writes "Scientists have decoded the mitochondrial DNA of the Woolly Mammoth. According to the article: 'the Mammoth was most closely related to the Asian elephant rather than the African Elephant. The three groups split from a common ancestor about six million years ago, with Asian elephants and mammoths diverging about half a million years later.'
This work is tied into efforts by researchers to use DNA to analyze other extinct species, such as the cave bear
, the Haast eagle
and the American lion
. The novel aspect of this latest work is that it involved stitching together almost 50 fragments of mtDNA in order to obtain the sequence as a whole."