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Sample records for human homo sapiens

  1. Spatial Construction Skills of Chimpanzees ("Pan Troglodytes") and Young Human Children ("Homo Sapiens Sapiens")

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Poti, Patrizia; Hayashi, Misato; Matsuzawa, Tetsuro

    2009-01-01

    Spatial construction tasks are basic tests of visual-spatial processing. Two studies have assessed spatial construction skills in chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) and young children (Homo sapiens sapiens) with a block modelling task. Study 1a subjects were three young chimpanzees and five adult chimpanzees. Study 1b subjects were 30 human children…

  2. Spatial Construction Skills of Chimpanzees ("Pan Troglodytes") and Young Human Children ("Homo Sapiens Sapiens")

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Poti, Patrizia; Hayashi, Misato; Matsuzawa, Tetsuro

    2009-01-01

    Spatial construction tasks are basic tests of visual-spatial processing. Two studies have assessed spatial construction skills in chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) and young children (Homo sapiens sapiens) with a block modelling task. Study 1a subjects were three young chimpanzees and five adult chimpanzees. Study 1b subjects were 30 human children…

  3. The Emergence of Homo sapiens.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rensberger, Boyce

    1980-01-01

    Describes chronologically the evolution of the human race on earth so as to refute Darwin's theory of descent from animals. Skull fragments from sites around the world suggest at least two possible routes toward the emergence of Homo sapiens sapiens. (Author/SK)

  4. The Emergence of Homo sapiens.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rensberger, Boyce

    1980-01-01

    Describes chronologically the evolution of the human race on earth so as to refute Darwin's theory of descent from animals. Skull fragments from sites around the world suggest at least two possible routes toward the emergence of Homo sapiens sapiens. (Author/SK)

  5. Homo Sapiens, All Too Homo Sapiens: Wise Man, All Too Human

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ketcham, Amaris

    2015-01-01

    The emphasis on STEM education should not be interpreted as an omen of the death of humanities; art, literature, history, and philosophy can inform and enlighten STEM studies if the walls of academic silos are broken down and taught in combination. Where the physical universe collides with the fanciful and flawed human experience of life, there is…

  6. LB1 and LB6 Homo floresiensis are not modern human (Homo sapiens) cretins.

    PubMed

    Brown, Peter

    2012-02-01

    Excavations in the late Pleistocene deposits at Liang Bua cave, Flores, have uncovered the skeletal remains of several small-bodied and small-brained hominins in association with stone artefacts and the bones of Stegodon. Due to their combination of plesiomorphic, unique and derived traits, they were ascribed to a new species, Homo floresiensis, which, along with Stegodon, appears to have become extinct ∼17 ka (thousand years ago). However, recently it has been argued that several characteristics of H. floresiensis were consistent with dwarfism and evidence of delayed development in modern human (Homo sapiens) myxoedematous endemic (ME) cretins. This research compares the skeletal and dental morphology in H. floresiensis with the clinical and osteological indicators of cretinism, and the traits that have been argued to be associated with ME cretinism in LB1 and LB6. Contrary to published claims, morphological and statistical comparisons did not identify the distinctive skeletal and dental indicators of cretinism in LB1 or LB6 H. floresiensis. Brain mass, skeletal proportions, epiphyseal union, orofacial morphology, dental development, size of the pituitary fossa and development of the paranasal sinuses, vault bone thickness and dimensions of the hands and feet all distinguish H. floresiensis from modern humans with ME cretinism. The research team responsible for the diagnosis of ME cretinism had not examined the original H. floresiensis skeletal materials, and perhaps, as a result, their research confused taphonomic damage with evidence of disease, and thus contained critical errors of fact and interpretation. Behavioural scenarios attempting to explain the presence of cretinous H. sapiens in the Liang Bua Pleistocene deposits, but not unaffected H. sapiens, are both unnecessary and not supported by the available archaeological and geochronological evidence from Flores. Crown Copyright © 2011. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Earliest evidence of modern human life history in North African early Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Smith, Tanya M; Tafforeau, Paul; Reid, Donald J; Grün, Rainer; Eggins, Stephen; Boutakiout, Mohamed; Hublin, Jean-Jacques

    2007-04-10

    Recent developmental studies demonstrate that early fossil hominins possessed shorter growth periods than living humans, implying disparate life histories. Analyses of incremental features in teeth provide an accurate means of assessing the age at death of developing dentitions, facilitating direct comparisons with fossil and modern humans. It is currently unknown when and where the prolonged modern human developmental condition originated. Here, an application of x-ray synchrotron microtomography reveals that an early Homo sapiens juvenile from Morocco dated at 160,000 years before present displays an equivalent degree of tooth development to modern European children at the same age. Crown formation times in the juvenile's macrodont dentition are higher than modern human mean values, whereas root development is accelerated relative to modern humans but is less than living apes and some fossil hominins. The juvenile from Jebel Irhoud is currently the oldest-known member of Homo with a developmental pattern (degree of eruption, developmental stage, and crown formation time) that is more similar to modern H. sapiens than to earlier members of Homo. This study also underscores the continuing importance of North Africa for understanding the origins of human anatomical and behavioral modernity. Corresponding biological and cultural changes may have appeared relatively late in the course of human evolution.

  8. Body composition in Pan paniscus compared with Homo sapiens has implications for changes during human evolution

    PubMed Central

    Zihlman, Adrienne L.; Bolter, Debra R.

    2015-01-01

    The human body has been shaped by natural selection during the past 4–5 million years. Fossils preserve bones and teeth but lack muscle, skin, fat, and organs. To understand the evolution of the human form, information about both soft and hard tissues of our ancestors is needed. Our closest living relatives of the genus Pan provide the best comparative model to those ancestors. Here, we present data on the body composition of 13 bonobos (Pan paniscus) measured during anatomical dissections and compare the data with Homo sapiens. These comparative data suggest that both females and males (i) increased body fat, (ii) decreased relative muscle mass, (iii) redistributed muscle mass to lower limbs, and (iv) decreased relative mass of skin during human evolution. Comparison of soft tissues between Pan and Homo provides new insights into the function and evolution of body composition. PMID:26034269

  9. Body composition in Pan paniscus compared with Homo sapiens has implications for changes during human evolution.

    PubMed

    Zihlman, Adrienne L; Bolter, Debra R

    2015-06-16

    The human body has been shaped by natural selection during the past 4-5 million years. Fossils preserve bones and teeth but lack muscle, skin, fat, and organs. To understand the evolution of the human form, information about both soft and hard tissues of our ancestors is needed. Our closest living relatives of the genus Pan provide the best comparative model to those ancestors. Here, we present data on the body composition of 13 bonobos (Pan paniscus) measured during anatomical dissections and compare the data with Homo sapiens. These comparative data suggest that both females and males (i) increased body fat, (ii) decreased relative muscle mass, (iii) redistributed muscle mass to lower limbs, and (iv) decreased relative mass of skin during human evolution. Comparison of soft tissues between Pan and Homo provides new insights into the function and evolution of body composition.

  10. Leukotriene signaling in the extinct human subspecies Homo denisovan and Homo neanderthalensis. Structural and functional comparison with Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Adel, Susan; Kakularam, Kumar Reddy; Horn, Thomas; Reddanna, Pallu; Kuhn, Hartmut; Heydeck, Dagmar

    2015-01-01

    Mammalian lipoxygenases (LOXs) have been implicated in cell differentiation and in the biosynthesis of pro- and anti-inflammatory lipid mediators. The initial draft sequence of the Homo neanderthalensis genome (coverage of 1.3-fold) suggested defective leukotriene signaling in this archaic human subspecies since expression of essential proteins appeared to be corrupted. Meanwhile high quality genomic sequence data became available for two extinct human subspecies (H. neanderthalensis, Homo denisovan) and completion of the human 1000 genome project provided a comprehensive database characterizing the genetic variability of the human genome. For this study we extracted the nucleotide sequences of selected eicosanoid relevant genes (ALOX5, ALOX15, ALOX12, ALOX15B, ALOX12B, ALOXE3, COX1, COX2, LTA4H, LTC4S, ALOX5AP, CYSLTR1, CYSLTR2, BLTR1, BLTR2) from the corresponding databases. Comparison of the deduced amino acid sequences in connection with site-directed mutagenesis studies and structural modeling suggested that the major enzymes and receptors of leukotriene signaling as well as the two cyclooxygenase isoforms were fully functional in these two extinct human subspecies. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Diagnosing Homo sapiens in the fossil record.

    PubMed

    Stringer, Christopher Brian; Buck, Laura Tabitha

    2014-01-01

    Diagnosing Homo sapiens is a critical question in the study of human evolution. Although what constitutes living members of our own species is straightforward, in the fossil record this is still a matter of much debate. The issue is complicated by questions of species diagnoses and ideas about the mode by which a new species is born, by the arguments surrounding the behavioural and cognitive separateness of the species, by the increasing appreciation of variation in the early African H. sapiens record and by new DNA evidence of hybridization with extinct species. This study synthesizes thinking on the fossils, archaeology and underlying evolutionary models of the last several decades with recent DNA results from both H. sapiens and fossil species. It is concluded that, although it may not be possible or even desirable to cleanly partition out a homogenous morphological description of recent H. sapiens in the fossil record, there are key, distinguishing morphological traits in the cranium, dentition and pelvis that can be usefully employed to diagnose the H. sapiens lineage. Increasing advances in retrieving and understanding relevant genetic data provide a complementary and perhaps potentially even more fruitful means of characterizing the differences between H. sapiens and its close relatives.

  12. Female-directed violence as a form of sexual coercion in humans (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    Barbaro, Nicole; Shackelford, Todd K

    2016-11-01

    Male-perpetrated female-directed violence (FDV) may be associated with greater sexual access to a female. Accordingly, FDV is expected to be associated with greater copulation frequency. Research on nonhuman primates affirms this hypothesis, but no previous research has investigated this relationship in humans (Homo sapiens). The current research tests the hypothesis that FDV is associated with in-pair copulation frequency and, thus, may function as a form of sexual coercion. It was predicted that men who perpetrate FDV will secure more in-pair copulations than men who do not perpetrate violence (Prediction 1a), and that average monthly rates of FDV would positively correlate with in-pair copulation frequency (Prediction 1b). Male participants (n = 355) completed a survey, reporting limited demographic information (e.g., age, relationship length), in-pair copulation frequency, and history of physical violence perpetration. As predicted, violent men secured more in-pair copulations, on average, than nonviolent men, and monthly rates of violence positively correlated with in-pair copulation frequency. In humans, as in nonhuman primates, FDV by males may facilitate greater sexual access to a female. We discuss the implications of the current research for an evolutionary perspective on partner violence, and draw on research on nonhuman primates to highlight profitable avenues of research on FDV in humans. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  13. The origin and evolution of Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Stringer, Chris

    2016-07-05

    If we restrict the use of Homo sapiens in the fossil record to specimens which share a significant number of derived features in the skeleton with extant H. sapiens, the origin of our species would be placed in the African late middle Pleistocene, based on fossils such as Omo Kibish 1, Herto 1 and 2, and the Levantine material from Skhul and Qafzeh. However, genetic data suggest that we and our sister species Homo neanderthalensis shared a last common ancestor in the middle Pleistocene approximately 400-700 ka, which is at least 200 000 years earlier than the species origin indicated from the fossils already mentioned. Thus, it is likely that the African fossil record will document early members of the sapiens lineage showing only some of the derived features of late members of the lineage. On that basis, I argue that human fossils such as those from Jebel Irhoud, Florisbad, Eliye Springs and Omo Kibish 2 do represent early members of the species, but variation across the African later middle Pleistocene/early Middle Stone Age fossils shows that there was not a simple linear progression towards later sapiens morphology, and there was chronological overlap between different 'archaic' and 'modern' morphs. Even in the late Pleistocene within and outside Africa, we find H. sapiens specimens which are clearly outside the range of Holocene members of the species, showing the complexity of recent human evolution. The impact on species recognition of late Pleistocene gene flow between the lineages of modern humans, Neanderthals and Denisovans is also discussed, and finally, I reconsider the nature of the middle Pleistocene ancestor of these lineages, based on recent morphological and genetic data.This article is part of the themed issue 'Major transitions in human evolution'.

  14. The origin and evolution of Homo sapiens

    PubMed Central

    Stringer, Chris

    2016-01-01

    If we restrict the use of Homo sapiens in the fossil record to specimens which share a significant number of derived features in the skeleton with extant H. sapiens, the origin of our species would be placed in the African late middle Pleistocene, based on fossils such as Omo Kibish 1, Herto 1 and 2, and the Levantine material from Skhul and Qafzeh. However, genetic data suggest that we and our sister species Homo neanderthalensis shared a last common ancestor in the middle Pleistocene approximately 400–700 ka, which is at least 200 000 years earlier than the species origin indicated from the fossils already mentioned. Thus, it is likely that the African fossil record will document early members of the sapiens lineage showing only some of the derived features of late members of the lineage. On that basis, I argue that human fossils such as those from Jebel Irhoud, Florisbad, Eliye Springs and Omo Kibish 2 do represent early members of the species, but variation across the African later middle Pleistocene/early Middle Stone Age fossils shows that there was not a simple linear progression towards later sapiens morphology, and there was chronological overlap between different ‘archaic’ and ‘modern’ morphs. Even in the late Pleistocene within and outside Africa, we find H. sapiens specimens which are clearly outside the range of Holocene members of the species, showing the complexity of recent human evolution. The impact on species recognition of late Pleistocene gene flow between the lineages of modern humans, Neanderthals and Denisovans is also discussed, and finally, I reconsider the nature of the middle Pleistocene ancestor of these lineages, based on recent morphological and genetic data. This article is part of the themed issue ‘Major transitions in human evolution’. PMID:27298468

  15. What constitutes Homo sapiens? Morphology versus received wisdom.

    PubMed

    Schwartz, Jeffrey

    2016-06-20

    Although Linnaeus coined Homo sapiens in 1735, it was Blumenbach forty years later who provided the first morphological definition of the species. Since humans were not then allowed to be ante-Diluvian, his effort applied to the genus, as well. After the Feldhofer Grotto Neanderthal disproved this creationist notion, and human-fossil hunting became legitimate, new specimens were allocated either to sapiens or new species within Homo, or even to new species within new genera. Yet as these taxonomic acts reflected the morphological differences between specimens, they failed to address the question: What constitutes H. sapiens? When in 1950 Mayr collapsed all human fossils into Homo, he not only denied humans a diverse evolutionary past, he also shifted the key to identifying its species from morphology to geological age - a practice most paleoanthropologists still follow. Thus, for example, H. erectus is the species that preceded H. sapiens, and H. sapiens is the species into which H. erectus morphed. In order to deal with a growing morass of morphologically dissimilar specimens, the non-taxonomic terms "archaic" (AS) and "anatomically modern" (AMS) were introduced to distinguish between the earlier and later versions of H. sapiens, thereby making the species impossible to define. In attempting to disentangle fact from scenario, I begin from the beginning, trying to delineate features that may be distinctive of extant humans (ES), and then turning to the fossils that have been included in the species. With the exception of Upper Paleolithic humans - e.g. from Cro-Magnon, Dolni Vestonice, Mladeč - I argue that many specimens regarded as AMS, and all those deemed AS, are not H. sapiens. The features these AMS do share with ES suggest the existence of a sapiens clade. Further, restudy of near-recent fossils, especially from southwestern China (∼11-14.5 ka), reinforces what discoveries such as H. floresiensis indicate: "If it's recent, it's not necessarily H. sapiens".

  16. Who's afraid of Homo sapiens?

    PubMed Central

    Preuss, Todd M

    2006-01-01

    Understanding how humans differ from other animals, as well as how we are like them, requires comparative investigations. For the purpose of documenting the distinctive features of humans, the most informative research involves comparing humans to our closest relatives–the chimpanzees and other great apes. Psychology and anthropology have maintained a tradition of empirical comparative research on human specializations of cognition. The neurosciences, by contrast, have been dominated by the model-animal research paradigm, which presupposes the commonality of "basic" features of brain organization across species and discourages serious treatment of species differences. As a result, the neurosciences have made little progress in understanding human brain specializations. Recent developments in neuroimaging, genomics, and other non-invasive techniques make it possible to directly compare humans and nonhuman species at levels of organization that were previously inaccessible, offering the hope of gaining a better understanding of the species-specific features of the human brain. This hope will be dashed, however, if chimpanzees and other great ape species become unavailable for even non-invasive research. PMID:17134486

  17. Homo Sapiens as Geological Agents

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holloway, T.; Bedsworth, L. W.; Caldeira, K.; Rosenzweig, C.; Kelley, G.; Rosenzweig, C.; Caldeira, K.; Bedsworth, L. W.; Holloway, T.; Purdy, J. S.; Vince, G.; Syvitski, J. A.; Bondre, N. R.; Kelly, J.; Vince, G.; Seto, K. C.; Steffen, W.; Oreskes, N.

    2015-12-01

    In the 18th and 19th centuries, earth scientists came to understand the magnitude and power of geological and geophysical processes. In comparison, the activities of humans seemed paltry if not insignificant. With the development of radiometric dating in the 20th century, scientists realized that human history was but a miniscule part of Earth history. Metaphors to this effect abounded, and filled textbooks: If Earth history were a 24-hour day, human history would not occupy even the final second. If Earth history were a yardstick, the human portion would not even be visible to the naked eye. Generations of scientists were taught that one of the principal contributions of geology, qua science, was the demonstration of our insignificance. The Anthropocene concept disrupts this. To affirms its existence is to insist that human activities compete in scale and significance with other Earth processes, and may threaten to overwhelm them. It also inverts our relation to normative claims. For more than a century earth scientists and evolutionary biologists insisted that their theories were descriptive and not normative—that there was no moral conclusion to be drawn from either planetary or human evolution. Now, we confront the suggestion that there is a moral component to our new paradigm: we can scarcely claim that humans are disrupting the climate, destroying biodiversity, and acidifying the oceans without implying that there is something troubling about these developments. Thus, the Anthropocene concept suggests both a radical redefinition of the scope of Earth science, and a radical reconsideration of the place of normative judgments in scientific work.

  18. A comparison of tooth structure in Neanderthals and early Homo sapiens sapiens: a radiographic study.

    PubMed Central

    Zilberman, U; Smith, P

    1992-01-01

    Tooth components of 1st and 2nd erupted permanent molars were measured from standardised radiographs of Homo sapiens sapiens and Homo sapiens neanderthalensis. Enamel height was greater in Homo sapiens sapiens but pulp height and width and the height of the enamel to floor of the pulp chamber were greater in Homo sapiens neanderthalensis. Dentine height, crown width and enamel width showed similar results in the two groups. Unerupted first molars were measured to analyse the influence of function on tooth components and the results obtained were always within the range measured for the erupted teeth. Discriminant analysis between groups, using tooth components, showed accuracy of 93% for identification of Homo sapiens sapiens and 94% for identification of Homo sapiens neanderthalensis. The results support the hypothesis of a distinct evolutionary line for the Neanderthals. PMID:1487432

  19. Yawn Contagion and Empathy in Homo sapiens

    PubMed Central

    Norscia, Ivan; Palagi, Elisabetta

    2011-01-01

    The ability to share others' emotions, or empathy, is crucial for complex social interactions. Clinical, psychological, and neurobiological clues suggest a link between yawn contagion and empathy in humans (Homo sapiens). However, no behavioral evidence has been provided so far. We tested the effect of different variables (e.g., country of origin, sex, yawn characteristics) on yawn contagion by running mixed models applied to observational data collected over 1 year on adult (>16 years old) human subjects. Only social bonding predicted the occurrence, frequency, and latency of yawn contagion. As with other measures of empathy, the rate of contagion was greatest in response to kin, then friends, then acquaintances, and lastly strangers. Related individuals (r≥0.25) showed the greatest contagion, in terms of both occurrence of yawning and frequency of yawns. Strangers and acquaintances showed a longer delay in the yawn response (latency) compared to friends and kin. This outcome suggests that the neuronal activation magnitude related to yawn contagion can differ as a function of subject familiarity. In conclusion, our results demonstrate that yawn contagion is primarily driven by the emotional closeness between individuals and not by other variables, such as gender and nationality. PMID:22163307

  20. Yawn contagion and empathy in Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Norscia, Ivan; Palagi, Elisabetta

    2011-01-01

    The ability to share others' emotions, or empathy, is crucial for complex social interactions. Clinical, psychological, and neurobiological clues suggest a link between yawn contagion and empathy in humans (Homo sapiens). However, no behavioral evidence has been provided so far. We tested the effect of different variables (e.g., country of origin, sex, yawn characteristics) on yawn contagion by running mixed models applied to observational data collected over 1 year on adult (>16 years old) human subjects. Only social bonding predicted the occurrence, frequency, and latency of yawn contagion. As with other measures of empathy, the rate of contagion was greatest in response to kin, then friends, then acquaintances, and lastly strangers. Related individuals (r≥0.25) showed the greatest contagion, in terms of both occurrence of yawning and frequency of yawns. Strangers and acquaintances showed a longer delay in the yawn response (latency) compared to friends and kin. This outcome suggests that the neuronal activation magnitude related to yawn contagion can differ as a function of subject familiarity. In conclusion, our results demonstrate that yawn contagion is primarily driven by the emotional closeness between individuals and not by other variables, such as gender and nationality.

  1. Human species and mating systems: Neandertal-Homo sapiens reproductive isolation and the archaeological and fossil records.

    PubMed

    Overmann, Karenleigh; Coolidge, Frederick

    2013-01-01

    The present paper examined the assumption of strong reproductive isolation (RI) between Homo neanderthalensis and Homo sapiens, as well as the question of what form it might have taken, using insights from the parallel case of chimpanzee–bonobo hybridization. RI from hybrid sterility or inviability was thought unlikely based on the short separation-to-introgression timeline. The forms of RI that typically develop in primates have relatively short timelines (especially for partial implementation); they generally preclude mating or influence hybrid survival and reproduction in certain contexts, and they have the potential to skew introgression directionality. These RI barriers are also consistent with some interpretations of the archaeological and fossil records, especially when behavioral, cognitive, morphological, and genetic differences between the two human species are taken into consideration. Differences potentially influencing patterns of survival and reproduction include interspecies violence, Neandertal xenophobia, provisioning behavior, and ontogenetic, morphological, and behavioral differences affecting matters such as kin and mate recognition, infanticide, and sexual selection. These factors may have skewed the occurrence of interbreeding or the survival and reproduction of hybrids in a way that might at least partially explain the pattern of introgression.

  2. Crystal structure of Homo sapiens kynureninase.

    PubMed

    Lima, Santiago; Khristoforov, Roman; Momany, Cory; Phillips, Robert S

    2007-03-13

    Kynureninase is a member of a large family of catalytically diverse but structurally homologous pyridoxal 5'-phosphate (PLP) dependent enzymes known as the aspartate aminotransferase superfamily or alpha-family. The Homo sapiens and other eukaryotic constitutive kynureninases preferentially catalyze the hydrolytic cleavage of 3-hydroxy-l-kynurenine to produce 3-hydroxyanthranilate and l-alanine, while l-kynurenine is the substrate of many prokaryotic inducible kynureninases. The human enzyme was cloned with an N-terminal hexahistidine tag, expressed, and purified from a bacterial expression system using Ni metal ion affinity chromatography. Kinetic characterization of the recombinant enzyme reveals classic Michaelis-Menten behavior, with a Km of 28.3 +/- 1.9 microM and a specific activity of 1.75 micromol min-1 mg-1 for 3-hydroxy-dl-kynurenine. Crystals of recombinant kynureninase that diffracted to 2.0 A were obtained, and the atomic structure of the PLP-bound holoenzyme was determined by molecular replacement using the Pseudomonas fluorescens kynureninase structure (PDB entry 1qz9) as the phasing model. A structural superposition with the P. fluorescens kynureninase revealed that these two structures resemble the "open" and "closed" conformations of aspartate aminotransferase. The comparison illustrates the dynamic nature of these proteins' small domains and reveals a role for Arg-434 similar to its role in other AAT alpha-family members. Docking of 3-hydroxy-l-kynurenine into the human kynureninase active site suggests that Asn-333 and His-102 are involved in substrate binding and molecular discrimination between inducible and constitutive kynureninase substrates.

  3. Copying results and copying actions in the process of social learning: chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) and human children (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    Call, Josep; Carpenter, Malinda; Tomasello, Michael

    2005-07-01

    There is currently much debate about the nature of social learning in chimpanzees. The main question is whether they can copy others' actions, as opposed to reproducing the environmental effects of these actions using their own preexisting behavioral strategies. In the current study, chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) and human children (Homo sapiens) were shown different demonstrations of how to open a tube-in both cases by a conspecific. In different experimental conditions, demonstrations consisted of (1) action only (the actions necessary to open the tube without actually opening it); (2) end state only (the open tube, without showing any actions); (3) both of these components (in a full demonstration); or (4) neither of these components (in a baseline condition). In the first three conditions subjects saw one of two different ways that the tube could open (break in middle; caps off ends). Subjects' behavior in each condition was assessed for how often they opened the tube, how often they opened it in the same location as the demonstrator, and how often they copied the demonstrator's actions or style of opening the tube. Whereas chimpanzees reproduced mainly the environmental results of the demonstrations (emulation), human children often reproduced the demonstrator's actions (imitation). Because the procedure used was similar in many ways to the procedure that Meltzoff (Dev Psych 31:1, 1995) used to study the understanding of others' unfulfilled intentions, the implications of these findings with regard to chimpanzees' understanding of others' intentions are also discussed.

  4. Similar Pathogen Targets in Arabidopsis thaliana and Homo sapiens Protein Networks

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-09-21

    Similar Pathogen Targets in Arabidopsis thaliana and Homo sapiens Protein Networks Paulo Shakarian1*, J. Kenneth Wickiser2 1 Paulo Shakarian...pathogens on host protein networks for humans and Arabidopsis - noting striking similarities. Specifically, we preform k-shell decomposition analysis on...significantly attacked. Citation: Shakarian P, Wickiser JK (2012) Similar Pathogen Targets in Arabidopsis thaliana and Homo sapiens Protein Networks

  5. The comparative psychology of same-different judgments by humans (Homo sapiens) and monkeys (Macaca mulatta).

    PubMed

    Smith, J David; Redford, Joshua S; Haas, Sarah M; Coutinho, Mariana V C; Couchman, Justin J

    2008-07-01

    The authors compared the performance of humans and monkeys in a Same-Different task. They evaluated the hypothesis that for humans the Same-Different concept is qualitative, categorical, and rule-based, so that humans distinguish 0-disparity pairs (i.e., same) from pairs with any discernible disparity (i.e., different); whereas for monkeys the Same-Different concept is quantitative, continuous, and similarity-based, so that monkeys distinguish small-disparity pairs (i.e., similar) from pairs with a large disparity (i.e., dissimilar). The results supported the hypothesis. Monkeys, more than humans, showed a gradual transition from same to different categories and an inclusive criterion for responding Same. The results have implications for comparing Same-Different performances across species--different species may not always construe or perform even identical tasks in the same way. In particular, humans may especially apply qualitative, rule-based frameworks to cognitive tasks like Same-Different.

  6. Black-capped chickadee (Poecile atricapillus) and human (Homo sapiens) chord discrimination.

    PubMed

    Hoeschele, Marisa; Cook, Robert G; Guillette, Lauren M; Brooks, Daniel I; Sturdy, Christopher B

    2012-02-01

    Human music perception is related both to musical experience and the physical properties of sound. Examining the processing of music by nonhuman animals has been generally neglected. We tested both black-capped chickadees and humans in a chord discrimination task that replicates and extends prior research with pigeons. We found that chickadees and humans, in common with pigeons, showed similar patterns of discrimination across manipulations of the 3rd and 5th notes of the triadic chords. For all species (chickadee and humans here, pigeons previously), chords with half-step alterations in the 5th note were easier to discriminate than half-step manipulations of the 3rd note, which is likely due to the sensory consonance of these chords. There were differences among species in terms of the fine discrimination of the chords within this larger pattern of results. Further, the ability to relearn the chords when transposed to a new root differed across species. Our results provide new comparative data suggesting some similarities in chord perception that span a wide range of species, from pigeons (nonvocal learners) to songbirds and humans (vocal learners).

  7. Implicit and Explicit Category Learning by Macaques (Macaca mulatta) and Humans (Homo sapiens)

    PubMed Central

    Smith, J. David; Beran, Michael J.; Crossley, Matthew J.; Boomer, Joseph. T.; Ashby, F. Gregory

    2010-01-01

    An influential theoretical perspective differentiates in humans an explicit, rule-based system of category learning from an implicit system that slowly associates different regions of perceptual space with different response outputs. This perspective was extended for the first time to the category learning of nonhuman primates. Humans and macaques learned categories composed of sine-wave gratings that varied across trials in bar width and bar orientation. The categories had either a single-dimensional, rule-based solution or a two-dimensional, information-integration solution. Humans strongly dimensionalized the stimuli and learned the rule-based task far more quickly. Six macaques showed the same performance advantage in the rule-based task. In humans, rule-based category learning is linked to explicit cognition, consciousness, and to declarative reports about the contents of cognition. The present results demonstrate an empirical continuity between human and nonhuman primate cognition, suggesting that nonhuman primates may have some structural components of humans’ capacity for explicit cognition. PMID:20141317

  8. Generalization of Category Knowledge and Dimensional Categorization in Humans (Homo sapiens) and Nonhuman Primates (Macaca mulatta)

    PubMed Central

    Smith, J. David; Zakrzewski, Alexandria C.; Johnston, Jennifer J. R.; Roeder, Jessica L.; Boomer, Joseph; Ashby, F. Gregory; Church, Barbara A.

    2015-01-01

    A theoretical framework within neuroscience distinguishes humans’ implicit and explicit systems for category learning. We used a perceptual-categorization paradigm to ask whether nonhumans share elements of these systems. Participants learned categories that foster implicit or explicit categorization in humans, because they had a multidimensional, information-integration (II) solution or a unidimensional, rule-based (RB) solution. Then humans and macaques generalized their category knowledge to new, untested regions of the stimulus space. II generalization was impaired, suggesting that II category learning is conditioned and constrained by stimulus generalization to its original, trained stimulus contexts. RB generalization was nearly seamless, suggesting that RB category knowledge in humans and monkeys has properties that grant it some independence from the original, trained stimulus contexts. These findings raise the question of 1) how closely macaques’ dimensional categorization verges on humans’ explicit/declarative categorization, and 2) how far macaques’ dimensional categorization has advanced beyond that in other vertebrate species. PMID:26167774

  9. Side biases in humans ( Homo sapiens): three ecological studies on hemispheric asymmetries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marzoli, Daniele; Tommasi, Luca

    2009-09-01

    Hemispheric asymmetries and side biases have been studied in humans mostly in laboratory settings, and evidence obtained in naturalistic settings is scarce. We here report the results of three studies on human ear preference observed during social interactions in noisy environments, i.e., discotheques. In the first study, a spontaneous right-ear preference was observed during linguistic exchange between interacting individuals. This lateral bias was confirmed in a quasi-experimental study in which a confederate experimenter evoked an ear-orienting response in bystanders, under the pretext of approaching them with a whispered request. In the last study, subjects showed a greater proneness to meet an experimenter’s request when it was directly addressed to the right rather than the left ear. Our findings are in agreement both with laboratory studies on hemispheric lateralization for language and approach/avoidance behavior in humans and with animal research. The present work is one of the few studies demonstrating the natural expression of hemispheric asymmetries, showing their effect in everyday human behavior.

  10. Timbre influences chord discrimination in black-capped chickadees (Poecile atricapillus) but not humans (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    Hoeschele, Marisa; Cook, Robert G; Guillette, Lauren M; Hahn, Allison H; Sturdy, Christopher B

    2014-11-01

    Timbre is an important attribute of sound both in music and nature. Previously, using an operant conditioning paradigm, we found that black-capped chickadees and humans show similar response patterns in discriminating triadic chords of the same timbre and transferred this discrimination to a novel key center (novel absolute pitch). The current study examined how varying the timbre of the chords influenced discrimination. Using a similar operant conditioning procedure, we trained humans (Experiment 1) and chickadees (Experiments 2 and 3) to discriminate a major chord from 6 other chord types that had semitone deviations from the major chord. The pattern of errors of the 2 species replicated our previous findings. We then tested participants with novel timbres. We found that humans readily transferred their discrimination to novel timbres, suggesting they were attending to triadic pitch relations. The chickadees failed to transfer to novel timbres, suggesting they were using a different strategy to perform the original chord discrimination. We conducted an acoustic analysis examining frequency ranges that are biologically relevant to chickadees. We found that the relative intensity within each chord of the frequencies used in black-capped chickadee song significantly correlated with chickadees' percent response during probe testing. In Experiment 3, we trained a new set of chickadees by including either expanded pitch or timbre training before testing. Although chickadees showed some transfer to novel chords following this expanded training, we found that neither type of expanded training helped the chickadees when probe tested with novel stimuli.

  11. The evolution and development of cranial form in Homo sapiens

    PubMed Central

    Lieberman, Daniel E.; McBratney, Brandeis M.; Krovitz, Gail

    2002-01-01

    Despite much data, there is no unanimity over how to define Homo sapiens in the fossil record. Here, we examine cranial variation among Pleistocene and recent human fossils by using a model of cranial growth to identify unique derived features (autapomorphies) that reliably distinguish fossils attributed to “anatomically modern” H. sapiens (AMHS) from those attributed to various taxa of “archaic” Homo spp. (AH) and to test hypotheses about the changes in cranial development that underlie the origin of modern human cranial form. In terms of pattern, AMHS crania are uniquely characterized by two general structural autapomorphies: facial retraction and neurocranial globularity. Morphometric analysis of the ontogeny of these autapomorphies indicates that the developmental changes that led to modern human cranial form derive from a combination of shifts in cranial base angle, cranial fossae length and width, and facial length. These morphological changes, some of which may have occurred because of relative size increases in the temporal and possibly the frontal lobes, occur early in ontogeny, and their effects on facial retraction and neurocranial globularity discriminate AMHS from AH crania. The existence of these autapomorphies supports the hypothesis that AMHS is a distinct species from taxa of “archaic” Homo (e.g., Homo neanderthalensis). PMID:11805284

  12. Neanderthal paintings? Production of prototypical human (Homo sapiens) faces shows systematic distortions.

    PubMed

    Carbon, Claus-Christian; Wirth, Benedikt Emanuel

    2014-01-01

    People's sketches of human faces seem to be systematically distorted: the eye position is always higher than in reality. This bias was experimentally analyzed by a series of experiments varying drawing conditions. Participants either drew prototypical faces from memory (studies 1 and 2: free reconstruction; study 3: cued reconstruction) or directly copied average faces (study 4). Participants consistently showed this positioning bias, which is even in accord with facial depictions published in influential research articles by famous face researchers (study 5). We discuss plausible explanations for this reliable and stable bias, which is coincidentally similar to the morphology of Neanderthals.

  13. The use of interval ratios in consonance perception by rats (Rattus norvegicus) and humans (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    Crespo-Bojorque, Paola; Toro, Juan M

    2015-02-01

    Traditionally, physical features in musical chords have been proposed to be at the root of consonance perception. Alternatively, recent studies suggest that different types of experience modulate some perceptual foundations for musical sounds. The present study tested whether the mechanisms involved in the perception of consonance are present in an animal with no extensive experience with harmonic stimuli and a relatively limited vocal repertoire. In Experiment 1, rats were trained to discriminate consonant from dissonant chords and tested to explore whether they could generalize such discrimination to novel chords. In Experiment 2, we tested if rats could discriminate between chords differing only in their interval ratios and generalize them to different octaves. To contrast the observed pattern of results, human adults were tested with the same stimuli in Experiment 3. Rats successfully discriminated across chords in both experiments, but they did not generalize to novel items in either Experiment 1 or Experiment 2. On the contrary, humans not only discriminated among both consonance-dissonance categories, and among sets of interval ratios, they also generalized their responses to novel items. These results suggest that experience with harmonic sounds may be required for the construction of categories among stimuli varying in frequency ratios. However, the discriminative capacity observed in rats suggests that at least some components of auditory processing needed to distinguish chords based on their interval ratios are shared across species.

