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    Palaeoanthropology

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    Hot topics in Italian Quaternary Research

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    PaleoanthropologyThree major evolutionary transitions are documented by the human fossil record from Italy, included between the Middle and the Late Pleistocene.

    Specimens such as the Ceprano calvaria, the skeleton from Altamura, the Neanderthals from Saccopastore and Monte Circeo, or the various early modern human samples scattered North to South, are the most notable signals of these transitions coming from the Italian peninsula.

    Climate change may be regarded as a major driving factor of human evolution and dispersal, as it modulates the availability of resources through severe influence on the environment.

    The rich documentation from Italy shows interesting relationships between climate, landscape, vegetation, animal communities, humans and their archaeological footprints.

    This opens to fantastic perspectives in the interrelated fields of palaeoanthropology and geosciences, and to a better understanding on human evolution as well as on the role of humans in Quaternary ecosystems.