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Contact: Lee J. Siegel
lee.siegel@utah.edu
801-581-8993
University of Utah

Thure Cerling, University of Utah

Caption: University of Utah geochemist Thure Cerling spearheaded a set of four new studies that revealed early humans and their ancestors and relatives made a surprising dietary switch some 3.5 million years ago, changing from an ape-like diet of mostly leaves and fruits from trees and shrubs to a grass-based diet of grasses, sedges and, perhaps in later stages, meat from grass-eating animals. Almost two dozen scientists from numerous institutions conducted the new research.

Credit: Lee J. Siegel, University of Utah.

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Related news release: A grassy trend in human ancestors' diets


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