Neanderthal Went Extinct Due To Human Cultural Superiority, Study Reveals

First Posted: Feb 02, 2016 11:34 AM EST

A group of researchers have developed a model which indicates that the Neanderthal possibly went extinct due to cultural superiority of humans during a period when early humans began arriving in Europe. In the study, the researchers believe that cultural difference was one of the major factors that led to the Neanderthal's extinction.

Previous studies have shown that members of the Neanderthal population lived freely in Europe for hundreds of thousands of years. When modern humans from Africa began migrating into the region about 45,000 years ago, the Neanderthal was wiped out, becoming extinct five thousand years after.

The researchers' computer model examined interspecies competition, where cultural and technical skills were applied. The model indicated that it is possible that Neanderthals became extinct since modern human culture and activities made survival difficult for groups that were not culturally advanced.

The researchers found that advanced cultures were capable of reducing less cultured groups even if they were larger. The more advanced culture most likely became the dominant group, which gradually became larger. The researchers believe that modern humans' advanced culture came with new technological innovations as well, which enabled them to displace the Neanderthal in allocating natural resources.

The findings of this study were published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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