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Genes shed light on pygmy history

Published on Feb 5, 2014 6:44 AM
 

PARIS (AFP) - Scientists on Tuesday said they could fill a blank in the history of Central Africa's pygmies, whose past is one of the most elusive of any community in the world.

At a key period in the human odyssey, these hunter-gatherer tribes shunned interbreeding with Bantu-speaking communities who were early farmers, according to a gene analysis.

The two groups first met when the Bantu groups, having acquired farming technology some 5,000 years ago, started moving out of the region of Nigeria and Cameroon into eastern, central and southern Africa.

Most of the other hunter-gatherers they encountered soon adopted the agricultural, sedentary lifestyle and even the languages of the Bantu groups.

 
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