  14. The Easy-to-Hard Effect in Human (Homo sapiens) and Rat (Rattus norvegicus) Auditory Identification

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Estella H.; Mercado, Eduardo; Church, Barbara A.; Orduña, Itzel

    2009-01-01

    Training exercises can improve perceptual sensitivities. We examined whether progressively training humans and rats to perform a difficult auditory identification task led to larger improvements than extensive training with highly similar sounds (the easy-to-hard effect). Practice improved humans’ ability to distinguish sounds regardless of the training regimen. However, progressively trained participants were more accurate and showed more generalization, despite significantly less training with the stimuli that were the most difficult to distinguish. Rats showed less capacity to improve with practice, but still benefited from progressive training. These findings indicate that transitioning from an easier to a more difficult task during training can facilitate, and in some cases may be essential for, auditory perceptual learning. The results are not predicted by an explanation that assumes interaction of generalized excitation and inhibition, but are consistent with a hierarchical account of perceptual learning in which the representational precision required to distinguish stimuli determines the mechanisms engaged during learning. PMID:18489229

  15. Planning in human children (Homo sapiens) assessed by maze problems on the touch screen.

    PubMed

    Miyata, Hiromitsu; Itakura, Shoji; Fujita, Kazuo

    2009-02-01

    The authors examined how human children perform on maze tasks on the touch screen and whether the children plan the solution of the mazes. In Experiment 1, the authors exposed children around 3 years of age to a maze having an L-shaped line as a barrier that can be solved by moving an illustration of a dog (the target) to that of a bone (the goal) with their fingers. The participants successfully solved the maze by taking efficient routes more frequently than chance, although the authors found no evidence that a preview of the maze before starting to solve the task facilitated their performance. In Experiment 2, using a plus-shaped maze, the authors found that 3- and 4-year-old children plan and adjust their moves while solving the maze, with 4-year-olds showing more advanced and higher-level planning than 3-year-olds. Similarity of these results to what the authors previously found in pigeons tested in the same tasks may suggest an analogy for planning capacity in the behavioral level across taxa and developmental stages.

  16. Adaptive sex ratio variation in pre-industrial human (Homo sapiens) populations?

    PubMed Central

    Lummaa, V; Merilä, J; Kause, A

    1998-01-01

    Sex allocation theory predicts that in a population with a biased operational sex ratio (OSR), parents will increase their fitness by adjusting the sex ratio of their progeny towards the rarer sex, until OSR has reached a level where the overproduction of either sex no longer increases a parent's probability of having grandchildren. Furthermore, in a monogamous mating system, a biased OSR is expected to lead to lowered mean fecundity among individuals of the more abundant sex. We studied the influence of OSR on the sex ratio of newborns and on the population birth rate using an extensive data set (n = 14,420 births) from pre-industrial (1775-1850) Finland. The overall effect of current OSR on sex ratio at birth was significant, and in the majority of the 21 parishes included in this study, more sons were produced when males were rarer than females. This suggests that humans adjusted the sex ratio of their offspring in response to the local OSR to maximize the reproductive success of their progeny. Birth rate and, presumably, also population growth rate increased when the sex ratio (males:females) among reproductive age classes approached equality. However, the strength of these patterns varied across the parishes, suggesting that factors other than OSR (e.g. socioeconomic or environmental factors may also have influenced the sex ratio at birth and the birth rate. PMID:9881467

  17. Adaptive sex ratio variation in pre-industrial human (Homo sapiens) populations?

    PubMed

    Lummaa, V; Merilä, J; Kause, A

    1998-04-07

    Sex allocation theory predicts that in a population with a biased operational sex ratio (OSR), parents will increase their fitness by adjusting the sex ratio of their progeny towards the rarer sex, until OSR has reached a level where the overproduction of either sex no longer increases a parent's probability of having grandchildren. Furthermore, in a monogamous mating system, a biased OSR is expected to lead to lowered mean fecundity among individuals of the more abundant sex. We studied the influence of OSR on the sex ratio of newborns and on the population birth rate using an extensive data set (n = 14,420 births) from pre-industrial (1775-1850) Finland. The overall effect of current OSR on sex ratio at birth was significant, and in the majority of the 21 parishes included in this study, more sons were produced when males were rarer than females. This suggests that humans adjusted the sex ratio of their offspring in response to the local OSR to maximize the reproductive success of their progeny. Birth rate and, presumably, also population growth rate increased when the sex ratio (males:females) among reproductive age classes approached equality. However, the strength of these patterns varied across the parishes, suggesting that factors other than OSR (e.g. socioeconomic or environmental factors may also have influenced the sex ratio at birth and the birth rate.

  18. Discrimination of holograms and real objects by pigeons (Columba livia) and humans (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    Stephan, Claudia; Steurer, Michael M; Aust, Ulrike

    2014-08-01

    The type of stimulus material employed in visual tasks is crucial to all comparative cognition research that involves object recognition. There is considerable controversy about the use of 2-dimensional stimuli and the impact that the lack of the 3rd dimension (i.e., depth) may have on animals' performance in tests for their visual and cognitive abilities. We report evidence of discrimination learning using a completely novel type of stimuli, namely, holograms. Like real objects, holograms provide full 3-dimensional shape information but they also offer many possibilities for systematically modifying the appearance of a stimulus. Hence, they provide a promising means for investigating visual perception and cognition of different species in a comparative way. We trained pigeons and humans to discriminate either between 2 real objects or between holograms of the same 2 objects, and we subsequently tested both species for the transfer of discrimination to the other presentation mode. The lack of any decrements in accuracy suggests that real objects and holograms were perceived as equivalent in both species and shows the general appropriateness of holograms as stimuli in visual tasks. A follow-up experiment involving the presentation of novel views of the training objects and holograms revealed some interspecies differences in rotational invariance, thereby confirming and extending the results of previous studies. Taken together, these results suggest that holograms may not only provide a promising tool for investigating yet unexplored issues, but their use may also lead to novel insights into some crucial aspects of comparative visual perception and categorization.

  19. Face and eye scanning in gorillas (Gorilla gorilla), orangutans (Pongo abelii), and humans (Homo sapiens): unique eye-viewing patterns in humans among hominids.

    PubMed

    Kano, Fumihiro; Call, Josep; Tomonaga, Masaki

    2012-11-01

    Because the faces and eyes of primates convey a rich array of social information, the way in which primates view faces and eyes reflects species-specific strategies for facial communication. How are humans and closely related species such as great apes similar and different in their viewing patterns for faces and eyes? Following previous studies comparing chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) with humans (Homo sapiens), this study used the eye-tracking method to directly compare the patterns of face and eye scanning by humans, gorillas (Gorilla gorilla), and orangutans (Pongo abelii). Human and ape participants freely viewed pictures of whole bodies and full faces of conspecifics and allospecifics under the same experimental conditions. All species were strikingly similar in that they viewed predominantly faces and eyes. No particular difference was identified between gorillas and orangutans, and they also did not differ from the chimpanzees tested in previous studies. However, humans were somewhat different from apes, especially with respect to prolonged eye viewing. We also examined how species-specific facial morphologies, such as the male flange of orangutans and the black-white contrast of human eyes, affected viewing patterns. Whereas the male flange of orangutans affected viewing patterns, the color contrast of human eyes did not. Humans showed prolonged eye viewing independently of the eye color of presented faces, indicating that this pattern is internally driven rather than stimulus dependent. Overall, the results show general similarities among the species and also identify unique eye-viewing patterns in humans.

  20. Rethinking the dispersal of Homo sapiens out of Africa.

    PubMed

    Groucutt, Huw S; Petraglia, Michael D; Bailey, Geoff; Scerri, Eleanor M L; Parton, Ash; Clark-Balzan, Laine; Jennings, Richard P; Lewis, Laura; Blinkhorn, James; Drake, Nick A; Breeze, Paul S; Inglis, Robyn H; Devès, Maud H; Meredith-Williams, Matthew; Boivin, Nicole; Thomas, Mark G; Scally, Aylwyn

    2015-01-01

    Current fossil, genetic, and archeological data indicate that Homo sapiens originated in Africa in the late Middle Pleistocene. By the end of the Late Pleistocene, our species was distributed across every continent except Antarctica, setting the foundations for the subsequent demographic and cultural changes of the Holocene. The intervening processes remain intensely debated and a key theme in hominin evolutionary studies. We review archeological, fossil, environmental, and genetic data to evaluate the current state of knowledge on the dispersal of Homo sapiens out of Africa. The emerging picture of the dispersal process suggests dynamic behavioral variability, complex interactions between populations, and an intricate genetic and cultural legacy. This evolutionary and historical complexity challenges simple narratives and suggests that hybrid models and the testing of explicit hypotheses are required to understand the expansion of Homo sapiens into Eurasia. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  1. The Centre for Early Human Behaviour (EHB) at the University of Bergen: A transdisciplinary exploration into the evolution of homo sapiens behaviour

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sobolowski, Stefan; Henshilwood, Christopher; Jansen, Eystein

    2017-04-01

    Homo sapiens was anatomically modern by 200 000 years ago in Africa, but there is no archaeological evidence to demonstrate that behaviour was modern at the time. Attributes of modern behaviour, perhaps inspired by changes in the human brain, are only recognizable after 100 000 years ago. Before we can study the process, we must critically define the criteria for the term 'modern behaviour' and then find a means to recognize such behavior in the record. This seemingly simple research statement involves complex exploration by a team of specialists. In this highly competitive research field our centre will, for the first time, be able to rise to the challenge by combining the skills of cutting-edge scientists in archaeology, climate reconstruction and modelling, and the cognitive and social sciences. Over the next decade we will integrate knowledge and methods from different disciplines to synthesize approaches and contribute to a sophisticated understanding of early human behaviour. Our highly ambitious research program will focus explicitly on rare, well preserved archaeological sites occupied in the period between 100-50 000 years ago because these contain the 'keys' for unlocking the past. A major competitive edge is the EHB Director's 25 years of archaeological experience and his long-term exclusive access, with permits, to a number of the best-preserved sites in the southern Cape, South Africa - a region regarded as a major locus for vital evidence that could inform on the behaviour of early humans. Our planned excavations at existing and new sites and our ground-breaking and innovative interdisciplinary approaches, including climate (The Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research) and cognitive research, to understanding the processes that shaped human cultures. Primarily, EHB will directly address unanswered, first order questions about Homo sapiens: a) what defines the switch to 'modern behaviour', exactly how should this term be defined and then, when, why and

  2. Revisiting the definition of homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Loike, John D; Tendler, Moshe D

    2002-12-01

    Research in genomics, human cloning, and transgenic technology has challenged bioethicists and scientists to rethink the definition of human beings as a species. For example, should the definition incorporate a genetic criterion and how does the capacity to genetically engineer human beings affect the definition of our species? In considering these contemporary bioethical dilemmas, we revisit an ancient source, the Talmud, and highlight how it provides specific biological, cultural, and genetic criteria to define the human species.

  3. Selection of Phototransduction Genes in Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Christopher, Mark; Scheetz, Todd E; Mullins, Robert F; Abràmoff, Michael D

    2013-08-13

    We investigated the evidence of recent positive selection in the human phototransduction system at single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) and gene level. SNP genotyping data from the International HapMap Project for European, Eastern Asian, and African populations was used to discover differences in haplotype length and allele frequency between these populations. Numeric selection metrics were computed for each SNP and aggregated into gene-level metrics to measure evidence of recent positive selection. The level of recent positive selection in phototransduction genes was evaluated and compared to a set of genes shown previously to be under recent selection, and a set of highly conserved genes as positive and negative controls, respectively. Six of 20 phototransduction genes evaluated had gene-level selection metrics above the 90th percentile: RGS9, GNB1, RHO, PDE6G, GNAT1, and SLC24A1. The selection signal across these genes was found to be of similar magnitude to the positive control genes and much greater than the negative control genes. There is evidence for selective pressure in the genes involved in retinal phototransduction, and traces of this selective pressure can be demonstrated using SNP-level and gene-level metrics of allelic variation. We hypothesize that the selective pressure on these genes was related to their role in low light vision and retinal adaptation to ambient light changes. Uncovering the underlying genetics of evolutionary adaptations in phototransduction not only allows greater understanding of vision and visual diseases, but also the development of patient-specific diagnostic and intervention strategies.

  4. Molecular docking of the scorpion toxin Tc1 to the structural model of the voltage-gated potassium channel Kv1.1 from human Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Liu, Hsuan-Liang; Lin, Jin-Chung

    2004-04-01

    In this study, structural model of the pore loop region of the voltage-gated potassium channel Kv1.1 from human Homo sapiens was constructed based on the crystallographic structure of KcsA by structural homology. The pore loop region of Kv1.1 exhibits similar folds as that of KcsA. The structural feature of the selectivity filter of Kv1.1 is nearly identical to that of KcsA, whereas most of the structural variations occur in the turret as well as in the inner and outer helices. Molecular docking experiments of the scorpion toxin Tc1 from Tityus cambridgei to the outer vestibule of KcsA as well as Kv1.1 were subsequently performed with various initial Tc1 orientations. Tc1 was found to form the most stable complexes with these two K+ channels when the side chain of Lys14 occupies the pore of the selectivity filter through electrostatic interaction. Tc1 binds preferentially towards Kv1.1 than KcsA due to stronger hydrophobic and electrostatic interactions formed between the toxin and the selectivity filter and outer vestibule of Kv1.1. Furthermore, surface complementarity of the outer vestibules of the channels to the Tc1 spatial conformations also plays an important role in stabilizing both the Tc1/KcsA and Tc1/Kv1.1 complexes.

  5. Ecospaces occupied by Homo erectus and Homo sapiens in insular Southeast Asia in the Pleistocene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hertler, Christine; Haupt, Susanne; Volmer, Rebekka; Bruch, Angela

    2014-05-01

    Hominins migrated to the islands of the Sunda Shelf multiple times. At least two immigration events are evident, an early immigration of Homo erectus in the late Early Pleistocene and a second immigration of Homo sapiens during the Late Pleistocene. Regional environments changed considerably in the Pleistocene. Expansion patterns among hominins are at least co-determined by their ecologies and environmental change. We examine these expansion patterns on the basis of habitat reconstructions. Mammalian communities provide a geographically extensive record and permit to assess hominin ecospaces. Although chronological resolution is low, they represent the most complete record of habitat changes associated with hominin expansion patterns. In order to reconstruct and compare hominin ecospaces on a quantitative scale, we set up a reference sample consisting of mammalian communities of 117 national parks in South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa. The diversity of such communities is assessed by ecological profiling of specialized herbivore taxa. Moreover, datasets on climate and vegetation correlate with the diversity structure of such specialized herbivore communities. Reconstructing the diversity structure of communities at key sites in Pleistocene Southeast Asia permits to infer features of the climatic and vegetation framework associated with different hominin taxa. Our results show that Homo erectus and Homo sapiens did not occupy similar ecospaces. The ecospace of Homo erectus is characterized by comparatively low diversity among frugivorous and folivorous taxa, while obligate grazers are part of the assemblages. Specialized herbivore communities with such a diversity structure occur at present in East Africa, while they are absent in Southeast Asia. In the reference sample, this type of ecospace corresponds to seasonal wetlands. Although Homo sapiens still inhabits this type of environment in Southeast Asia, his ecospace is wider. Homo sapiens is associated with

  6. Karyotype evolution of giraffes (Giraffa camelopardalis) revealed by cross-species chromosome painting with Chinese muntjac (Muntiacus reevesi) and human (Homo sapiens) paints.

    PubMed

    Huang, L; Nesterenko, A; Nie, W; Wang, J; Su, W; Graphodatsky, A S; Yang, F

    2008-01-01

    Considering the giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis, GCA, 2n = 30) as a primitive species, its comparative genomic data are critical for our understanding of the karyotype evolution of pecorans. Here, we have established genome-wide chromosomal homologies between giraffe, Chinese muntjac (Muntiacus reevesi, MRE, 2n = 46) and human (Homo sapiens, HSA, 2n = 46) with whole sets of chromosome-specific paints from Chinese muntjac and human, in addition to providing a high-resolution G-banding karyotype of giraffe. Chinese muntjac and human chromosome paints detected 32 and 45 autosomal homologs in the genome of giraffe, respectively. Our results suggest that it would require at least thirteen fissions, six fusions and three intrachromosomal rearrangements to 'transform' the 2n = 44 eutherian ancestral karyotype to the 2n = 58 pecoran ancestral karyotype. During giraffe evolution, some ancestral eutherian syntenies (i.e. association of HSA3/21, 4/8, 7/16, 14/15, 16/19 and two forms of 12/22) have been retained, while several derived syntenies (i.e. associations of human homologous segments 2/1, 2/9, 5/19, 4/12/22, 8/9, and 10/20) have been produced. The reduction of chromosome number in giraffe from the 2n = 58 pecoran ancestral karyotype could be primarily attributed to extensive Robertsonian translocations of ancestral chromosomal segments. More complex chromosomal rearrangements (including tandem fusion, centromere repositioning and pericentric inversion) have happened during the evolution of GCA2 and GCA8.

  7. Crystal structure of Homo sapiens protein LOC79017

    SciTech Connect

    Bae, Euiyoung; Bingman, Craig A.; Aceti, David J.; Phillips, Jr., George N.

    2010-02-08

    LOC79017 (MW 21.0 kDa, residues 1-188) was annotated as a hypothetical protein encoded by Homo sapiens chromosome 7 open reading frame 24. It was selected as a target by the Center for Eukaryotic Structural Genomics (CESG) because it did not share more than 30% sequence identity with any protein for which the three-dimensional structure is known. The biological function of the protein has not been established yet. Parts of LOC79017 were identified as members of uncharacterized Pfam families (residues 1-95 as PB006073 and residues 104-180 as PB031696). BLAST searches revealed homologues of LOC79017 in many eukaryotes, but none of them have been functionally characterized. Here, we report the crystal structure of H. sapiens protein LOC79017 (UniGene code Hs.530024, UniProt code O75223, CESG target number go.35223).

  8. Homo sapiens, Homo neanderthalensis and the Denisova specimen: New insights on their evolutionary histories using whole-genome comparisons

    PubMed Central

    Paixão-Côrtes, Vanessa Rodrigues; Viscardi, Lucas Henrique; Salzano, Francisco Mauro; Hünemeier, Tábita; Bortolini, Maria Cátira

    2012-01-01

    After a brief review of the most recent findings in the study of human evolution, an extensive comparison of the complete genomes of our nearest relative, the chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes), of extant Homo sapiens, archaic Homo neanderthalensis and the Denisova specimen were made. The focus was on non-synonymous mutations, which consequently had an impact on protein levels and these changes were classified according to degree of effect. A total of 10,447 non-synonymous substitutions were found in which the derived allele is fixed or nearly fixed in humans as compared to chimpanzee. Their most frequent location was on chromosome 21. Their presence was then searched in the two archaic genomes. Mutations in 381 genes would imply radical amino acid changes, with a fraction of these related to olfaction and other important physiological processes. Eight new alleles were identified in the Neanderthal and/or Denisova genetic pools. Four others, possibly affecting cognition, occured both in the sapiens and two other archaic genomes. The selective sweep that gave rise to Homo sapiens could, therefore, have initiated before the modern/archaic human divergence. PMID:23413113

  9. Use of social information in the problem solving of orangutans (Pongo pygmaeus) and human children (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    Call, J; Tomasello, M

    1995-09-01

    Fourteen juvenile and adult orangutans and 24 3- and 4-year-old children participated in 4 studies on imitative learning in a problem-solving situation. In all studies a simple to operate apparatus was used, but its internal mechanism was hidden from subjects to prevent individual learning. In the 1st study, orangutans observed a human demonstrator perform 1 of 4 actions on the apparatus and obtain a reward; they subsequently showed no signs of imitative learning. Similar results were obtained in a 2nd study in which orangutan demonstrators were used. Similar results were also obtained in a 3rd study in which a human encouraged imitation from an orangutan that had previously been taught to mimic arbitrary human actions. In a 4th study, human 3- and 4-year-old children learned the task by means of imitation.

  10. Differences in compact bone tissue microscopic structure between adult humans (Homo sapiens) and Assam macaques (Macaca assamensis).

    PubMed

    Nganvongpanit, Korakot; Phatsara, Manussabhorn; Settakorn, Jongkolnee; Mahakkanukrauh, Pasuk

    2015-09-01

    This study investigated the osteon structure of adult humans and Assam macaques, which served as a nonhuman primate model, to find an adequate key for species identification. Samples of compact bone from humans (n=5) and Assam macaques (n=5) - including humerus (n=20), radius (n=20), ulna (n=20), femur (n=20), tibia (n=20) and fibula (n=20) - were processed using conventional histological techniques. 100 secondary osteons from each sample were evaluated under light microscopy. Parameter measurements included: diameter, perimeter and area of Haversian canal and osteon; distance between centers of Haversian canals; and ratio between diameter of Haversian canal and osteon. Four parameters, including diameters and areas of Haversian canal and osteon, demonstrated significantly higher (P<0.05) values in humans than in Assam macaques. Therefore, compact bone microstructure could thus be used as a potential tool to differentiate human and nonhuman primates. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Frequency-range discriminations: special and general abilities in zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) and humans (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    Weisman, R; Njegovan, M; Sturdy, C; Phillmore, L; Coyle, J; Mewhort, D

    1998-09-01

    The acoustic frequency ranges in birdsongs and human speech can provide important pitch cues for recognition. Zebra finches and humans were trained to sort contiguous frequencies into 3 or 8 ranges, based on associations between the ranges and reward. The 3-range task was conducted separately in 3 spectral regions. Zebra finches discriminated 3 ranges in the medium and high spectral regions faster than in the low region and discriminated 8 ranges with precision. Humans discriminated 3 ranges in all 3 spectral regions to the same modest standard and acquired only a crude discrimination of the lowest and highest of 8 ranges. The results indicate that songbirds have a special sensitivity to the pitches in conspecific songs and, relative to humans, have a remarkable general ability to sort pitches into ranges.

  12. A comparative analysis of the intestinal metagenomes present in guinea pigs (Cavia porcellus) and humans (Homo sapiens)

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Guinea pig (Cavia porcellus) is an important model for human intestinal research. We have characterized the faecal microbiota of 60 guinea pigs using Illumina shotgun metagenomics, and used this data to compile a gene catalogue of its prevalent microbiota. Subsequently, we compared the guinea pig microbiome to existing human gut metagenome data from the MetaHIT project. Results We found that the bacterial richness obtained for human samples was lower than for guinea pig samples. The intestinal microbiotas of both species were dominated by the two phyla Bacteroidetes and Firmicutes, but at genus level, the majority of identified genera (320 of 376) were differently abundant in the two hosts. For example, the guinea pig contained considerably more of the mucin-degrading Akkermansia, as well as of the methanogenic archaea Methanobrevibacter than found in humans. Most microbiome functional categories were less abundant in guinea pigs than in humans. Exceptions included functional categories possibly reflecting dehydration/rehydration stress in the guinea pig intestine. Finally, we showed that microbiological databases have serious anthropocentric biases, which impacts model organism research. Conclusions The results lay the foundation for future gastrointestinal research applying guinea pigs as models for humans. PMID:23020652

  13. A comparative analysis of the intestinal metagenomes present in guinea pigs (Cavia porcellus) and humans (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    Hildebrand, Falk; Ebersbach, Tine; Nielsen, Henrik Bjørn; Li, Xiaoping; Sonne, Si Brask; Bertalan, Marcelo; Dimitrov, Peter; Madsen, Lise; Qin, Junjie; Wang, Jun; Raes, Jeroen; Kristiansen, Karsten; Licht, Tine Rask

    2012-09-28

    Guinea pig (Cavia porcellus) is an important model for human intestinal research. We have characterized the faecal microbiota of 60 guinea pigs using Illumina shotgun metagenomics, and used this data to compile a gene catalogue of its prevalent microbiota. Subsequently, we compared the guinea pig microbiome to existing human gut metagenome data from the MetaHIT project. We found that the bacterial richness obtained for human samples was lower than for guinea pig samples. The intestinal microbiotas of both species were dominated by the two phyla Bacteroidetes and Firmicutes, but at genus level, the majority of identified genera (320 of 376) were differently abundant in the two hosts. For example, the guinea pig contained considerably more of the mucin-degrading Akkermansia, as well as of the methanogenic archaea Methanobrevibacter than found in humans. Most microbiome functional categories were less abundant in guinea pigs than in humans. Exceptions included functional categories possibly reflecting dehydration/rehydration stress in the guinea pig intestine. Finally, we showed that microbiological databases have serious anthropocentric biases, which impacts model organism research. The results lay the foundation for future gastrointestinal research applying guinea pigs as models for humans.

  14. Cashing out: The decisional flexibility of uncertainty responses in rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta) and humans (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    Zakrzewski, Alexandria C; Perdue, Bonnie M; Beran, Michael J; Church, Barbara A; Smith, J David

    2014-10-01

    Researchers are exploring whether animals share with humans something like a metacognitive capacity. Though some results point to human-animal continuities in this domain, they face the dominant criticism that animals' performances might be associative. A persistent problem is that animal-metacognition paradigms present static environments of risk and reward that may foster inflexible and conditioned responding. Those environments do not challenge animals to show the flexibility in their decision strategies that could indicate an antecedent capacity to metacognition. Accordingly, we tested macaques and humans on an uncertainty-monitoring paradigm in which risk changed dynamically. Participants classified stimuli of different difficulties while also choosing when to use a cashout response to collect the accumulated rewards that would be forfeit on a discrimination error. Macaques (Macaca mulatta) and humans flexibly adjusted their decision criteria to achieve appropriate protection against the cost of error that could differ depending on trial difficulty and the number of rewards at risk. In particular, monkeys widened their cashout-response region as their accumulated rewards increased, providing more protection against a more costly error. These findings demonstrate a new continuity between humans' and animals' uncertainty systems. They reveal a calibration by macaques of present risk to trial difficulty tolerated. They show that animals' uncertainty-monitoring and risk-management systems have substantial trial-by-trial flexibility.

  15. A slowing effect on visual search by advance information in pigeons (Columba livia): a comparison with humans (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    Sekiguchi, Katsuo; Ushitani, Tomokazu; Jitsumori, Masako

    2011-01-01

    A comparative study was conducted to investigate whether the search for a target letter was facilitated when the target and prime (preceding stimulus) letters were identical. Pigeons (Section 2) and human participants (Section 3) were first trained to search for "A" among "Y"s and "E" among "D"s in a condition in which a square shape appeared as the prime (Neutral condition). In subsequent testing, a prime was identical either to the corresponding target (Target-priming condition) or to the distractor (Distractor-priming condition). Humans and pigeons responded differently to the two priming conditions. On early trials, the Target prime facilitated search in humans, reducing reaction times (RTs) to targets. In pigeons, however, RTs were longer with Target primes, suggesting that pre-exposure to target letters may directly inhibit the search for targets in subsequent search displays. Furthermore, pre-exposure to the distractor letters may inhibit the processing of the distractor. On later trials, RTs of humans were faster in both priming conditions than in the Neutral condition, suggesting that expectation of a target facilitated search ("Y" predicted "A" and "D" predicted "E"). In contrast, the pigeons showed no evidence of expectation-based facilitation, with constant slowing effects of the Target prime extending across sessions. Possible mechanisms underlying such a slowing priming effect in pigeons were discussed.

  16. Can Chimpanzee Infants ("Pan Troglodytes") Form Categorical Representations in the Same Manner as Human Infants ("Homo Sapiens")?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Murai, Chizuko; Kosugi, Daisuke; Tomonaga, Masaki; Tanaka, Masayuki; Matsuzawa, Tetsuro; Itakura, Shoji

    2005-01-01

    We directly compared chimpanzee infants and human infants for categorical representations of three global-like categories (mammals, furniture and vehicles), using the familiarization-novelty preference technique. Neither species received any training during the experiments. We used the time that participants spent looking at the stimulus object…

  17. Can Chimpanzee Infants ("Pan Troglodytes") Form Categorical Representations in the Same Manner as Human Infants ("Homo Sapiens")?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Murai, Chizuko; Kosugi, Daisuke; Tomonaga, Masaki; Tanaka, Masayuki; Matsuzawa, Tetsuro; Itakura, Shoji

    2005-01-01

    We directly compared chimpanzee infants and human infants for categorical representations of three global-like categories (mammals, furniture and vehicles), using the familiarization-novelty preference technique. Neither species received any training during the experiments. We used the time that participants spent looking at the stimulus object…

  18. Spatial working memory in immersive virtual reality foraging: path organization, traveling distance and search efficiency in humans (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    De Lillo, Carlo; Kirby, Melissa; James, Frances C

    2014-05-01

    Search and serial recall tasks were used in the present study to characterize the factors affecting the ability of humans to keep track of a set of spatial locations while traveling in an immersive virtual reality foraging environment. The first experiment required the exhaustive exploration of a set of locations following a procedure previously used with other primate and non-primate species to assess their sensitivity to the geometric arrangement of foraging sites. The second experiment assessed the dependency of search performance on search organization by requiring the participants to recall specific trajectories throughout the foraging space. In the third experiment, the distance between the foraging sites was manipulated in order to contrast the effects of organization and traveling distance on recall accuracy. The results show that humans benefit from the use of organized search patterns when attempting to monitor their travel though either a clustered "patchy" space or a matrix of locations. Their ability to recall a series of locations is dependent on whether the order in which they are explored conformed or did not conform to specific organization principles. Moreover, the relationship between search efficiency and search organization is not confounded by effects of traveling distance. These results indicate that in humans, organizational factors may play a large role in their ability to forage efficiently. The extent to which such dependency may pertain to other primates and could be accounted for by visual organization processes is discussed on the basis of previous studies focused on perceptual grouping, search, and serial recall in non-human species.

  19. Human (Homo sapiens) responses to the pig (Sus scrofa) sex pheromone 5 alpha-androst-16-en-3-one.

    PubMed

    Filsinger, E E; Braun, J J; Monte, W C; Linder, D E

    1984-06-01

    Previous studies have suggested that the pig sex pheromone 5 alpha-androst-16-en-3-one may function as a human sex pheromone. Two hundred male and female college students were assigned to one of four odor conditions (androstenone, methyl anthranilate, skatole, and a no-odor control) and were asked to rate photographs of a male stimulus and to rate their own mood in the presence of each odorant. There was a significant overall sex by treatment condition interaction. Men in the androstenone condition rated the stimulus male as more passive, and women in the androstenone condition rated themselves as less sexy; these effects were specific to the androstenone condition.

  20. Feature versus spatial strategies by orangutans (Pongo abelii) and human children (Homo sapiens) in a cross-dimensional task.

    PubMed

    Marsh, Heidi L; Adams, Laura; Floyd, Catherine; MacDonald, Suzanne E

    2013-05-01

    Despite the fact that photographic stimuli are used across experimental contexts with both human and nonhuman subjects, the nature of individuals' perceptions of these stimuli is still not well understood. In the present experiments, we tested whether three orangutans and 36 human children could use photographic information presented on a computer screen to solve a perceptually corresponding problem in the physical domain. Furthermore, we tested the cues that aided in this process by pitting featural information against spatial position in a series of probe trials. We found that many of the children and one orangutan were successfully able to use the information cross-dimensionally; however, the other two orangutans and almost a quarter of the children failed to acquire the task. Species differences emerged with respect to ease of task acquisition. More striking, however, were the differences in cues that participants used to solve the task: Whereas the orangutan used a spatial strategy, the majority of children used a feature one. Possible reasons for these differences are discussed from both evolutionary and developmental perspectives. The novel results found here underscore the need for further testing in this area to design appropriate experimental paradigms in future comparative research settings.

  1. Understanding of visual attention by adult humans (Homo sapiens): a partial replication of Povinelli, Bierschwale, and Cech (1999).

    PubMed

    Thomas, Emily; Murphy, Mary; Pitt, Rebecca; Rivers, Angela; Leavens, David A

    2008-11-01

    Povinelli, Bierschwale, and Cech (1999) reported that when tested on a visual attention task, the behavior of juvenile chimpanzees did not support a high-level understanding of visual attention. This study replicates their research using adult humans and aims to investigate the validity of their experimental design. Participants were trained to respond to pointing cues given by an experimenter, and then tested on their ability to locate hidden objects from visual cues. Povinelli et al.'s assertion that the generalization of pointing to gaze is indicative of a high-level framework was not supported by our findings: Training improved performance only on initial probe trials when the experimenter's gaze was not directed at the baited cup. Furthermore, participants performed above chance on such trials, the same result exhibited by chimpanzees and used as evidence by Povinelli et al. to support a low-level framework. These findings, together with the high performance of participants in an incongruent condition, in which the experimenter pointed to or gazed at an unbaited container, challenge the validity of their experimental design. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2008 APA, all rights reserved).

  2. Pygmoid Australomelanesian Homo sapiens skeletal remains from Liang Bua, Flores: population affinities and pathological abnormalities.

    PubMed

    Jacob, T; Indriati, E; Soejono, R P; Hsü, K; Frayer, D W; Eckhardt, R B; Kuperavage, A J; Thorne, A; Henneberg, M

    2006-09-05

    Liang Bua 1 (LB1) exhibits marked craniofacial and postcranial asymmetries and other indicators of abnormal growth and development. Anomalies aside, 140 cranial features place LB1 within modern human ranges of variation, resembling Australomelanesian populations. Mandibular and dental features of LB1 and LB6/1 either show no substantial deviation from modern Homo sapiens or share features (receding chins and rotated premolars) with Rampasasa pygmies now living near Liang Bua Cave. We propose that LB1 is drawn from an earlier pygmy H. sapiens population but individually shows signs of a developmental abnormality, including microcephaly. Additional mandibular and postcranial remains from the site share small body size but not microcephaly.

  3. Ongoing adaptive evolution of ASPM, a brain size determinant in Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Mekel-Bobrov, Nitzan; Gilbert, Sandra L; Evans, Patrick D; Vallender, Eric J; Anderson, Jeffrey R; Hudson, Richard R; Tishkoff, Sarah A; Lahn, Bruce T

    2005-09-09

    The gene ASPM (abnormal spindle-like microcephaly associated) is a specific regulator of brain size, and its evolution in the lineage leading to Homo sapiens was driven by strong positive selection. Here, we show that one genetic variant of ASPM in humans arose merely about 5800 years ago and has since swept to high frequency under strong positive selection. These findings, especially the remarkably young age of the positively selected variant, suggest that the human brain is still undergoing rapid adaptive evolution.

  4. Molecular biology of Homo sapiens: Abstracts of papers presented at the 51st Cold Spring Harbor symposium on quantitative biology

    SciTech Connect

    Watson, J.D.; Siniscalco, M.

    1986-01-01

    This volume contains abstracts of papers presented at the 51st Cold Springs Harbor Symposium on Quantitative Biology. The topic for this meeting was the ''Molecular Biology of Homo sapiens.'' Sessions were entitled Human Gene Map, Human Cancer Genes, Genetic Diagnosis, Human Evolution, Drugs Made Off Human Genes, Receptors, and Gene Therapy. (DT)

  5. Bone strength and athletic ability in hominids: Ardipithecus ramidus to Homo sapiens

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, S. A.

    2013-03-01

    The ability of the femur to resist bending stresses is determined by its midlength cross-sectional geometry, its length and the elastic properties of the mineral part of the bone. The animal's athletic ability, determined by a ``bone strength index,'' is limited by this femoral bending strength in relation to the loads on the femur. This analysis is applied to the fossil record for Homo sapiens, Homo neanderthalensis, Homo erectus, Homo habilis, Australopithecus afarensis and Ardipithecus ramidus. Evidence that the femoral bone strength index of modern Homo sapiens has weakened over the last 50,000 years is found.

