A team of researchers found that the ‘alien’ remains found in Chile more than a decade ago belong to a human fetus that happened to be affected by several rare bone disorders. Scientists thought that the tiny skeleton belongs to an alien for more than 15 years.
Scientists who studied the bones are confident that their insights could lead to better diagnosis of rare bone conditions. They found that the fetus had several genetic mutations that led to the disorder.
DNA differences like this are useful to help us diagnose children and adults with ‘undiagnosed’ disorders,
Senior researcher Prof. Atul Butte said in a recent interview.
Prof. Butte teaches computational health sciences at the University of California, San Francisco.
The bizarre mummified skeleton dubbed “Ata” was discovered in 2003 in the Atacama Desert, in Chile. The 6-inch-tall skeleton had a very alien-like head, slanted eyes, and was lacking two pairs of ribs. What’s more, the bone composition of “Ata” was that of child aged 6.
Skeleton Does Not Have Alien Origins
These features convinced many people that the remains had alien origins and somebody was covering it up. Nevertheless, the new study suggests that while the skeleton seems to be unique in the world, its origins are earthly.
Study authors believe that Ata is just a human fetus with a very rare genetic condition that affected its bones. They found grave mutations in seven genes that are behind bone development.
Many of these genetic disorders had already been documented. They are usually linked to severe cases of dwarfism, facial abnormalities, and bone deformities. Some of these mutations however have never been seen in humans.
Ata’s short figure and abnormal number of ribs are caused mutations in the genes responsible for collagen production and bone development. It is the first time, though, that so many mutations are found in a single human.
Image Source: Cronica.com