All Things Considered for January 4, 2017 Hear the All Things Considered program for January 4, 2017

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Researchers from the Max Planck Institute excavate the East Gallery of Denisova Cave in Siberia in August 2010. With ancient bone fragments so hard to come by, being able to successfully filter dirt for the DNA of extinct human ancestors can open new doors, research-wise. Bence Viola/Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology hide caption

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Bence Viola/Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology

Shots - Health News

Dust To Dust: Scientists Find DNA Of Human Ancestors In Cave Floor Dirt

Anthropologists in Germany say they may not need old bones to recover ancient DNA. They just analyze dust from the floor of caves where Neanderthals and other now-extinct human relatives once resided.

Omar Al-Awad sits with his daughter Taiba (left) and son Abdul-Jabar in their Toledo apartment in 2015. David Gilkey/NPR hide caption

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David Gilkey/NPR

In Toledo, Syrian Refugees Are Welcomed Amid A Difficult Immigration Climate

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Former Exxon Mobil Chairman and CEO Rex Tillerson will give up about $7 million compared with what he would have received had he retired in March as planned. His confirmation hearings for secretary of state are tentatively set to begin Jan. 11. Jon Gambrell/AP hide caption

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Jon Gambrell/AP

Rex Tillerson Cuts Ties With Exxon Mobil In Advance Of Confirmation Hearings

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The Millennium Tower has gained notoriety as "The Leaning Tower of San Francisco." Residents of the luxury condominium building and the city are suing the developer. Eric Risberg/AP hide caption

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Eric Risberg/AP

San Francisco's 'Leaning Tower' Has Residents Fuming

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Roxane Gay is also the author of Bad Feminist, An Untamed State and Ayiti. She recently wrote World of Wakanda #1, a Black Panther prequel. Jay Grabiec/Grove Atlantic hide caption

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Jay Grabiec/Grove Atlantic

Roxane Gay On Good Men, Bad Men And 'Difficult Women'

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Researchers from the Max Planck Institute excavate the East Gallery of Denisova Cave in Siberia in August 2010. With ancient bone fragments so hard to come by, being able to successfully filter dirt for the DNA of extinct human ancestors can open new doors, research-wise. Bence Viola/Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology hide caption

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Bence Viola/Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology

Dust To Dust: Scientists Find DNA Of Human Ancestors In Cave Floor Dirt

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An artist's rendering of a black hole that's 2 billion times more massive than our sun. Streams of particles ejected from black holes like this one are thought to be the brightest objects in the universe. ESO/M. Kornmesser hide caption

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ESO/M. Kornmesser

Some Bizarre Black Holes Put On Light Shows

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Anglican Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu (left) celebrates Mass on his 85th birthday at St. George's Cathedral in Cape Town, South Africa, on Oct. 7. Tutu has called for the right to assisted death, which is currently illegal in his country. Schalk van Zuydam/AP hide caption

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Schalk van Zuydam/AP

Desmond Tutu Joins Advocates To Call For Right To Assisted Death

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An unmarked police truck patrols the outside of a detention center run by CoreCivic in Eloy, Ariz., on Jan. 20, 2016. Ricardo Arduengo/AP hide caption

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Ricardo Arduengo/AP

Will The Private Prison Business See A Trump Bump?

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Josuhe Pagliery grew up playing video games on consoles he says were not common in Cuba. Those games helped inspire him to develop Savior, Cuba's first independent video game. Greg Allen/NPR hide caption

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Greg Allen/NPR

Amid Isolation, 2 Cubans Develop Island's First Video Game

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Charlene Hipsher works at Roane County's drug treatment court observing firsthand the struggles of the opioid epidemic's victims. Mona Yeh hide caption

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Mona Yeh

Tennessee Recovery Court Provides Drug Addicts An Alternative To Jail

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