  6. Identification of the ancestral haplotype for apolipoprotein B suggests an African origin of Homo sapiens sapiens and traces their subsequent migration to Europe and the Pacific

    SciTech Connect

    Rapacz, J.; Hasler-Rapacz, J.O. ); Chen, L.; Wu, Mingjiuan; Schumaker, V.N. ); Butler-Brunner, E.; Butler, R. )

    1991-02-15

    The probable ancestral haplotype for human apolipoprotein B (apoB) has been identified through immunological analysis of chimpanzee and gorilla serum and sequence analysis of their DNA. Moreover, the frequency of this ancestral apoB haplotype among different human populations provides strong support for the African origin of Homo sapiens sapiens and their subsequent migration from Africa to Europe and to the Pacific. The approach used here for the identification of the ancestral human apoB haplotype is likely to be applicable to many other genes.

  7. Tissue-Specific Methylation of Long Interspersed Nucleotide Element-1 of Homo Sapiens (L1Hs) During Human Embryogenesis and Roles in Neural Tube Defects.

    PubMed

    Wang, L; Chang, S; Guan, J; Shangguan, S; Lu, X; Wang, Z; Wu, L; Zou, J; Zhao, H; Bao, Y; Qiu, Z; Niu, B; Zhang, T

    2015-01-01

    Epigenetic regulation of long interspersed nucleotide element-1 (LINE-1) retrotransposition events plays crucial roles during early development. Previously we showed that LINE-1 hypomethylation in neuronal tissues is associated with pathogenesis of neural tube defect (NTD). Herein, we further evaluated LINE-1 Homo sapiens (L1Hs) methylation in tissues derived from three germ layers of stillborn NTD fetuses, to define patterns of tissue specific methylation and site-specific hypomethylation at CpG sites within an L1Hs promoter region. Stable, tissue-specific L1Hs methylation patterns throughout three germ layer lineages of the fetus, placenta, and maternal peripheral blood were observed. Samples from maternal peripheral blood exhibited the highest level of L1Hs methylation (64.95%) and that from placenta showed the lowest (26.82%). Between samples from NTDs and controls, decrease in L1Hs methylation was only significant in NTD-affected brain tissue at 7.35%, especially in females (8.98%). L1Hs hypomethylation in NTDs was also associated with a significant increase in expression level of an L1Hs-encoded transcript in females (r = -0.846, p = 0.004). This could be due to genomic DNA instability and alternation in chromatins accessibility resulted from abnormal L1Hs hypomethylation, as showed in this study with HCT-15 cells treated with methylation inhibitor 5-Aza.

  8. Pygmoid Australomelanesian Homo sapiens skeletal remains from Liang Bua, Flores: Population affinities and pathological abnormalities

    PubMed Central

    Jacob, T.; Indriati, E.; Soejono, R. P.; Hsü, K.; Frayer, D. W.; Eckhardt, R. B.; Kuperavage, A. J.; Thorne, A.; Henneberg, M.

    2006-01-01

    Liang Bua 1 (LB1) exhibits marked craniofacial and postcranial asymmetries and other indicators of abnormal growth and development. Anomalies aside, 140 cranial features place LB1 within modern human ranges of variation, resembling Australomelanesian populations. Mandibular and dental features of LB1 and LB6/1 either show no substantial deviation from modern Homo sapiens or share features (receding chins and rotated premolars) with Rampasasa pygmies now living near Liang Bua Cave. We propose that LB1 is drawn from an earlier pygmy H. sapiens population but individually shows signs of a developmental abnormality, including microcephaly. Additional mandibular and postcranial remains from the site share small body size but not microcephaly. PMID:16938848

  9. Sky Luminaries in the Space Orienting Activity of Homo Sapiens in the Middle Palaeolithic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaurov, E. N.

    Data describing the beginnings of the space orienting activity of Homo sapiens is analysed and systematized: observation of the Pole and the recognition of Ursa Major were used as the basis of the determination of the points of the compass. Data and results from astronomy, history of astronomy, archaeology and palaeoanthropology were used for the reconstruction of the evolution of the space orienting activity of Homo sapiens.

  10. Bone strength and athletic ability in hominids: Ardipithecus ramidus to Homo sapiens

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Scott

    2012-10-01

    A methodology for the evaluation of the athletic ability of animals based on the strength of their femur and their body mass is developed. The ability of the femur to resist bending stresses is determined by its midlength cross-sectional geometry, its length and the elastic properties of the mineral part of the bone. The animal's athletic ability, determined by a ``bone strength index,'' is limited by this femoral bending strength in relation to the loads on the femur. This analysis is applied to the fossil record for Homo sapiens, Homo neanderthalensis, Homo erectus, Homo habilis, Australopithecus afarensis and Ardipithecus ramidus. Evidence that the femoral bone strength index of modern Homo sapiens has weakened over the last 50,000 years is found.

  11. Stratigraphic, chronological and behavioural contexts of Pleistocene Homo sapiens from Middle Awash, Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Clark, J Desmond; Beyene, Yonas; WoldeGabriel, Giday; Hart, William K; Renne, Paul R; Gilbert, Henry; Defleur, Alban; Suwa, Gen; Katoh, Shigehiro; Ludwig, Kenneth R; Boisserie, Jean-Renaud; Asfaw, Berhane; White, Tim D

    2003-06-12

    Clarifying the geographic, environmental and behavioural contexts in which the emergence of anatomically modern Homo sapiens occurred has proved difficult, particularly because Africa lacked adequate geochronological, palaeontological and archaeological evidence. The discovery of anatomically modern Homo sapiens fossils at Herto, Ethiopia, changes this. Here we report on stratigraphically associated Late Middle Pleistocene artefacts and fossils from fluvial and lake margin sandstones of the Upper Herto Member of the Bouri Formation, Middle Awash, Afar Rift, Ethiopia. The fossils and artefacts are dated between 160,000 and 154,000 years ago by precise age determinations using the 40Ar/39Ar method. The archaeological assemblages contain elements of both Acheulean and Middle Stone Age technocomplexes. Associated faunal remains indicate repeated, systematic butchery of hippopotamus carcasses. Contemporary adult and juvenile Homo sapiens fossil crania manifest bone modifications indicative of deliberate mortuary practices.

  12. Out of Africa: new hypotheses and evidence for the dispersal of Homo sapiens along the Indian Ocean rim.

    PubMed

    Petraglia, Michael D; Haslam, Michael; Fuller, Dorian Q; Boivin, Nicole; Clarkson, Chris

    2010-06-01

    The dispersal of Homo sapiens out of Africa is a significant topic in human evolutionary studies. Most investigators agree that our species arose in Africa and subsequently spread out to occupy much of Eurasia. Researchers have argued that populations expanded along the Indian Ocean rim at ca 60,000 years ago during a single rapid dispersal event, probably employing a coastal route towards Australasia. Archaeologists have been relatively silent about the movement and expansion of human populations in terrestrial environments along the Indian Ocean rim, although it is clear that Homo sapiens reached Australia by ca 45,000 years ago. Here, we synthesize and document current genetic and archaeological evidence from two major landmasses, the Arabian peninsula and the Indian subcontinent, regions that have been underplayed in the story of out of Africa dispersals. We suggest that modern humans were present in Arabia and South Asia earlier than currently believed, and probably coincident with the presence of Homo sapiens in the Levant between ca 130 and 70,000 years ago. We show that climatic and environmental fluctuations during the Late Pleistocene would have had significant demographic effects on Arabian and South Asian populations, though indigenous populations would have responded in different ways. Based on a review of the current genetic, archaeological and environmental data, we indicate that demographic patterns in Arabia and South Asia are more interesting and complex than surmised to date.

  13. Evaluating the transitional mosaic: frameworks of change from Neanderthals to Homo sapiens in eastern Europe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davies, William; White, Dustin; Lewis, Mark; Stringer, Chris

    2015-06-01

    Defining varying spatial and temporal analytical scales is essential before evaluating the responses of late Neanderthals and early Homo sapiens to Abrupt Environmental Transitions (AETs) and environmental disasters for the period 130-25 ka. Recent advances in addressing the population histories and interactions (using both genetic and archaeological evidence) of Neanderthals and H. sapiens have encouraged consideration of more subtle dynamics of archaeological change. Descriptions of change based on methodologies pioneered some 160 years ago are no longer adequate to explain the patterning we now see in the record. New chronological results, using multiple dating methods, allow us to begin to unpick the spatial and temporal scales of change. Isochronic markers (such as specific volcanic eruptions) can be used to create temporal frameworks (lattices), and results from other dating techniques compared against them. A combination of chronological lattices and direct dating of diagnostic artefacts and human fossils permits us, for the first time, to have greater confidence in connecting human (recent hominin) species and their behavioural responses to environmental conditions, and in quantifying scales of change over time and space (time-transgression). The timing of innovations, particularly those in bone, antler and ivory, can be directly quantified and tested, and used to re-evaluate longstanding models of cultural change. This paper also uses these new chronologies to explore the ecologies of late Neanderthals and early H. sapiens: their population densities, mobilities, resources exploited and possible interactions. Environmental productivity estimates are used to generate new questions of potential population densities and mobilities, and thus the sensitivity of these groups to environmental perturbations. Scales and intensities of effect on environments from natural disasters and AETs (notably Heinrich Events and the Campanian Ignimbrite eruption) are defined

  14. Development of the palatal size in Pan troglodytes, Hominids and Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Arnold, W H; Zoellner, A; Sebastian, T

    2004-12-01

    As the hard palate plays an important role in speech production it was the aim of this study whether similarities or dissimilarities in palatal size may allow conclusions about the ability to produce speech in the extant investigated species. The palatal size of Pan troglodytes, Homo sapiens, Australopithecus afarensis, Australopithecus africanus, Australopithecus robustus, Australopithecus boisei, Homo erectus, Homo neanderthalensis and Cro-Magnon has been investigated using euclidian distance matrix analysis (EDMA) and thin-plate-spline analysis. The results show that the palatal size of all australopithecine specimens and H. erectus is very similar to that of P toglodytes, whereas the palatal size of H. neanderthalensis more closely resembles that of H. sapiens. Postnatal development of palatal size in P troglodytes is different from that of H. sapiens. In P troglodytes not only the size of the palate changes but also the form. In H. sapiens there is little change in form, but a continuos uniform growth from infantile to adult specimens. From the results we conclude that in all australopithecine samples which have been investigated, the palatal size is similar to that of P troglodytes. Therefore, it is unlikely that austraopithecine individuals were capable of producing vowels and consonants. The palatal size of H. neandethalensis and Cro-Magnon is similar to that of H. sapiens which may indicate the possibility that they were capable of speech production.

  15. A comparative analysis of the categorization of multidimensional stimuli: I. Unidimensional classification does not necessarily imply analytic processing; evidence from pigeons (Columba livia), squirrels (Sciurus carolinensis), and humans (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    Wills, A J; Lea, Stephen E G; Leaver, Lisa A; Osthaus, Britta; Ryan, Catriona M E; Suret, Mark B; Bryant, Catherine M L; Chapman, Sue J A; Millar, Louise

    2009-11-01

    Pigeons (Columba livia), gray squirrels (Sciurus carolinensis), and undergraduates (Homo sapiens) learned discrimination tasks involving multiple mutually redundant dimensions. First, pigeons and undergraduates learned conditional discriminations between stimuli composed of three spatially separated dimensions, after first learning to discriminate the individual elements of the stimuli. When subsequently tested with stimuli in which one of the dimensions took an anomalous value, the majority of both species categorized test stimuli by their overall similarity to training stimuli. However some individuals of both species categorized them according to a single dimension. In a second set of experiments, squirrels, pigeons, and undergraduates learned go/no-go discriminations using multiple simultaneous presentations of stimuli composed of three spatially integrated, highly salient dimensions. The tendency to categorize test stimuli including anomalous dimension values unidimensionally was higher than in the first set of experiments and did not differ significantly between species. The authors conclude that unidimensional categorization of multidimensional stimuli is not diagnostic for analytic cognitive processing, and that any differences between human's and pigeons' behavior in such tasks are not due to special features of avian visual cognition.

  16. Gracility of the modern Homo sapiens skeleton is the result of decreased biomechanical loading

    PubMed Central

    Ryan, Timothy M.; Shaw, Colin N.

    2015-01-01

    The postcranial skeleton of modern Homo sapiens is relatively gracile compared with other hominoids and earlier hominins. This gracility predisposes contemporary humans to osteoporosis and increased fracture risk. Explanations for this gracility include reduced levels of physical activity, the dissipation of load through enlarged joint surfaces, and selection for systemic physiological characteristics that differentiate modern humans from other primates. This study considered the skeletal remains of four behaviorally diverse recent human populations and a large sample of extant primates to assess variation in trabecular bone structure in the human hip joint. Proximal femur trabecular bone structure was quantified from microCT data for 229 individuals from 31 extant primate taxa and 59 individuals from four distinct archaeological human populations representing sedentary agriculturalists and mobile foragers. Analyses of mass-corrected trabecular bone variables reveal that the forager populations had significantly higher bone volume fraction, thicker trabeculae, and consequently lower relative bone surface area compared with the two agriculturalist groups. There were no significant differences between the agriculturalist and forager populations for trabecular spacing, number, or degree of anisotropy. These results reveal a correspondence between human behavior and bone structure in the proximal femur, indicating that more highly mobile human populations have trabecular bone structure similar to what would be expected for wild nonhuman primates of the same body mass. These results strongly emphasize the importance of physical activity and exercise for bone health and the attenuation of age-related bone loss. PMID:25535352

  17. Gracility of the modern Homo sapiens skeleton is the result of decreased biomechanical loading.

    PubMed

    Ryan, Timothy M; Shaw, Colin N

    2015-01-13

    The postcranial skeleton of modern Homo sapiens is relatively gracile compared with other hominoids and earlier hominins. This gracility predisposes contemporary humans to osteoporosis and increased fracture risk. Explanations for this gracility include reduced levels of physical activity, the dissipation of load through enlarged joint surfaces, and selection for systemic physiological characteristics that differentiate modern humans from other primates. This study considered the skeletal remains of four behaviorally diverse recent human populations and a large sample of extant primates to assess variation in trabecular bone structure in the human hip joint. Proximal femur trabecular bone structure was quantified from microCT data for 229 individuals from 31 extant primate taxa and 59 individuals from four distinct archaeological human populations representing sedentary agriculturalists and mobile foragers. Analyses of mass-corrected trabecular bone variables reveal that the forager populations had significantly higher bone volume fraction, thicker trabeculae, and consequently lower relative bone surface area compared with the two agriculturalist groups. There were no significant differences between the agriculturalist and forager populations for trabecular spacing, number, or degree of anisotropy. These results reveal a correspondence between human behavior and bone structure in the proximal femur, indicating that more highly mobile human populations have trabecular bone structure similar to what would be expected for wild nonhuman primates of the same body mass. These results strongly emphasize the importance of physical activity and exercise for bone health and the attenuation of age-related bone loss.

  18. Emergence of a Homo sapiens-specific gene family and chromosome 16p11.2 CNV susceptibility

    PubMed Central

    Nuttle, Xander; Giannuzzi, Giuliana; Duyzend, Michael H.; Schraiber, Joshua G.; Narvaiza, Iñigo; Sudmant, Peter H.; Penn, Osnat; Chiatante, Giorgia; Malig, Maika; Huddleston, John; Benner, Chris; Camponeschi, Francesca; Ciofi-Baffoni, Simone; Stessman, Holly A.F.; Marchetto, Maria C. N.; Denman, Laura; Harshman, Lana; Baker, Carl; Raja, Archana; Penewit, Kelsi; Janke, Nicolette; Tang, W. Joyce; Ventura, Mario; Banci, Lucia; Antonacci, Francesca; Akey, Joshua M.; Amemiya, Chris T.; Gage, Fred H.; Reymond, Alexandre; Eichler, Evan E.

    2016-01-01

    Genetic differences that specify unique aspects of human evolution have typically been identified by comparative analyses between the genomes of humans and closely related primates1, including more recently the genomes of archaic hominins2,3. Not all regions of the genome, however, are equally amenable to such study. Recurrent copy number variation (CNV) at chromosome 16p11.2 accounts for ~1% of autism cases4,5 and is mediated by a complex set of segmental duplications, many of which arose recently during human evolution. We reconstructed the evolutionary history of the locus and identified BOLA2 (bolA family member 2) as a gene duplicated exclusively in Homo sapiens. We estimate that a 95 kbp segment containing BOLA2 duplicated across the critical region ~282 thousand years ago (kya), one of the latest among a series of genomic changes that dramatically restructured the locus during hominid evolution. All humans examined carry one or more copies of the duplication, which nearly fixed early in the human lineage—a pattern unlikely to have arisen so rapidly in the absence of selection (p < 0.0097). We show that the duplication of BOLA2 led to a novel, human-specific in-frame fusion transcript and that BOLA2 copy number correlates with both RNA expression (r = 0.36) and protein level (r = 0.65), with the greatest expression difference between human and chimpanzee in experimentally derived stem cells. Analyses of 152 patients carrying a chromosome 16p11.2 rearrangement showed that >96% of breakpoints occur within the Homo sapiens-specific duplication. In summary, the duplicative transposition of BOLA2 at the root of the Homo sapiens lineage ~282 kya simultaneously increased copy number of a gene associated with iron homeostasis and predisposed our species to recurrent rearrangements associated with disease. PMID:27487209

  19. Life as a Cosmic Phenomenon: 2. the Panspermic Trajectory of Homo Sapiens

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tokoro, Gensuke; Wickramasinghe, N. Chandra

    We discuss the origin and evolution of Homo sapiens in a cosmic context, and in relation to the Hoyle-Wickramasinghe theory of panspermia for which there is now overwhelming evidence. It is argued that the first bacteria (archea) incident on the Earth via the agency of comets 3.8-4 billion years ago continued at later times to be augmented by viral genes (DNA, RNA) from space that eventually led to the evolutionary patterns we see in present-day biology. We argue that the current evolutionary status of Homo sapiens as well as its future trajectory is circumscribed by evolutionary processes that were pre-determined on a cosmic scale -- over vast distances and enormous spans of cosmic time. Based on this teleological hypothesis we postulate that two distinct classes of cosmic viruses (cosmic viral genes) are involved in accounting for the facts relating to the evolution of life.

  20. Co-evolution of Mycobacterium tuberculosis and Homo sapiens

    PubMed Central

    Brites, Daniela; Gagneux, Sebastien

    2015-01-01

    The causative agent of human tuberculosis (TB), Mycobacterium tuberculosis, is an obligate pathogen that evolved to exclusively persist in human populations. For M. tuberculosis to transmit from person to person, it has to cause pulmonary disease. Therefore, M. tuberculosis virulence has likely been a significant determinant of the association between M. tuberculosis and humans. Indeed, the evolutionary success of some M. tuberculosis genotypes seems at least partially attributable to their increased virulence. The latter possibly evolved as a consequence of human demographic expansions. If co-evolution occurred, humans would have counteracted to minimize the deleterious effects of M. tuberculosis virulence. The fact that human resistance to infection has a strong genetic basis is a likely consequence of such a counter-response. The genetic architecture underlying human resistance to M. tuberculosis remains largely elusive. However, interactions between human genetic polymorphisms and M. tuberculosis genotypes have been reported. Such interactions are consistent with local adaptation and allow for a better understanding of protective immunity in TB. Future ‘genome-to-genome’ studies, in which locally associated human and M. tuberculosis genotypes are interrogated in conjunction, will help identify new protective antigens for the development of better TB vaccines. PMID:25703549

  1. Do primates see the solitaire illusion differently? A comparative assessment of humans (Homo sapiens), chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes), rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta), and capuchin monkeys (Cebus apella).

    PubMed

    Agrillo, Christian; Parrish, Audrey E; Beran, Michael J

    2014-11-01

    An important question in comparative psychology is whether human and nonhuman animals share similar principles of perceptual organization. Despite much empirical research, no firm conclusion has been drawn. The Solitaire illusion is a numerosity illusion in humans that occurs when one misperceives the relative number of 2 types of items presented in intermingled sets. To date, no study has investigated whether nonhuman animals perceive the Solitaire illusion as humans do. Here, we compared the perception of the Solitaire illusion in human and nonhuman primates in 3 experiments. We first observed (Experiment 1) the spontaneous behavior of chimpanzees when presented with 2 arrays composed of a different number of preferred and nonpreferred food items. In probe trials, preferred items were presented in the Solitaire pattern in 2 different spatial arrangements (either clustered centrally or distributed on the perimeter). Chimpanzees did not show any misperception of quantity in the Solitaire pattern. Next, humans, chimpanzees, rhesus monkeys, and capuchin monkeys underwent the same testing of relative quantity judgments in a computerized task that also presented the Solitaire illusion (Experiments 2 and 3). Unlike humans, chimpanzees did not appear to perceive the illusion, in agreement with Experiment 1. The performance of rhesus monkeys and capuchin monkeys was also different from that of humans, but was slightly more indicative of a potential Solitaire illusion. On the whole, our results suggest a potential discontinuity in the visual mechanisms underlying the Solitaire illusion between human and nonhuman primates.

  2. Direct and indirect reputation formation in nonhuman great apes (Pan paniscus, Pan troglodytes, Gorilla gorilla, Pongo pygmaeus) and human children (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    Herrmann, Esther; Keupp, Stefanie; Hare, Brian; Vaish, Amrisha; Tomasello, Michael

    2013-02-01

    Humans make decisions about when and with whom to cooperate based on their reputations. People either learn about others by direct interaction or by observing third-party interactions or gossip. An important question is whether other animal species, especially our closest living relatives, the nonhuman great apes, also form reputations of others. In Study 1, chimpanzees, bonobos, orangutans, and 2.5-year-old human children experienced a nice experimenter who tried to give food/toys to the subject and a mean experimenter who interrupted the food/toy giving. In studies 2 and 3, nonhuman great apes and human children could only passively observe a similar interaction, in which a nice experimenter and a mean experimenter interacted with a third party. Orangutans and 2.5-year-old human children preferred to approach the nice experimenter rather than the mean one after having directly experienced their respective behaviors. Orangutans, chimpanzees, and 2.5-year-old human children also took into account experimenter actions toward third parties in forming reputations. These studies show that the human ability to form direct and indirect reputation judgment is already present in young children and shared with at least some of the other great apes. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved

  3. Stereology of the Thyroid Gland in Indo-Pacific Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) in Comparison with Human (Homo sapiens): Quantitative and Functional Implications

    PubMed Central

    Kot, Brian Chin Wing; Lau, Thomas Yue Huen; Cheng, Sammy Chi Him

    2013-01-01

    The mammalian thyroid gland maintains basal metabolism in tissues for optimal function. Determining thyroid volume is important in assessing growth and involution. Volume estimation is also important in stereological studies. Direct measurements of colloid volume and nuclear-to-cytoplasmic ratio of the follicular cells may provide important information about thyroid gland function such as hormone storage and secretion, which helps understand the changes at morphological and functional levels. The present study determined the colloid volume using simple stereological principle and the nuclear-to-cytoplasmic ratio of 4 Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins and 2 human thyroid glands. In both dolphin and human thyroid glands, the size of the follicles tended to be quite variable. The distribution of large and small follicles within the thyroid gland was also found to be random in both the dolphin and human thyroid gland; however, the size of follicles appeared to decrease as a function of increasing age in the dolphin thyroid gland. The mean colloid volume of the dolphin thyroid gland and human thyroid gland was 1.22×105 µm3 and 7.02×105 µm3 respectively. The dolphin and human subjects had a significant difference in the mean colloid volume. The mean N/C ratio of the dolphin thyroid follicular epithelia and human follicular epithelia was 0.50 and 0.64 respectively. The dolphin and human subjects had a significant difference in the mean N/C ratio. This information contributes to understanding dolphin thyroid physiology and its structural adaptations to meet the physical demands of the aquatic environment, and aids with ultrasonography and corrective therapy in live subjects. PMID:23690927

  4. Stereology of the thyroid gland in Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) in comparison with human (Homo sapiens): quantitative and functional implications.

    PubMed

    Kot, Brian Chin Wing; Lau, Thomas Yue Huen; Cheng, Sammy Chi Him

    2013-01-01

    The mammalian thyroid gland maintains basal metabolism in tissues for optimal function. Determining thyroid volume is important in assessing growth and involution. Volume estimation is also important in stereological studies. Direct measurements of colloid volume and nuclear-to-cytoplasmic ratio of the follicular cells may provide important information about thyroid gland function such as hormone storage and secretion, which helps understand the changes at morphological and functional levels. The present study determined the colloid volume using simple stereological principle and the nuclear-to-cytoplasmic ratio of 4 Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins and 2 human thyroid glands. In both dolphin and human thyroid glands, the size of the follicles tended to be quite variable. The distribution of large and small follicles within the thyroid gland was also found to be random in both the dolphin and human thyroid gland; however, the size of follicles appeared to decrease as a function of increasing age in the dolphin thyroid gland. The mean colloid volume of the dolphin thyroid gland and human thyroid gland was 1.22×10(5) µm(3) and 7.02×10(5) µm(3) respectively. The dolphin and human subjects had a significant difference in the mean colloid volume. The mean N/C ratio of the dolphin thyroid follicular epithelia and human follicular epithelia was 0.50 and 0.64 respectively. The dolphin and human subjects had a significant difference in the mean N/C ratio. This information contributes to understanding dolphin thyroid physiology and its structural adaptations to meet the physical demands of the aquatic environment, and aids with ultrasonography and corrective therapy in live subjects.

  5. The Arrival of Homo sapiens into the Southern Cone at 14,000 Years Ago

    PubMed Central

    Politis, Gustavo G.; Gutiérrez, María A.; Blasi, Adriana

    2016-01-01

    The Arroyo Seco 2 site contains a rich archaeological record, exceptional for South America, to explain the expansion of Homo sapiens into the Americas and their interaction with extinct Pleistocene mammals. The following paper provides a detailed overview of material remains found in the earliest cultural episodes at this multi-component site, dated between ca. 12,170 14C yrs B.P. (ca. 14,064 cal yrs B.P.) and 11,180 14C yrs B.P. (ca. 13,068 cal yrs B.P.). Evidence of early occupations includes the presence of lithic tools, a concentration of Pleistocene species remains, human-induced fractured animal bones, and a selection of skeletal parts of extinct fauna. The occurrence of hunter-gatherers in the Southern Cone at ca. 14,000 cal yrs B.P. is added to the growing list of American sites that indicate a human occupation earlier than the Clovis dispersal episode, but posterior to the onset of the deglaciation of the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) in the North America. PMID:27683248

  6. The processing of positional information in a two-item sequence limits the emergence of symmetry in baboons (Papio papio), but not in humans (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    Fagot, Joël; Malassis, Raphaelle; Medam, Tiphaine

    2017-08-04

    When trained to associate Stimulus A to Stimulus B, humans can derive the untrained symmetrical B to A relation while nonhuman animals have much more difficulties. Urcuioli (2008, Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior, 90, 257--282; 2015, Conductal, 3, 4--25) proposed that the apparent difficulty of animals in symmetry testing reflects their double encoding of the information on the stimuli (identity and relation) and their positional (i.e., spatial and temporal/ordinal) characteristics. This comparative study tested the emergence of symmetry in humans and baboons in a task in which the position of the stimuli was manipulated independently of their relation. Humans and baboons initially learned to associate pairs of visual shapes on a touch screen in a specific order. Three pairs of (A-B, C-D, and E-F) stimuli were used in training. After training, the two species were tested with the B-A, F-C, and E-D pairs. The B-A pairs preserved the association initially learned with A-B but reversed the positional information relative to training. The F-C pair neither preserved the association nor the positional information of the training pairs, and positional information were the only cues preserved in the E-D pair. Humans showed a response time advantage for B-A, suggesting symmetry, but also for E-D, suggesting that they also process positional information. In baboons, the advantage was found only for E-D, suggesting that they only process positional information. These results confirm that the processing of stimulus pairs differ between nonhuman animals to humans.

  7. Cryptosporidium hominis n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Cryptosporidiidae) from Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Morgan-Ryan, Una M; Fall, Abbie; Ward, Lucy A; Hijjawi, Nawal; Sulaiman, Irshad; Fayer, Ronald; Thompson, R C Andrew; Olson, M; Lal, Altaf; Xiao, Lihua

    2002-01-01

    The structure and infectivity of the oocysts of a new species of Cryptosporidium from the feces of humans are described. Oocysts are structurally indistinguishable from those of Cryptosporidium parvum. Oocysts of the new species are passed fully sporulated, lack sporocysts. and measure 4.4-5.4 microm (mean = 4.86) x 4.4-5.9 microm (mean = 5.2 microm) with a length to width ratio 1.0-1.09 (mean 1.07) (n = 100). Oocysts were not infectious for ARC Swiss mice, nude mice. Wistar rat pups, puppies, kittens or calves, but were infectious to neonatal gnotobiotic pigs. Pathogenicity studies in the gnotobiotic pig model revealed significant differences in parasite-associated lesion distribution (P = 0.005 to P = 0.02) and intensity of infection (P = 0.04) between C. parvum and this newly described species from humans. In vitro cultivation studies have also revealed growth differences between the two species. Multi-locus analysis of numerous unlinked loci, including a preliminary sequence scan of the entire genome demonstrated this species to be distinct from C. parvum and also demonstrated a lack of recombination, providing further support for its species status. Based on biological and molecular data, this Cryptosporidium infecting the intestine of humans is proposed to be a new species Cryptosporidium hominis n. sp.

  8. Transfer between local and global processing levels by pigeons (Columba livia) and humans (Homo sapiens) in exemplar- and rule-based categorization tasks.

    PubMed

    Aust, Ulrike; Braunöder, Elisabeth

    2015-02-01

    The present experiment investigated pigeons' and humans' processing styles-local or global-in an exemplar-based visual categorization task in which category membership of every stimulus had to be learned individually, and in a rule-based task in which category membership was defined by a perceptual rule. Group Intact was trained with the original pictures (providing both intact local and global information), Group Scrambled was trained with scrambled versions of the same pictures (impairing global information), and Group Blurred was trained with blurred versions (impairing local information). Subsequently, all subjects were tested for transfer to the 2 untrained presentation modes. Humans outperformed pigeons regarding learning speed and accuracy as well as transfer performance and showed good learning irrespective of group assignment, whereas the pigeons of Group Blurred needed longer to learn the training tasks than the pigeons of Groups Intact and Scrambled. Also, whereas humans generalized equally well to any novel presentation mode, pigeons' transfer from and to blurred stimuli was impaired. Both species showed faster learning and, for the most part, better transfer in the rule-based than in the exemplar-based task, but there was no evidence of the used processing mode depending on the type of task (exemplar- or rule-based). Whereas pigeons relied on local information throughout, humans did not show a preference for either processing level. Additional tests with grayscale versions of the training stimuli, with versions that were both blurred and scrambled, and with novel instances of the rule-based task confirmed and further extended these findings.

  9. Variability in first Homo: Analysis of the ratio between the skulls KNM-ER 1470 and KNM-ER 1813 based on sexual dimorphism of Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Guimarães, S W Ferreira; Lorenzo, C

    2015-10-01

    The study of the skulls KNM-ER 1470 and KNM-ER 1813, considered the first members of the genus Homo, has raised some debates. While some of researchers maintain that there is only one species, another group argues that there are two species. On one hand these two fossils are still taxonomically undetermined, on the other hand they bring up another problem related to the existence of a genus with multiple species since its beginning, according to the last discoveries. In this paper, we have compared the size ratio between these fossils with ratios established in populations of Homo sapiens, in order to know if they fit into the human standard, considering intra-sexual and inter-sexual variation. Results help to establish whether these fossils correspond to different species or their differences could be related to sexual dimorphism within a single species.

  10. Looking Ahead? Computerized Maze Task Performance by Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes), Rhesus Monkeys (Macaca mulatta), Capuchin Monkeys (Cebus apella), and Human Children (Homo sapiens)

    PubMed Central

    Beran, Michael J.; Parrish, Audrey E.; Futch, Sara E.; Evans, Theodore A.; Perdue, Bonnie M.

    2015-01-01

    Human and nonhuman primates are not mentally constrained to the present. They can remember the past and – at least to an extent – anticipate the future. Anticipation of the future ranges from long-term prospection such as planning for retirement to more short-term future oriented cognition such as planning a route through a maze. Here we tested a great ape species (chimpanzees), an Old World monkey species (rhesus macaques) a New World monkey species (capuchin monkeys) and human children on a computerized maze task. All subjects had to move a cursor through a maze to reach a goal at the bottom of the screen. For best performance on the task, subjects had to “plan ahead” to the end of the maze to move the cursor in the correct direction, avoid traps, and reverse directions if necessary. Mazes varied in difficulty. Chimpanzees were better than both monkey species, and monkeys showed a particular deficit when moving away from the goal or changing directions was required. Children showed a similar pattern to monkeys regarding the effects of reversals and moves away from the goal, but their overall performance in terms of correct maze completion was similar to the chimpanzees. The results highlight similarities as well as differences in planning across species and the role that inhibitory control may play in future oriented cognition in primates. PMID:25798793

  11. [The emergence of obstetrical mechanism: From Lucy to Homo sapiens].

    PubMed

    Frémondière, P; Thollon, L; Marchal, F

    2017-03-01

    The evolutionary history of modern birth mechanism is now a renewed interest in obstetrical papers. The purpose of this work is to review the literature in paleo-obstetrical field. Our analysis focuses on paleo-obstetrical hypothesis, from 1960 to the present day, based on the reconstruction of fossil pelvis. Indeed, these pelvic reconstructions usually provide an opportunity to make an obstetrical assumption in our ancestors. In this analysis, we show that modern birth mechanism takes place during the emergence of our genus 2 million years ago. References are made to human specificities related to obstetrical mechanism: exclusive bipedalism, increase of brain size at birth, metabolic cost of the pregnancy and deep trophoblastic implantation. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  12. Transfer of spatial search between environments in human adults and young children (Homo sapiens): implications for representation of local geometry by spatial systems.

    PubMed

    Lew, Adina R; Usherwood, Barrie; Fragkioudaki, Frantzeska; Koukoumi, Varvara; Smith, Shamus P; Austen, Joe M; McGregor, Anthony

    2014-04-01

    Whether animals represent environmental geometry in a global and/or local way has been the subject of recent debate. We applied a transfer of search paradigm between rectangular- and kite-shaped arenas to examine the performance of human adults (using virtual environments) and children of 2.5-3.5 years (using real arenas). Adults showed robust transfer to a congruent corner in a kite-shaped arena, following training in a rectangular-shaped arena in two paradigms modeled on those used with rats and young children respectively. In contrast, the children showed no evidence of transfer of search, despite above chance performance in the rectangular arena, and above chance performance in a study where search occurred in the kite arena only. The pattern of findings suggests global aspects of environmental geometry may be used to re-establish heading, and that the matching of elements of local geometry in new global contexts may be an advanced developmental achievement.

  13. Preliminary Study to Test the Feasibility of Sex Identification of Human (Homo sapiens) Bones Based on Differences in Elemental Profiles Determined by Handheld X-ray Fluorescence.

    PubMed

    Nganvongpanit, Korakot; Buddhachat, Kittisak; Brown, Janine L; Klinhom, Sarisa; Pitakarnnop, Tanita; Mahakkanukrauh, Pasuk

    2016-09-01

    Sex assignment of human remains is a crucial step in forensic anthropological studies. The aim of this study was to examine elemental differences between male and female bones using X-ray fluorescence (XRF) and determine if elemental profiling could be used for sex discrimination. Cranium, humerus, and os coxae of 60 skeletons (30 male, 30 female) from the Chiang Mai University Skeletal Collection were scanned by XRF and differences in elemental profiles between male and female bones determined using discriminant analysis. In the cranium, three elements (S, Ca, Pb) were significantly higher in males and five elements (Si, Mn, Fe, Zn, Ag) plus light elements (atomic number lower than 12) were higher in females. In humerus and os coxae, nine elements were significantly higher in male and one element was higher in female samples. The accuracy rate for sex estimation was 60, 63, and 61 % for cranium, humerus, and os coxae, respectively, and 67 % when data for all three bones were combined. We conclude that there are sex differences in bone elemental profiles; however, the accuracy of XRF analyses for discriminating between male and female samples was low compared to standard morphometric and molecular methods. XRF could be used on small samples that cannot be sexed by traditional morphological methods, but more work is needed to increase the power of this technique for gender assignment.

