Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Rutgers researcher offers a new perspective on human evolution

16.02.2004


The fossil remains of early humans gave generations of scientists the clues needed to piece together much of our ancestral lineage. Chi-Hua Chiu now leads us into another dimension in the study of human origins: the underlying developmental and genetic processes that led to these remarkable evolutionary changes.



"To develop a better understanding of the genetic basis of human evolution, we must discover specific relationships between particular genetic changes and their resulting effects on the body plan," said Chiu, an assistant professor of genetics and anthropology at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey.

Chiu explained that our expanding knowledge of genomics will open doors to an understanding of the ways in which genes regulate development, both in humans and their nonhuman relations.


Locomotion and limb structure have long been topics of interest to paleoanthropologists. In a presentation at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Seattle Monday (Feb. 16), Chiu spoke of correlating the evolution of genes responsible for the formation of arms and legs with the observable diversity in limb structure among humans and other primates.

In the growing field of evolution and development, known as EvoDevo, the view is that significant developmental differences are due to changes in gene regulation. "Once we have the structure of gene regulatory sequences, comparative studies of humans and nonhuman primates can be used to examine the evolution of these sequences, their functions and the resulting anatomical differences," said Chiu.

Chiu counseled her listeners to look to the mouse for answers, as have many research scientists before. "Primates are not ideal model organisms for developmental genetics and embryology because they have long generation times and produce small litters," she said.

Recognizing that mice certainly have important limitations as models for human or nonhuman primate development, Chiu noted that historical uses of mice in the laboratory have given EvoDevo researchers a head start. "There is already a substantial amount of information available on mouse developmental genetics," she said.

"Modern developmental genetics, comparative genomics and molecular embryology with model organisms provide the foundation on which to build innovative studies of genotype-phenotype relationships in human origins."

Joseph Blumberg | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.rutgers.edu/

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Water world
20.11.2017 | Washington University in St. Louis

nachricht Carefully crafted light pulses control neuron activity
20.11.2017 | University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A “cosmic snake” reveals the structure of remote galaxies

The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.

Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...

Im Focus: Visual intelligence is not the same as IQ

Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.

That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...

Im Focus: Novel Nano-CT device creates high-resolution 3D-X-rays of tiny velvet worm legs

Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.

During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....

Im Focus: Researchers Develop Data Bus for Quantum Computer

The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.

Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...

Im Focus: Wrinkles give heat a jolt in pillared graphene

Rice University researchers test 3-D carbon nanostructures' thermal transport abilities

Pillared graphene would transfer heat better if the theoretical material had a few asymmetric junctions that caused wrinkles, according to Rice University...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Ecology Across Borders: International conference brings together 1,500 ecologists

15.11.2017 | Event News

Road into laboratory: Users discuss biaxial fatigue-testing for car and truck wheel

15.11.2017 | Event News

#Berlin5GWeek: The right network for Industry 4.0

30.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Antarctic landscape insights keep ice loss forecasts on the radar

20.11.2017 | Earth Sciences

Filling the gap: High-latitude volcanic eruptions also have global impact

20.11.2017 | Earth Sciences

Water world

20.11.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>