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Revealing the Mystery of Easter Island and its link to South America

Study of history is a never-ending journey that is full of knowing new information and exciting facts. Taking one more step ahead a new paleogenomic research has revealed the likelihood of the intermixing of inhabitants of Easter Island with South Americans much before the arrival of Europeans on the island in 1722. Easter Island is considered as a mystery island that has captured the attention of researchers who want to understand how and when it became inhabited, and by whom.

Easter Island is famous for ancient carved statues and a remote location. During the research the team of researchers analyzed bone fragments from the ancient skeletal remains of five different individuals that were excavated in the 1980s. Those skeletal were the part of the Kon-Tiki Museum's collection in Oslo. Each sample yielded less than 200 milligrams of material which had been used in a previous study. Three individuals lived prior to European contact, and two lived afterwards. No gene flow was found between the inhabitants of Easter Island and South America. It is a possibility that the intermixing occurred between 1280 and 1425. Slavery, whaling, mass deportations, and other activities motivated the intermixing. The analysis of DNA from ancient humans throws light on human evolution with much accuracy. Research is still going on to determine more precisely when this gene flew between Native Americans and the people of Easter Island. They want to re-study the samples to be sure.

By: Anita Aishvarya