  14. Comparing the performances of apes (Gorilla gorilla, Pan troglodytes, Pongo pygmaeus) and human children (Homo sapiens) in the floating peanut task.

    PubMed

    Hanus, Daniel; Mendes, Natacha; Tennie, Claudio; Call, Josep

    2011-01-01

    Recently, Mendes et al. [1] described the use of a liquid tool (water) in captive orangutans. Here, we tested chimpanzees and gorillas for the first time with the same "floating peanut task." None of the subjects solved the task. In order to better understand the cognitive demands of the task, we further tested other populations of chimpanzees and orangutans with the variation of the peanut initially floating or not. Twenty percent of the chimpanzees but none of the orangutans were successful. Additional controls revealed that successful subjects added water only if it was necessary to obtain the nut. Another experiment was conducted to investigate the reason for the differences in performance between the unsuccessful (Experiment 1) and the successful (Experiment 2) chimpanzee populations. We found suggestive evidence for the view that functional fixedness might have impaired the chimpanzees' strategies in the first experiment. Finally, we tested how human children of different age classes perform in an analogous experimental setting. Within the oldest group (8 years), 58 percent of the children solved the problem, whereas in the youngest group (4 years), only 8 percent were able to find the solution.

  15. Humans (Homo sapiens) judge the emotional content of piglet (Sus scrofa domestica) calls based on simple acoustic parameters, not personality, empathy, nor attitude toward animals.

    PubMed

    Maruščáková, Iva L; Linhart, Pavel; Ratcliffe, Victoria F; Tallet, Céline; Reby, David; Špinka, Marek

    2015-05-01

    The vocal expression of emotion is likely driven by shared physiological principles among species. However, which acoustic features promote decoding of emotional state and how the decoding is affected by their listener's psychology remain poorly understood. Here we tested how acoustic features of piglet vocalizations interact with psychological profiles of human listeners to affect judgments of emotional content of heterospecific vocalizations. We played back 48 piglet call sequences recorded in four different contexts (castration, isolation, reunion, nursing) to 60 listeners. Listeners judged the emotional intensity and valence of the recordings and were further asked to attribute a context of emission from four proposed contexts. Furthermore, listeners completed a series of questionnaires assessing their personality (NEO-FFI personality inventory), empathy [Interpersonal Reactivity Index (IRI)] and attitudes to animals (Animal Attitudes Scale). None of the listeners' psychological traits affected the judgments. On the contrary, acoustic properties of recordings had a substantial effect on ratings. Recordings were rated as more intense with increasing pitch (mean fundamental frequency) and increasing proportion of vocalized sound within each stimulus recording and more negative with increasing pitch and increasing duration of the calls within the recording. More complex acoustic properties (jitter, harmonic-to-noise ratio, and presence of subharmonics) did not seem to affect the judgments. The probability of correct context recognition correlated positively with the assessed emotion intensity for castration and reunion calls, and negatively for nursing calls. In conclusion, listeners judged emotions from pig calls using simple acoustic properties and the perceived emotional intensity might guide the identification of the context.

  16. Pair-bonding, romantic love, and evolution: the curious case of Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Fletcher, Garth J O; Simpson, Jeffry A; Campbell, Lorne; Overall, Nickola C

    2015-01-01

    This article evaluates a thesis containing three interconnected propositions. First, romantic love is a "commitment device" for motivating pair-bonding in humans. Second, pair-bonding facilitated the idiosyncratic life history of hominins, helping to provide the massive investment required to rear children. Third, managing long-term pair bonds (along with family relationships) facilitated the evolution of social intelligence and cooperative skills. We evaluate this thesis by integrating evidence from a broad range of scientific disciplines. First, consistent with the claim that romantic love is an evolved commitment device, our review suggests that it is universal; suppresses mate-search mechanisms; has specific behavioral, hormonal, and neuropsychological signatures; and is linked to better health and survival. Second, we consider challenges to this thesis posed by the existence of arranged marriage, polygyny, divorce, and infidelity. Third, we show how the intimate relationship mind seems to be built to regulate and monitor relationships. Fourth, we review comparative evidence concerning links among mating systems, reproductive biology, and brain size. Finally, we discuss evidence regarding the evolutionary timing of shifts to pair-bonding in hominins. We conclude there is interdisciplinary support for the claim that romantic love and pair-bonding, along with alloparenting, played critical roles in the evolution of Homo sapiens.

  17. LocDB: experimental annotations of localization for Homo sapiens and Arabidopsis thaliana.

    PubMed

    Rastogi, Shruti; Rost, Burkhard

    2011-01-01

    LocDB is a manually curated database with experimental annotations for the subcellular localizations of proteins in Homo sapiens (HS, human) and Arabidopsis thaliana (AT, thale cress). Currently, it contains entries for 19,604 UniProt proteins (HS: 13,342; AT: 6262). Each database entry contains the experimentally derived localization in Gene Ontology (GO) terminology, the experimental annotation of localization, localization predictions by state-of-the-art methods and, where available, the type of experimental information. LocDB is searchable by keyword, protein name and subcellular compartment, as well as by identifiers from UniProt, Ensembl and TAIR resources. In comparison to other public databases, LocDB as a resource adds about 10,000 experimental localization annotations for HS proteins and ∼900 for AS proteins. Over 40% of the proteins in LocDB have multiple localization annotations providing a better platform for development of new multiple localization prediction methods with higher coverage and accuracy. Links to all referenced databases are provided. LocDB will be updated regularly by our group (available at: http://www.rostlab.org/services/locDB).

  18. Forearm articular proportions and the antebrachial index in Homo sapiens, Australopithecus afarensis and the great apes.

    PubMed

    Williams, Frank L'Engle; Cunningham, Deborah L; Amaral, Lia Q

    2015-12-01

    When hominin bipedality evolved, the forearms were free to adopt nonlocomotor tasks which may have resulted in changes to the articular surfaces of the ulna and the relative lengths of the forearm bones. Similarly, sex differences in forearm proportions may be more likely to emerge in bipeds than in the great apes given the locomotor constraints in Gorilla, Pan and Pongo. To test these assumptions, ulnar articular proportions and the antebrachial index (radius length/ulna length) in Homo sapiens (n=51), Gorilla gorilla (n=88), Pan troglodytes (n=49), Pongo pygmaeus (n=36) and Australopithecus afarensis A.L. 288-1 and A.L. 438-1 are compared. Intercept-adjusted ratios are used to control for size and minimize the effects of allometry. Canonical scores axes show that the proximally broad and elongated trochlear notch with respect to size in H. sapiens and A. afarensis is largely distinct from G. gorilla, P. troglodytes and P. pygmaeus. A cluster analysis of scaled ulnar articular dimensions groups H. sapiens males with A.L. 438-1 ulna length estimates, while one A.L. 288-1 ulna length estimate groups with Pan and another clusters most closely with H. sapiens, G. gorilla and A.L. 438-1. The relatively low antebrachial index characterizing H. sapiens and non-outlier estimates of A.L. 288-1 and A.L. 438-1 differs from those of the great apes. Unique sex differences in H. sapiens suggest a link between bipedality and forearm functional morphology. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  19. The genetic legacy of Paleolithic Homo sapiens sapiens in extant Europeans: a Y chromosome perspective.

    PubMed

    Semino, O; Passarino, G; Oefner, P J; Lin, A A; Arbuzova, S; Beckman, L E; De Benedictis, G; Francalacci, P; Kouvatsi, A; Limborska, S; Marcikiae, M; Mika, A; Mika, B; Primorac, D; Santachiara-Benerecetti, A S; Cavalli-Sforza, L L; Underhill, P A

    2000-11-10

    A genetic perspective of human history in Europe was derived from 22 binary markers of the nonrecombining Y chromosome (NRY). Ten lineages account for >95% of the 1007 European Y chromosomes studied. Geographic distribution and age estimates of alleles are compatible with two Paleolithic and one Neolithic migratory episode that have contributed to the modern European gene pool. A significant correlation between the NRY haplotype data and principal components based on 95 protein markers was observed, indicating the effectiveness of NRY binary polymorphisms in the characterization of human population composition and history.

  20. Genetic evidence of an early exit of Homo sapiens sapiens from Africa through eastern Africa.

    PubMed

    Quintana-Murci, L; Semino, O; Bandelt, H J; Passarino, G; McElreavey, K; Santachiara-Benerecetti, A S

    1999-12-01

    The out-of-Africa scenario has hitherto provided little evidence for the precise route by which modern humans left Africa. Two major routes of dispersal have been hypothesized: one through North Africa into the Levant, documented by fossil remains, and one through Ethiopia along South Asia, for which little, if any, evidence exists. Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) can be used to trace maternal ancestry. The geographic distribution and variation of mtDNAs can be highly informative in defining potential range expansions and migration routes in the distant past. The mitochondrial haplogroup M, first regarded as an ancient marker of East-Asian origin, has been found at high frequency in India and Ethiopia, raising the question of its origin. (A haplogroup is a group of haplotypes that share some sequence variations.) Its variation and geographical distribution suggest that Asian haplogroup M separated from eastern-African haplogroup M more than 50,000 years ago. Two other variants (489C and 10873C) also support a single origin of haplogroup M in Africa. These findings, together with the virtual absence of haplogroup M in the Levant and its high frequency in the South-Arabian peninsula, render M the first genetic indicator for the hypothesized exit route from Africa through eastern Africa/western India. This was possibly the only successful early dispersal event of modern humans out of Africa.

  1. Genetic characterization of general transcription factors TFIIF and TFIIB of Homo sapiens sapiens.

    PubMed

    Purrello, M; Di Pietro, C; Rapisarda, A; Mirabile, E; Motta, S; Sichel, G; Grzeschik, K H

    1995-01-01

    Analysis of loci GTF2F1 and GTF2B, encoding Rap 74 (a subunit of TFIIF) and TFIIB, respectively, showed that they are present in a single copy in the human genome and are localized at 19p13.3 and 1p22, respectively. By using as probe a cDNA for Rap 30 (the other subunit of TFIIF), we localized the GTF2F2 locus to 13q14; the same probe also detected a cross-hybridizing sequence at 4q31 whose functional importance remains to be elucidated. These data and those previously published by our group demonstrate that genes coding for class II general transcription factors with reported sequence similarity to bacterial sigma proteins are scattered in different regions of the human genome, with no evidence of clustering. This dispersion and the identification of homologs of both TBP and TFIIB in Archaea suggest an early evolutionary origin of the general transcription apparatus of contemporary eukaryotes.

  2. Earliest evidence for the structure of Homo sapiens populations in Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scerri, Eleanor M. L.; Drake, Nick A.; Jennings, Richard; Groucutt, Huw S.

    2014-10-01

    Understanding the structure and variation of Homo sapiens populations in Africa is critical for interpreting multiproxy evidence of their subsequent dispersals into Eurasia. However, there is no consensus on early H. sapiens demographic structure, or its effects on intra-African dispersals. Here, we show how a patchwork of ecological corridors and bottlenecks triggered a successive budding of populations across the Sahara. Using a temporally and spatially explicit palaeoenvironmental model, we found that the Sahara was not uniformly ameliorated between ∼130 and 75 thousand years ago (ka), as has been stated. Model integration with multivariate analyses of corresponding stone tools then revealed several spatially defined technological clusters which correlated with distinct palaeobiomes. Similarities between technological clusters were such that they decreased with distance except where connected by palaeohydrological networks. These results indicate that populations at the Eurasian gateway were strongly structured, which has implications for refining the demographic parameters of dispersals out of Africa.

  3. HS3D, A Dataset of Homo Sapiens Splice Regions, and its Extraction Procedure from a Major Public Database

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pollastro, Pasquale; Rampone, Salvatore

    The aim of this work is to describe a cleaning procedure of GenBank data, producing material to train and to assess the prediction accuracy of computational approaches for gene characterization. A procedure (GenBank2HS3D) has been defined, producing a dataset (HS3D - Homo Sapiens Splice Sites Dataset) of Homo Sapiens Splice regions extracted from GenBank (Rel.123 at this time). It selects, from the complete GenBank Primate Division, entries of Human Nuclear DNA according with several assessed criteria; then it extracts exons and introns from these entries (actually 4523 + 3802). Donor and acceptor sites are then extracted as windows of 140 nucleotides around each splice site (3799 + 3799). After discarding windows not including canonical GT-AG junctions (65 + 74), including insufficient data (not enough material for a 140 nucleotide window) (686 + 589), including not AGCT bases (29 + 30), and redundant (218 + 226), the remaining windows (2796 + 2880) are reported in the dataset. Finally, windows of false splice sites are selected by searching canonical GT-AG pairs in not splicing positions (271 937 + 332 296). The false sites in a range +/- 60 from a true splice site are marked as proximal. HS3D, release 1.2 at this time, is available at the Web server of the University of Sannio: http://www.sci.unisannio.it/docenti/rampone/.

  4. Dental size reduction in Indonesian Homo erectus: Implications for the PU-198 premolar and the appearance of Homo sapiens on Java.

    PubMed

    Polanski, Joshua M; Marsh, Hannah E; Maddux, Scott D

    2016-01-01

    The recent recovery of a hominin maxillary third premolar, PU-198, within the faunal collections from Punung Cave (East Java) has led to assertions that Homo sapiens appeared on Java between 143,000 and 115,000 years ago. The taxonomic assignment of PU-198 to H. sapiens was based predominantly on the small size of the specimen, following an analysis which found little to no overlap in premolar size between Homo erectus and terminal Pleistocene/Holocene H. sapiens. Here, we re-evaluate the use of size in the taxonomic assignment of PU-198 in light of 1) new buccolingual and mesiodistal measurements taken on the fossil, 2) comparisons to a larger sample of H. erectus and H. sapiens maxillary third premolars, and 3) evidence of a diachronic trend in post-canine dental size reduction among Javan H. erectus. Our results demonstrate PU-198 to be slightly larger than previously suggested, reveal substantial overlap in premolar size between H. erectus and H. sapiens, and indicate a statistically significant reduction in premolar size between early and late Javan H. erectus. Our findings cast doubt on the assignment of PU-198 to H. sapiens, and accordingly, question the appearance of H. sapiens on Java between 143,000 and 115,000 years ago. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Emergence of a Homo sapiens-specific gene family and chromosome 16p11.2 CNV susceptibility.

    PubMed

    Nuttle, Xander; Giannuzzi, Giuliana; Duyzend, Michael H; Schraiber, Joshua G; Narvaiza, Iñigo; Sudmant, Peter H; Penn, Osnat; Chiatante, Giorgia; Malig, Maika; Huddleston, John; Benner, Chris; Camponeschi, Francesca; Ciofi-Baffoni, Simone; Stessman, Holly A F; Marchetto, Maria C N; Denman, Laura; Harshman, Lana; Baker, Carl; Raja, Archana; Penewit, Kelsi; Janke, Nicolette; Tang, W Joyce; Ventura, Mario; Banci, Lucia; Antonacci, Francesca; Akey, Joshua M; Amemiya, Chris T; Gage, Fred H; Reymond, Alexandre; Eichler, Evan E

    2016-08-11

    Genetic differences that specify unique aspects of human evolution have typically been identified by comparative analyses between the genomes of humans and closely related primates, including more recently the genomes of archaic hominins. Not all regions of the genome, however, are equally amenable to such study. Recurrent copy number variation (CNV) at chromosome 16p11.2 accounts for approximately 1% of cases of autism and is mediated by a complex set of segmental duplications, many of which arose recently during human evolution. Here we reconstruct the evolutionary history of the locus and identify bolA family member 2 (BOLA2) as a gene duplicated exclusively in Homo sapiens. We estimate that a 95-kilobase-pair segment containing BOLA2 duplicated across the critical region approximately 282 thousand years ago (ka), one of the latest among a series of genomic changes that dramatically restructured the locus during hominid evolution. All humans examined carried one or more copies of the duplication, which nearly fixed early in the human lineage--a pattern unlikely to have arisen so rapidly in the absence of selection (P < 0.0097). We show that the duplication of BOLA2 led to a novel, human-specific in-frame fusion transcript and that BOLA2 copy number correlates with both RNA expression (r = 0.36) and protein level (r = 0.65), with the greatest expression difference between human and chimpanzee in experimentally derived stem cells. Analyses of 152 patients carrying a chromosome 16p11. rearrangement show that more than 96% of breakpoints occur within the H. sapiens-specific duplication. In summary, the duplicative transposition of BOLA2 at the root of the H. sapiens lineage about 282 ka simultaneously increased copy number of a gene associated with iron homeostasis and predisposed our species to recurrent rearrangements associated with disease.

  6. Before the Emergence of Homo sapiens: Overview on the Early-to-Middle Pleistocene Fossil Record (with a Proposal about Homo heidelbergensis at the subspecific level)

    PubMed Central

    Manzi, Giorgio

    2011-01-01

    The origin of H. sapiens has deep roots, which include two crucial nodes: (1) the emergence and diffusion of the last common ancestor of later Homo (in the Early Pleistocene) and (2) the tempo and mode of the appearance of distinct evolutionary lineages (in the Middle Pleistocene). The window between 1,000 and 500 thousand years before present appears of crucial importance, including the generation of a new and more encephalised kind of humanity, referred to by many authors as H. heidelbergensis. This species greatly diversified during the Middle Pleistocene up to the formation of new variants (i.e., incipient species) that, eventually, led to the allopatric speciation of H. neanderthalensis and H. sapiens. The special case furnished by the calvarium found near Ceprano (Italy), dated to 430–385 ka, offers the opportunity to investigate this matter from an original perspective. It is proposed to separate the hypodigm of a single, widespread, and polymorphic human taxon of the Middle Pleistocene into distinct subspecies (i.e., incipient species). The ancestral one should be H. heidelbergensis, including specimens such as Ceprano and the mandible from Mauer. PMID:21716742

  7. Before the Emergence of Homo sapiens: Overview on the Early-to-Middle Pleistocene Fossil Record (with a Proposal about Homo heidelbergensis at the subspecific level).

    PubMed

    Manzi, Giorgio

    2011-01-01

    The origin of H. sapiens has deep roots, which include two crucial nodes: (1) the emergence and diffusion of the last common ancestor of later Homo (in the Early Pleistocene) and (2) the tempo and mode of the appearance of distinct evolutionary lineages (in the Middle Pleistocene). The window between 1,000 and 500 thousand years before present appears of crucial importance, including the generation of a new and more encephalised kind of humanity, referred to by many authors as H. heidelbergensis. This species greatly diversified during the Middle Pleistocene up to the formation of new variants (i.e., incipient species) that, eventually, led to the allopatric speciation of H. neanderthalensis and H. sapiens. The special case furnished by the calvarium found near Ceprano (Italy), dated to 430-385 ka, offers the opportunity to investigate this matter from an original perspective. It is proposed to separate the hypodigm of a single, widespread, and polymorphic human taxon of the Middle Pleistocene into distinct subspecies (i.e., incipient species). The ancestral one should be H. heidelbergensis, including specimens such as Ceprano and the mandible from Mauer.

  8. Similarity analysis between chromosomes of Homo sapiens and monkeys with correlation coefficient, rank correlation coefficient and cosine similarity measures

    PubMed Central

    Someswara Rao, Chinta; Viswanadha Raju, S.

    2016-01-01

    In this paper, we consider correlation coefficient, rank correlation coefficient and cosine similarity measures for evaluating similarity between Homo sapiens and monkeys. We used DNA chromosomes of genome wide genes to determine the correlation between the chromosomal content and evolutionary relationship. The similarity among the H. sapiens and monkeys is measured for a total of 210 chromosomes related to 10 species. The similarity measures of these different species show the relationship between the H. sapiens and monkey. This similarity will be helpful at theft identification, maternity identification, disease identification, etc. PMID:26981409

  9. Similarity analysis between chromosomes of Homo sapiens and monkeys with correlation coefficient, rank correlation coefficient and cosine similarity measures.

    PubMed

    Someswara Rao, Chinta; Viswanadha Raju, S

    2016-03-01

    In this paper, we consider correlation coefficient, rank correlation coefficient and cosine similarity measures for evaluating similarity between Homo sapiens and monkeys. We used DNA chromosomes of genome wide genes to determine the correlation between the chromosomal content and evolutionary relationship. The similarity among the H. sapiens and monkeys is measured for a total of 210 chromosomes related to 10 species. The similarity measures of these different species show the relationship between the H. sapiens and monkey. This similarity will be helpful at theft identification, maternity identification, disease identification, etc.

  10. From Homo Sapiens to Homo Cosmicus - Astronautics, Darwinism abd Historical Determinism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tolkowsky, G.

    Since its inception in late-nineteenth century, astronautics has been viewed as a historical outcome of human evolution as well as a future driver thereof. The history of astronautics-related, evolutionary thought reveals a tension between the Darwinian notion of natural selection and that of homocosmic predestination - be it of dialectical materialistic or theological nature. One can detect the influence of this ideological diversity on the American and Soviet space programs.

  11. Mitochondrial tRNA sequences as unusual replication origins: pathogenic implications for Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Seligmann, Hervé; Krishnan, Neeraja M; Rao, Basuthkar J

    2006-12-07

    The heavy strand of vertebrate mitochondrial genomes accumulates deaminations proportionally to the time it spends single-stranded during replication. A previous study showed that the strength of genome-wide deamination gradients originating from tRNA gene's locations increases with their capacities to form secondary structures resembling mitochondrial origins of light strand replication (OL), suggesting an alternative function for tRNA sequences. We hypothesize that this function is frequently pathogenic for those tRNA genes that normally do not form OL-like structures, because this could cause excess mutations in genome regions unadapted to tolerate them. In human mitochondrial genomes, pathogenic tRNA variants usually form less OL-like structures than non-pathogenic ones in cases where the normal non-pathogenic tRNA variant can function as OL, as evolutionary analyses reveal. For tRNAs lacking the putative OL-like functioning capacity, pathogenic variants form more OL-like secondary structures, particularly structures that might invoke bi-directional replication (true for 14 among 21 tRNA species, p<0.05, sign test; significantly at p<0.05 (1 tailed test) for 7 tRNA species), but not more unidirectional replication invoking structures. Accounting for the functional cloverleaf-like structure-forming capacities of tRNAs yields similar results. Rare, non-pathogenic tRNA mutants tend to form more OL-like structures than the common, non-pathogenic ones, suggesting weak directional selection also among non-pathogenic variants. The duration spent single stranded by a region of the heavy strand (D(ssH)) during replication, estimated by integrating over all regions that can function as OL in Homo sapiens mitochondrial genomes, increases with distance of that region from the Dloop. This suggests convergence of single-strandedness during replication and transcription, and explains conserved locations of tRNA species in mitochondrial genomes and bacterial operons. These

  12. Two conformational states in the crystal structure of the Homo sapiens cytoplasmic ribosomal decoding A site.

    PubMed

    Kondo, Jiro; Urzhumtsev, Alexandre; Westhof, Eric

    2006-01-01

    The decoding A site of the small ribosomal subunit is an RNA molecular switch, which monitors codon-anticodon interactions to guarantee translation fidelity. We have solved the crystal structure of an RNA fragment containing two Homo sapiens cytoplasmic A sites. Each of the two A sites presents a different conformational state. In one state, adenines A1492 and A1493 are fully bulged-out with C1409 forming a wobble-like pair to A1491. In the second state, adenines A1492 and A1493 form non-Watson-Crick pairs with C1409 and G1408, respectively while A1491 bulges out. The first state of the eukaryotic A site is, thus, basically the same as in the bacterial A site with bulging A1492 and A1493. It is the state used for recognition of the codon/anticodon complex. On the contrary, the second state of the H.sapiens cytoplasmic A site is drastically different from any of those observed for the bacterial A site without bulging A1492 and A1493.

  13. Object permanence in orangutans (Pongo pygmaeus), chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes), and children (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    Call, J

    2001-06-01

    Juvenile and adult orangutans (n = 5; Pongo pygmaeus), chimpanzees (n = 7; Pan troglodytes), and 19- and 26-month-old children (n = 24; Homo sapiens) received visible and invisible displacements. Three containers were presented forming a straight line, and a small box was used to displace a reward under them. Subjects received 3 types of displacement: single (the box visited 1 container), double adjacent (the box visited 2 contiguous containers), and double nonadjacent (the box visited 2 noncontiguous containers). All species performed at comparable levels, solving all problems except the invisible nonadjacent displacements. Visible displacements were easier than invisible, and single were easier than double displacements. In a 2nd experiment, subjects saw the baiting of either 2 adjacent or 2 nonadjacent containers with no displacements. All species selected the empty container more often when the baited containers were nonadjacent than when they were adjacent. It is hypothesized that a response bias and inhibition problem were responsible for the poor performance in nonadjacent displacements.

  14. Laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy microanalysis of trace elements in Homo sapiens teeth.

    PubMed

    Alvira, F C; Ramirez Rozzi, F; Bilmes, G M

    2010-03-01

    Two of the main items from which to retrieve data in anthropology are teeth and bones. Identification of trace elements in their composition allows valuable information to be obtained about alimentary habits and community life conditions of groups and individuals. Conventional methods used to determine the presence of trace elements require sample preparation, with partial or total destruction of the pieces, which in most cases are unique. In this work we show the possibilities of laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) as a nearly nondestructive tool in anthropology and paleontology for the measurement of the presence and distribution of trace elements in teeth. We applied LIBS to the determination of strontium and magnesium in dentin and enamel of Neolithic, middle age, and modern Homo sapiens teeth. Mg/Ca and Sr/Ca distribution maps of dentin and enamel in modern teeth were created using the data obtained. Ablation threshold fluences of dentin and enamel were also measured using the photoacoustic signal induced by laser ablation. Significant variations were found in the Mg/Ca and Sr/Ca ratios in the tooth dental tissue and between the teeth of the groups and individuals studied. These results can be useful for evolutionary anthropology studies as they can provide information regarding early nutrition, seasonality, and residential mobility.

  15. The mitogenome of a 35,000-year-old Homo sapiens from Europe supports a Palaeolithic back-migration to Africa.

    PubMed

    Hervella, M; Svensson, E M; Alberdi, A; Günther, T; Izagirre, N; Munters, A R; Alonso, S; Ioana, M; Ridiche, F; Soficaru, A; Jakobsson, M; Netea, M G; de-la-Rua, C

    2016-05-19

    After the dispersal of modern humans (Homo sapiens) Out of Africa, hominins with a similar morphology to that of present-day humans initiated the gradual demographic expansion into Eurasia. The mitogenome (33-fold coverage) of the Peştera Muierii 1 individual (PM1) from Romania (35 ky cal BP) we present in this article corresponds fully to Homo sapiens, whilst exhibiting a mosaic of morphological features related to both modern humans and Neandertals. We have identified the PM1 mitogenome as a basal haplogroup U6*, not previously found in any ancient or present-day humans. The derived U6 haplotypes are predominantly found in present-day North-Western African populations. Concomitantly, those found in Europe have been attributed to recent gene-flow from North Africa. The presence of the basal haplogroup U6* in South East Europe (Romania) at 35 ky BP confirms a Eurasian origin of the U6 mitochondrial lineage. Consequently, we propose that the PM1 lineage is an offshoot to South East Europe that can be traced to the Early Upper Paleolithic back migration from Western Asia to North Africa, during which the U6 lineage diversified, until the emergence of the present-day U6 African lineages.

  16. The mitogenome of a 35,000-year-old Homo sapiens from Europe supports a Palaeolithic back-migration to Africa

    PubMed Central

    Hervella, M.; Svensson, E. M.; Alberdi, A.; Günther, T.; Izagirre, N.; Munters, A. R.; Alonso, S.; Ioana, M.; Ridiche, F.; Soficaru, A.; Jakobsson, M.; Netea, M. G.; de-la-Rua, C.

    2016-01-01

    After the dispersal of modern humans (Homo sapiens) Out of Africa, hominins with a similar morphology to that of present-day humans initiated the gradual demographic expansion into Eurasia. The mitogenome (33-fold coverage) of the Peştera Muierii 1 individual (PM1) from Romania (35 ky cal BP) we present in this article corresponds fully to Homo sapiens, whilst exhibiting a mosaic of morphological features related to both modern humans and Neandertals. We have identified the PM1 mitogenome as a basal haplogroup U6*, not previously found in any ancient or present-day humans. The derived U6 haplotypes are predominantly found in present-day North-Western African populations. Concomitantly, those found in Europe have been attributed to recent gene-flow from North Africa. The presence of the basal haplogroup U6* in South East Europe (Romania) at 35 ky BP confirms a Eurasian origin of the U6 mitochondrial lineage. Consequently, we propose that the PM1 lineage is an offshoot to South East Europe that can be traced to the Early Upper Paleolithic back migration from Western Asia to North Africa, during which the U6 lineage diversified, until the emergence of the present-day U6 African lineages. PMID:27195518

  17. The rhizome of Reclinomonas americana, Homo sapiens, Pediculus humanus and Saccharomyces cerevisiae mitochondria

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Mitochondria are thought to have evolved from eubacteria-like endosymbionts; however, the origin of the mitochondrion remains a subject of debate. In this study, we investigated the phenomenon of chimerism in mitochondria to shed light on the origin of these organelles by determining which species played a role in their formation. We used the mitochondria of four distinct organisms, Reclinomonas americana, Homo sapiens, Saccharomyces cerevisiae and multichromosome Pediculus humanus, and attempted to identify the origin of each mitochondrial gene. Results Our results suggest that the origin of mitochondrial genes is not limited to the Rickettsiales and that the creation of these genes did not occur in a single event, but through multiple successive events. Some of these events are very old and were followed by events that are more recent and occurred through the addition of elements originating from current species. The points in time that the elements were added and the parental species of each gene in the mitochondrial genome are different to the individual species. These data constitute strong evidence that mitochondria do not have a single common ancestor but likely have numerous ancestors, including proto-Rickettsiales, proto-Rhizobiales and proto-Alphaproteobacteria, as well as current alphaproteobacterial species. The analysis of the multichromosome P. humanus mitochondrion supports this mechanism. Conclusions The most plausible scenario of the origin of the mitochondrion is that ancestors of Rickettsiales and Rhizobiales merged in a proto-eukaryotic cell approximately one billion years ago. The fusion of the Rickettsiales and Rhizobiales cells was followed by gene loss, genomic rearrangements and the addition of alphaproteobacterial elements through ancient and more recent recombination events. Each gene of each of the four studied mitochondria has a different origin, while in some cases, multichromosomes may allow for enhanced gene exchange

  18. [Annexins--proteins involved in organization and function of biological membranes--from Arabidopsis thaliana to Homo sapiens].

    PubMed

    Bandorowicz-Pikuła, Joanna

    2007-01-01

    The mini-review series presented in this issue of Postepy Biochemii is focussed on some aspects of biology of calcium- and membrane-binding proteins, annexins, ubiquitous in all eucaryotic organisms (excluding yeasts), from Arabidopsis thaliana to Homo sapiens. Annexins are encoded by twelve genes in verterbrates and by eight in higher plants. Their physiological significance is underlined by two facts: the numer of the annexin genes seems to grow during evolution and in some cell types they comprise up to 2% of total protein. In the present review the hypothesis is discussed suggesting that multiplication of annexin genes in evolution represents mechanism of organism adaptation to changes in environment. In addition, the experimental data are presented suggestive of annexins playing a crucial role in functioning of plasma membrane, such as signal transduction, ion and vesicular transport and membrane repair. The review is then followed by articlesdealing in details with participation of annexins in plant response to abiotic stress (Arabidopsis thaliana), in tissue mineralization (Gallus gallus), in exocytosis of catecholamines by PC12 cells (mammals) and in Niemann-Pick type C disease related to abnormal transport and intracellular storage of cholesterol (Homo sapiens).

  19. Foramen magnum position variation in Pan troglodytes, Plio-Pleistocene hominids, and recent Homo sapiens: implications for recognizing the earliest hominids.

    PubMed

    Ahern, James C M

    2005-07-01

    The anteroposterior position of the foramen magnum distinguishes living Homo sapiens from apes, and has been used as evidence for the hominid status of numerable fossils in the history of human paleontology. During the past decade, foramen magnum position has been cited as evidence of the hominid status of Ardipithecus and Sahelanthropus. Specifically, the basion of Ardpithecus is reported to be inline with the bicarotid chord, while the basion of Sahelanthropus is reported to both touch the biporion chord and intersect the bicarotid chord. In order to assess the effectiveness of anteroposterior foramen magnum position in distinguishing hominids from nonhominid apes, this study examined whether or not the positions of biporion and bicarotid relative to basion sufficiently distinguished Pan troglodytes from recent Homo sapiens and Plio-Pleistocene hominids. The distances from basion to the biporion chord (BSBIP) and from basion to the bicarotid chord (BSBIC) were measured on samples of chimpanzee (n = 69) and recent human (n = 42) crania and a sample of Plio-Pleistocene hominid fossils (n = 8). The data were used to test the hypothesis that BSBIP and BSBIC measurements do not sufficiently distinguish P. troglodytes from hominids. While basion to biporion (BSBIP) does not effectively distinguish P. troglodytes from Plio-Pleistocene hominids and humans when used univariately, basion to bicarotid (BSBIC), when used univariately or bivariately with BSBIP, can be used to test whether or not an unknown specimen is a hominid. These results are used to evaluate the hominid status of Ardipithecus and Sahelanthropus. (c) 2004 Wiley-Liss, Inc

  20. Testing for localized stimulus enhancement and object movement reenactment in pig-tailed macaques (Macaca nemestrina) and young children (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    Rigamonti, Marco M; Custance, Deborah M; Previde, Emanuela Prato; Spiezio, Caterina

    2005-08-01

    Four puzzle boxes were used to investigate localized stimulus enhancement and object movement reenactment (OMR) in 13 pig-tailed macaques (Macaca nemestrina) and 30 human infants (Homo sapiens). Participants received contrasting demonstrations on each box. A circular lid was gripped by its rim or handle and swiveled to the left or right. A flap door was pushed or flipped. A sliding lid was pushed to the left or right. A pin bolt was demonstrated being pushed down, or the participants were left to solve the puzzle for themselves. Despite the fact that the monkeys watched the demonstrations about 60% of the time, only a weak OMR effect was found on the sliding lid. In contrast, the children watched significantly more, and there was clear evidence of socially mediated learning on all of the boxes.

  1. Field-mapping and petrographic analysis of volcanoes surrounding the Lake Natron Homo sapiens footprint site, northern Tanzania

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hewitt, S. M.; Zimmer, B.; Liutkus, C.; Carmichael, S. K.; McGinnis, K.

    2010-12-01

    The Lake Natron Homo sapiens footprint site is located in northern Tanzania along the East African Rift escarpment. The site is positioned south of Lake Natron within an ephemeral channel of the Engare Sero River. The hominid footprints are preserved in a tuff, which originated from one of the volcanic centers surrounding the site. Two large volcanoes in the surrounding region, including the active carbonatite producing Oldoinyo L’engai and the now extinct Kerimasi are possible sources. This area also contains over 30 smaller tuff cones and tuff rings that have been poorly mapped and not analyzed in detail. The site is significant as it is the oldest modern human trackway in East Africa and one of the largest collections of hominid footprints in the world. Determining the source of the footprinted volcanic ash requires detailed field mapping, and both petrographic and geochemical analyses. Extensive field-mapping of the region revealed multiple regional beds that stratigraphically overlay the footprinted layer. Age dating as well as geochemical analysis is being conducted to relate these beds to the footprinted layer. Field-mapping showed that the footprinted tuff is over 35 cm thick, suggesting a large, sustained eruption. The bulk of the tuff cones examined in the field visibly varied in composition to the footprinted tuff and, based on proximity to the footprint site, are too small to produce the requisite volume of ash. Field analysis of samples collected from Oldoinyo L’engai reveal the most similar mineral assemblages to the footprinted layer, and the large volcano provides a source substantial enough to create a thick ash bed 10 km north of the summit. Preliminary research reveals that the footprinted tuff is a phonolite, characterized by silica depletion and the presence of sanidine, augite, and annite with interstitial calcite. XRD analysis of samples collected from Oldoinyo L’engai reveal a nepheline-rich phonolite with zeolites (ie. phillipsite

  2. Middle Stone Age (MSA) site distributions in eastern Africa and their relationship to Quaternary environmental change, refugia and the evolution of Homo sapiens

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Basell, Laura S.

