karl_lembke (karl_lembke) wrote,
karl_lembke
karl_lembke

Hobbits

From the BBC, brain analyses show that "Hobbits", or Homo floresiensis, were in fact a separate species from H. sapiens.
Professor Falk's team scanned all 21 skulls into a computer and then created a "virtual endocast" using specialist software.

Then, they used statistical techniques to study shape differences between the brain casts and to classify them into two different groups: one microcephalic, the other normal.

The dwarf's brain fell into the microcephalic category, while the Hobbit brain fell into the normal group - despite its small size.

In other ways, however, the Hobbit brain is unique, which is consistent with its attribution to a new species.

A previous study of LB1's endocast revealed that large parts of the frontal lobe and other anatomical features were consistent with higher cognitive processes.

"LB1 has a highly evolved brain," said Professor Falk. "It didn't get bigger, it got rewired and reorganised, and that's very interesting."
Tags: science
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