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The DNA of a hunter-gatherer who lived in Spain some 7,000 years ago suggests that Europeans were dark-skinned until much more recently than previously thought, researchers said Sunday.Europeans from the Mesolithic Period between 10,000 and 5,000 years ago, when La Brana lived, were thought to have already been fair-skinned due to low ultraviolet radiation levels at these high latitudes.The Upper Palaeolithic or Late Stone Age stretched from 50,000-10,000 years ago, followed by the Mesolithic or Middle Stone Age that lasted until about 5,000 years ago, when it was followed in Europe by the Neolithic or New Stone Age.Lalueza-Fox said light-skinned Europeans emerged "much later" than once believed – possibly only in the Neolithic era when erstwhile hunter-gatherers became farmers.
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