    2008-12-01

    This paper considers the evolution of Homo sapiens in eastern Africa in relation to refugia and bottlenecks around ˜200 ka BP, at a macro scale. Middle Stone Age (MSA) lithics, site distributions and locations are analysed in relation to palaeovegetation maps of the last glacial/interglacial cycle, which are used as a proxy for earlier climate cycles. A "push and pull" model is then postulated for the spread of Homo sapiens out of refugia in eastern Africa, involving both volcanism (push) and habitat availability (pull). A date within OIS 5 is suggested for this expansion to other parts of the continent, and potentially further afield, contrary to a frequently proposed expansion within OIS 3.

  3. Survival of the Friendliest: Homo sapiens Evolved via Selection for Prosociality.

    PubMed

    Hare, Brian

    2017-01-03

    The challenge of studying human cognitive evolution is identifying unique features of our intelligence while explaining the processes by which they arose. Comparisons with nonhuman apes point to our early-emerging cooperative-communicative abilities as crucial to the evolution of all forms of human cultural cognition, including language. The human self-domestication hypothesis proposes that these early-emerging social skills evolved when natural selection favored increased in-group prosociality over aggression in late human evolution. As a by-product of this selection, humans are predicted to show traits of the domestication syndrome observed in other domestic animals. In reviewing comparative, developmental, neurobiological, and paleoanthropological research, compelling evidence emerges for the predicted relationship between unique human mentalizing abilities, tolerance, and the domestication syndrome in humans. This synthesis includes a review of the first a priori test of the self-domestication hypothesis as well as predictions for future tests.

  4. The protocadherin 11X/Y (PCDH11X/Y) gene pair as determinant of cerebral asymmetry in modern Homo sapiens

    PubMed Central

    Priddle, Thomas H; Crow, Timothy J

    2013-01-01

    Annett's right-shift theory proposes that human cerebral dominance (the functional and anatomical asymmetry or torque along the antero-posterior axis) and handedness are determined by a single “right-shift” gene. Familial transmission of handedness and specific deviations of cerebral dominance in sex chromosome aneuploidies implicate a locus within an X–Y homologous region of the sex chromosomes. The Xq21.3/Yp11.2 human-specific region of homology includes the protocadherin 11X/Y (PCDH11X/Y) gene pair, which encode cell adhesion molecules subject to accelerated evolution following the separation of the human and chimpanzee lineages six million years ago. PCDH11X and PCDH11Y, differentially regulated by retinoic acid, are highly expressed in the ventricular zone, subplate, and cortical plate of the developing cerebral cortex. Both proteins interact with β-catenin, a protein that plays a role in determining axis formation and regulating cortical size. In this way, the PCDH11X/Y gene pair determines cerebral asymmetry by initiating the right shift in Homo sapiens. PMID:23600975

  5. Comparative in vivo forefoot kinematics of Homo sapiens and Pan paniscus.

    PubMed

    Griffin, Nicole L; D'Août, Kristiaan; Richmond, Brian; Gordon, Adam; Aerts, Peter

    2010-12-01

    The human metatarsophalangeal joints play a key role in weight transmission and propulsion during bipedal gait, but at present, the identification of when a habitual, human-like metatarsi-fulcrimating mechanism first appeared in the fossil record is debated. Part of this debate can be attributed to the absence of certain detailed quantitative data distinguishing human and great ape forefoot form and function. The aim of this study is to quantitatively test previous observations that human metatarsophalangeal joints exhibit greater amounts of dorsal excursion (i.e., dorsiflexion) than those of Pan at the terminal stance phase of terrestrial locomotion. Video recordings were made in order to measure sagittal excursions of the medial metatarsophalangeal joints in habitually shod/unshod adult humans and adult bonobos (Pan paniscus). Results indicate that the human first and second metatarsophalangeal joints usually dorsiflex more than those of bonobos. When timing of maximum excursion of the first metatarsophalangeal joint is coupled with existing plantar pressure data, the unique role of the human forefoot as a key site of leverage and weight transmission is highlighted. These results support hypotheses that significant joint functional differences between great apes and humans during gait underlie taxonomic distinctions in trabecular bone architecture of the forefoot.

  6. Horizontal gene transfer events reshape the global landscape of arm race between viruses and homo sapiens

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Dong-Sheng; Wu, Yi-Quan; Zhang, Wei; Jiang, San-Jie; Chen, Shan-Ze

    2016-01-01

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) drives the evolution of recipient organism particularly if it provides a novel function which enhances the fitness or its adaption to the environment. Virus-host co-evolution is attractive for studying co-evolutionary processes, since viruses strictly replicate inside of the host cells and thus their evolution is inexorably tangled with host biology. HGT, as a mechanism of co-evolution between human and viruses, has been widely documented, however, the roles HGT play during the interaction between human and viruses are still in their infancy. In this study, we performed a comprehensive analysis on the genes horizontally transferred between viruses and their corresponding human hosts. Our study suggests that the HGT genes in human are predominantly enriched in immune related GO terms while viral HGT genes are tend to be encoded by viruses which promote the invasion of immune system of hosts. Based on our results, it gives us a hint about the evolution trajectory of HGT events. Overall, our study suggests that the HGT between human and viruses are highly relevant to immune interaction and probably reshaped the arm race between hosts and viruses. PMID:27270140

  7. Co-dispersal of the blood fluke Schistosoma japonicum and Homo sapiens in the Neolithic Age

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Mingbo; Zheng, Hong-Xiang; Su, Jing; Feng, Zheng; McManus, Donald P.; Zhou, Xiao-Nong; Jin, Li; Hu, Wei

    2015-01-01

    The global spread of human infectious diseases is of considerable public health and biomedical interest. Little is known about the relationship between the distribution of ancient parasites and that of their human hosts. Schistosoma japonicum is one of the three major species of schistosome blood flukes causing the disease of schistosomiasis in humans. The parasite is prevalent in East and Southeast Asia, including the People’s Republic of China, the Philippines and Indonesia. We studied the co-expansion of S. japonicum and its human definitive host. Phylogenetic reconstruction based on complete mitochondrial genome sequences showed that S. japonicum radiated from the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River to the mountainous areas of China, Japan and Southeast Asia. In addition, the parasite experienced two population expansions during the Neolithic agriculture era, coinciding with human migration and population growth. The data indicate that the advent of rice planting likely played a key role in the spread of schistosomiasis in Asia. Moreover, the presence of different subspecies of Oncomelania hupensis intermediate host snails in different localities in Asia allowed S. japonicum to survive in new rice-planting areas, and concurrently drove the intraspecies divergence of the parasite. PMID:26686813

  8. Comparative investigations of anatomy and physiology in mammalian noses (Homo sapiens--Artiodactyla).

    PubMed

    Grützenmacher, S; Robinson, D M; Sevecke, J; Mlynski, G; Beule, A G

    2011-03-01

    Knowledge of airflow in animal noses is sparse. Such knowledge could be important for selection of animal models used in environmental studies. From the phylogenetic and ontogenetic point of view, a comparison between the animal and human nose is interesting. Nose models of 5 even-toed ungulate species (he-goat, sheep, cow, roebuck, wild boar) and two humans (new born infant and adult) were examined. Anatomical and physiological features of the nasal cavities of all species were compared. All models were rinsed with water and the flow was visualized for observation. Geometric and rhinoresistometric measurements were then performed. Even-toed ungulates have two turbinates directly in the main part of the nasal airflow (respiratory turbinates) and a different number of turbinates in a so-called dead space of the nasal airflow above the nasopharyngeal duct (ethmoidal turbinates). The latter correspond with the upper and middle turbinate in analogy to the human nose. Respiratory turbinates of even-toed ungulates insert immediately behind the external nasal ostium. Thus, the whole nasal cavity acts as a functional area with the exception of a small area acting as dead space only detectable in ruminants, possibly indicating a small evolutionary progress from suinae to bovidae. The shape of the animal nasal cavity is stretched and flat. The airflow runs nearly completely turbulent through the nose. The nasal cavity in the adult human is relatively short and high. The area between the external nasal ostium and the head of the inferior turbinate is called inflow area. It distributes the airflow over the whole nasal cross section and generates a turbulent flow. So the airflow is prepared to contact the mucosa in the functional area (turbinate area). The morphology of the inflow area is approximately formed by the shape of the external nose. The nasal cavity of a newborn child is also stretched and flat and more similar to the nasal shape of the investigated animals. The

  9. Developmental Changes in Morphology of the Middle and Posterior External Cranial Base in Modern Homo sapiens

    PubMed Central

    Dalal, Deepal H.; Smith, Heather F.

    2015-01-01

    The basicranium has been described as phylogenetically informative, developmentally stable, and minimally affected by external factors and consequently plays an important role in cranial size and shape in subadult humans. Here basicranial variation of subadults from several modern human populations was investigated and the impact of genetic relatedness on basicranial morphological similarities was investigated. Three-dimensional landmark data were digitized from subadult basicrania from seven populations. Published molecular data on short tandem repeats were statistically compared to morphological data from three ontogenetic stages. Basicranial and temporal bone morphology both reflect genetic distances in childhood and adolescence (5–18 years), but not in infancy (<5 years). The occipital bone reflects genetic distances only in adolescence (13–18 years). The sphenoid bone does not reflect genetic distances at any ontogenetic stage but was the most diagnostic region evaluated, resulting in high rates of correct classification among populations. These results suggest that the ontogenetic processes driving basicranial development are complex and cannot be succinctly summarized across populations or basicranial regions. However, the fact that certain regions reflect genetic distances suggests that the morphology of these regions may be useful in reconstructing population history in specimens for which direct DNA evidence is unavailable, such as archaeological sites. PMID:26413515

  10. Effect of mutation on aggregation propensity in homology model structures of syntaxin-3 from Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Maheshwari, Amutha Selvaraj; Rajesh, Durairaj; Padmanabhan, Parasuraman; Archunan, Govindaraju

    2014-10-01

    Perception of molecular mechanism would provide potent additional knowledge on mammalian membrane proteins involved in causing diseases. In human, syntaxin-3 (STX3) is a significant apical targeting protein in the epithelial membrane and in exocytosis process; it also acts as a vesicle transporter by cellular receptor in neutrophils, which is crucial for protein trafficking event. Structurally, syntaxin-3 has hydrophobic domain at carboxyl terminus that directs itself to intra-cellular compartments. In addition, the experimental structure of STX3 is not available and no mutational study has been carried out with natural variants of proteins. Moreover, there is no evidence so far for the natural variant Val286 of STX3 causing any diseases. Hence, in the present study, analyses of residue-based properties of the homology model STX3 were carried out along with mutations at carboxyl terminus of STX3 by implementing protein engineering and in silico approaches. The model structure of STX3 was constructed adopting Modeller v9.11 and the aggregation propensity was analyzed with BioLuminate tool. The results showed that there was reduction in aggregation propensity with point mutation at Val286, instead of Ile, resulting into increasing the structural stability of STX3. In conclusion, the Ccap exposed residue would be a suitable position for further mutational studies, particularly with Val286 of STX3 in human. This approach could gainfully be applied to STX3 for efficient drug designing which would be a valuable target in the cancer treatment.

  11. Morphological relationship between the cranial and supraorbital regions in Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Nowaczewska, Wioletta; Kuźmiński, Łukasz; Biecek, Przemysław

    2015-01-01

    Although some hypotheses that attempt to explain the variation in supraorbital region morphology in modern humans have been proposed, this issue is still not well understood. In this study, the craniofacial size and spatial models were tested using a sample of modern human crania from geographically diverse populations, and the co-occurrence of the degrees of glabella (GL) and superciliary arch (ST) expression were analyzed. The two supraorbital structures were examined by visual assessment, and eight quantitative variables were included in the three-way ANOVA, canonical variates analysis and partial rank correlation. The influences of sex and the region of origin of the cranial samples on the relationships between the examined variables and the degrees of supraorbital structures expression were also considered. The results only partially supported the craniofacial size and spatial models and suggested that GL and ST experienced separate influences during development. In the sample of all crania, the neurocranial size more strongly influenced the morphological variation of the ST than of the GL, and sex influenced both of these structures the most. The results suggest that sex may be the main factor (having an influence independent of the other traits) on the morphological variation of the GL and ST. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  12. Developmental Changes in Morphology of the Middle and Posterior External Cranial Base in Modern Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Dalal, Deepal H; Smith, Heather F

    2015-01-01

    The basicranium has been described as phylogenetically informative, developmentally stable, and minimally affected by external factors and consequently plays an important role in cranial size and shape in subadult humans. Here basicranial variation of subadults from several modern human populations was investigated and the impact of genetic relatedness on basicranial morphological similarities was investigated. Three-dimensional landmark data were digitized from subadult basicrania from seven populations. Published molecular data on short tandem repeats were statistically compared to morphological data from three ontogenetic stages. Basicranial and temporal bone morphology both reflect genetic distances in childhood and adolescence (5-18 years), but not in infancy (<5 years). The occipital bone reflects genetic distances only in adolescence (13-18 years). The sphenoid bone does not reflect genetic distances at any ontogenetic stage but was the most diagnostic region evaluated, resulting in high rates of correct classification among populations. These results suggest that the ontogenetic processes driving basicranial development are complex and cannot be succinctly summarized across populations or basicranial regions. However, the fact that certain regions reflect genetic distances suggests that the morphology of these regions may be useful in reconstructing population history in specimens for which direct DNA evidence is unavailable, such as archaeological sites.

  13. She more than he: gender bias supports the empathic nature of yawn contagion in Homo sapiens

    PubMed Central

    Norscia, Ivan; Demuru, Elisa; Palagi, Elisabetta

    2016-01-01

    Psychological, clinical and neurobiological findings endorse that empathic abilities are more developed in women than in men. Because there is growing evidence that yawn contagion is an empathy-based phenomenon, we expect that the female bias in the empathic abilities reflects on a gender skew in the responsiveness to others’ yawns. We verified this assumption by applying a linear model on a dataset gathered during a 5 year period of naturalistic observations on humans. Gender, age and social bond were included in the analysis as fixed factors. The social bond and the receiver’s gender remained in the best model. The rates of contagion were significantly lower between acquaintances than between friends and family members, and significantly higher in women than in men. These results not only confirm that yawn contagion is sensitive to social closeness, but also that the phenomenon is affected by the same gender bias affecting empathy. The sex skew, also found in other non-human species, fits with the female social roles which are likely to require higher empathic abilities (e.g. parental care, group cohesion maintenance, social mediation). The fact that female influence in social dynamics also relies on face-to-face emotional exchange raises concerns on the negative repercussions of having women’s facial expressions forcibly concealed. PMID:26998318

  14. Similar pathogen targets in Arabidopsis thaliana and homo sapiens protein networks.

    PubMed

    Shakarian, Paulo; Wickiser, J Kenneth

    2012-01-01

    We study the behavior of pathogens on host protein networks for humans and Arabidopsis - noting striking similarities. Specifically, we preform [Formula: see text]-shell decomposition analysis on these networks - which groups the proteins into various "shells" based on network structure. We observe that shells with a higher average degree are more highly targeted (with a power-law relationship) and that highly targeted nodes lie in shells closer to the inner-core of the network. Additionally, we also note that the inner core of the network is significantly under-targeted. We show that these core proteins may have a role in intra-cellular communication and hypothesize that they are less attacked to ensure survival of the host. This may explain why certain high-degree proteins are not significantly attacked.

  15. Solution structure of a membrane-anchored ubiquitin-fold (MUB) protein from Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    de la Cruz, Norberto B; Peterson, Francis C; Lytle, Betsy L; Volkman, Brian F

    2007-07-01

    The protein Bc059385, whose solution structure is reported here, is the human representative of a recently identified family of membrane-anchored ubiquitin-fold (MUB) proteins. Analysis of their similarity to ubiquitin indicates that homologous amino acid residues in MUBs form a hydrophobic surface very similar to the recognition patch surrounding Ile-44 in ubiquitin. This suggests that MUBs may interact with proteins containing an alpha-helical motif similar to those of some ubiquitin binding domains. A disordered loop common to MUBs may also provide a second protein interaction site. From the available data, it is probable that this protein is prenylated and associated with the membrane. With <20% identity to ubiquitin, the MUB family further expands the sequence space that maps to the beta-grasp fold, and adds membrane localization to its list of functional roles.

  16. Morphometric variability of minicolumns in the striate cortex of Homo sapiens, Macaca mulatta, and Pan troglodytes

    PubMed Central

    Casanova, Manuel F; Trippe, Juan; Tillquist, Christopher; Switala, Andrew E

    2009-01-01

    Radially oriented ensembles of neurons and their projections, termed minicolumns, are hypothesized to be the basic microcircuit of mammalian cerebral cortex. Minicolumns can be divided into a core and a peripheral neuropil space compartment. The core of minicolumns is constrained by the migratory path of pyramidal cells and their attendant radially oriented projections. Variation in minicolumnar morphometry and density is observed both within and across species. Using a scale-independent measure of variability in minicolumnar width (VCW), we demonstrated a significant increase in VCW in layers III–V of striate cortex in humans relative to macaques and chimpanzees. Despite changes in minicolumnar width (CW) across species, their core space (w) remained the same. Given that cellular elements and processes within the peripheral neuropil space of minicolumns are derived from assorted sources, cross-species differences in VCW may result from genetic and epigenetic influences acting primarily on this compartment of the minicolumn. PMID:19207984

  17. Relationship of cranial robusticity to cranial form, geography and climate in Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Baab, Karen L; Freidline, Sarah E; Wang, Steven L; Hanson, Timothy

    2010-01-01

    Variation in cranial robusticity among modern human populations is widely acknowledged but not well-understood. While the use of "robust" cranial traits in hominin systematics and phylogeny suggests that these characters are strongly heritable, this hypothesis has not been tested. Alternatively, cranial robusticity may be a response to differences in diet/mastication or it may be an adaptation to cold, harsh environments. This study quantifies the distribution of cranial robusticity in 14 geographically widespread human populations, and correlates this variation with climatic variables, neutral genetic distances, cranial size, and cranial shape. With the exception of the occipital torus region, all traits were positively correlated with each other, suggesting that they should not be treated as individual characters. While males are more robust than females within each of the populations, among the independent variables (cranial shape, size, climate, and neutral genetic distances), only shape is significantly correlated with inter-population differences in robusticity. Two-block partial least-squares analysis was used to explore the relationship between cranial shape (captured by three-dimensional landmark data) and robusticity across individuals. Weak support was found for the hypothesis that robusticity was related to mastication as the shape associated with greater robusticity was similar to that described for groups that ate harder-to-process diets. Specifically, crania with more prognathic faces, expanded glabellar and occipital regions, and (slightly) longer skulls were more robust than those with rounder vaults and more orthognathic faces. However, groups with more mechanically demanding diets (hunter-gatherers) were not always more robust than groups practicing some form of agriculture.

  18. From Sea Anemone to Homo sapiens: The Evolution of the p53 Family of Genes

    SciTech Connect

    Levine, Arnold

    2009-09-14

    The human genome contains three transcription factors termed p53, p63 and p73 which are related orthologues. The function of the p53 protein is to respond to a wide variety of stresses which can disrupt the fidelity of DNA replication and cell division in somatic cells of the body. These stress signals, such as DNA damage, increase the mutation rate during DNA duplication and so an active p53 protein responds by eliminating clones of cells with mutations employing apoptosis, senescence or cell cycle arrest. In this way the p53 protein acts as a tumor suppressor preventing the mutations that can lead to cancers. The p63 and p73 proteins act in a similar fashion to protect the germ line cells in females (eggs). In addition the p63 protein plays a central role in the formation of epithelial cell layers and p73 plays a critical role in the formation of several structures in the central nervous system. Based upon their amino acid sequences and structural considerations the oldest organisms that contain an ancestor of the p53/p63/p73 gene are the sea anemone or hydra. The present day representatives of these animals contain a p63/p73 like ancestor gene and the protein functions in germ cells of this animal to enforce the fidelity of DNA replication after exposure to ultraviolet light. Thus the structure and functions of this gene family have been preserved for over one billion years of evolution. Other invertebrates such as the worm, the fly and the clam contain a very similar ancestor gene with a similar set of functions. The withdrawal of a food source from a worm results in the p63/p73 mediated apoptosis of the eggs so that new organisms will not be hatched into a poor environment. A similar response is thought to occur in humans. Thus this ancestor gene ensures the fidelity of the next generation of organisms. The first time a clearly distinct new p53 gene arises is in the cartilaginous fish and in the bony fish a separation of the p

  19. From Sea Anemone to Homo Sapiens: The Evolution of the p53 Family of Genes

    SciTech Connect

    Levine, Arnold

    2009-09-14

    The human genome contains three transcription factors termed p53, p63 and p73 which are related orthologues. The function of the p53 protein is to respond to a wide variety of stresses which can disrupt the fidelity of DNA replication and cell division in somatic cells of the body. These stress signals, such as DNA damage, increase the mutation rate during DNA duplication and so an active p53 protein responds by eliminating clones of cells with mutations employing apoptosis, senescence or cell cycle arrest. In this way the p53 protein acts as a tumor suppressor preventing the mutations that can lead to cancers. The p63 and p73 proteins act in a similar fashion to protect the germ line cells in females (eggs). In addition the p63 protein plays a central role in the formation of epithelial cell layers and p73 plays a critical role in the formation of several structures in the central nervous system. Based upon their amino acid sequences and structural considerations the oldest organisms that contain an ancestor of the p53/p63/p73 gene are the sea anemone or hydra. The present day representatives of these animals contain a p63/p73 like ancestor gene and the protein functions in germ cells of this animal to enforce the fidelity of DNA replication after exposure to ultraviolet light. Thus the structure and functions of this gene family have been preserved for over one billion years of evolution. Other invertebrates such as the worm, the fly and the clam contain a very similar ancestor gene with a similar set of functions. The withdrawal of a food source from a worm results in the p63/p73 mediated apoptosis of the eggs so that new organisms will not be hatched into a poor environment. A similar response is thought to occur in humans. Thus this ancestor gene ensures the fidelity of the next generation of organisms. The first time a clearly distinct new p53 gene arises is in the cartilaginous fish and in the bony fish a separation of the p

  20. XMAn: a Homo sapiens mutated-peptide database for the MS analysis of cancerous cell states.

    PubMed

    Yang, Xu; Lazar, Iulia M

    2014-12-05

    To enable the identification of mutated peptide sequences in complex biological samples, in this work, two novel cancer- and disease-related protein databases with mutation information collected from several public resources such as COSMIC, IARC P53, OMIM, and UniProtKB were developed. In-house developed Perl scripts were used to search and process the data and to translate each gene-level mutation into a mutated peptide sequence. The cancer and disease mutation databases comprise a total of 872,125 and 27,148 peptide entries from 25 642 and 2913 proteins, respectively. A description line for each entry provides the parent protein ID and name, the cDNA- and protein-level mutation site and type, the originating database, and the disease or cancer tissue type and corresponding hits. The two databases are FASTA-formatted to enable data retrieval by commonly used tandem MS search engines. While the largest number of mutations were encountered for the amino acids A/D/E/G/L/P/R/S, the global mutation profiles replicate closely the outcome of the 1000 Genomes Project aimed at cataloguing natural mutations in the human population. The affected proteins were primarily involved in transcription regulation, splicing, protein synthesis/folding/binding, redox/energy production, adhesion/motility, and to some extent in DNA damage repair and signaling. The applicability of the database to identifying the presence of mutated peptides was investigated with MCF-7 breast cancer cell extracts.

  1. Hypermutability of genes in Homo sapiens due to the hosting of long mono-SSR.

    PubMed

    Loire, Etienne; Praz, Françoise; Higuet, Dominique; Netter, Pierre; Achaz, Guillaume

    2009-01-01

    Simple sequence repeats (SSRs) are very common short repeats in eukaryotic genomes. "Long" SSRs are considered "hypermutable" sequences because they exhibit a high rate of expansion and contraction. Because they are potentially deleterious, long SSRs tend to be uncommon in coding sequences. However, several genes contain long SSRs in their exonic sequences. Here, we identify 1,291 human genes that host a mononucleotide SSR long enough to be prone to expansion or contraction, being called hypermutable hereafter. On the basis of Gene Ontology annotations, we show that only a restricted number of functions are overrepresented among those hypermutable genes including cell cycle and maintenance of DNA integrity. Using a probabilistic model, we show that genes involved in these functions are expected to host long SSRs because they tend to be long and/or are biased in nucleotide composition. Finally, we show that for almost all functions we observe fewer hypermutable sequences than expected under a neutral model. There are however interesting exceptions, for example, genes involved in protein and RNA transport, as well as meiosis and mismatch repair functions that have as many hypermutable genes as expected under neutrality. Conversely, there are functions (e.g., collagen-related genes) where hypermutable genes are more often avoided than in other functions. Our results show that, even though several functions harbor unusually long SSR in their exons, long SSRs are deleterious sequences in almost all functions and are removed by purifying selection. The strength of this purifying selection however greatly varies from function to function. We discuss possible explanations for this intriguing result.

  2. Crystal Structure of the Homo sapiens Kynureninase-3-Hydroxyhippuric Acid Inhibitor Complex: Insights into the Molecular Basis Of Kynureninase Substrate Specificity

    SciTech Connect

    Lima,Santiago; Kumar,Sunil; Gawandi,Vijay; Momany,Cory; Phillips,Robert S.

    2009-02-23

    Homo sapiens kynureninase is a pyridoxal-5'-phosphate dependent enzyme that catalyzes the hydrolytic cleavage of 3-hydroxykynurenine to yield 3-hydroxyanthranilate and L-alanine as part of the tryptophan catabolic pathway leading to the de novo biosynthesis of NAD{sup +}. This pathway results in quinolinate, an excitotoxin that is an NMDA receptor agonist. High levels of quinolinate have been correlated with the etiology of neurodegenerative disorders such as AIDS-related dementia and Alzheimer's disease. We have synthesized a novel kynureninase inhibitor, 3-hydroxyhippurate, cocrystallized it with human kynureninase, and solved the atomic structure. On the basis of an analysis of the complex, we designed a series of His-102, Ser-332, and Asn-333 mutants. The H102W/N333T and H102W/S332G/N333T mutants showed complete reversal of substrate specificity between 3-hydroxykynurenine and L-kynurenine, thus defining the primary residues contributing to substrate specificity in kynureninases.

  3. Metacarpal head biomechanics: a comparative backscattered electron image analysis of trabecular bone mineral density in Pan troglodytes, Pongo pygmaeus, and Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Zeininger, Angel; Richmond, Brian G; Hartman, Gideon

    2011-06-01

    Great apes and humans use their hands in fundamentally different ways, but little is known about joint biomechanics and internal bone variation. This study examines the distribution of mineral density in the third metacarpal heads in three hominoid species that differ in their habitual joint postures and loading histories. We test the hypothesis that micro-architectural properties relating to bone mineral density reflect habitual joint use. The third metacarpal heads of Pan troglodytes, Pongo pygmaeus, and Homo sapiens were sectioned in a sagittal plane and imaged using backscattered electron microscopy (BSE-SEM). For each individual, 72 areas of subarticular cortical (subchondral) and trabecular bone were sampled from within 12 consecutive regions of the BSE-SEM images. In each area, gray levels (representing relative mineralization density) were quantified. Results show that chimpanzee, orangutan, and human metacarpal III heads have different gray level distributions. Weighted mean gray levels (WMGLs) in the chimpanzee showed a distinct pattern in which the 'knuckle-walking' regions (dorsal) and 'climbing' regions (palmar) are less mineralized, interpreted to reflect elevated remodeling rates, than the distal regions. Pongo pygmaeus exhibited the lowest WMGLs in the distal region, suggesting elevated remodeling rates in this region, which is loaded during hook grip hand postures associated with suspension and climbing. Differences among regions within metacarpal heads of the chimpanzee and orangutan specimens are significant (Kruskal-Wallis, p < 0.001). In humans, whose hands are used for manipulation as opposed to locomotion, mineralization density is much more uniform throughout the metacarpal head. WMGLs were significantly (p < 0.05) lower in subchondral compared to trabecular regions in all samples except humans. This micro-architectural approach offers a means of investigating joint loading patterns in primates and shows significant differences in

  4. Expression, purification, crystallization and preliminary X-ray characterization of the GRP carbohydrate-recognition domain from Homo sapiens

    SciTech Connect

    Zhou, Dongwen; Sun, Jianping; Zhao, Wei; Zhang, Xiao; Shi, Yunyu; Teng, Maikun Niu, Liwen; Dong, Yuhui; Liu, Peng

    2006-05-01

    The CRD domain of GRP from H. sapiens has been expressed, purified and crystallized and X-ray diffraction data have been collected to a resolution of 2.0 Å. Galectins are a family of animal lectins which share similar carbohydrate-recognition domains (CRDs) and an affinity for β-galactosides. A novel human galectin-related protein named GRP (galectin-related protein; previously known as HSPC159) comprises only one conserved CRD with 38 additional N-terminal residues. The C-terminal fragment of human GRP (GRP-C; residues 38–172) containing the CRD has been expressed and purified. The protein was crystallized using the hanging-drop vapour-diffusion method from a solution containing 2% PEG 400 and 2M ammonium sulfate in 100 mM Tris–HCl buffer pH 7.5. Diffraction data were collected to a resolution limit of 2.0 Å at beamline 3W1A of Beijing Synchrotron Radiation Facility at 100 K. The crystals belong to the monoclinic space group C2, with unit-cell parameters a = 123.07, b = 96.67, c = 61.56 Å, β = 118.72°. The estimated Matthews coefficient was 2.6 Å{sup 3} Da{sup −1}, corresponding to 51.8% solvent content.

  5. Schizophrenia as the price that homo sapiens pays for language: a resolution of the central paradox in the origin of the species.

    PubMed

    Crow, T J

    2000-03-01

    The central paradox of schizophrenia is that the condition, apparently genetic in origin, persists in spite of a substantial fecundity disadvantage. The hypothesis is proposed that the predisposition to schizophrenia is a component of Homo sapiens-specific variation associated with the capacity for language. A genetic change (the 'speciation event', predicted to be related to the Xq21.3 to Yp chromosomal transposition that separates Homo sapiens from the great apes) allowed the hemispheres to develop with a 'cerebral torque', reflected particularly in association cortex, from right frontal to left occipital. Variations in the dimension of lateralization are associated with differences in the rate at which verbal and non-verbal ability develops. The nuclear symptoms of schizophrenia can be understood as a failure to establish dominance for a key component - the phonological sequence - of language in one hemisphere, with consequent disruption of the mechanism of 'indexicality' that allows the speaker to distinguish his thoughts from the speech output that he generates and the speech input that he receives and decodes from others.

  6. Protein-protein interaction site prediction in Homo sapiens and E. coli using an interaction-affinity based membership function in fuzzy SVM.

    PubMed

    Sriwastava, Brijesh Kumar; Basu, Subhadip; Maulik, Ujjwal

    2015-10-01

    Protein-protein interaction (PPI) site prediction aids to ascertain the interface residues that participate in interaction processes. Fuzzy support vector machine (F-SVM) is proposed as an effective method to solve this problem, and we have shown that the performance of the classical SVM can be enhanced with the help of an interaction-affinity based fuzzy membership function. The performances of both SVM and F-SVM on the PPI databases of the Homo sapiens and E. coli organisms are evaluated and estimated the statistical significance of the developed method over classical SVM and other fuzzy membership-based SVM methods available in the literature. Our membership function uses the residue-level interaction affinity scores for each pair of positive and negative sequence fragments. The average AUC scores in the 10-fold cross-validation experiments are measured as 79.94% and 80.48% for the Homo sapiens and E. coli organisms respectively. On the independent test datasets, AUC scores are obtained as 76.59% and 80.17% respectively for the two organisms. In almost all cases, the developed F-SVM method improves the performances obtained by the corresponding classical SVM and the other classifiers, available in the literature.

  7. Human evolution. Evolution of early Homo: an integrated biological perspective.

    PubMed

    Antón, Susan C; Potts, Richard; Aiello, Leslie C

    2014-07-04

    Integration of evidence over the past decade has revised understandings about the major adaptations underlying the origin and early evolution of the genus Homo. Many features associated with Homo sapiens, including our large linear bodies, elongated hind limbs, large energy-expensive brains, reduced sexual dimorphism, increased carnivory, and unique life history traits, were once thought to have evolved near the origin of the genus in response to heightened aridity and open habitats in Africa. However, recent analyses of fossil, archaeological, and environmental data indicate that such traits did not arise as a single package. Instead, some arose substantially earlier and some later than previously thought. From ~2.5 to 1.5 million years ago, three lineages of early Homo evolved in a context of habitat instability and fragmentation on seasonal, intergenerational, and evolutionary time scales. These contexts gave a selective advantage to traits, such as dietary flexibility and larger body size, that facilitated survival in shifting environments.

  8. The Middle Stone Age archaeology of the Lower Omo Valley Kibish Formation: excavations, lithic assemblages, and inferred patterns of early Homo sapiens behavior.

    PubMed

    Shea, John J

    2008-09-01

    This paper describes the excavation, stratigraphy, and lithic assemblages of Middle Stone Age sites from the Omo Kibish Formation (Lower Omo Valley, southwestern Ethiopia). Three sites were excavated, two in Kibish Member I (KHS and AHS) and one at the base of Member III (BNS). The assemblages are dominated by relatively high-quality raw materials procured as pebbles from local gravels. The principal modes of core preparation are radial/centripetal Levallois and discoidal. Retouched tools are rare. Foliate bifaces are present, as are larger tools, such as handaxes, picks, and lanceolates, but these are more common among surface finds than among excavated assemblages. Middle Stone Age assemblages shed light on the adaptations of the earliest-known Homo sapiens populations in Africa.

  9. Tracking the displacement of objects: a series of tasks with great apes (Pan troglodytes, Pan paniscus, Gorilla gorilla, and Pongo pygmaeus) and young children (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    Barth, Jochen; Call, Josep

    2006-07-01

    The authors administered a series of object displacement tasks to 24 great apes and 24 30-month-old children (Homo sapiens). Objects were placed under 1 or 2 of 3 cups by visible or invisible displacements. The series included 6 tasks: delayed response, inhibition test, A not B, rotations, transpositions, and object permanence. Apes and children solved most tasks performing at comparable levels except in the transposition task, in which apes performed better than children. Ape species performed at comparable levels in all tasks except in single transpositions, in which chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) and bonobos (Pan paniscus) performed better than gorillas (Gorilla gorilla) and orangutans (Pongo pygmeaus). All species found nonadjacent trials and rotations especially difficult. The number of elements that changed locations, the type of displacement, and having to inhibit predominant reaching responses were factors that negatively affected the subjects' performance.

  10. Analytical morphies on mid-sagittal craniograms glabella-opisthocranion of Homo erectus and Homo sapiens neanderthalensis: Fourier parameters and synthesis of mean craniograms.

    PubMed

    Vacca, E; Pesce Delfino, V

    1991-03-01

    Among mathematic procedures used in morphological description, Fourier analysis was indicated as extremely effective in obtaining numerical representations of shape. In order to fully exploit its potentiality in morphology the worked data have to be referred exclusively to the shape of the investigated object and the application of suitable procedures of dimensional normalization are necessary, moreover the significance of the parameters obtained from the analysis must be referable univocally to the morphological datum. In these conditions the numerical characterization of shapes and the relations detectable from different parameters obtained from the description assume the significance of real "analytical morphies". These statements were verified by performing morphological description and comparison, by means of the Fourier harmonic analysis on two groups of mid-sagittal glabella-opisthocranIon craniograms to point out their possible distinctive analytical characteristics: the first group relates to classical neanderthalian group, the second one is made up of asiatic samples of Homo erectus. Some typical patterns of the obtained parameters were discussed and explained in terms of analytical morphies characterizing the given specimens, the traditional morphological classifications were verified and, above all, a numerical description of these samples was obtained.

