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Year in review: Early human kin could shake up family tree

Origins of the genus remain fuzzy

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7:03am, December 15, 2015
stone tool

TOOL TIME  One of several significant hominid discoveries in 2015, this 3.3-million-year-old fashioned stone from Kenya suggests early hominids used tools before the Homo genus evolved.

Scientists trying to untangle the human evolutionary family’s ancient secrets welcomed a new set of tantalizing and controversial finds this year. A series of fossil discoveries offered potentially important insights into the origins of the human genus, Homo. Most notably, a group of South African fossils triggered widespread excitement accompanied by head-scratching and vigorous debate.

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