian and bike-friendly cities such as Berlin, Paris, Chicago and Barcelona is very encouraging.Lead SA, an initiative that encourages South Africans to celebrate the country’s achievements while taking responsibility for its problems, said the CNN mention was recognition of Cape Town’s commitment to making cycling lanes efficient and safe in order “to assist in alleviating congestion and pollution by cars.“Less cars and more convenient, eco-friendly access to the city is key to making Cape Town a more liveable city,” Lead SA said in a statement last week.“What Capetonians should also know is that the new MyCiti buses operating in various areas from Tableview and within Cape Town allow cyclists to take their bikes on board with them and also to leave them at secure lock-up points close to the stations.”According to Lead SA, Cape Town’s new cycling lanes mirror the MyCiti bus routes, by running to the right of the existing bus lanes along the northern route, which includes Blaauwberg, Table View and Milnerton. The cycling lanes are three metres wide and evenly paved for a smooth ride. The paved lane stretches for 16 kilometres.There are numerous companies that rent out bicycles in Cape Town, such as ByBike, and various guided bicycle tours are also on offer. The Bicycle Empowerment Network and Vamos Cycling Tour are two companies offering two-wheeled tours through the city’s townships.SAinfo reporterWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

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New immigration officers make a mark

first_img20 January 2012 The deployment of 350 newly trained immigration officers at OR Tambo International Airport over the festive season was an overwhelming success, says Home Affairs Director-General Mkuseli Apleni. The 350 South African National Defence Force (SANDF) officers were laterally transferred to the department, trained as immigration officers and then deployed to the airport in December. They were trained on international best practices, which seek to deal with child trafficking, human trafficking, illegal immigration and money laundering. The new method of immigration management replaces the one where immigration officers simply conducted passport control, Apleni explained. The new immigration officers processed the entry and departure of 268 260 South African citizens and 351 003 foreign nationals. From 21 December 2011 to 18 January 2012, 7 472 violations of the country’s immigration laws were identified and 230 suspicious cases referred to the department’s Inspectorate Services for further investigation. “We are cognisant of the fact that there may still be instances of teething problems, as with any new operation. In this regard, we welcome all suggestions and call on members of the public to seek the assistance of the supervisor on duty,” Apleni said. He added that the department was in the process of strengthening security at all of South Africa’s ports of entry. “In this regard, we have taken a decision that passenger liners would no longer be allowed to dock at the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town since it is not a designated port of entry. “It must be noted that it is only the Minister of Home Affairs who is constitutionally mandated to designate a port of entry within the Republic of South Africa,” he said. Passenger liners will be rerouted to Duncan Dock at the Cape Town Harbour, where foreign nationals entering South Africa will be processed in line with the Immigration Act. The department has also deployed “additional human resource capacity” to two of the country’s harbours, with 37 more officials at the Cape Town Harbour and 47 more at the Durban Harbour. Source: BuaNewslast_img read more

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Google Making Fashion Week Documentary Using “Glasses”

first_img8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Some of the most beautiful women on the planet have geeked out hard this week, donning Google Glasses on the catwalk for New York’s Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week.Designer Diane von Furstenberg’s line teamed up with Google to unveil a futuristic collaboration, merging fashion and technology. Models have been paired with colored Glasses that match their outfits. Google will edit the footage recorded by each of the Glasses to create a documentary shot from each of the models’ perspectives. Look for it on the Google Glass Google Plus channel this week.“Beauty, style and comfort are as important to Glass as the latest technology,” Sergey Brin said. The Google co-founder joined von Furstenberg in the front row of the show, each sporting a pair. Wearable fashion technology (or is it tech fashion?) is an eye-grabber, and with Google planning to sell the Glasses in retail locations next year, this was a savvy PR move. The first Glass release, the “Explorer Edition,” is reportedly priced at $1,500, but that’s not stopping the buzz.If nothing else, it’s a big personal move for Brin, whose label faves begin and end with Crocs.  Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…center_img Tags:#Google#web Related Posts adam popesculast_img read more