  11. Utilization of Boron Compounds for the Modification of Suberoyl Anilide Hydroxamic Acid as Inhibitor of Histone Deacetylase Class II Homo sapiens

    PubMed Central

    Bakri, Ridla; Parikesit, Arli Aditya; Satriyanto, Cipta Prio; Kerami, Djati; Tambunan, Usman Sumo Friend

    2014-01-01

    Histone deacetylase (HDAC) has a critical function in regulating gene expression. The inhibition of HDAC has developed as an interesting anticancer research area that targets biological processes such as cell cycle, apoptosis, and cell differentiation. In this study, an HDAC inhibitor that is available commercially, suberoyl anilide hydroxamic acid (SAHA), has been modified to improve its efficacy and reduce the side effects of the compound. Hydrophobic cap and zinc-binding group of these compounds were substituted with boron-based compounds, whereas the linker region was substituted with p-aminobenzoic acid. The molecular docking analysis resulted in 8 ligands with ΔGbinding value more negative than the standards, SAHA and trichostatin A (TSA). That ligands were analyzed based on the nature of QSAR, pharmacological properties, and ADME-Tox. It is conducted to obtain a potent inhibitor of HDAC class II Homo sapiens. The screening process result gave one best ligand, Nova2 (513246-99-6), which was then further studied by molecular dynamics simulations. PMID:25214833

  12. Correlation of the KHS Tuff of the Kibish Formation to volcanic ash layers at other sites, and the age of early Homo sapiens (Omo I and Omo II).

    PubMed

    Brown, Francis H; McDougall, Ian; Fleagle, John G

    2012-10-01

    Hominin specimens Omo I and Omo II from Member I of the Kibish Formation, Ethiopia are attributed to early Homo sapiens, and an age near 196 ka has been suggested for them. The KHS Tuff, within Member II of the Kibish Formation has not been directly dated at the site, but it is believed to have been deposited at or near the time of formation of sapropel S6 in the Mediterranean Sea. Electron microprobe analyses suggest that the KHS Tuff correlates with the WAVT (Waidedo Vitric Tuff) at Herto, Gona, and Konso (sample TA-55), and with Unit D at Kulkuletti in the Ethiopian Rift Valley. Konso sample TA-55 is older than 154 ka, and Unit D at Kulkuletti is dated at 183 ka. These correlations and ages provide strong support for the age originally suggested for the hominin remains Omo I and Omo II, and for correlation of times of deposition in the Kibish region with formation of sapropels in the Mediterranean Sea. The Aliyo Tuff in Member III of the Kibish Formation is dated at 104 ka, and correlates with Gademotta Unit 15 in the Ethiopian Rift Valley.

  13. A 3-D geometric morphometric study of intraspecific variation in the ontogeny of the temporal bone in modern Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Smith, Heather F; Ritzman, Terrence; Otárola-Castillo, Erik; Terhune, Claire E

    2013-11-01

    This study addresses how the human temporal bone develops the population-specific pattern of morphology observed among adults and at what point in ontogeny those patterns arise. Three-dimensional temporal bone shape was captured using 15 landmarks on ontogenetic series of specimens from seven modern human populations. Discriminant function analysis revealed that population-specific temporal bone morphology is evident early in ontogeny, with significant shape differences among many human populations apparent prior to the eruption of the first molar. As early as five years of age, temporal bone shape reflects population history and can be used to reliably sort populations, although those in closer geographic proximity and molecular affinity are more likely to be misclassified. The deviation of cold-adapted populations from this general pattern of congruence between temporal bone morphology and genetic distances, identified in previous work, was confirmed here in adult and subadult specimens, and was revealed to occur earlier in ontogeny than previously recognized. Significant differences exist between the ontogenetic trajectories of some pairs of populations, but not among others, and the angles of these trajectories do not reflect genetic relationships or final adult temporal bone size. Significant intrapopulation differences are evident early in ontogeny, with differences becoming amplified by divergent trajectories in some groups. These findings elucidate how the congruence between adult human temporal bone morphology and population history develops, and reveal that this pattern corresponds closely to that described previously for facial ontogeny.

  14. Homo sapiens dullard protein phosphatase shows a preference for the insulin-dependent phosphorylation site of lipin1.

    PubMed

    Wu, Rui; Garland, Megan; Dunaway-Mariano, Debra; Allen, Karen N

    2011-04-19

    Human lipin1 catalyzes the highly regulated conversion of phosphatidic acids to diacylglycerides. Lipin's cellular location, protein partners, and biological function are directed by phosphorylation-dephosphorylation events catalyzed by the phosphoserine phosphatase dullard. To define the determinants of dullard substrate recognition and catalysis, and hence, lipin regulation, steady-state kinetic analysis was performed on phosphoserine-bearing nonapeptides based on the phosphorylation sites of lipin. The results demonstrate that dullard shows specificity for the peptide corresponding to the insulin-dependent phosphorylation site (Ser106) of lipin with a k(cat)/K(m) of 2.9 × 10(4) M(-1) s(-1). These results are consistent with a coil-loop structure for the insulin-dependent phosphorylation site on human lipin1 and make unlikely the requirement for an adaptor protein to confer activity such as that proposed for the yeast homologue.

  15. Comprehensive characterization of evolutionary conserved breakpoints in four New World Monkey karyotypes compared to Chlorocebus aethiops and Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Fan, Xiaobo; Supiwong, Weerayuth; Weise, Anja; Mrasek, Kristin; Kosyakova, Nadezda; Tanomtong, Alongkoad; Pinthong, Krit; Trifonov, Vladimir A; Cioffi, Marcelo de Bello; Grothmann, Pierre; Liehr, Thomas; Oliveira, Edivaldo H C de

    2015-11-01

    Comparative cytogenetic analysis in New World Monkeys (NWMs) using human multicolor banding (MCB) probe sets were not previously done. Here we report on an MCB based FISH-banding study complemented with selected locus-specific and heterochromatin specific probes in four NWMs and one Old World Monkey (OWM) species, i.e. in Alouatta caraya (ACA), Callithrix jacchus (CJA), Cebus apella (CAP), Saimiri sciureus (SSC), and Chlorocebus aethiops (CAE), respectively. 107 individual evolutionary conserved breakpoints (ECBs) among those species were identified and compared with those of other species in previous reports. Especially for chromosomal regions being syntenic to human chromosomes 6, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 and 16 previously cryptic rearrangements could be observed. 50.4% (54/107) NWM-ECBs were colocalized with those of OWMs, 62.6% (62/99) NWM-ECBs were related with those of Hylobates lar (HLA) and 66.3% (71/107) NWM-ECBs corresponded with those known from other mammalians. Furthermore, human fragile sites were aligned with the ECBs found in the five studied species and interestingly 66.3% ECBs colocalized with those fragile sites (FS). Overall, this study presents detailed chromosomal maps of one OWM and four NWM species. This data will be helpful to further investigation on chromosome evolution in NWM and hominoids in general and is prerequisite for correct interpretation of future sequencing based genomic studies in those species.

  16. Structure of the C-terminal heme-binding domain of THAP domain containing protein 4 from Homo sapiens

    SciTech Connect

    Bianchetti, Christopher M.; Bingman, Craig A.; Phillips, Jr., George N.

    2012-03-15

    The thanatos (the Greek god of death)-associated protein (THAP) domain is a sequence-specific DNA-binding domain that contains a C2-CH (Cys-Xaa{sub 2-4}-Cys-Xaa{sub 35-50}-Cys-Xaa{sub 2}-His) zinc finger that is similar to the DNA domain of the P element transposase from Drosophila. THAP-containing proteins have been observed in the proteome of humans, pigs, cows, chickens, zebrafish, Drosophila, C. elegans, and Xenopus. To date, there are no known THAP domain proteins in plants, yeast, or bacteria. There are 12 identified human THAP domain-containing proteins (THAP0-11). In all human THAP protein, the THAP domain is located at the N-terminus and is {approx}90 residues in length. Although all of the human THAP-containing proteins have a homologous N-terminus, there is extensive variation in both the predicted structure and length of the remaining protein. Even though the exact function of these THAP proteins is not well defined, there is evidence that they play a role in cell proliferation, apoptosis, cell cycle modulation, chromatin modification, and transcriptional regulation. THAP-containing proteins have also been implicated in a number of human disease states including heart disease, neurological defects, and several types of cancers. Human THAP4 is a 577-residue protein of unknown function that is proposed to bind DNA in a sequence-specific manner similar to THAP1 and has been found to be upregulated in response to heat shock. THAP4 is expressed in a relatively uniform manner in a broad range of tissues and appears to be upregulated in lymphoma cells and highly expressed in heart cells. The C-terminal domain of THAP4 (residues 415-577), designated here as cTHAP4, is evolutionarily conserved and is observed in all known THAP4 orthologs. Several single-domain proteins lacking a THAP domain are found in plants and bacteria and show significant levels of homology to cTHAP4. It appears that cTHAP4 belongs to a large class of proteins that have yet to be fully

  17. A novel primate specific gene, CEI, is located in the homeobox gene IRXA2 promoter in Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Wu, Qingfa; Tommerup, Niels; Ming Wang, San; Hansen, Lars

    2006-04-26

    The Iroquois (IRX) homeobox gene family consists of six highly conserved transcription factors that are of importance for normal embryonic development. They are organized in two gene clusters in human, one on 5p15.33 and the other one on 16q12.2, respectively, and both the organization and the structure of the genes are highly conserved. An open reading frame coding for an unknown protein is identified in the promoter of IRXA2 on chromosome 5p. This new gene is composed of four exons and it is orientated in a head-to-head manner to IRXA2. Only a short 851 bp segment separates the two translation start codons and the two genes may share a bi-directional promoter. This bi-directional promoter is embedded in a large CpG-island, that also continues into both genes. RT-PCR analysis of the new gene reveals two alternative mRNA transcripts and a third mRNA transcript can be predicted from EST clones. The expression profile of the gene analysed in 9 different human tissues reveals that it is expressed in a coordinated fashion with IRXA2, which has led to the name CEI (Coordinated Expression to IRXA2). The CEI protein lacks homology to any known protein or protein domain in public databases, and a putative amino terminal signal peptide suggests the protein is secreted or ER compartment located. The gene is only found in the human and the chimpanzee genome, but not in the mouse or the rat genome, which suggests that CEI is unique for higher primates. As the identified bi-directional promoter not being a relic of an ancient compact genome, CEI may play an important role in the evolution of higher primates in coordination with the IRX genes.

  18. OSBP-related protein 8 (ORP8) interacts with Homo sapiens sperm associated antigen 5 (SPAG5) and mediates oxysterol interference of HepG2 cell cycle

    SciTech Connect

    Zhong, Wenbin; Zhou, You; Li, Jiwei; Mysore, Raghavendra; Luo, Wei; Li, Shiqian; Chang, Mau-Sun; Olkkonen, Vesa M.; Yan, Daoguang

    2014-04-01

    We earlier identified OSBP-related protein 8 (ORP8) as an endoplasmic reticulum/nuclear envelope oxysterol-binding protein implicated in cellular lipid homeostasis, migration, and organization of the microtubule cytoskeleton. Here, a yeast two-hybrid screen identified Homo sapiens sperm associated antigen 5 (SPAG5)/Astrin as interaction partner of ORP8. The putative interaction was further confirmed by pull-down and co-immunoprecipitation assays. ORP8 did not colocalize with kinetochore-associated SPAG5 in mitotic HepG2 or HuH7 cells, but overexpressed ORP8 was capable of recruiting SPAG5 onto endoplasmic reticulum membranes in interphase cells. In our experiments, 25-hydroxycholesterol (25OHC) retarded the HepG2 cell cycle, causing accumulation in G2/M phase; ORP8 overexpression resulted in the same phenotype. Importantly, ORP8 knock-down dramatically inhibited the oxysterol effect on HepG2 cell cycle, suggesting a mediating role of ORP8. Furthermore, knock-down of SPAG5 significantly reduced the effects of both ORP8 overexpression and 25OHC on the cell cycle, placing SPAG5 downstream of the two cell-cycle interfering factors. Taken together, the present results suggest that ORP8 may via SPAG5 mediate oxysterol interference of the HepG2 cell cycle. - Highlights: • The oxysterol-binding protein ORP8 was found to interact with the mitotic regulator SPAG5/Astrin. • Treatment of HepG2 cells with 25-hydroxycholesterol caused cell cycle retardation in G2/M. • ORP8 overexpression caused a similar G2/M accumulation, and ORP8 knock-down reversed the 25-hydroxycholesterol effect. • Reduction of cellular of SPAG5/Astrin reversed the cell cycle effects of both 25-hydroxycholesterol and ORP8 overexpression. • Our results suggest that ORP8 mediates via SPAG5/Astrin the oxysterol interference of HepG2 cell cycle.

  19. Gestalt principle use in college students, children with autism, toddlers (Homo sapiens), and cotton top tamarins (Saguinus oedipus).

    PubMed

    Neiworth, Julie J; Whillock, Katherine M; Kim, Seo Hyun; Greenberg, Julia R; Jones, Katherine B; Patel, Anushka R; Steefel-Moore, David L; Shaw, Allyson J; Rupert, Deborah D; Gauer, Jacqueline L; Kudura, Aisha G

    2014-05-01

    The use of Gestalt principles of proximity, similarity, and closure to recognize objects by configural superiority was examined in college students, low- and high-functioning children with autism, toddlers, and adult cotton top tamarin monkeys. At issue was whether the monkeys showed differences from humans in perceptual processing and whether they showed any similarities with clinical or developmental groups. The method required a pointing response to discriminate an odd item in a 4-item visual display. All subjects were trained to a high accuracy to point to the odd item before being tested with graphic stimuli that differentiated feature changes based on configural superiority. The results were that college students and high-functioning children with autism responded faster and more accurately to trials in which the odd item was easily noticed by the use of Gestalt principles and configural superiority. Toddlers also responded more accurately to the Gestalt trials, but without being faster at making the response. Low-functioning children with autism and tamarins showed no advantage to Gestalt trials but exhibited different processing styles. The implications of these findings to track the evolution of human perception and to develop a primate model for the perceptual deficits of autism are discussed.

  20. Expression, purification, crystallization and preliminary X-ray characterization of the GRP carbohydrate-recognition domain from Homo sapiens

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Dongwen; Sun, Jianping; Zhao, Wei; Zhang, Xiao; Shi, Yunyu; Teng, Maikun; Niu, Liwen; Dong, Yuhui; Liu, Peng

    2006-01-01

    Galectins are a family of animal lectins which share similar carbohydrate-recognition domains (CRDs) and an affinity for β-galactosides. A novel human galectin-related protein named GRP (galectin-related protein; previously known as HSPC159) comprises only one conserved CRD with 38 additional N-terminal residues. The C-terminal fragment of human GRP (GRP-C; residues 38–172) containing the CRD has been expressed and purified. The protein was crystallized using the hanging-drop vapour-diffusion method from a solution containing 2% PEG 400 and 2M ammonium sulfate in 100 mM Tris–HCl buffer pH 7.5. Diffraction data were collected to a resolution limit of 2.0 Å at beamline 3W1A of Beijing Synchrotron Radiation Facility at 100 K. The crystals belong to the monoclinic space group C2, with unit-cell parameters a = 123.07, b = 96.67, c = 61.56 Å, β = 118.72°. The estimated Matthews coefficient was 2.6 Å3 Da−1, corresponding to 51.8% solvent content. PMID:16682780

  1. Identification of a better Homo sapiens Class II HDAC inhibitor through binding energy calculations and descriptor analysis.

    PubMed

    Tambunan, Usman Sumo Friend; Wulandari, Evi Kristin

    2010-10-15

    Human papillomaviruses (HPVs) are the most common on sexually transmitted viruses in the world. HPVs are responsible for a large spectrum of deseases, both benign and malignant. The certain types of HPV are involved in the development of cervical cancer. In attemps to find additional drugs in the treatment of cervical cancer, inhibitors of the histone deacetylases (HDAC) have received much attention due to their low cytotoxic profiles and the E6/E7 oncogene function of human papilomavirus can be completely by passed by HDAC inhibition. The histone deacetylase inhibitors can induce growth arrest, differentiation and apoptosis of cancer cells. HDAC class I and class II are considered the main targets for cancer. Therefore, the six HDACs class II was modeled and about two inhibitors (SAHA and TSA) were docked using AutoDock4.2, to each of the inhibitor in order to identify the pharmacological properties. Based on the results of docking, SAHA and TSA were able to bind with zinc ion in HDACs models as a drug target. SAHA was satisfied almost all the properties i.e., binding affinity, the Drug-Likeness value and Drug Score with 70% oral bioavailability and the carbonyl group of these compound fits well into the active site of the target where the zinc is present. Hence, SAHA could be developed as potential inhibitors of class II HDACs and valuable cervical cancer drug candidate.

  2. Cloning, expression, purification, crystallization and X-ray analysis of inositol monophosphatase from Mus musculus and Homo sapiens

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Nisha; Halliday, Amy C.; Knight, Matthew; Lack, Nathan A.; Lowe, Edward; Churchill, Grant C.

    2012-01-01

    Inositol monophosphatase (IMPase) catalyses the hydrolysis of inositol monophosphate to inositol and is crucial in the phosphatidylinositol (PI) signalling pathway. Lithium, which is the drug of choice for bipolar disorder, inhibits IMPase at therapeutically relevant plasma concentrations. Both mouse IMPase 1 (MmIMPase 1) and human IMPase 1 (HsIMPase 1) were cloned into pRSET5a, expressed in Escherichia coli, purified and crystallized using the sitting-drop method. The structures were solved at resolutions of 2.4 and 1.7 Å, respectively. Comparison of MmIMPase 1 and HsIMPase 1 revealed a core r.m.s. deviation of 0.516 Å. PMID:23027737

  3. Nuclear receptors, nuclear-receptor factors, and nuclear-receptor-like orphans form a large paralog cluster in Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Garcia-Vallvé, S; Palau, J

    1998-06-01

    We studied a human protein paralog cluster formed by 38 nonredundant sequences taken from the Swiss-Prot database and its supplement, TrEMBL. These sequences include nuclear receptors, nuclear-receptor factors and nuclear-receptor-like orphans. Working separately with both the central cysteine-rich DNA-binding domain and the carboxy-terminal ligand-binding domain, we performed multialignment analyses that included drawings of paralog trees. Our results show that the cluster is highly multibranched, with considerable differences in the amino acid sequence in the ligand-binding domain (LBD), and 17 proximal subbranches which are identifiable and fully coincident when independent trees from both domains are compared. We identified the six recently proposed subfamilies as groups of neighboring clusters in the LBD paralog tree. We found similarities of 80%-100% for the N-terminal transactivation domain among mammalian ortholog receptors, as well as some paralog resemblances within diverse subbranches. Our studies suggest that during the evolutionary process, the three domains were assembled in a modular fashion with a nonshuffled modular fusion of the LBD. We used the EMBL server PredictProtein to make secondary-structure predictions for all 38 LBD subsequences. Amino acid residues in the multialigned homologous domains--taking the beginning of helix H3 of the human retinoic acid receptor-gamma as the initial point of reference--were substituted with H or E, which identify residues predicted to be helical or extended, respectively. The result was a secondary structure multialignment with the surprising feature that the prediction follows a canonical pattern of alignable alpha-helices with some short extended elements in between, despite the fact that a number of subsequences resemble each other by less than 25% in terms of the similarity index. We also identified the presence of a binary patterning in all of the predicted helices that were conserved throughout the 38

  4. Structure of putative CutA1 from Homo sapiens determined at 2.05 Å resolution

    PubMed Central

    Bagautdinov, Bagautdin; Matsuura, Yoshinori; Bagautdinova, Svetlana; Kunishima, Naoki; Yutani, Katsuhide

    2008-01-01

    The structure of human brain CutA1 (HsCutA1) has been determined using diffraction data to 2.05 Å resolution. HsCutA1 has been implicated in the anchoring of acetylcholinesterase in neuronal cell membranes, while its bacterial homologue Escherichia coli CutA1 is involved in copper tolerance. Additionally, the structure of HsCutA1 bears similarity to that of the signal transduction protein PII, which is involved in regulation of nitrogen metabolism. Although several crystal structures of CutA1 from various sources with different rotation angles and degrees of interaction between trimer interfaces have been reported, the specific functional role of CutA1 is still unclear. In this study, the X-ray structure of HsCutA1 was determined in space group P212121, with unit-cell parameters a = 68.69, b = 88.84, c = 125.33 Å and six molecules per asymmetric unit. HsCutA1 is a trimeric molecule with intertwined antiparallel β-strands; each subunit has a molecular weight of 14.6 kDa and contains 135 amino-acid residues. In order to obtain clues to the possible function of HsCutA1, its crystal structure was compared with those of other CutA1 and PII proteins. PMID:18453701

  5. Structure of putative CutA1 from Homo sapiens determined at 2.05 A resolution.

    PubMed

    Bagautdinov, Bagautdin; Matsuura, Yoshinori; Bagautdinova, Svetlana; Kunishima, Naoki; Yutani, Katsuhide

    2008-05-01

    The structure of human brain CutA1 (HsCutA1) has been determined using diffraction data to 2.05 A resolution. HsCutA1 has been implicated in the anchoring of acetylcholinesterase in neuronal cell membranes, while its bacterial homologue Escherichia coli CutA1 is involved in copper tolerance. Additionally, the structure of HsCutA1 bears similarity to that of the signal transduction protein PII, which is involved in regulation of nitrogen metabolism. Although several crystal structures of CutA1 from various sources with different rotation angles and degrees of interaction between trimer interfaces have been reported, the specific functional role of CutA1 is still unclear. In this study, the X-ray structure of HsCutA1 was determined in space group P2(1)2(1)2(1), with unit-cell parameters a = 68.69, b = 88.84, c = 125.33 A and six molecules per asymmetric unit. HsCutA1 is a trimeric molecule with intertwined antiparallel beta-strands; each subunit has a molecular weight of 14.6 kDa and contains 135 amino-acid residues. In order to obtain clues to the possible function of HsCutA1, its crystal structure was compared with those of other CutA1 and PII proteins.

  6. Should autism be considered a canary bird telling that Homo sapiens may be on its way to extinction?

    PubMed

    Christophersen, Olav Albert

    2012-01-01

    There has been a dramatic enhancement of the reported incidence of autism in different parts of the world over the last 30 years. This can apparently not be explained only as a result of improved diagnosis and reporting, but may also reflect a real change. The causes of this change are unknown, but if we shall follow T.C. Chamberlin's principle of multiple working hypotheses, we need to take into consideration the possibility that it partly may reflect an enhancement of the average frequency of responsible alleles in large populations. If this hypothesis is correct, it means that the average germline mutation rate must now be much higher in the populations concerned, compared with the natural mutation rate in hominid ancestors before the agricultural and industrial revolutions. This is compatible with the high prevalence of impaired human semen quality in several countries and also with what is known about high levels of total exposure to several different unnatural chemical mutagens, plus some natural ones at unnaturally high levels. Moreover, dietary deficiency conditions that may lead to enhancement of mutation rates are also very widespread, affecting billions of people. However, the natural mutation rate in hominids has been found to be so high that there is apparently no tolerance for further enhancement of the germline mutation rate before the Eigen error threshold will be exceeded and our species will go extinct because of mutational meltdown. This threat, if real, should be considered far more serious than any disease causing the death only of individual patients. It should therefore be considered the first and highest priority of the best biomedical scientists in the world, of research-funding agencies and of all medical doctors to try to stop the express train carrying all humankind as passengers on board before it arrives at the end station of our civilization.

  7. Should autism be considered a canary bird telling that Homo sapiens may be on its way to extinction?

    PubMed Central

    Christophersen, Olav Albert

    2012-01-01

    There has been a dramatic enhancement of the reported incidence of autism in different parts of the world over the last 30 years. This can apparently not be explained only as a result of improved diagnosis and reporting, but may also reflect a real change. The causes of this change are unknown, but if we shall follow T.C. Chamberlin's principle of multiple working hypotheses, we need to take into consideration the possibility that it partly may reflect an enhancement of the average frequency of responsible alleles in large populations. If this hypothesis is correct, it means that the average germline mutation rate must now be much higher in the populations concerned, compared with the natural mutation rate in hominid ancestors before the agricultural and industrial revolutions. This is compatible with the high prevalence of impaired human semen quality in several countries and also with what is known about high levels of total exposure to several different unnatural chemical mutagens, plus some natural ones at unnaturally high levels. Moreover, dietary deficiency conditions that may lead to enhancement of mutation rates are also very widespread, affecting billions of people. However, the natural mutation rate in hominids has been found to be so high that there is apparently no tolerance for further enhancement of the germline mutation rate before the Eigen error threshold will be exceeded and our species will go extinct because of mutational meltdown. This threat, if real, should be considered far more serious than any disease causing the death only of individual patients. It should therefore be considered the first and highest priority of the best biomedical scientists in the world, of research-funding agencies and of all medical doctors to try to stop the express train carrying all humankind as passengers on board before it arrives at the end station of our civilization. PMID:23990819

  8. Toward reduction in animal sacrifice for drugs: molecular modeling of Macaca fascicularis P450 2C20 for virtual screening of Homo sapiens P450 2C8 substrates.

    PubMed

    Rua, Francesco; Di Nardo, Giovanna; Sadeghi, Sheila J; Gilardi, Gianfranco

    2012-01-01

    Macaca fascicularis P450 2C20 shares 92% identity with human cytochrome P450 2C8, which is involved in the metabolism of more than 8% of all prescribed drugs. To date, only paclitaxel and amodiaquine, two substrate markers of the human P450 2C8, have been experimentally confirmed as M. fascicularis P450 2C20 drugs. To bridge the lack of information on the ligands recognized by M. fascicularis P450 2C20, in this study, a three-dimensional homology model of this enzyme was generated on the basis of the available crystal structure of the human homologue P450 2C8 using YASARA. The results indicated that 90.0%, 9.0%, 0.5%, and 0.5% of the residues of the P450 2C20 model were located in the most favorable, allowed, generously allowed, and disallowed regions, respectively. The root-mean-square deviation of the C-alpha superposition of the M. fascicularis P450 2C20 model with the Homo sapiens P450 2C8 was 0.074 Å, indicating a very high similarity of the two structures. Subsequently, the 2C20 model was used for in silico screening of 58 known P450 2C8 substrates and 62 inhibitors. These were also docked in the active site of the crystal structure of the human P450 2C8. The affinity of each compound for the active site of both cytochromes proved to be very similar, meaning that the few key residues that are mutated in the active site of the M. fascicularis P450 do not prevent the P450 2C20 from recognizing the same substrates as the human P450 2C8.

  9. Implications of natural selection in shaping 99.4% nonsynonymous DNA identity between humans and chimpanzees: Enlarging genus Homo

    PubMed Central

    Wildman, Derek E.; Uddin, Monica; Liu, Guozhen; Grossman, Lawrence I.; Goodman, Morris

    2003-01-01

    What do functionally important DNA sites, those scrutinized and shaped by natural selection, tell us about the place of humans in evolution? Here we compare ≈90 kb of coding DNA nucleotide sequence from 97 human genes to their sequenced chimpanzee counterparts and to available sequenced gorilla, orangutan, and Old World monkey counterparts, and, on a more limited basis, to mouse. The nonsynonymous changes (functionally important), like synonymous changes (functionally much less important), show chimpanzees and humans to be most closely related, sharing 99.4% identity at nonsynonymous sites and 98.4% at synonymous sites. On a time scale, the coding DNA divergencies separate the human–chimpanzee clade from the gorilla clade at between 6 and 7 million years ago and place the most recent common ancestor of humans and chimpanzees at between 5 and 6 million years ago. The evolutionary rate of coding DNA in the catarrhine clade (Old World monkey and ape, including human) is much slower than in the lineage to mouse. Among the genes examined, 30 show evidence of positive selection during descent of catarrhines. Nonsynonymous substitutions by themselves, in this subset of positively selected genes, group humans and chimpanzees closest to each other and have chimpanzees diverge about as much from the common human–chimpanzee ancestor as humans do. This functional DNA evidence supports two previously offered taxonomic proposals: family Hominidae should include all extant apes; and genus Homo should include three extant species and two subgenera, Homo (Homo) sapiens (humankind), Homo (Pan) troglodytes (common chimpanzee), and Homo (Pan) paniscus (bonobo chimpanzee). PMID:12766228

  10. From hominins to humans: how sapiens became behaviourally modern

    PubMed Central

    Sterelny, Kim

    2011-01-01

    This paper contributes to a debate in the palaeoarchaeological community about the major time-lag between the origin of anatomically modern humans and the appearance of typically human cultural behaviour. Why did humans take so long—at least 100 000 years—to become ‘behaviourally modern’? The transition is often explained as a change in the intrinsic cognitive competence of modern humans: often in terms of a new capacity for symbolic thought, or the final perfection of language. These cognitive breakthrough models are not satisfactory, for they fail to explain the uneven palaeoanthropological record of human competence. Many supposed signature capacities appear (and then disappear) before the supposed cognitive breakthrough; many of the signature capacities disappear again after the breakthrough. So, instead of seeing behavioural modernity as a simple reflection of a new kind of mind, this paper presents a niche construction conceptual model of behavioural modernity. Humans became behaviourally modern when they could reliably transmit accumulated informational capital to the next generation, and transmit it with sufficient precision for innovations to be preserved and accumulated. In turn, the reliable accumulation of culture depends on the construction of learning environments, not just intrinsic cognitive machinery. I argue that the model is (i) evolutionarily plausible: the elements of the model can be assembled incrementally, without implausible selective scenarios; (ii) the model coheres with the broad palaeoarchaeological record; (iii) the model is anthropologically and ethnographically plausible; and (iv) the model is testable, though only in coarse, preliminary ways. PMID:21320896

  11. A Model of an Integrated Immune System Pathway in Homo sapiens and Its Interaction with Superantigen Producing Expression Regulatory Pathway in Staphylococcus aureus: Comparing Behavior of Pathogen Perturbed and Unperturbed Pathway

    PubMed Central

    Tomar, Namrata; De, Rajat K.

    2013-01-01

    Response of an immune system to a pathogen attack depends on the balance between the host immune defense and the virulence of the pathogen. Investigation of molecular interactions between the proteins of a host and a pathogen helps in identifying the pathogenic proteins. It is necessary to understand the dynamics of a normally behaved host system to evaluate the capacity of its immune system upon pathogen attack. In this study, we have compared the behavior of an unperturbed and pathogen perturbed host system. Moreover, we have developed a formalism under Flux Balance Analysis (FBA) for the optimization of conflicting objective functions. We have constructed an integrated pathway system, which includes Staphylococcal Superantigen (SAg) expression regulatory pathway and TCR signaling pathway of Homo sapiens. We have implemented the method on this pathway system and observed the behavior of host signaling molecules upon pathogen attack. The entire study has been divided into six different cases, based on the perturbed/unperturbed conditions. In other words, we have investigated unperturbed and pathogen perturbed human TCR signaling pathway, with different combinations of optimization of concentrations of regulatory and signaling molecules. One of these cases has aimed at finding out whether minimization of the toxin production in a pathogen leads to the change in the concentration levels of the proteins coded by TCR signaling pathway genes in the infected host. Based on the computed results, we have hypothesized that the balance between TCR signaling inhibitory and stimulatory molecules can keep TCR signaling system into resting/stimulating state, depending upon the perturbation. The proposed integrated host-pathogen interaction pathway model has accurately reflected the experimental evidences, which we have used for validation purpose. The significance of this kind of investigation lies in revealing the susceptible interaction points that can take back the

  12. Geometric variation of the frontal squama in the genus homo: frontal bulging and the origin of modern human morphology.

    PubMed

    Bruner, Emiliano; Athreya, Sheela; de la Cuétara, José Manuel; Marks, Tarah

    2013-02-01

    The majority of studies of frontal bone morphology in paleoanthropology have analyzed the frontal squama and the browridge as a single unit, mixing information from different functional elements. Taking into account that the bulging of the frontal bone is often described as a species-specific trait of Homo sapiens, in this article we analyze variation in the midsagittal profile of the genus Homo, focusing on the frontal squama alone, using landmark-based superimpositions and principal components analysis. Our results demonstrate that anatomically modern humans are definitely separated from extinct human taxa on the basis of frontal bulging. However, there is minor overlap among these groups, indicating that it is necessary to exercise caution when using this trait alone to make taxonomic inferences on individual specimens. Early modern humans do not show differences with recent modern humans, and "transitional" individuals such as Jebel Irhoud 1, Maba, and Florisbad, show modern-like frontal squama morphology. The bulging of the frontal squama in modern humans may represent a structural consequence of more general cranial changes, or it could be a response to changes in the morphology of the underlying prefrontal brain elements. A subtle difference between Neandertals and the Afro-European Middle Pleistocene Homo sample is associated with flattening at bregma in the former group, a result that merits further investigation. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  13. Liquid conservation in orangutans (Pongo pygmaeus) and humans (Homo sapiens): individual differences and perceptual strategies.

    PubMed

    Call, J; Rochat, P

    1996-09-01

    Four orangutans (1 juvenile, 2 subadults, and 1 adult) and ten 6-8-year-old children were tested in 4 liquid conservation tasks of increasing levels of difficulty. Task difficulty depended on the type of transformation (continuous vs. discontinuous quantities) and the relative contrast between the shapes of the containers. Results indicate that orangutans did not display conservation in the strict sense; instead they showed "partial" conservation (intermediate reactions according to J. Piaget & B. Inhelder, 1941). In contrast, some of the children provided evidence of conservation in all 4 tasks, showing "true" or logically necessary conservation in the original sense proposed by J. Piaget and B. Inhelder (1941). Although orangutans did not show conservation in the strict sense, as J. Piaget (1955) and others have generally agreed it should be defined, orangutans behaved as individual and creative problem solvers, adopting different perceptual strategies depending on the task.

  14. Homo sapiens in the Americas. Overview of the earliest human expansion in the New World.

    PubMed

    Marangoni, Aurelio; Caramelli, David; Manzi, Giorgio

    2014-01-01

    Although it is widely recognised that America was the last continent to be populated by our species, researchers' views on various aspects of this process (e.g. the period in which it occurred, the area from which the colonizing populations came, the number of dispersal waves and the routes taken by these migrations) differ significantly. In this paper, we review both classical data and more recent findings from various research fields - including geology, paleoecology, archaeology, skeletal biology, and genetics - that may shed light on the dynamics of the colonization of the American continent, according to a critical reappraisal of the various hypotheses and models that have been advanced over time to explain this process.

  15. Sarcocystis heydorni, n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Protozoa) with cattle (Bos taurus) and human (Homo sapiens) cycle

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Cattle (Bos taurus) are intermediate hosts for four species of Sarcocystis, S. cruzi, S. hirsuta, S. hominis, and S. rommeli. Of these four species, mature sarcocysts of S. cruzi are thin-walled (< 1µm) whereas S. hirsuta, S. hominis, and S. rommeli have thick walls (4 µm or more). Here we describe ...

  16. Crystallization and preliminary X-ray crystallographic investigations on a βγ-crystallin domain of absent in melanoma 1 (AIM1), a protein from Homo sapiens

    SciTech Connect

    Aravind, Penmatsa; Rajini, Bheemreddy; Sharma, Yogendra; Sankaranarayanan, Rajan

    2006-03-01

    The crystallization and preliminary X-ray diffraction analysis of AIM1g1, a βγ-crystallin domain of absent in melanoma (AIM1) protein from H. sapiens, is reported. AIM1g1 is a single βγ-crystallin domain from the protein absent in melanoma 1 (AIM1), which appears to play a role in the suppression of melanomas. This domain is known to bind calcium and its structure would help in identifying calcium-coordinating sites in vertebrate crystallins, which have hitherto been believed to have lost this ability during evolution. Crystallization of this domain was performed by the hanging-drop vapour-diffusion method. Crystals diffracted to a maximum resolution of 1.86 Å and were found to belong to space group P6{sub 1} or P6{sub 5}, with unit-cell parameters a = b = 54.98, c = 59.73 Å. Solvent-content analysis indicated the presence of one monomer per asymmetric unit.

