5-speed listening (Our Homeland - Level 3)

Modern humans came from Botswana



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A new study claims that the origin of modern humans is in Botswana. The study is published in the journal 'Nature'. Researchers in the study said they used DNA to find out where modern humans came from. The researchers believe we all have roots in a region of northern Botswana, south of the Zambezi River. Humans were there 200,000 years ago. They lived there for at least 70,000 years before they moved around the African continent. They then started migrating to what is now Europe and Asia. Researcher Professor Vanessa Hayes, from the University of Sydney in Australia, said: "We've known for a long time that modern humans originated in Africa roughly 200,000 years ago."

The researchers pinpointed an area called Okavango as being the place we come from. There used to be a huge lake there but it is now salt flats. The people had access to water, hunting and farmland. Scientists analyzed DNA samples from 200 people who live near the area today. They are from the Khoisan people. The Khoisan now live in modern-day South Africa and Namibia. They had a lot of DNA called L0, which is the oldest form of DNA known to be inside humans. Professor Hayes explained why L0 is important. She said: "Every time a new migration occurs, that migration event is recorded in our [L0 and] DNA as a time-stamp.... Everyone walking around today...comes from this region."

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