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Scientists have identified a previously unknown type of ancient human through analysis of DNA from a finger bone unearthed in a Siberian cave.
The extinct "hominin" (human like creature) lived in Central Asia between 48,000 and 30,000 years ago.
An international team has sequenced genetic material from the fossil showing that it is distinct from that of Neanderthals and modern humans.
Details of the find, dubbed "X-woman", have been published in Nature journal.
“Back at the time this lineage came out of Africa, it had to have been a distinct group, perhaps a distinct species,” he said. “But whether or not this individual was a distinct species, we have to wait for the nuclear DNA.”