  17. New dates for the Fontéchevade (Charente, France) Homo remains.

    PubMed

    Chase, Philip G; Debénath, André; Dibble, Harold L; McPherron, Shannon P; Schwarcz, Henry P; Stafford, Thomas W; Tournepiche, Jean-François

    2007-02-01

    Homo I from the site of Fontéchevade, France, has long been an anomaly in the European fossil record. The specimen is a fragment of human frontal bone that lacks a supraorbital torus and appears to belong to an anatomically modern Homo sapiens. However, the level from which it was recovered in 1947 was dated on the basis of associated faunal and lithic material to the last interglacial or earlier. As a result, Homo I has been interpreted, among other things, as a representative of a pre-sapiens lineage in Europe. This paper reports on recent ESR and radiocarbon dates that indicate that the specimen almost certainly dates to oxygen isotope stage 3, which brings it in line with other evidence for the entry of modern Homo sapiens into Europe.

  18. In Silico Molecular Modeling and Docking Studies on Novel Mutants (E229V, H225P and D230C) of the Nucleotide-Binding Domain of Homo sapiens Hsp70.

    PubMed

    Elengoe, Asita; Hamdan, Salehhuddin

    2016-08-12

    In this study, we explored the possibility of determining the synergistic interactions between nucleotide-binding domain (NBD) of Homo sapiens heat-shock 70 kDa protein (Hsp70) and E1A 32 kDa of adenovirus serotype 5 motif (PNLVP) in the efficiency of killing of tumor cells in cancer treatment. At present, the protein interaction between NBD and PNLVP motif is still unknown, but believed to enhance the rate of virus replication in tumor cells. Three mutant models (E229V, H225P and D230C) were built and simulated, and their interactions with PNLVP motif were studied. The PNLVP motif showed the binding energy and intermolecular energy values with the novel E229V mutant at -7.32 and -11.2 kcal/mol. The E229V mutant had the highest number of hydrogen bonds (7). Based on the root mean square deviation, root mean square fluctuation, hydrogen bonds, salt bridge, secondary structure, surface-accessible solvent area, potential energy and distance matrices analyses, it was proved that the E229V had the strongest and most stable interaction with the PNLVP motif among all the four protein-ligand complex structures. The knowledge of this protein-ligand complex model would help in designing Hsp70 structure-based drug for cancer therapy.

  19. The Advantage of Throwing the First Stone: How Understanding the Evolutionary Demands of Homo sapiens Is Helping Us Understand Carpal Motion

    PubMed Central

    Rohde, Rachel S.; Crisco, Joseph J.; Wolfe, Scott W.

    2012-01-01

    Unlike any other diarthrodial joint in the human body, the “wrist joint” is composed of numerous articulations between eight carpal bones, the distal radius, the distal ulna, and five metacarpal bones. The carpal bones articulate with each other as well as with the distal radius, distal ulna, and the metacarpal bases. Multiple theories explaining intercarpal motion have been proposed; however, controversy exists concerning the degree and direction of motion of the individual carpal bones within the two carpal rows during different planes of motion. Recent investigations have suggested that traditional explanations of carpal bone motion may not entirely account for carpal motion in all planes. Better understanding of the complexities of carpal motion through the use of advanced imaging techniques and simultaneous appreciation of human anatomic and functional evolution have led to the hypothesis that the “dart thrower’s motion” of the wrist is uniquely human. Carpal kinematic research and current developments in both orthopaedic surgery and anthropology underscore the importance of the dart thrower’s motion in human functional activities and the clinical implications of these concepts for orthopaedic surgery and rehabilitation. PMID:20044492

  20. Simulating an Infection Growth Model in Certain Healthy Metabolic Pathways of Homo sapiens for Highlighting Their Role in Type I Diabetes mellitus Using Fire-Spread Strategy, Feedbacks and Sensitivities

    PubMed Central

    Tagore, Somnath; De, Rajat K.

    2013-01-01

    Disease Systems Biology is an area of life sciences, which is not very well understood to date. Analyzing infections and their spread in healthy metabolite networks can be one of the focussed areas in this regard. We have proposed a theory based on the classical forest fire model for analyzing the path of infection spread in healthy metabolic pathways. The theory suggests that when fire erupts in a forest, it spreads, and the surrounding trees also catch fire. Similarly, when we consider a metabolic network, the infection caused in the metabolites of the network spreads like a fire. We have constructed a simulation model which is used to study the infection caused in the metabolic networks from the start of infection, to spread and ultimately combating it. For implementation, we have used two approaches, first, based on quantitative strategies using ordinary differential equations and second, using graph-theory based properties. Furthermore, we are using certain probabilistic scores to complete this task and for interpreting the harm caused in the network, given by a ‘critical value’ to check whether the infection can be cured or not. We have tested our simulation model on metabolic pathways involved in Type I Diabetes mellitus in Homo sapiens. For validating our results biologically, we have used sensitivity analysis, both local and global, as well as for identifying the role of feedbacks in spreading infection in metabolic pathways. Moreover, information in literature has also been used to validate the results. The metabolic network datasets have been collected from the Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG). PMID:24039701

  1. OSL dating of the Aterian levels at Dar es-Soltan I (Rabat, Morocco) and implications for the dispersal of modern Homo sapiens

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barton, R. N. E.; Bouzouggar, A.; Collcutt, S. N.; Schwenninger, J.-L.; Clark-Balzan, L.

    2009-09-01

    The Aterian is a distinctive Middle Palaeolithic industry which is very widely spread across North Africa. Its dating and significance have been debated for nearly a century. Renewed interest in the Aterian has arisen because of a recent proposal that its development and spread may be linked to the dispersal of anatomically modern humans. The industry contains technological innovations such as thin bifacially flaked lithic points and pedunculates as well as evidence for personal ornaments and use of red ochre. Such markers as shell beads are believed to be indicative of symbolic behaviour. Dar es-Soltan I on the Atlantic coast of Morocco contains a thick sequence of Aterian deposits that were thought to represent the later stages of development of this industry. New Optically Stimulated Luminescence dates and geomorphological study indicate a much older sequence and so far the earliest yet recorded ages for the Aterian. They suggest an appearance in the Maghreb region during MIS (Marine Isotope Stage) 5.

  2. Non-random distribution of homo-repeats: links with biological functions and human diseases

    PubMed Central

    Lobanov, Michail Yu.; Klus, Petr; Sokolovsky, Igor V.; Tartaglia, Gian Gaetano; Galzitskaya, Oxana V.

    2016-01-01

    The biological function of multiple repetitions of single amino acids, or homo-repeats, is largely unknown, but their occurrence in proteins has been associated with more than 20 hereditary diseases. Analysing 122 bacterial and eukaryotic genomes, we observed that the number of proteins containing homo-repeats is significantly larger than expected from theoretical estimates. Analysis of statistical significance indicates that the minimal size of homo-repeats varies with amino acid type and proteome. In an attempt to characterize proteins harbouring long homo-repeats, we found that those containing polar or small amino acids S, P, H, E, D, K, Q and N are enriched in structural disorder as well as protein- and RNA-interactions. We observed that E, S, Q, G, L, P, D, A and H homo-repeats are strongly linked with occurrence in human diseases. Moreover, S, E, P, A, Q, D and T homo-repeats are significantly enriched in neuronal proteins associated with autism and other disorders. We release a webserver for further exploration of homo-repeats occurrence in human pathology at http://bioinfo.protres.ru/hradis/. PMID:27256590

  3. Beyond the Pleistocene: Using Phylogeny and Constraint to Inform the Evolutionary Psychology of Human Mating

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Eastwick, Paul W.

    2009-01-01

    Evolutionary psychologists explore the adaptive function of traits and behaviors that characterize modern Homo sapiens. However, evolutionary psychologists have yet to incorporate the phylogenetic relationship between modern Homo sapiens and humans' hominid and pongid relatives (both living and extinct) into their theorizing. By considering the…

  4. Beyond the Pleistocene: Using Phylogeny and Constraint to Inform the Evolutionary Psychology of Human Mating

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Eastwick, Paul W.

    2009-01-01

    Evolutionary psychologists explore the adaptive function of traits and behaviors that characterize modern Homo sapiens. However, evolutionary psychologists have yet to incorporate the phylogenetic relationship between modern Homo sapiens and humans' hominid and pongid relatives (both living and extinct) into their theorizing. By considering the…

  5. The molecular chaperone, Atp12p, from Homo sapiens. In vitro studies with purified wild type and mutant (E240K) proteins.

    PubMed

    Hinton, Ayana; Gatti, Domenico L; Ackerman, Sharon H

    2004-03-05

    Work in Saccharomyces cerevisiae has shown that Atp12p binds to unassembled alpha subunits of F(1) and in so doing prevents the alpha subunit from associating with itself in non-productive complexes during assembly of the F(1) moiety of the mitochondrial ATP synthase. We have developed a method to prepare recombinant Atp12p after expression of its human cDNA in bacterial cells. The molecular chaperone activity of HuAtp12p was studied using citrate synthase as a model substrate. Wild type HuAtp12p suppresses the aggregation of thermally inactivated citrate synthase. In contrast, the mutant protein HuAtp12p(E240K), which harbors a lysine at the position of the highly conserved Glu-240, fails to prevent citrate synthase aggregation at 43 degrees C. No significant differences were observed between the wild type and the mutant proteins as judged by sedimentation analysis, cysteine titration, tryptophan emission spectra, or limited proteolysis, which suggests that the E240K mutation alters the activity of HuAtp12p with minimal effects on the physical integrity of the protein. An additional important finding of this work is that the equilibrium chemical denaturation curve of HuAtp12p shows two components, the first of which is associated with protein aggregation. This result is consistent with a model for Atp12p structure in which there is a hydrophobic chaperone domain that is buried within the protein interior.

  6. All great ape species (Gorilla gorilla, Pan paniscus, Pan troglodytes, Pongo abelii) and two-and-a-half-year-old children (Homo sapiens) discriminate appearance from reality.

    PubMed

    Karg, Katja; Schmelz, Martin; Call, Josep; Tomasello, Michael

    2014-11-01

    Nonhuman great apes and human children were tested for an understanding that appearance does not always correspond to reality. Subjects were 29 great apes (bonobos [Pan paniscus], chimpanzees [Pan troglodytes], gorillas [Gorilla gorilla], and orangutans [Pongo abelii]) and 24 2½-year-old children. In our task, we occluded portions of 1 large and 1 small food stick such that the size relations seemed reversed. Subjects could then choose which one they wanted. There was 1 control condition and 2 experimental conditions (administered within subjects). In the control condition subjects saw only the apparent stick sizes, whereas in the 2 experimental conditions they saw the true stick sizes as well (the difference between them being what the subjects saw first: the apparent or the real stick sizes). All great ape species and children successfully identified the bigger stick, despite its smaller appearance, in the experimental conditions, but not in the control. We discuss these results in relation to the understanding of object permanence and conservation, and exclude reversed reward contingency learning as an explanation. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved).

  7. Structural insight with mutational impact on tyrosinase and PKC-β interaction from Homo sapiens: Molecular modeling and docking studies for melanogenesis, albinism and increased risk for melanoma.

    PubMed

    Banerjee, Arundhati; Ray, Sujay

    2016-10-30

    Human tyrosinase, is an important protein for biosynthetic pathway of melanin. It was studied to be phosphorylated and activated by protein kinase-C, β-subunit (PKC-β) through earlier experimentations with in vivo evidences. Documentation documents that mutation in two essentially vital serine residues in C-terminal end of tyrosinase leads to albinism. Due to the deficiency of protective shield like enzyme; melanin, albinos are at an increased peril for melanoma and other skin cancers. So, computational and residue-level insight including a mutational exploration with evolutionary importance into this mechanism lies obligatory for future pathological and therapeutic developments. Therefore, functional tertiary models of the relevant proteins were analyzed after satisfying their stereo-chemical features. Evolutionarily paramount residues for the activation of tyrosinase were perceived via multiple sequence alignment phenomena. Mutant-type tyrosinase protein (S98A and S102A) was thereby modeled, maintaining the wild-type proteins' functionality. Furthermore, this present comparative study discloses the variation in the stable residual participation (for mutant-type and wild-type tyrosinase-PKCβ complex). Mainly, an increased number of polar negatively charged residues from the wild-type tyrosinase participated with PKC-β, predominantly. Fascinatingly supported by evaluation of statistical significances, mutation even led to a destabilizing impact in tyrosinase accompanied by conformational switches with a helix-to-coil transition in the mutated protein. Even the allosteric sites in the protein got poorly hampered upon mutation leading to weaker tendency for binding partners to interact.

  8. Molecular dynamics simulation of complex Histones Deacetylase (HDAC) Class II Homo Sapiens with suberoylanilide hydroxamic acid (SAHA) and its derivatives as inhibitors of cervical cancer.

    PubMed

    Tambunan, Usman Sumo Friend; Bakri, Ridla; Prasetia, Tirtana; Parikesit, Arli Aditya; Kerami, Djati

    2013-01-01

    Cervical cancer is second most common cancer in woman worldwide. Cervical cancer caused by human papillomavirus (HPV) oncogene. Inhibition of histone deacetylase (HDAC) activity has been known as a potential strategy for cancer therapy. SAHA is an HDAC inhibitor that has been used in cancer therapy but still has side effects. SAHA modification proposed to minimize side effects. Triazole attachment on the chain of SAHA has been known to enhance the inhibition ability of SAHA and less toxic. In this study, it will be carried out with molecular dynamic simulations of SAHA modifications consisting ligand 1a, 2a and, 2c to interact with six HDAC in hydrated conditions. To all six HDAC Class II, performed docking with SAHA and a modified inhibitor. The docking results were then carried out molecular dynamics simulations to determine the inhibitor affinities in hydrated conditions. The molecular dynamic simulations results show better affinities of ligand 2c with HDAC 4, 6, and 7 than SAHA itself, and good affinity was also shown by ligand 2a and 1c on HDAC 5 and 9. The results of this study can be a reference to obtain better inhibitors.

  9. Genome-wide identification and functional annotation of miRNAs in anti-inflammatory plant and their cross-kingdom regulation in Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Ankita; Sahu, Sarika; Kumari, Pooja; Gopi, Soundhara Rajan; Malhotra, Rajesh; Biswas, Sagarika

    2016-06-29

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are newly discovered non-coding small (~17-24 nucleotide) RNAs that regulate gene expression of its target mRNA at the post-transcriptional levels. In this study, total 12,593 ESTs of Curcuma longa were taken from database of expressed sequence tags (dbEST) and clustered into 2821 contigs using EGassembler web server. Precursor miRNAs (pre-miRNAs) were predicted from these contigs that folded into stem-loop structure using MFold server. Thirty-four mature C. longa miRNAs (clo-miRNAs) were identified from pre-miRNAs having targets involved in various important functions of plant such as self-defence, growth and development, alkaloid metabolic pathway and ethylene signalling process. Sequence analysis of identified clo-miRNAs indicated that 56% miRNAs belong to ORF and 44% belong to non-ORF region. clo-mir-5 and clo-mir-6 were established as the conserved miRNAs, whereas clo-mir-20 was predicted to be the most stable miRNA. Phylogenetic analysis carried out by molecular evolutionary genetics analysis (MEGA) software indicated close evolutionary relationship of clo-mir-5075 with osa-MIR5075. Further, identified clo-miRNAs were checked for their cross-kingdom regulatory potential. clo-mir-14 was found to regulate various gene transcripts in humans that has been further investigated for its biostability in foetal bovine serum (FBS). The results indicated higher degree of stability of clo-mir-14 (48 h) in FBS. Thus, contribution of this miRNA to the cellular immune response during the inflamed condition of rheumatoid arthritis and adequate stability may make it a good choice for the therapeutic agent in near future.

  10. The place of Homo floresiensis in human evolution.

    PubMed

    Baab, Karen

    2016-06-20

    Two main evolutionary scenarios have been proposed to explain the presence of the small-bodied and small-brained Homo floresiensis species on the remote Indonesian island of Flores in the Late Pleistocene. According to these two scenarios, H. floresiensis was a dwarfed descendent of H. erectus or a late-surviving remnant of a older lineage, perhaps descended from H. habilis. Each scenario has interesting and important implications for hominin biogeography, body size evolution, brain evolution and morphological convergences. Careful evaluation reveals that only a small number of characters support each of these scenarios uniquely. H. floresiensis exhibits a cranial shape and many cranial characters that appear to be shared derived traits with H. erectus, but postcranial traits are more primitive and resemble those of early Homo or even australopiths. Mandibular and dental traits show a mix of derived and primitive features. Unfortunately, many traits cannot be used to assess these two hypotheses because their distribution in H. erectus, early Homo (e.g., H. habilis), or both is unknown. H. erectus ancestry implies evolutionary convergence on a postcranial configuration similar to australopiths and early Homo, which could be explained by a return to more climbing behaviors. Body size reduction as well as brain size reduction on a scale only rarely documented in mammals would also accompany the origin of H. floresiensis from a H. erectus ancestor. H. habilis ancestry implies parallel evolution of numerous cranial characters, as well as a few dentognathic traits. A pre-H. erectus ancestry also suggests an early migration to Southeast Asia that is as yet undocumented in mainland Asia, but minimal body and brain size reduction.

  11. Evolution of the Genus Homo

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tattersall, Ian; Schwartz, Jeffrey H.

    2009-05-01

    Definition of the genus Homo is almost as fraught as the definition of Homo sapiens. We look at the evidence for “early Homo,” finding little morphological basis for extending our genus to any of the 2.5-1.6-myr-old fossil forms assigned to “early Homo” or Homo habilis/rudolfensis. We also point to heterogeneity among “early African Homo erectus,” and the lack of apomorphies linking these fossils to the Asian Homo erectus group, a cohesive regional clade that shows some internal variation, including brain size increase over time. The first truly cosmopolitan Homo species is Homo heidelbergensis, known from Africa, Europe, and China following 600 kyr ago. One species sympatric with it included the >500-kyr-old Sima de los Huesos fossils from Spain, clearly distinct from Homo heidelbergensis and the oldest hominids assignable to the clade additionally containing Homo neanderthalensis. This clade also shows evidence of brain size expansion with time; but although Homo neanderthalensis had a large brain, it left no unequivocal evidence of the symbolic consciousness that makes our species unique. Homo sapiens clearly originated in Africa, where it existed as a physical entity before it began (also in that continent) to show the first stirrings of symbolism. Most likely, the biological underpinnings of symbolic consciousness were exaptively acquired in the radical developmental reorganization that gave rise to the highly characteristic osteological structure of Homo sapiens, but lay fallow for tens of thousands of years before being “discovered” by a cultural stimulus, plausibly the invention of language.

  12. Homo floresiensis contextualized: a geometric morphometric comparative analysis of fossil and pathological human samples.

    PubMed

    Baab, Karen L; McNulty, Kieran P; Harvati, Katerina

    2013-01-01

    The origin of hominins found on the remote Indonesian island of Flores remains highly contentious. These specimens may represent a new hominin species, Homo floresiensis, descended from a local population of Homo erectus or from an earlier (pre-H. erectus) migration of a small-bodied and small-brained hominin out of Africa. Alternatively, some workers suggest that some or all of the specimens recovered from Liang Bua are pathological members of a small-bodied modern human population. Pathological conditions proposed to explain their documented anatomical features include microcephaly, myxoedematous endemic hypothyroidism ("cretinism") and Laron syndrome (primary growth hormone insensitivity). This study evaluates evolutionary and pathological hypotheses through comparative analysis of cranial morphology. Geometric morphometric analyses of landmark data show that the sole Flores cranium (LB1) is clearly distinct from healthy modern humans and from those exhibiting hypothyroidism and Laron syndrome. Modern human microcephalic specimens converge, to some extent, on crania of extinct species of Homo. However in the features that distinguish these two groups, LB1 consistently groups with fossil hominins and is most similar to H. erectus. Our study provides further support for recognizing the Flores hominins as a distinct species, H. floresiensis, whose affinities lie with archaic Homo.

  13. Homo floresiensis Contextualized: A Geometric Morphometric Comparative Analysis of Fossil and Pathological Human Samples

    PubMed Central

    Baab, Karen L.; McNulty, Kieran P.; Harvati, Katerina

    2013-01-01

    The origin of hominins found on the remote Indonesian island of Flores remains highly contentious. These specimens may represent a new hominin species, Homo floresiensis, descended from a local population of Homo erectus or from an earlier (pre-H. erectus) migration of a small-bodied and small-brained hominin out of Africa. Alternatively, some workers suggest that some or all of the specimens recovered from Liang Bua are pathological members of a small-bodied modern human population. Pathological conditions proposed to explain their documented anatomical features include microcephaly, myxoedematous endemic hypothyroidism (“cretinism”) and Laron syndrome (primary growth hormone insensitivity). This study evaluates evolutionary and pathological hypotheses through comparative analysis of cranial morphology. Geometric morphometric analyses of landmark data show that the sole Flores cranium (LB1) is clearly distinct from healthy modern humans and from those exhibiting hypothyroidism and Laron syndrome. Modern human microcephalic specimens converge, to some extent, on crania of extinct species of Homo. However in the features that distinguish these two groups, LB1 consistently groups with fossil hominins and is most similar to H. erectus. Our study provides further support for recognizing the Flores hominins as a distinct species, H. floresiensis, whose affinities lie with archaic Homo. PMID:23874886

  14. Aristotle's "homo mimeticus" as an Educational Paradigm for Human Coexistence

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scaramuzzo, Gilberto

    2016-01-01

    In the "Poetics" of Aristotle there is a definition of the human being that perhaps has not yet been well considered in educational theory and practice. This definition calls into question a dynamism that according to Plato was unavoidable for an appropriate understanding of the educational process that turns a human being into a…

  15. Aristotle's "homo mimeticus" as an Educational Paradigm for Human Coexistence

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scaramuzzo, Gilberto

    2016-01-01

    In the "Poetics" of Aristotle there is a definition of the human being that perhaps has not yet been well considered in educational theory and practice. This definition calls into question a dynamism that according to Plato was unavoidable for an appropriate understanding of the educational process that turns a human being into a…

  16. Comparison of inverse-dynamics musculo-skeletal models of AL 288-1 Australopithecus afarensis and KNM-WT 15000 Homo ergaster to modern humans, with implications for the evolution of bipedalism.

    PubMed

    Wang, Weijie; Crompton, Robin H; Carey, Tanya S; Günther, Michael M; Li, Yu; Savage, Russell; Sellers, Williams I

    2004-12-01

    Size and proportions of the postcranial skeleton differ markedly between Australopithecus afarensis and Homo ergaster, and between the latter and modern Homo sapiens. This study uses computer simulations of gait in models derived from the best-known skeletons of these species (AL 288-1, Australopithecus afarensis, 3.18 million year ago) and KNM-WT 15000 (Homo ergaster, 1.5-1.8 million year ago) compared to models of adult human males and females, to estimate the required muscle power during bipedal walking, and to compare this with those in modern humans. Skeletal measurements were carried out on a cast of KNM-WT 15000, but for AL 288-1 were taken from the literature. Muscle attachments were applied to the models based on their position relative to the bone in modern humans. Joint motions and moments from experiments on human walking were input into the models to calculate muscle stress and power. The models were tested in erect walking and 'bent-hip bent-knee' gait. Calculated muscle forces were verified against EMG activity phases from experimental data, with reference to reasonable activation/force delays. Calculated muscle powers are reasonably comparable to experimentally derived metabolic values from the literature, given likely values for muscle efficiency. The results show that: 1) if evaluated by the power expenditure per unit of mass (W/kg) in walking, AL 288-1 and KNM-WT 15000 would need similar power to modern humans; however, 2) with distance-specific parameters as the criteria, AL 288-1 would require to expend relatively more muscle power (W/kg.m(-1)) in comparison to modern humans. The results imply that in the evolution of bipedalism, body proportions, for example those of KNM-WT 15000, may have evolved to obtain an effective application of muscle power to bipedal walking over a long distance, or at high speed.

  17. Post-cranial skeletons of hypothyroid cretins show a similar anatomical mosaic as Homo floresiensis.

    PubMed

    Oxnard, Charles; Obendorf, Peter J; Kefford, Ben J

    2010-09-27

    Human remains, some as recent as 15 thousand years, from Liang Bua (LB) on the Indonesian island of Flores have been attributed to a new species, Homo floresiensis. The definition includes a mosaic of features, some like modern humans (hence derived: genus Homo), some like modern apes and australopithecines (hence primitive: not species sapiens), and some unique (hence new species: floresiensis). Conversely, because only modern humans (H. sapiens) are known in this region in the last 40 thousand years, these individuals have also been suggested to be genetic human dwarfs. Such dwarfs resemble small humans and do not show the mosaic combination of the most complete individuals, LB1 and LB6, so this idea has been largely dismissed. We have previously shown that some features of the cranium of hypothyroid cretins are like those of LB1. Here we examine cretin postcrania to see if they show anatomical mosaics like H. floresiensis. We find that hypothyroid cretins share at least 10 postcranial features with Homo floresiensis and unaffected humans not found in apes (or australopithecines when materials permit). They share with H. floresiensis, modern apes and australopithecines at least 11 postcranial features not found in unaffected humans. They share with H. floresiensis, at least 8 features not found in apes, australopithecines or unaffected humans. Sixteen features can be rendered metrically and multivariate analyses demonstrate that H. floresiensis co-locates with cretins, both being markedly separate from humans and chimpanzees (P<0.001: from analysis of similarity (ANOSIM) over all variables, ANOSIM, global R>0.999). We therefore conclude that LB1 and LB6, at least, are, most likely, endemic cretins from a population of unaffected Homo sapiens. This is consistent with recent hypothyroid endemic cretinism throughout Indonesia, including the nearby island of Bali.

  18. Post-Cranial Skeletons of Hypothyroid Cretins Show a Similar Anatomical Mosaic as Homo floresiensis

    PubMed Central

    Oxnard, Charles; Obendorf, Peter J.; Kefford, Ben J.

    2010-01-01

    Human remains, some as recent as 15 thousand years, from Liang Bua (LB) on the Indonesian island of Flores have been attributed to a new species, Homo floresiensis. The definition includes a mosaic of features, some like modern humans (hence derived: genus Homo), some like modern apes and australopithecines (hence primitive: not species sapiens), and some unique (hence new species: floresiensis). Conversely, because only modern humans (H. sapiens) are known in this region in the last 40 thousand years, these individuals have also been suggested to be genetic human dwarfs. Such dwarfs resemble small humans and do not show the mosaic combination of the most complete individuals, LB1 and LB6, so this idea has been largely dismissed. We have previously shown that some features of the cranium of hypothyroid cretins are like those of LB1. Here we examine cretin postcrania to see if they show anatomical mosaics like H. floresiensis. We find that hypothyroid cretins share at least 10 postcranial features with Homo floresiensis and unaffected humans not found in apes (or australopithecines when materials permit). They share with H. floresiensis, modern apes and australopithecines at least 11 postcranial features not found in unaffected humans. They share with H. floresiensis, at least 8 features not found in apes, australopithecines or unaffected humans. Sixteen features can be rendered metrically and multivariate analyses demonstrate that H. floresiensis co-locates with cretins, both being markedly separate from humans and chimpanzees (P<0.001: from analysis of similarity (ANOSIM) over all variables, ANOSIM, global R>0.999). We therefore conclude that LB1 and LB6, at least, are, most likely, endemic cretins from a population of unaffected Homo sapiens. This is consistent with recent hypothyroid endemic cretinism throughout Indonesia, including the nearby island of Bali. PMID:20885948

  19. Postcranial robusticity in Homo. III: Ontogeny.

    PubMed

    Ruff, C B; Walker, A; Trinkaus, E

    1994-01-01

    The influence of developmental factors on long-bone cross-sectional geometry and articular size in modern humans is investigated using two approaches: (1) an analysis of the effects of increased mechanical loading on long-bone structure when applied during different developmental periods, using data collected for a study of upper limb bone bilateral asymmetry in professional tennis players; and (2) an analysis of the relative timing of age changes in femoral dimensions among juveniles from the Pecos Pueblo Amerindian archaeological sample. Results of these analyses are used to interpret the femoral morphology of three pre-Recent Homo juveniles--the H. erectus KNM-WT 15000 and the archaic H. sapiens La Ferrassie 6 and Teshik-Tash 1--as well as observed differences in postcranial morphology between adult Recent and earlier Homo (Ruff et al., 1993). Our findings indicate the following: (1) There are age-related changes in long-bone diaphyseal envelope sensitivity to increased mechanical loading, with the periosteal envelope more responsive prior to mid-adolescence, and the endosteal envelope more responsive thereafter. The periosteal expansion and endosteal contraction of the diaphysis documented earlier for adult pre-Recent Homo relative to Recent humans (Ruff et al., 1993) is thus consistent with a developmental response to increased mechanical loading applied throughout life. The relatively large medullary cavity in the 11-12-year-old KNM-WT 15000 femur is also consistent with this model. However, the two archaic H. sapiens juveniles show relatively small medullary cavities, possibly indicating a modified developmental pattern in this group. (2) Articulations follow a growth pattern similar to that of long-bone length (and stature), while cross-sectional diaphyseal dimensions (cortical area, second moments of area) show a contrasting growth pattern, with slower initial growth from childhood through mid-adolescence, followed by a "catch-up" period that continues

  20. Age estimation in fossil hominins: comparing dental development in early Homo with modern humans.

    PubMed

    Dean, M Christopher; Liversidge, Helen M

    2015-01-01

    Previous studies have used molar tooth eruption as a comparative marker of maturation in early fossil hominins. However, tooth eruption and tooth formation are independent maturational processes. To determine whether estimates of age for entering a stage of dental development in three early hominin fossils fell within the distribution of a modern human sample. This study used a comparative model of dental development to identify the stages of dental development most likely to provide information about length of the growth period in early fossil hominins. Age estimates for stages of dental development in fossils were superimposed onto a normal distribution of the same radiographically defined stages derived from a sample of 6540 children of diverse geographical origin. Both within the dentition of S7-37, from Sangiran, Java, but also for stages of two other specimens (KNM-WT 15000 from Kenya and StW 151 from South Africa), all age estimates for later stages of tooth formation fell within the modern sample range. A pattern appears to exist in early Homo where, both within and between developing dentitions, age estimates for stages of P4, M2 and M3 tooth formation fell consistently among the more advanced individuals of the modern human sample.

  1. Homo sapiens Systemic RNA Interference-defective-1 Transmembrane Family Member 1 (SIDT1) Protein Mediates Contact-dependent Small RNA Transfer and MicroRNA-21-driven Chemoresistance*

    PubMed Central

    Elhassan, Mohamed O.; Christie, Jennifer; Duxbury, Mark S.

    2012-01-01

    Locally initiated RNA interference (RNAi) has the potential for spatial propagation, inducing posttranscriptional gene silencing in distant cells. In Caenorhabditis elegans, systemic RNAi requires a phylogenetically conserved transmembrane channel, SID-1. Here, we show that a human SID-1 orthologue, SIDT1, facilitates rapid, contact-dependent, bidirectional small RNA transfer between human cells, resulting in target-specific non-cell-autonomous RNAi. Intercellular small RNA transfer can be both homotypic and heterotypic. We show SIDT1-mediated intercellular transfer of microRNA-21 to be a driver of resistance to the nucleoside analog gemcitabine in human adenocarcinoma cells. Documentation of a SIDT1-dependent small RNA transfer mechanism and the associated phenotypic effects on chemoresistance in human cancer cells raises the possibility that conserved systemic RNAi pathways contribute to the acquisition of drug resistance. Mediators of non-cell-autonomous RNAi may be tractable targets for novel therapies aimed at improving the efficacy of current cytotoxic agents. PMID:22174421

  2. Homo economicus belief inhibits trust.

    PubMed

    Xin, Ziqiang; Liu, Guofang

    2013-01-01

    As a foundational concept in economics, the homo economicus assumption regards humans as rational and self-interested actors. In contrast, trust requires individuals to believe partners' benevolence and unselfishness. Thus, the homo economicus belief may inhibit trust. The present three experiments demonstrated that the direct exposure to homo economicus belief can weaken trust. And economic situations like profit calculation can also activate individuals' homo economicus belief and inhibit their trust. It seems that people's increasing homo economicus belief may serve as one cause of the worldwide decline of trust.

  3. Homo Economicus Belief Inhibits Trust

    PubMed Central

    Xin, Ziqiang; Liu, Guofang

    2013-01-01

    As a foundational concept in economics, the homo economicus assumption regards humans as rational and self-interested actors. In contrast, trust requires individuals to believe partners’ benevolence and unselfishness. Thus, the homo economicus belief may inhibit trust. The present three experiments demonstrated that the direct exposure to homo economicus belief can weaken trust. And economic situations like profit calculation can also activate individuals’ homo economicus belief and inhibit their trust. It seems that people’s increasing homo economicus belief may serve as one cause of the worldwide decline of trust. PMID:24146907

  4. No homo.

    PubMed

    Brown, Joshua R

    2011-01-01

    The phrase no homo arose in hip-hop lyrics of the 1990s as a discourse interjection to negate supposed sexual and gender transgressions. Today the phrase has gained currency beyond hip-hop culture and pervades racial and gender continua. As a result, its increasing prevalence in mainstream speech has caused critics to deplore no homo as outright homophobia. This article describes the origins and scope of no homo. Instead of easily identifying the phrase as homophobic, the article invites readers to examine the phrase as a way of understanding the complexities in gender identification processes along with the linguistic dexterity necessary for survival in certain sociocultural groups. By exploring the macrosociological issues which created and perpetuate the need for no homo, we arrive at a deeper understanding of sexuality, marginalized sexuality, and the (often unspoken) uneasiness with sexual and gendered nonconformity.

  5. Evolution of M1 crown size and cusp proportions in the genus Homo

    PubMed Central

    Quam, Rolf; Bailey, Shara; Wood, Bernard

    2009-01-01

    Previous research into tooth crown dimensions and cusp proportions has proved to be a useful way to identify taxonomic differences in Pliocene and Pleistocene fossil hominins. The present study has identified changes in both M1 crown size and cusp proportions within the genus Homo, with M1 overall crown size reduction apparently occurring in two main stages. The first stage (a reduction of ca. 17%) is associated with the emergence of Homo ergaster and Homo erectus sensu stricto. The second stage (a reduction of ca. 10%) occurs in Homo sapiens, but the reduced modern human M1 tooth crown size was only attained in Upper Paleolithic times. The absolute sizes of the individual cusps are highly positively correlated with overall crown size and dental reduction produces a reduction in the absolute size of each of the cusps. Most of the individual cusps scale isometrically with crown size, but the paracone shows a negative allometric relationship, indicating that the reduction in paracone size is less than in the other M1 cusps. Thus, the phylogenetically oldest cusp in the upper molars also seems to be the most stable cusp (at least in the M1). The most striking change in M1 cusp proportions is a change in the relative size of the areas of the paracone and metacone. The combination of a small relative paracone and a large relative metacone generally characterizes specimens attributed to early Homo, and the presence of this character state in Australopithecus andParanthropus suggests it may represent the primitive condition for the later part of the hominin clade. In contrast, nearly all later Homo taxa, with the exception of Homo antecessor, show the opposite condition (i.e. a relatively large paracone and a relatively small metacone). This change in the relationship between the relative sizes of the paracone and metacone is related to an isometric reduction of the absolute size of the metacone. This metacone reduction occurs in the context of relative stability in the

  6. Human evolution.

    PubMed

    Wood, B

    1996-12-01

    The common ancestor of modern humans and the great apes is estimated to have lived between 5 and 8 Myrs ago, but the earliest evidence in the human, or hominid, fossil record is Ardipithecus ramidus, from a 4.5 Myr Ethiopian site. This genus was succeeded by Australopithecus, within which four species are presently recognised. All combine a relatively primitive postcranial skeleton, a dentition with expanded chewing teeth and a small brain. The most primitive species in our own genus, Homo habilis and Homo rudolfensis, are little advanced over the australopithecines and with hindsight their inclusion in Homo may not be appropriate. The first species to share a substantial number of features with later Homo is Homo ergaster, or 'early African Homo erectus', which appears in the fossil record around 2.0 Myr. Outside Africa, fossil hominids appear as Homo erectus-like hominids, in mainland Asia and in Indonesia close to 2 Myr ago; the earliest good evidence of 'archaic Homo' in Europe is dated at between 600-700 Kyr before the present. Anatomically modern human, or Homo sapiens, fossils are seen first in the fossil record in Africa around 150 Kyr ago. Taken together with molecular evidence on the extent of DNA variation, this suggests that the transition from 'archaic' to 'modern' Homo may have taken place in Africa.

