domestication a horse It was important to mankind. It allowed rapid displacement and transportation of goods over long distances. The speed of our movement, the speed of walking, becomes the speed of running, shifting the load from what we can carry on our backs to the capacity of a group of horses. For thousands of years, horses and carts were the cars, trucks, ships, and planes of today.
Mystery shrouds the place where the horses were domesticated. Conflicting theories, based on bone finds, point to the Iberian Peninsula, the Potai in Central Asia, and Anatolia. What is known is that the oldest finds, dating back to 3500 BC, are sheds found in Botai, but it is difficult to know if horses at that time were actually domesticated. Two thousand years later, around 1500 BC, the horse was domesticated and carriages were already used all over the world.
Now a group of scientists has sequenced the genomes of 273 prehistoric horses that lived between 44,000 and 2,000 years ago. Bones were collected throughout Europe, Eurasia, and Asia. By comparing DNA sequences, they found that before 2000 BC, horses that lived in different regions of Europe and Asia were genetically different and could be classified into four distinct groups. After 500 years, the horses that lived in these areas belonged to only one of these four groups: the other three groups disappeared. The group that has survived includes every race we know today, from massive draft horses to racers. It was also possible to determine that the group of horses that dominated the entire planet were the descendants of horses that lived in the Volga region, a region called the Volga-Don, which is located in the steppes of Eurasia.
The simplest explanation for this result is that the horses that lived in the Volga-Don were domesticated and proved so useful that their use and breeding spread throughout Europe, becoming the horses we know today.
By comparing the genes of today’s domesticated horses with those of these three other groups of horses in the past, scientists have found that modern horses have two mutations that may have helped with domestication. One is in a gene called ZFPM1 that regulates animals’ moods and makes them more malleable. Another is a gene called GSDMC related to chronic back pain. What scientists believe is that the domesticated horses were not only more docile, but had less back pain when riding.
The conclusion is that the breed of horses that originated in the Volga Dom region was domesticated around 2000 BC and spread throughout the world. Little by little, they replaced the other three groups that existed in Europe and Asia, giving rise to modern domesticated horses.
*He is a biologist, holds a Ph.D. in cellular and molecular biology from Cornell University and author of the book “The New Coronavirus Arrival in Brazil.” “Lotus Leaf”, “Mosquito Slider”; e ‘long march to eat snails
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