Blog 7- The Last One

Homo sapiens may not have evolved into a separate species since they first showed up on Earth. However it is still early, we have changed a lot in the few hundred years changing from hunter gatherers to farmers and revolutionizing the way we interacts with each other by moving into and making large cities. There have been social evolutions and genetic evolutions since the earlier days of the Homo sapien.

Mutations and evolution are necessary to adapt and survive in changing environments. Humans DNA is mutated every day, whether it’s in somatic or gamete cells, these mutations maybe beneficial. Looking through generations, we can see the average heights of males and females across different countries increase by as much as 6 inches. This is mainly because of individuals being more selective when they chose a partner. The taller humans tend to be more successful in finding a partner than those who are shorter. In the future, it might even be normal to see that everyone is over 6ft tall. Humans are also selective with other physical traits such as hair color. There has been a hypothesis that has been going around since I was in junior high that red heads might disappear in the near future. Whatever the reason they claim it to be (I’ve heard accounts of warming temperatures and radiation causing them to change their hair color to far impossible ones like “because they have no soul”), this slow decrease in number of a prominent phenotype is an example of modern evolution.

Another way humans are evolving has to deal with the evolution of other organisms also. Like we learned in earlier lectures, there are beneficial mutations that make it easier for a person with a specific set of alleles to be able to survive an epidemic. The example we had in the earlier lecture was malaria and sickle cell anemia, where a heterozygous individual for sickle cell would have more of an advantage against malaria when compared to homozygous recessive individuals and homozygous dominant, this is called the heterozygous advantage. In malaria infested areas in the world, we can see that there is a larger than normal group of individuals who are heterozygous for sickle cell. These individuals will reproduce and create a whole new genotype frequency for the next generation. We can probably predict that this might happen to other diseases in the future. My prediction is, with the increasing numbers of antibiotic resistant bacteria, there will be those who genetically have an advantage against the strain and those who do not. Eventually, those who survive are able to pass on their DNA and change the gene frequency in the area and maybe completely overcoming the fatal gene leading to evolution in the long run if it continues.

While humans may not be evolving into a new species anytime soon, there are many smaller ways that we can see how we have changed within the past few thousand years. With this data, we can predict how we might change in the future and come up with new ideas and technology to advance ourselves.

 

5 thoughts on “Blog 7- The Last One

  1. Wow! I really enjoyed reading your post. It’s crazy to note, as you mentioned in your blog, we went from hunting animals to growing our own food. If only we could produce our own meat I think we’d be even more progressive as humans.

    You also mentioned humans with red hair probably going to be nonexistent within the next few years. Considering how much traveling and moving people do and understanding science, I am now able to fully comprehend what this means. It’d be an interesting story to hear from those who are direct descendants with this gene. Many families take pride in their heritage and families’ features.

    Lastly, in my blog I mentioned the height of the Neanderthals and how their height better helped them adapt to the harsh cold. What I didn’t think about is that, as you mentioned, we might see taller humans being the norm (although I’m 4’11” and think everyone is much taller than I am haha)!

  2. This is a really great post and I think your last paragraph is what really caught my attention because it talks about how finding out how we evolved in the past and how now from the findings of past things can result in us being able to predict the future and how we will probably evolve. This can be true or it can’t be true because if you think about It, in the past we didn’t have all the medicines and body/mind altering technology and this is why the body had to change, to change with the evolving technology and surroundings. Now we have new medicines and technology to go with about everything that can hurt us or harm us so I would see it being hard for our species to change in the coming years.

  3. Hi! I really enjoyed your post. I really enjoyed watching and learning about the evolutionary process of humans as time has passed! The face that human DNA can be changed and manipulated everyday blows my mind. It something that we have such a hard time seeing from our point of view, but I thought it was interesting how the heights of males and females across different countries increase by as much as 6 inches. I have also heard about the hypothesis that redheads may disappear amongst the population. I did not know that the reasons were attributed to warming temperature and radiation. I also appreciated the bit you wrote about sickle cell anemia and malaria, as that was an example which seemed to be used through the entirety of the course! Well done!

  4. Like you mentioned, it is very interesting how human populations under go specific gene mutations in order to adapt to the changes and challenges present in the environment in order to better increase chances of human survival for the population. Humans under go constant evolution at a genetic level, one in which we do not see much in a phenotypical sense. For instance, I was actually born without wisdom teeth on the left side of my mouth, my dentist explained to me that the human anatomy has evolved to a point where it tries to protect its self from complications and reduce the energy it exerts. Apparently, being born without all or some of your wisdom teeth is your bodies attempt at reducing the energy needed to grow and maintain them as well as reduce the risk of possible dental complications that wisdom teeth create through their existence. It is truly amazing how our bodies slowly evolve without much of a phenotypical indicator.

  5. Like you mentioned, it is very interesting how human populations under go specific gene mutations in order to adapt to the changes and challenges present in the environment in order to better increase chances of human survival for the population. Humans under go constant evolution at a genetic level, one in which we do not see much in a phenotypical sense. For instance, I was actually born without wisdom teeth on the left side of my mouth, making evident that human anatomy has evolved to a point where it tries to protect its self from complications and reduce the energy it exerts. It was explained to me that being born without all or some of your wisdom teeth is your bodies attempt at reducing the energy needed to grow and maintain them as well as reduce the risk of possible dental complications that wisdom teeth create through their existence. It is quite mind boggling how our bodies slowly evolve without much of a phenotypical indicator.

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