ATACAMA HUMANOID PDF

Nearly two decades ago, the rumors began: In the Atacama Desert of northern Chile, someone had discovered a tiny mummified alien. An amateur collector exploring a ghost town was said to have come across a white cloth in a leather pouch. Unwrapping it, he found a six-inch-long skeleton. Despite its size, the skeleton was remarkably complete.

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The skeleton, which was sold to a private collector in Spain, was so bizarre it appeared in a documentary as potential evidence for alien life. Rather than a visitor from another world, Ata was a girl who appears to have been stillborn, or to have died immediately after birth, with devastating mutations that shaped her extraordinary body.

The skeleton was remarkable in many ways. While only six inches tall, the bones had some features of a child aged six to eight. Instead of the usual 12 pairs of ribs found on humans, Ata had only 10 pairs. The head was an elongated cone shape. The curious remains caught the eye of Garry Nolan, a professor of microbiology and immunology at Stanford University in California, who offered to study the specimen. In , he concluded that Ata was human , but the reasons for the dramatic deformities were far from clear.

From DNA extracted from the bones, they found that Ata was a girl who carried mutations in at least seven genes that are known to cause major skeletal malformations or accelerate their development. Beyond her skeletal malformations, Ata may have had a condition called congenital diaphragmatic hernia, a relatively common life-threatening birth defect in which the diaphragm does not develop properly.

Details of the work are published in Genome Research. Nolan believes that Ata was stillborn or died immediately after her birth, perhaps 40 years before her remains were discovered. It turns out to be human, with a fascinating genetic story from which we might learn something important to help others. May she rest in peace. Facebook Twitter Pinterest. Topics Genetics. Biology Chile Americas. Reuse this content. Most popular.

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Researchers finally solve mystery of 'alien' skeleton

The skeleton, which was sold to a private collector in Spain, was so bizarre it appeared in a documentary as potential evidence for alien life. Rather than a visitor from another world, Ata was a girl who appears to have been stillborn, or to have died immediately after birth, with devastating mutations that shaped her extraordinary body. The skeleton was remarkable in many ways. While only six inches tall, the bones had some features of a child aged six to eight. Instead of the usual 12 pairs of ribs found on humans, Ata had only 10 pairs.

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The Atacama skeleton

In fact, some would say it looks, well, alien. Chat with us in Facebook Messenger. Find out what's happening in the world as it unfolds. The mummified specimen from Atacama region of Chile. Story highlights An unusual skeleton found in Chile has perplexed people for more than a decade Whole genome sequencing revealed what caused its abnormalities.

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