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Svante Pääbo: “There were almost always other types of humans around”

In this telephone conversation recorded just after he had heard news of the award of his Nobel Prize, Svante Pääbo reflects on our relationship to extinct species of early hominins and how his exploration of their genetics might influence our view of ourselves and our place in nature. He also discusses what gave him the confidence to undertake the decades-long search and the influence of his mother and Nobel Prize laureate father, Sune Bergström. He tells Adam Smith that having a laureate father taught him an important lesson: “Such people are normal human beings.”

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