Showing posts with label PLOS ONE. Show all posts
Showing posts with label PLOS ONE. Show all posts

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Do Bigfoot Inbreed? This Complicates Bigfoot DNA Research

human inbreeding may have be more prevalent than we thought 
"...if small, inbred populations did exist, it would invalidate many of the genetic inferences about when humans split off from the tree of life." --Erik Trinkhaus, Anthropologist

It can go two ways, either Bigfoot has a sufficient breeding population, or they are extremely scarce and might resort to inbreeding. Inbreeding, it seems, may have been more common in early humans than we thought. If this is the case according to Erik Trinkhaus, an anthropologist at Washington University says if small, inbred populations did exist, it would invalidate many of the genetic inferences about when humans split off from the tree of life, because these inferences assume large, stable populations.

Why is human inbreeding even being debated? New fossil evidence is changing how anthropologist view the human tree of life.
The evidence comes from fragments of an approximately 100,000-year-old human skull unearthed at a site called Xujiayao, located in the Nihewan Basin of northern China. The skull's owner appears to have had a now-rare congenital deformity that probably arose through inbreeding, researchers report today (March 18) in the journal PLOS ONE.

The fossil, now dubbed Xujiayao 11, is just one of many examples of ancient human remains that display rare or unknown congenital abnormalities, according to the researchers. "These populations were probably relatively isolated, very small and, as a consequence, fairly inbred," study leader Erik Trinkhaus, an anthropologist at Washington University in St. Louis, told LiveScience.

Before I get emails from an offended Sasquatch or an inbred challenging me to a banjo playoff. There may be an argument that primates, especially ones more in tune with their animal nature, have a mechanism against inbreeding.

According Live Science some primates recognize the sound of kin.

Previous studies have found that animals living in complex social groups have no trouble recognizing their own kin's calls, particularly the sounds of maternal relatives. Even goat mamas keep a long-term memory for their baby's calls, according to a study published earlier this year.

But less is known about how animals recognize their father's calls, and the cries of the relatives on dad's side of the family. Likewise, researchers know very little about how solitary-living animals avoid inbreeding with dad's side of the family.

That's where the gray mouse lemur (Microcebus murinus) comes in. These cartoonishly cute lemurs are raised by their mothers without help from dad. When they grow up, they head out of the nest to forage on their own. But male lemurs' ranges are large, and they often overlap with that of their daughters', suggesting the primitive primates have evolved some way to avoid accidentally mating with a relative.

The take-away, Kessler and her colleagues wrote, is that recognizing dad's voice requires neither a big brain nor a complex social life. In fact, ability to recognize kin may have preceded complex social structures in evolutionary history.
What is most interesting to us at Bigfoot Lunch Club is how inbreeding messes up how we understand human lineage and how it may have an affect on human DNA research, at least as far as . If the current Bigfoot DNA research being done by Dr. Melba Ketchum or Dr. Bryan Sykes is also based on human lineage, do these need to be rethought as well?

Watch the video below to learn more about how the deformed fossils found in China could change how we think of how humans split off from the tree of life.

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