Homo luzonensis

Paul Rincon “Homo luzonensis: New human species found in Philippines” https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-47873072

フィリピン、ルソン島北部の「カラオ洞窟(Callao Cave)」で2007年に発掘された〈人骨〉がこの度「新しい種の人類」と認定された。「ルソン人(Homo luzonensis)」*1。その特徴のひとつは初期人類の特徴とともに現生人類と似た特徴も有しているということである。

The new specimens from Callao Cave, in the north of Luzon, are described in the journal Nature(“A new species of Homo from the Late Pleistocene of the Philippines” https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-019-1067-9 ))(Florent Détroit, Armand Salvador Mijares, Julien Corny, Guillaume Daver, Clément Zanolli, Eusebio Dizon, Emil Robles, Rainer Grün & Philip J. Piper “. They have been dated to between 67,000 years and 50,000 years ago.

They consist of thirteen remains - teeth, hand and foot bones, as well as part of a femur - that belong to at least three adult and juvenile individuals. They have been recovered in excavations at the cave since 2007.

Homo luzonensis has some physical similarities to recent humans, but in other features hark back to the australopithecines, upright-walking ape-like creatures that lived in Africa between two and four million years ago, as well as very early members of the genus Homo.

The finger and toe bones are curved, suggesting climbing was still an important activity for this species. This also seems to have been the case for some australopithecines.


If australopithecine-like species were able to reach South-East Asia, it would change the way our ideas about who in our human family tree left Africa first.

Homo erectus has long thought to have been the first member of our direct line to leave the African homeland - around 1.9 million years ago.

And given that Luzon was only ever accessible by sea, the find raises questions about how pre-human species might have reached the island.


In addition to Homo luzonensis, island South-East Asia also appears to have been home to another human species called the Denisovans, who appear to have interbred with early modern humans (Homo sapiens) when they arrived in the region.

This evidence comes from analysis of DNA, as no known Denisovan fossils have been found in the region.


MIchael Greshko and Maya Wei-Haas “New species of ancient human discovered in the Philippines” https://www.nationalgeographic.com/science/2019/04/new-species-ancient-human-discovered-luzon-philippines-homo-luzonensis/

See also
Katarina Zimmer “New Species of Human, Homo luzonensis, Identified in the Philippines” https://www.the-scientist.com/news-opinion/new-species-of-human--homo-luzonensis--identified-in-the-philippines-65722