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First Farmers Were Also Sailors

first_imgWhen hunter-gatherers in the Middle East began to settle down and cultivate crops about 10,500 years ago, they became the world’s first farmers. But two new papers suggest that they were at home on both the land and the sea: Studies of ancient and modern human DNA, including the first reported ancient DNA from early Middle Eastern farmers, indicate that agriculture spread to Europe via a coastal route, probably by farmers using boats to island hop across the Aegean and Mediterranean seas.Archaeologists have long known that farming arose in the Middle East and then spread to Europe, because radiocarbon dating of hundreds of early sites shows a clear time gradient from east to west. But that is only a rough guide, and in recent years geneticists have been filling in the details of that picture by sequencing the DNA of both modern and ancient populations. While the relatively cool conditions at many European sites have helped preserve the DNA of ancient skeletons, researchers had not succeeded in sequencing DNA from the many skeletons found at very early Middle Eastern sites, due to their very hot and dry environments. That has left a big gap in their understanding of the very earliest steps in the spread of farming from the Middle East to Europe, which began at least 8000 years ago.Since the early 1990s, a Spanish team has been excavating at three ancient farming sites in Syria, whose earliest dates range from 10,500 to 10,000 years ago—the very beginning of the agricultural revolution. Last week, in PLOS Genetics, the team reported having partially sequenced DNA from the mitochondria (the energy units of the living cell) of 15 skeletons from two of the sites, Tell Ramad and Tell Halula (see photo above). This is the first report of ancient DNA from early Middle Eastern farmers.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)“It is clearly great that [genetic] data has become available” from these ancient groups, says Marie-France Deguilloux, a paleogeneticist from the University of Bordeaux in France, who adds that having such DNA sequences is “crucial” to tracing the spread of farming to Europe.The paper’s lead author, anthropologist Eva Fernández of Liverpool John Moores University in the United Kingdom, attributes the team’s success to two main factors: First, the bodies at the Syrian farming villages were buried in pits under the floors of the houses and then sealed with thick mud, which probably protected the skeletons from the temperature extremes of Syrian summers; and second, the skeletons were put in cold storage immediately after being removed from the pits, which also preserved DNA from further degradation.The mitochondrial DNA sequences from the Syrian skeletons showed what the team calls “strong affinities” with ancient DNA recently recovered from roughly 7000-year-old farming villages in both Germany and Spain, confirming that populations in the Middle East were indeed the source of later farming populations in Europe. Even more important, Fernández and her colleagues say, is what the team found when it compared the Middle Eastern DNA with a database of 60 modern populations in the Middle East and Europe. That analysis revealed very close genetic affinities with people living today in Cyprus and Crete, suggesting that farmers had first migrated from the Middle East to Greece and its islands by boat, before moving on to the mainland. The alternative, more northern route, overland to Europe via modern-day Turkey, was not supported by the data, because modern populations in Turkey did not show close genetic relationships to the Syrian skeletons.Fernández says that this scenario is also bolstered by archaeological findings of the past couple of decades. Very early farming sites have been excavated on Cyprus, but researchers were not sure whether they represented a small population pushed off the mainland—perhaps by population pressure or competition with other farmers—or the beginnings of a major migration across the sea to Europe. “This implies that the first farmers were undoubtedly in possession of advanced enough navigation capabilities,” as well as adequate boats, to make the 60 kilometers sea voyage from the mainland, Fernández says.More evidence that Middle Eastern farmers were also sailors comes from a paper published online today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. A team led by George Stamatoyannopoulos, a geneticist at the University of Washington, Seattle, looked at 75,000 genetic markers across the genomes of 964 people from 32 different modern populations, including Greece and the Greek islands, Turkey, Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa. Using statistical techniques that allow researchers to trace the origins of populations based on the differences between them today, these researchers also found that farming had spread to Europe by a sea route, via Crete, the Greek islands, and the northern Mediterranean coast.The two teams did differ on one question, however: whether Middle Eastern farmers first spread from the Levantine coast (modern day Israel, Lebanon, and Syria), the conclusion of the Fernández group; or from the southern coast of modern-day Turkey, as found by the Proceedings authors. Fernández says that while “both studies support each other” in pointing to a sea route, the differences between them could be due to the genetic profiles of Middle Easterners having changed since ancient times. In her view, the ancient DNA results from Syria would be a more reliable indicator of the genetics of early farmers.However, outside researchers raise caution flags about the new ancient DNA findings. The sample of 15 skeletons from Syria is too small to represent all of the early Middle Eastern farming populations, says Guido Brandt, a paleogeneticist at the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz in  Germany. “It is questionable whether the genetic diversity of a melting pot like the [Middle] East can be sufficiently explored” by such a small number of partial mitochondrial DNA sequences, he contends.Deguilloux agrees. Despite the strong evidence for a maritime spread of farming, she says, the current data cannot rule out the possibility that the spread of agriculture to Europe had “multiple origins,” including overland routes.last_img read more

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