Skip to comments.How our DNA differs from that of Denisovans, our extinct cousins
Posted on 09/01/2012 5:42:46 AM PDT by Pharmboy
Scientists are beginning to analyze the DNA differences between modern humans and our extinct archaic relatives, the Denisovans. (National Human Genome Research Institute)
Genome of ancient Denisovans may help clarify human evolution
Scientists recently reported they had pieced together a high-quality sequence of an archaic human relative, the Denisovans.
Among other things, the researchers took a close look at the ways in which we differ from these people, who were named after the place where their traces were discovered: Denisova Cave in the Altai Mountains of Siberia....snip
It's "fascinating" to see the DNA changes that spread to most or all modern humans since our line split off from that of the Denisovans and the Neanderthals, said senior author Svante Paabo of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany. It's like taking a look at the last steps in human evolutionary history.
"The amazing thing to me is that [it is] not an astronomically long list," he said at a press conference on Wednesday. ...snip
Boring down even further, the researchers found 23 amino-acid changes that we have but Denisovans and monkeys and apes don't have. These might be especially likely to be important in making us who we are, Paabo said.
"It's quite interesting to me that eight have to do with brain function and brain development ... and some of them have to do with genes which, for example, can cause autism when the genes are mutated," he said.
And the autism-linked genes are interesting because a lot of what it takes to get by in human society, with all its politics and manipulation, has to do with being able to "read" the likely feelings of others, to get inside the head of another person.
(Excerpt) Read more at latimes.com ...
What I’m waiting for is a step by step description of the genetic mutations—that is, a scientific illustration of the process as our “cousins” evolved into us.
This should include a description of the changes in phenotype which correspond with each change in genotype.
Now you might say this is not evolution or speciation, but think about this: if drug-resistant malaria suddenly became a worldwide problem, those with the sickle cell trait might be the only survivors. The environment would have acted on this genotype and 'selected' it for survival. And, if enough time goes by, this remnant human population might become a distinct species.
The more subtle neuro-cognitive connections may not be teased out in our lifetimes.
Another one who doesn’t understand the 2nd Law of Thermodyanics, I see...
Nice one...perhaps his dart-throwing ability comes directly from his Denosivan ancestors’ ability to throw spears.
Changes to genotype may not necessarily be expressed phenotyplically. Likewise, there the a high degree of phenotypic plasticity in some species. And what of convergence between unrelated species?
What about basic morphological changes like skull size and skull shape?
Can anyone recommend a readable concise introduction to evolutionary genetics?
Very interesting, thank you.
Those types of changes are more likely to be seen in regulatory rather than structural genes. The secrets of regulatory genes remain largely unknown...and will likely continue to be for the immediate future. Patience is required, to be sure...but many things have indeed been discovered in the last 50 years.
It’s all about arrows.
Order to disorder is one arrow.
Self organizing and replicating organisms arising from dust is another, and it points in exactly the opposite direction of the first arrow.
All statements about the Second Law of Thermodynamics in post # 4 appear to be true.
Speciation is phenotypic change.
If we don’t have one species changing into another, we don’t have evolution.
If my responses seem to cover many different areas it’s because the theory of evolution contains uncertainties in many different ways.
For example, natural selection is logically flawed in that it conflates agency with environment and it contains a consistent ambiguity regarding the problem of survival. That is, for the mouse is the hawk the problem or is the mouse’s fur color the problem? If the fur color is the problem, the agent of solving the problem is the in the mouse’s genes, not in the environment.
God placed his creatures on a very dynamic planet. But he also built deep within the stuff of our being the ability to reprogram our stuff to be able to deal with the radical changes we endure on this planet.
Who else could have thought up such an elegant solution? What a creative and competent and loving God He is.
That understanding of that law seems to be violated after every meal. The the churning mess in your stomach gets transmogrified into bone and blood and mitochondria and DNA. Endlessly complex structures by the billions. Seems like defying the 2nd Law (as you understand it) is the hallmark of life.
As to your mouse example, to the individual mouse the hawk represents a direct existential threat, i.e. he may get killed and eaten. To the mouse population, the presence of hawks serves as a benefit; hawks remove the slower, non-cryptically colored, or otherwise less capable mice from the gene pool, improving the overall survivability for the mouse population in the presence of hawks. Now imagine two different substrates, one sand and another duff - in the sandy environment a lighter colored mouse will be favored for survival, but in the other situation, a darker mouse. The mice are the same species, but their phenotype varies by environment. If the environment were to change, the mouse population will adapt to the change by favoring the individuals most likely not to be eaten.
You mistate the Second Law of Thermodynamics. That's not what it says at all. The Second Law of Thermodynamics states that "in all energy exchanges, if no energy enters or leaves the system, the potential energy of the state will always be less than that of the initial state."
