Thursday, May 6, 2010

Different Species, Identical DNA


In two previous posts we introduced the speculation that Modern Humans may have interbred with Neanderthals. these articles are based on Svante Pääbo's quest to sequence the Neanderthal DNA.

Read Love or War with Cavemen and Doin' IT with Neanderthals

In our our third installment we have some interesting revelations surfacing as the Neanderthal DNA sequencing continues.

The first revelation is both DNA's, Neanderthals and Modern Humans, are nearly identical.

Wired Magazine explains further:

"After years of anticipation, the Neanderthal genome has been sequenced. It’s not quite complete, but there’s enough for scientists to start comparing it with our own.

According to these first comparisons, humans and Neanderthals are practically identical at the protein level. Whatever our differences, they’re not in the composition of our building blocks.

However, even if the Neanderthal genome won’t show scientists what makes humans so special, there’s a consolation prize for the rest of us. Most people can likely trace some of their DNA to Neanderthals..."


For Bigfooters this is amazing, because we know Neanderthals and Modern humans were both very physically different, but according to the DNA evidence we would never know to what degree without fossil evidence.

Its a two-edge sword for Bigfoot DNA evidence. If DNA can be so similar, nearly identical, between two species, it may be hard to distinguish Bigfoot DNA.

On the other hand, we may already have Bigfoot DNA and dismissed it because it was so similar to another known species.

The second revelation is, according to studies, not all modern humans contain the same amount of Neanderthal DNA. Modern humans with African descent actually have less traceable Neanderthal DNA.

Such studies will occupy scientists for years to come. In the meantime, the researchers produced a more immediately stirring result. They compared the Neanderthal genome to genomes of five people from China, France, Papua New Guinea, southern Africa and western Africa. Among non-Africans, between one and four percent of all DNA came from Neanderthals...

...For people of African descent disappointed that they lack Neanderthal ancestry, Pääbo gave solace.

“It’s totally possible that inside Africa, there was a contribution from other archaic humans that we don’t know about,” he said. “We shouldn’t take these results as saying that only people outside Africa have caveman biology.”


EXTERNAL LINKS
Wired Magazine Article
Svante Pääbo on Wiki











4 comments:

  1. There is nothing in the Neanderthal research that has anything to do with the bigfoot phenomenon. "... we know Neanderthals and Modern humans were both very physically different, but according to the DNA evidence we would never know to what degree without fossil evidence." DNA is not used to show physical differences.

    "If DNA can be so similar, nearly identical, between two species, it may be hard to distinguish Bigfoot DNA." You have no evidence for this. They obviously were able to distinguish Neanderthal from modern human DNA.
    This is a type of fallacy known as special pleading. ie bigfoot gets to break all the rules. In this case, it is bigfoot's DNA that gets to be special. It can disguise itself as human DNA.

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  2. Okay seesdifferent, we respect your skepticism, but in your anxiousness to show how critical you can think you have missed our point.

    1st DNA can reveal different physical traits in the biology of organisms.

    2nd The study of other hominids is certainly related to Bigfoot

    3rd our point was, without a Bigfoot body, there is not much we can do with the "evidence" we may or may not have.

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  3. I see Gilgamesh is still winning fights. Some things never change.
    On the other hand, some things do change. Which always leads to me asking questions, because (on another other hand) some things never change...

    In the article "Doin' IT With Neanderthals", which I read some few minutes ago, there is the following quote:
    "In recent years, fossils with both Neanderthal and modern human features have been found suggesting the two species interbred but previous scans of Neanderthal genes reveal Neanderthal DNA to have a very different make-up to modern man's."
    Now, in this article, I read that "The first revelation is both DNA's, Neanderthals and Modern Humans, are nearly identical."

    Before you fire anyone, please realize I am not criticizing the articles, nor impugning the journalistic integrity of the BLC. "Doin' IT" was posted in 2009, "Different Species, Identical DNA" in 2010, and in between, presumably, Science occurred, which can and does often lead to discrepancies of content in articles and posts on cutting-edge information outlets.

    What interests me in this case is the possibility that both statements may actually be true...and therein lies my question. It is often said that the DNA of a chimpanzee is "nearly identical" to that of humans, the difference is some tiny fraction less than two percent. Then again, if looked at in another way, the DNA of chimps and humans are vastly different, on the order of about sixty million base pairs--that being about two percent of the total number of base pairs.
    Is it possible that this is the origin of this apparent discrepancy? Simply a different perspective on what constitutes as "identical" (comparing the entire genome) or "different" (considering the amount of information that does not match)?

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  4. Whew, I just blew in from the future to post in the past, with a 2010 NPR series that helps clear this all up. Maybe someone will accidentally find themselves here and be grateful I time traveled here for said purpose. If only I could figure out how to get back to my own time...

    http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=126611419

    Disclaimer: Time travel may be impossible, do not try this at home.

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