I was reading the Neanderthal wiki out of curiosity of this interesting species and came across this.
quote:Preliminary DNA sequencing from a 38,000-year-old bone fragment of a femur found at Vindija Cave, Croatia, in 1980 showed that Homo neanderthalensis and Homo sapiens share about 99.5% of their DNA
Now I am not quite sure but aren't there humans within our own populations that are more diverse DNA wise with other humans than we are to the Neanderthals? If so, how can we so different within our own populations to that of a different species? Sorry, genetics is not my stronghold. So I was curious to better understand this. I may be and probably am completely off.
I'm not completely sure. But i believe the 99.5% refers to similarities in gene location on the genome. The allele combinations that humans carry is different than neanderthals but the location of the genes within the DNA is 99.5% similar.
I don't believe that they are saying that humans and neanderthals have 99.5% of the same basepair sequence.