It speaks only to energy, not to corruption, the state of being archaic (whatever THAT dedinition is), or a tendency towards anarchy.
It also speaks to a closed system, in which no energy is added. The sun prevents the Earth from being a closed system.
If you also include the sun in the system, over billions of years, yes, the sun will dissipate in energy and potential energy.
But the Second Law cannot be applied to evolution on Earth in any meaningful way. Nor should it.
Denis O’Van? Didn’t he pitch for Cincinnati in the 1950s? I am sorry to learn of his passing.
Covering a lot of areas—as you say—is not a problem; however, what I DO find a bit irksome is that after each time I respond to you with some data, you totally ignore it and throw something else out.
Of course, if he'd have asked, I'd have hit it.
|GGG managers are SunkenCiv, StayAt HomeMother & Ernest_at_the_Beach|
Old as hell, but not extinct.
If we don’t have one species changing into another, we still have evolution, because that’s merely change. The change is a consequence of small replication errors, i.e. mutations, during mitosis and other cellular activity.
I’m not my grandfather (or my grandmother), and that’s the consequence of dropping half of the chromosomes for just two generations. And since there are 23 chromosome pairs, I’m not getting an even number from each of my grandparents (iow, it’s not exactly one quarter from each grandparent). Each of us has 64 great-great-great-great-grandparents, which means that, unless there’s been a cousin marriage along one of the lines, at least 18 of those 64 ancestors passed down zero chromosomes to us. They are still the ancestors, because they had to have lived and had offspring, but their genetic information has vanished from at least some of their descendants.
At the 5th-great generation — 128 of them — 82 have left zero to the current generation’s individual. In the next generation back, 210 left nothing. In short, there are (for most of us) 46 lines going back. As genetic sequencing becomes cheaper and quicker, and many, many more are sampled, common ancestry will be easier to figure out (even if no name can be put on it) and each of the 23 chromosome pairs will be grouped by common origin, and the number of groups will probably be in the high teens, at least.
Oh My Gawd!
I'd have 'leapt on' it.
Give it up! You cant reason with faith. Faith, by definition, is the suspension of reason.
Perhaps. And I have faith in the presence and existance of God.
But just because I cannot reason with someone who abandons reason, I *still* can cause them to need to drop the citation of mathmatical and physical principles, when those principles simply do not apply.
Yeah...the ones I had looked like that too, more or less...
That is exactly how I was taught human genetics about forty years ago.
Have there been developments since then that describe a process whereby some information gets exchanged between the members of a pair of chromosomes before meiosis takes place? I think the process is perhaps not as simple as some of us were taught and that the math you describe, although correct for the simpler model we were taught, is not, in fact, what actually happens.
Perhaps there is a recently trained geneticist reading this thread who can clarify this.
He is NOT extinct! He is a world class dart thrower!
There’s a little bit, yeah. There’s nothing significant enough to alter the basic model to the extent as has been claimed somewhere around FR (another topic, perhaps a year ago), by some nimrod who claimed that the result was that *exactly* one quarter of our genes came from *each* grandparent. The basic math is good enough to get the basic understanding of what’s going on. Or course, given that the human genome data currently available indicates that everyone’s got almost exactly the same DNA (much of it “junk DNA”), none of this matters, eh? ;’)
Don’t overlook the fact that reason cannot justify itself on a metaphysical level.
My posts #11 and 16 do in fact respond to your post # 14.
Without morphological change, evolution has no meaning.
Therefore evolution must provide an explanation which provides a description of specific genetic changes and the morphological changes which correspond with each of them.
Number of chromosome pairs is irrelevant to quantity of genetic material passed from one generation to the next. Meiosis and fertilization are important events to understand here.
You get exactly half (on average) of each parent’s genetic material. The same thing happened to them from their parents, which means you have exactly one fourth (on average) of genetic material from each grandparent.
As for speciation—if it doesn’t exist, there can be no such thing as descent with modification and evolution is therefore only a figment of our imaginations.
Science is not about truth. It is about proof.
Religion is about truth.
Never the twain shall meet.
I think this is a false categorization of religion and science.
For example, are your comments religious or scientific? Are they true?
Is it not true to say that force equals mass times acceleration?
And where does philosophy fit in? Logic, which deals with proof, is central to philosophy. But nobody would say philosophy isn’t about truth.
Outstanding! Very creative way of injecting a babe into a science thread!
She blinded me.
No, evolution continues all the time, because it is change, period. Speciation is merely a subset of that change. The rest of your post is a figment of your imagination.
Darwinian evolution can happen even if speciation is impossible?
Since you brought it up, you can answer your own question. You’re just a slippery eel and a troll, and I’ll waste no further time with you.
Leaving the personal attacks to those who don’t really believe their own arguments, let’s you and I review just how evolution can occur if no single species can change into another, ever.