The analysis of the ancient genome suggests that it is likely possible to piece together the genomes of organisms that lived as far back as a million years ago, said Ludovic Orlando, the lead author of the paper describing the discovery, at a press briefing organized by the journal Nature in which the paper was published Wednesday.

That "obviously opens great perspective as to the level of details we could reconstruct [about] our own origins and actually, the evolutionary history of almost every single species living on the planet," Orlando added.

Previously, the oldest genome ever reconstructed — one belonging to an ancient human relative — was just 70,000 years old.