Neandertalere er en betegnelse på fortidsmennesker som man har funnet spor av i Europa og i det vestlige Asia. Neandertalerne og de tidlige menneskene regnes oftest som forskjellige arter, selv om de levde i samme tidsperiode.
Kort sammendrag av Svante Pääbos foredrag "A Neanderthal Perspective on Human Origins".
Neanderthals, who became extinct around 30,000 years ago, are the closest relatives of extant humans. We are currently sequencing the Neanderthal genome and analyze it together with several colleagues in Croatia, Spain, Germany and the US. To date we have determined the sequences of more than 1.1 billion DNA fragments extracted from Neanderthal fossils from Vindija Cave in Croatia. Among these are fragments we have identified almost 3.7 billion bases from the Neanderthal genome. This allows over 60% of all nucleotide sequences in the genome to be studied. Using these data we can now for the first time determine which substitutions occurred on the human evolutionary lineage and which parts of the human genome that was affected by positive selection after fully modern humans diverged from the Neanderthal linage.