  7. Nuclear receptors Homo sapiens Rev-erbβ and Drosophila melanogaster E75 are thiolate-ligated heme proteins, which undergo redox-mediated ligand switching and bind CO and NO

    PubMed Central

    Marvin, Katherine A.; Reinking, Jeffrey L.; Lee, Andrea J.; Pardee, Keith M.; Krause, Henry M.; Burstyn, Judith N.

    2009-01-01

    Nuclear receptors E75, which regulates development in D. melanogaster, and Rev-erbβ, which regulates circadian rhythm in humans, bind heme within their ligand binding domains (LBD). The heme-bound ligand binding domains of E75 and Rev-erbβ were studied using electronic absorption, MCD, resonance Raman and EPR spectroscopies. Both proteins undergo redox-dependent ligand switching and CO- and NO-induced ligand displacement. In the Fe(III) oxidation state, the nuclear receptor hemes are low-spin and 6-coordinate with cysteine(thiolate) as one of the two axial heme ligands. The sixth ligand is a neutral donor, presumably histidine. When the heme is reduced to the Fe(II) oxidation state, the cysteine(thiolate) is replaced by a different neutral donor ligand, whose identity is not known. CO binds to the Fe(II) heme in both E75(LBD) and Rev-erbβ(LBD) opposite a sixth neutral ligand, plausibly the same histidine that served as the sixth ligand in the Fe(III) state. NO binds to the heme of both proteins; however, the NO-heme is 5-coordinate in E75 and 6-coordinate in Rev-erbβ. These nuclear receptors exhibit coordination characteristics that are similar to other known redox and gas sensors, suggesting that E75 and Rev-erbβ may function in heme-, redox- or gas-regulated control of cellular function. PMID:19405475

  8. Nuclear receptors homo sapiens Rev-erbbeta and Drosophila melanogaster E75 are thiolate-ligated heme proteins which undergo redox-mediated ligand switching and bind CO and NO.

    PubMed

    Marvin, Katherine A; Reinking, Jeffrey L; Lee, Andrea J; Pardee, Keith; Krause, Henry M; Burstyn, Judith N

    2009-07-28

    Nuclear receptors E75, which regulates development in Drosophila melanogaster, and Rev-erbbeta, which regulates circadian rhythm in humans, bind heme within their ligand binding domains (LBD). The heme-bound ligand binding domains of E75 and Rev-erbbeta were studied using electronic absorption, MCD, resonance Raman, and EPR spectroscopies. Both proteins undergo redox-dependent ligand switching and CO- and NO-induced ligand displacement. In the Fe(III) oxidation state, the nuclear receptor hemes are low spin and 6-coordinate with cysteine(thiolate) as one of the two axial heme ligands. The sixth ligand is a neutral donor, presumably histidine. When the heme is reduced to the Fe(II) oxidation state, the cysteine(thiolate) is replaced by a different neutral donor ligand, whose identity is not known. CO binds to the Fe(II) heme in both E75(LBD) and Rev-erbbeta(LBD) opposite a sixth neutral ligand, plausibly the same histidine that served as the sixth ligand in the Fe(III) state. NO binds to the heme of both proteins; however, the NO-heme is 5-coordinate in E75 and 6-coordinate in Rev-erbbeta. These nuclear receptors exhibit coordination characteristics that are similar to other known redox and gas sensors, suggesting that E75 and Rev-erbbeta may function in heme-, redox-, or gas-regulated control of cellular function.

  9. Brain size of Homo floresiensis and its evolutionary implications.

    PubMed

    Kubo, Daisuke; Kono, Reiko T; Kaifu, Yousuke

    2013-06-07

    The extremely small endocranial volume (ECV) of LB1, the type specimen of Homo floresiensis, poses a challenge in our understanding of human brain evolution. Some researchers hypothesize dramatic dwarfing of relative brain size from Homo erectus presumably without significant decrease in intellectual function, whereas others expect a lesser degree of brain diminution from a more primitive, small-brained form of hominin currently undocumented in eastern Asia. However, inconsistency in the published ECVs for LB1 (380-430 cc), unclear human intraspecific brain-body size scaling and other uncertainties have hampered elaborative modelling of its brain size reduction. In this study, we accurately determine the ECV of LB1 using high-resolution micro-CT scan. The ECV of LB1 thus measured, 426 cc, is larger than the commonly cited figure in previous studies (400 cc). Coupled with brain-body size correlation in Homo sapiens calculated based on a sample from 20 worldwide modern human populations, we construct new models of the brain size reduction in the evolution of H. floresiensis. The results show a more significant contribution of scaling effect than previously claimed.

  10. A "g" beyond "Homo Sapiens"? Some Hints and Suggestions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, James J.

    2007-01-01

    This article proposes that a complete account of cognitive evolution may have to accommodate a domain-general source of variance in mental abilities accounting for differences among primate taxa. Deaner, van Schaik, and Johnson [Deaner, R.O., van Schaik, C.P. and Johnson, V.E. (2006). Do some taxa have better domain-general cognition than others?…

  11. A "g" beyond "Homo Sapiens"? Some Hints and Suggestions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, James J.

    2007-01-01

    This article proposes that a complete account of cognitive evolution may have to accommodate a domain-general source of variance in mental abilities accounting for differences among primate taxa. Deaner, van Schaik, and Johnson [Deaner, R.O., van Schaik, C.P. and Johnson, V.E. (2006). Do some taxa have better domain-general cognition than others?…

  12. Absence makes the adaptations grow fonder: proportion of time apart from partner, male sexual psychology, and sperm competition in humans (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    Shackelford, Todd K; Goetz, Aaron T; McKibbin, William F; Starratt, Valerie G

    2007-05-01

    Sperm competition occurs when the sperm of multiple males concurrently occupy the reproductive tract of a female and compete to fertilize an egg. We used a questionnaire to investigate psychological responses to the risk of sperm competition for 237 men in committed, sexual relationships. As predicted, a man who spends a greater (relative to a man who spends a lesser) proportion of time apart from his partner since the couple's last copulation reported (a) greater sexual interest in his partner, (b) greater distress in response to his partner's sexual rejection, and (c) greater sexual persistence in response to his partner's sexual rejection. All effects were independent of total time since the couple's last copulation and the man's relationship satisfaction. Discussion addresses limitations of the current research and situates the current results within the broader comparative literature on adaptation to sperm competition.

  13. The minerals and the light: Mineralogy and astronomy in the history of the homo sapiens sapiens

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giovanna Giovine, Laura

    2016-04-01

    Since the end of the '90s, when the concept of competence was introduced in the education world, the debate on teaching assessment of competences is going on in the Italian school system. Nonetheless, first cycle and second cycle State Exams and national tests (INVALSI), yet have a focus on knowledge and skills. In the education field competence is defined as the capability to face requests and complex tasks effectively, using knowledge and skills acquired by study, research, observation and experience. The proposal formulated here is directed to turn disciplinary knowledge and skills to personal competences through educational and unitary teaching, in order to overcome the discontinuities between Primary school - Secondary school - Universities - the world of work. The ultimate goal is to preserve throughout the didactic course of teaching the wholeness and unitarily of personal competence of the student, who uses acquired disciplinary knowledge and skills in a personal fashion, neither mnemonic nor mechanical. The course of study may begin in the first class of lower secondary school and go on up to the fifth class of upper secondary school, with didactic laboratorial strategies and teaching strategies for competences, involving multiple disciplines. The recipients are the classes where a greater difficulty for students to integrate into the life of the School is registered, or the learned input-skills are of low or inadequate level, possibly with the presence of students with Special Educational Needs. In involved classes the collaboration and sharing of all teachers of the Class Council has been requested, in order to build an educational unitary course, centered on the concept of competence. Contents of the course: • The materials of the solid earth: minerals (physical and chemical properties, classification) • Percentages, graphics, angles, geometric solids, symmetry • Measurement units, speed and acceleration, mass and weight, pressure, energy, heat, temperature, density • States of matter: solid state and liquid state • The periodic table of elements, atoms and molecules • Mixtures Introduction to the course: • History informs sciences: newspapers and books dating back to the First World War are read in the classroom, mineral resources used in everyday life and the their mining locations, in cooperation with Geohistory and Italian teachers. • Discussion groups and "questioning" by the test "Is it useful to study the Mineralogy?" and input test with open-ended questions. • Experiments in the laboratory shared with Physics teacher: we observe a mineral (recognition, classification, chemical composition) • Theoretical lesson: natural sciences, physics and chemistry, with the support of the textbook and using material found by students in the Internet • Visit to the local museum with the teacher of Geometric Design or Art History or Technology or Geohistory • Brainstorming and project with support of LIM to view video-on lab and specific software • Experiments in the laboratory shared with the teacher of Mathematics: growing crystals (shape and symmetry, recognition and classification, chemical composition and structure of atoms) • Final report on experiments, possibly with research hypotheses.

  14. Beyond the pleistocene: using phylogeny and constraint to inform the evolutionary psychology of human mating.

    PubMed

    Eastwick, Paul W

    2009-09-01

    Evolutionary psychologists explore the adaptive function of traits and behaviors that characterize modern Homo sapiens. However, evolutionary psychologists have yet to incorporate the phylogenetic relationship between modern Homo sapiens and humans' hominid and pongid relatives (both living and extinct) into their theorizing. By considering the specific timing of evolutionary events and the role of evolutionary constraint, researchers using the phylogenetic approach can generate new predictions regarding mating phenomena and derive new explanations for existing evolutionary psychological findings. Especially useful is the concept of the adaptive workaround-an adaptation that manages the maladaptive elements of a pre-existing evolutionary constraint. The current review organizes 7 features of human mating into their phylogenetic context and presents evidence that 2 adaptive workarounds played a critical role as Homo sapiens's mating psychology evolved. These adaptive workarounds function in part to mute or refocus the effects of older, previously evolved adaptations and highlight the layered nature of humans' mating psychology. (c) 2009 APA, all rights reserved.

  15. Genetic Analysis of Lice Supports Direct Contact between Modern and Archaic Humans

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Vincent S; Hammond, Shaless L; Rogers, Alan R; Clayton, Dale H

    2004-01-01

    Parasites can be used as unique markers to investigate host evolutionary history, independent of host data. Here we show that modern human head lice, Pediculus humanus, are composed of two ancient lineages, whose origin predates modern Homo sapiens by an order of magnitude (ca. 1.18 million years). One of the two louse lineages has a worldwide distribution and appears to have undergone a population bottleneck ca. 100,000 years ago along with its modern H. sapiens host. Phylogenetic and population genetic data suggest that the other lineage, found only in the New World, has remained isolated from the worldwide lineage for the last 1.18 million years. The ancient divergence between these two lice is contemporaneous with splits among early species of Homo, and cospeciation analyses suggest that the two louse lineages codiverged with a now extinct species of Homo and the lineage leading to modern H. sapiens. If these lice indeed codiverged with their hosts ca. 1.18 million years ago, then a recent host switch from an archaic species of Homo to modern H. sapiens is required to explain the occurrence of both lineages on modern H. sapiens. Such a host switch would require direct physical contact between modern and archaic forms of Homo. PMID:15502871

  16. Genetic analysis of lice supports direct contact between modern and archaic humans.

    PubMed

    Reed, David L; Smith, Vincent S; Hammond, Shaless L; Rogers, Alan R; Clayton, Dale H

    2004-11-01

    Parasites can be used as unique markers to investigate host evolutionary history, independent of host data. Here we show that modern human head lice, Pediculus humanus, are composed of two ancient lineages, whose origin predates modern Homo sapiens by an order of magnitude (ca. 1.18 million years). One of the two louse lineages has a worldwide distribution and appears to have undergone a population bottleneck ca. 100,000 years ago along with its modern H. sapiens host. Phylogenetic and population genetic data suggest that the other lineage, found only in the New World, has remained isolated from the worldwide lineage for the last 1.18 million years. The ancient divergence between these two lice is contemporaneous with splits among early species of Homo, and cospeciation analyses suggest that the two louse lineages codiverged with a now extinct species of Homo and the lineage leading to modern H. sapiens. If these lice indeed codiverged with their hosts ca. 1.18 million years ago, then a recent host switch from an archaic species of Homo to modern H. sapiens is required to explain the occurrence of both lineages on modern H. sapiens. Such a host switch would require direct physical contact between modern and archaic forms of Homo.

  17. Skulls and Human Evolution: The Use of Casts of Anthropoid Skulls in Teaching Concepts of Human Evolution.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gipps, John

    1991-01-01

    Proposes the use of a series of 11 casts of fossil skulls as a method of teaching about the theory of human evolution. Students explore the questions of which skulls are "human" and which came first in Homo Sapien development, large brain or upright stance. (MDH)

  18. Skulls and Human Evolution: The Use of Casts of Anthropoid Skulls in Teaching Concepts of Human Evolution.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gipps, John

    1991-01-01

    Proposes the use of a series of 11 casts of fossil skulls as a method of teaching about the theory of human evolution. Students explore the questions of which skulls are "human" and which came first in Homo Sapien development, large brain or upright stance. (MDH)

  19. Filling the gap. Human cranial remains from Gombore II (Melka Kunture, Ethiopia; ca. 850 ka) and the origin of Homo heidelbergensis.

    PubMed

    Profico, Antonio; Di Vincenzo, Fabio; Gagliardi, Lorenza; Piperno, Marcello; Manzi, Giorgio

    2016-06-20

    African archaic humans dated to around 1,0 Ma share morphological affinities with Homo ergaster and appear distinct in cranio-dental morphology from those of the Middle Pleistocene that are referred to Homo heidelbergensis. This observation suggests a taxonomic and phylogenetic discontinuity in Africa that ranges across the Matuyama/Brunhes reversal (780 ka). Yet, the fossil record between roughly 900 and 600 ka is notoriously poor. In this context, the Early Stone Age site of Gombore II, in the Melka Kunture formation (Upper Awash, Ethiopia), provides a privileged case-study. In the Acheulean layer of Gombore II, somewhat more recent than 875 ±10 ka, two large cranial fragments were discovered in 1973 and 1975 respectively: a partial left parietal (Melka Kunture 1) and a right portion of the frontal bone (Melka Kunture 2), which probably belonged to the same cranium. We present here the first detailed description and computer-assisted reconstruction of the morphology of the cranial vault pertaining to these fossil fragments. Our analysis suggest that the human fossil specimen from Gombore II fills a phenetic gap between Homo ergaster and Homo heidelbergensis. This appears in agreement with the chronology of such a partial cranial vault, which therefore represents at present one of the best available candidates (if any) for the origin of Homo heidelbergensis in Africa.

  20. Dental evidence for ontogenetic differences between modern humans and Neanderthals.

    PubMed

    Smith, Tanya M; Tafforeau, Paul; Reid, Donald J; Pouech, Joane; Lazzari, Vincent; Zermeno, John P; Guatelli-Steinberg, Debbie; Olejniczak, Anthony J; Hoffman, Almut; Radovcic, Jakov; Makaremi, Masrour; Toussaint, Michel; Stringer, Chris; Hublin, Jean-Jacques

    2010-12-07

    Humans have an unusual life history, with an early weaning age, long childhood, late first reproduction, short interbirth intervals, and long lifespan. In contrast, great apes wean later, reproduce earlier, and have longer intervals between births. Despite 80 y of speculation, the origins of these developmental patterns in Homo sapiens remain unknown. Because they record daily growth during formation, teeth provide important insights, revealing that australopithecines and early Homo had more rapid ontogenies than recent humans. Dental development in later Homo species has been intensely debated, most notably the issue of whether Neanderthals and H. sapiens differ. Here we apply synchrotron virtual histology to a geographically and temporally diverse sample of Middle Paleolithic juveniles, including Neanderthals, to assess tooth formation and calculate age at death from dental microstructure. We find that most Neanderthal tooth crowns grew more rapidly than modern human teeth, resulting in significantly faster dental maturation. In contrast, Middle Paleolithic H. sapiens juveniles show greater similarity to recent humans. These findings are consistent with recent cranial and molecular evidence for subtle developmental differences between Neanderthals and H. sapiens. When compared with earlier hominin taxa, both Neanderthals and H. sapiens have extended the duration of dental development. This period of dental immaturity is particularly prolonged in modern humans.

  1. The dual origin of modern humanity.

    PubMed

    Tattersall, Ian

    2004-01-01

    Living Homo sapiens can define itself using both behavioral and anatomical uniquenesses. But is this possible when looking backward? Using a strict morphological definition, Homo sapiens can probably be traced back in the fossil record to about 150 kyr ago, which fits well with molecular estimates for the ancestor of all living human populations. However, activities reliably indicating established symbolic cognition can be recognized in the archaeological record only back to under 100 kyr ago. Since it is probable that the potential for symbolic cognition was born in the genetic/structural alterations that also gave rise to the distinctive morphological entity Homo sapiens, it appears that the expression of the human symbolic cognitive potential had to await, for many millennia, the >discovery< of that potential through a cultural rather than a biological stimulus. Most plausibly, this stimulus was the invention of language. Modern human symbolic cognition is not an extrapolation of pre-existing evolutionary trends, suggesting that Homo sapiens is not biologically >fine-tuned< for any specific behavior patterns.

  2. [The technological character of the human being].

    PubMed

    Del Barco Collazos, José Luis

    2009-01-01

    Technique is not accidental, but essential, to human being. It is the homo sapiens sapiens way of life. There is neither pretechnological human life nor a historic period without it. Human being is making tools and instruments since the very moment he is on earth. And so will he go on. Plough, airship and future apparatus are stages of the technical progress. The enormous human aptitude for making is due to the connexion between brain and hands. Technique ought be neither venerated nor feared but ruled.

  3. Absolute and relative endocranial size in Neandertals and later Pleistocene Homo.

    PubMed

    Gallagher, Andrew

    2014-10-01

    Eurasian Neandertals encompass the entire observed range of recent and fossil Homo sapiens in absolute, but not relative endocranial volume, and Neandertals attest an average EQ significantly lower than their Upper Pleistocene successors. While the cognitive, social, and evolutionary implications of this phenomenon have been emphasised, the statistical basis of a mean inference of EQ in the Neandertal hypodigm has not been appropriately demonstrated. A demonstrable male bias in the available postcranial, not cranial, series has skewed perceptions of Neandertal brain-to-body size scaling towards a rejection of the null hypothesis. A simple resolution to this problem is a concise assessment of paired associated covariates against a suitable recent human comparator series. Permutations of Fisher's z and Student's t statistics are valid metrics in tests of significance in single datum hypotheses. Bootstrapped single observation tests determined significance in body size, absolute and relative endocranial volume in Pleistocene archaic, early modern, and late Pleistocene H. sapiens. With respect to absolute ECV, all current Middle-Upper Pleistocene crania fall within the substantial recent Homo range. Nevertheless, simple indices derived from raw and modified data in normal and logarithmic space reveal that Western European Neandertal males approach the lower extremes of our observed size range in relative ECV, yet none exceed statistical significance. Results confirm that relative ECV/brain size in Neandertals was not significantly depressed relative to recent and fossil H. sapiens and this is consistent with a substantial body of data from living humans dismissing any simple correspondence of relative brain size with intelligence and, by extension, evolutionary success. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  4. The colours of humanity: the evolution of pigmentation in the human lineage.

    PubMed

    Jablonski, Nina G; Chaplin, George

    2017-07-05

    Humans are a colourful species of primate, with human skin, hair and eye coloration having been influenced by a great variety of evolutionary forces throughout prehistory. Functionally naked skin has been the physical interface between the physical environment and the human body for most of the history of the genus Homo, and hence skin coloration has been under intense natural selection. From an original condition of protective, dark, eumelanin-enriched coloration in early tropical-dwelling Homo and Homo sapiens, loss of melanin pigmentation occurred under natural selection as Homo sapiens dispersed into non-tropical latitudes of Africa and Eurasia. Genes responsible for skin, hair and eye coloration appear to have been affected significantly by population bottlenecks in the course of Homo sapiens dispersals. Because specific skin colour phenotypes can be created by different combinations of skin colour-associated genetic markers, loss of genetic variability due to genetic drift appears to have had negligible effects on the highly redundant genetic 'palette' for the skin colour. This does not appear to have been the case for hair and eye coloration, however, and these traits appear to have been more strongly influenced by genetic drift and, possibly, sexual selection.This article is part of the themed issue 'Animal coloration: production, perception, function and application'. © 2017 The Author(s).

  5. Cognitive Functions: Human vs. Animal - 4:1 Advantage |-FAM72-SRGAP2-|.

    PubMed

    Ho, Nguyen Thi Thanh; Kim, Pok-Son; Kutzner, Arne; Heese, Klaus

    2017-04-01

    With the advent of computational genomics, an intensive search is underway for unique biomarkers for Homo sapiens that could be used to differentiate taxa within the Hominoidea, in particular to distinguish Homo from the apes (Pan, Gorilla, Pongo, and Hylobates) and species or subspecies within the genus Homo (H. sapiens, H. heidelbergensis, H. neanderthalensis, H. erectus, and the Denisovans). Here, we suggest that the |-FAM72-SRGAP2-| (family with sequence similarity 72/SLIT-ROBO Rho GTPase activating protein 2) gene pair is a unique molecular biomarker for the genus Homo that could also help to place Australopithecus at its most appropriate place within the phylogenetic tree and may explain the distinctive higher brain cognitive functions of humans.

  6. The Human Story: From Hominids to Homo Intelligens. A Curriculum Map for 5th Grade.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fluellen, Jerry E., Jr.

    A curriculum map for a year-long, fifth-grade, multidisciplinary project takes a performance view of understanding from Harvard University Project Zero's Research Center. Throughout the project and in each assessment of understanding, learners show what they know about human evolution. This guide to deep disciplinary understanding of the big idea…

  7. On the trail of the genus Homo between archaic and derived morphologies.

    PubMed

    Manzi, Giorgio

    2012-01-01

    The topic of this review is the evolution of the genus Homo, focusing on evolutionary transitions that occurred during the Early and Middle Pleistocene. Two crucial issues are addressed in particular: 1) the emergence in the Early Pleistocene of the archaic variant of Homo that might represent the last common ancestor before the emergence of at least two (more probably three) geographically distinct trajectories; and (2) the evolution of these derived lineages, ultimately leading to the allopatric speciations of the most encephalised species of Homo: H. neanderthalensis and H. sapiens. In this framework, the time window between 1.0 million years ago (Ma) and 500 thousand years ago (ka) is of crucial importance, since it is probable that a new kind of humanity emerged in this period and then spread across a wide area encompassing Africa and Eurasia. These humans are represented by a number of specimens that are included within the single, polymorphic, and widespread species H. heidelbergensis. It is suggested that, in the course of the Middle Pleistocene, this species diversified in a number of incipient species -or subspecies- geographically and phenotypically distinct from one another. The case-study furnished by the calvarium found near Ceprano, in Italy, is of great interest in this regard, since it displays the least derived morphology seen among the hypodigm of H. heidelbergensis, and may represent better than other specimens the ancestral morphotype (i.e., the stem subspecies) of this taxon.

  8. Living in an adaptive world: Genomic dissection of the genus Homo and its immune response.

    PubMed

    Quach, Hélène; Quintana-Murci, Lluis

    2017-04-03

    More than a decade after the sequencing of the human genome, a deluge of genome-wide population data are generating a portrait of human genetic diversity at an unprecedented level of resolution. Genomic studies have provided new insight into the demographic and adaptive history of our species, Homo sapiens, including its interbreeding with other hominins, such as Neanderthals, and the ways in which natural selection, in its various guises, has shaped genome diversity. These studies, combined with functional genomic approaches, such as the mapping of expression quantitative trait loci, have helped to identify genes, functions, and mechanisms of prime importance for host survival and involved in phenotypic variation and differences in disease risk. This review summarizes new findings in this rapidly developing field, focusing on the human immune response. We discuss the importance of defining the genetic and evolutionary determinants driving immune response variation, and highlight the added value of population genomic approaches in settings relevant to immunity and infection.

  9. Modern human origins: progress and prospects.

    PubMed Central

    Stringer, Chris

    2002-01-01

    The question of the mode of origin of modern humans (Homo sapiens) has dominated palaeoanthropological debate over the last decade. This review discusses the main models proposed to explain modern human origins, and examines relevant fossil evidence from Eurasia, Africa and Australasia. Archaeological and genetic data are also discussed, as well as problems with the concept of 'modernity' itself. It is concluded that a recent African origin can be supported for H. sapiens, morphologically, behaviourally and genetically, but that more evidence will be needed, both from Africa and elsewhere, before an absolute African origin for our species and its behavioural characteristics can be established and explained. PMID:12028792

  10. The Four Canonical TPR Subunits of Human APC/C Form Related Homo-Dimeric Structures and Stack in Parallel to Form a TPR Suprahelix☆

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Ziguo; Chang, Leifu; Yang, Jing; Conin, Nora; Kulkarni, Kiran; Barford, David

    2013-01-01

    The anaphase-promoting complex or cyclosome (APC/C) is a large E3 RING-cullin ubiquitin ligase composed of between 14 and 15 individual proteins. A striking feature of the APC/C is that only four proteins are involved in directly recognizing target proteins and catalyzing the assembly of a polyubiquitin chain. All other subunits, which account for > 80% of the mass of the APC/C, provide scaffolding functions. A major proportion of these scaffolding subunits are structurally related. In metazoans, there are four canonical tetratricopeptide repeat (TPR) proteins that form homo-dimers (Apc3/Cdc27, Apc6/Cdc16, Apc7 and Apc8/Cdc23). Here, we describe the crystal structure of the N-terminal homo-dimerization domain of Schizosaccharomyces pombe Cdc23 (Cdc23Nterm). Cdc23Nterm is composed of seven contiguous TPR motifs that self-associate through a related mechanism to those of Cdc16 and Cdc27. Using the Cdc23Nterm structure, we generated a model of full-length Cdc23. The resultant “V”-shaped molecule docks into the Cdc23-assigned density of the human APC/C structure determined using negative stain electron microscopy (EM). Based on sequence conservation, we propose that Apc7 forms a homo-dimeric structure equivalent to those of Cdc16, Cdc23 and Cdc27. The model is consistent with the Apc7-assigned density of the human APC/C EM structure. The four canonical homo-dimeric TPR proteins of human APC/C stack in parallel on one side of the complex. Remarkably, the uniform relative packing of neighboring TPR proteins generates a novel left-handed suprahelical TPR assembly. This finding has implications for understanding the assembly of other TPR-containing multimeric complexes. PMID:23583778

  11. In search of Homo economicus.

    PubMed

    Yamagishi, Toshio; Li, Yang; Takagishi, Haruto; Matsumoto, Yoshie; Kiyonari, Toko

    2014-09-01

    Homo economicus, a model for humans in neoclassical economics, is a rational maximizer of self-interest. However, many social scientists regard such a person as a mere imaginary creature. We found that 31 of 446 residents of relatively wealthy Tokyo suburbs met the behavioral definition of Homo economicus. In several rounds of economic games, participants whose behavior was consistent with this model always apportioned the money endowed by the experimenter to themselves, leaving no share for their partners. These participants had high IQs and a deliberative decision style. An additional 39 participants showed a similar disregard for other people's welfare, although they were slightly more altruistic than those in the Homo economicus group. The psychological composition of these quasi-Homo economicus participants was distinct from that of participants in the Homo economicus group. Although participants in the latter group behaved selfishly on the basis of rational calculations, those in the former group made selfish choices impulsively. The implications of these findings concerning the two types of extreme noncooperators are discussed.

  12. Human orexin/hypocretin receptors form constitutive homo- and heteromeric complexes with each other and with human CB{sub 1} cannabinoid receptors

    SciTech Connect

    Jäntti, Maria H.; Mandrika, Ilona; Kukkonen, Jyrki P.

    2014-03-07

    Highlights: • OX{sub 1} and OX{sub 2} orexin and CB{sub 1} cannabinoid receptor dimerization was investigated. • Bioluminescence resonance energy transfer method was used. • All receptors readily formed constitutive homo- and heteromeric complexes. - Abstract: Human OX{sub 1} orexin receptors have been shown to homodimerize and they have also been suggested to heterodimerize with CB{sub 1} cannabinoid receptors. The latter has been suggested to be important for orexin receptor responses and trafficking. In this study, we wanted to assess the ability of the other combinations of receptors to also form similar complexes. Vectors for expression of human OX{sub 1}, OX{sub 2} and CB{sub 1} receptors, C-terminally fused with either Renilla luciferase or GFP{sup 2} green fluorescent protein variant, were generated. The constructs were transiently expressed in Chinese hamster ovary cells, and constitutive dimerization between the receptors was assessed by bioluminescence energy transfer (BRET). Orexin receptor subtypes readily formed homo- and hetero(di)mers, as suggested by significant BRET signals. CB{sub 1} receptors formed homodimers, and they also heterodimerized with both orexin receptors. Interestingly, BRET efficiency was higher for homodimers than for almost all heterodimers. This is likely to be due to the geometry of the interaction; the putatively symmetric dimers may place the C-termini in a more suitable orientation in homomers. Fusion of luciferase to an orexin receptor and GFP{sup 2} to CB{sub 1} produced more effective BRET than the opposite fusions, also suggesting differences in geometry. Similar was seen for the OX{sub 1}–OX{sub 2} interaction. In conclusion, orexin receptors have a significant propensity to make homo- and heterodi-/oligomeric complexes. However, it is unclear whether this affects their signaling. As orexin receptors efficiently signal via endocannabinoid production to CB{sub 1} receptors, dimerization could be an effective way

  13. A bivariate approach to the widening of the frontal lobes in the genus Homo.

    PubMed

    Bruner, Emiliano; Holloway, Ralph L

    2010-02-01

    Within the genus Homo, the most encephalized taxa (Neandertals and modern humans) show relatively wider frontal lobes than either Homo erectus or australopithecines. The present analysis considers whether these changes are associated with a single size-based or allometric pattern (positive allometry of the width of the anterior endocranial fossa) or with a more specific and non-allometric pattern. The relationship between hemispheric length, maximum endocranial width, and frontal width at Broca's area was investigated in extant and extinct humans. Our results do not support positive allometry for the frontal lobe's width in relation to the main endocranial diameters within modern humans (Homo sapiens). Also, the correlation between frontal width and hemispheric length is lower than the correlation between frontal width and parieto-temporal width. When compared with the australopithecines, the genus Homo could have experienced a non-allometric widening of the brain at the temporo-parietal areas, which is most evident in Neandertals. Modern humans and Neandertals also display a non-allometric widening of the anterior endocranial fossa at the Broca's cap when compared with early hominids, again more prominent in the latter group. Taking into account the contrast between the intra-specific patterns and the between-species differences, the relative widening of the anterior fossa can be interpreted as a definite evolutionary character instead of a passive consequence of brain size increase. This expansion is most likely associated with correspondent increments of the underlying neural mass, or at least with a geometrical reallocation of the frontal cortical volumes. Although different structural changes of the cranial architecture can be related to such variations, the widening of the frontal areas is nonetheless particularly interesting when some neural functions (like language or working memory, decision processing, etc.) and related fronto-parietal cortico

  14. Morphological variation in Homo erectus and the origins of developmental plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Antón, Susan C.; Taboada, Hannah G.; Middleton, Emily R.; Rainwater, Christopher W.; Taylor, Andrea B.; Turner, Trudy R.; Turnquist, Jean E.; Weinstein, Karen J.; Williams, Scott A.

    2016-01-01

    Homo erectus was the first hominin to exhibit extensive range expansion. This extraordinary departure from Africa, especially into more temperate climates of Eurasia, has been variously related to technological, energetic and foraging shifts. The temporal and regional anatomical variation in H. erectus suggests that a high level of developmental plasticity, a key factor in the ability of H. sapiens to occupy a variety of habitats, may also have been present in H. erectus. Developmental plasticity, the ability to modify development in response to environmental conditions, results in differences in size, shape and dimorphism across populations that relate in part to levels of resource sufficiency and extrinsic mortality. These differences predict not only regional variations but also overall smaller adult sizes and lower levels of dimorphism in instances of resource scarcity and high predator load. We consider the metric variation in 35 human and non-human primate ‘populations’ from known environmental contexts and 14 time- and space-restricted paleodemes of H. erectus and other fossil Homo. Human and non-human primates exhibit more similar patterns of variation than expected, with plasticity evident, but in differing patterns by sex across populations. The fossil samples show less evidence of variation than expected, although H. erectus varies more than Neandertals. This article is part of the themed issue ‘Major transitions in human evolution’. PMID:27298467

  15. Morphological variation in Homo erectus and the origins of developmental plasticity.

    PubMed

    Antón, Susan C; Taboada, Hannah G; Middleton, Emily R; Rainwater, Christopher W; Taylor, Andrea B; Turner, Trudy R; Turnquist, Jean E; Weinstein, Karen J; Williams, Scott A

    2016-07-05

    Homo erectus was the first hominin to exhibit extensive range expansion. This extraordinary departure from Africa, especially into more temperate climates of Eurasia, has been variously related to technological, energetic and foraging shifts. The temporal and regional anatomical variation in H. erectus suggests that a high level of developmental plasticity, a key factor in the ability of H. sapiens to occupy a variety of habitats, may also have been present in H. erectus. Developmental plasticity, the ability to modify development in response to environmental conditions, results in differences in size, shape and dimorphism across populations that relate in part to levels of resource sufficiency and extrinsic mortality. These differences predict not only regional variations but also overall smaller adult sizes and lower levels of dimorphism in instances of resource scarcity and high predator load. We consider the metric variation in 35 human and non-human primate 'populations' from known environmental contexts and 14 time- and space-restricted paleodemes of H. erectus and other fossil Homo Human and non-human primates exhibit more similar patterns of variation than expected, with plasticity evident, but in differing patterns by sex across populations. The fossil samples show less evidence of variation than expected, although H. erectus varies more than Neandertals.This article is part of the themed issue 'Major transitions in human evolution'. © 2016 The Author(s).

  16. The foot of Homo naledi

    PubMed Central

    Harcourt-Smith, W. E. H.; Throckmorton, Z.; Congdon, K. A.; Zipfel, B.; Deane, A. S.; Drapeau, M. S. M.; Churchill, S. E.; Berger, L. R.; DeSilva, J. M.

    2015-01-01

    Modern humans are characterized by a highly specialized foot that reflects our obligate bipedalism. Our understanding of hominin foot evolution is, although, hindered by a paucity of well-associated remains. Here we describe the foot of Homo naledi from Dinaledi Chamber, South Africa, using 107 pedal elements, including one nearly-complete adult foot. The H. naledi foot is predominantly modern human-like in morphology and inferred function, with an adducted hallux, an elongated tarsus, and derived ankle and calcaneocuboid joints. In combination, these features indicate a foot well adapted for striding bipedalism. However, the H. naledi foot differs from modern humans in having more curved proximal pedal phalanges, and features suggestive of a reduced medial longitudinal arch. Within the context of primitive features found elsewhere in the skeleton, these findings suggest a unique locomotor repertoire for H. naledi, thus providing further evidence of locomotor diversity within both the hominin clade and the genus Homo. PMID:26439101

  17. The foot of Homo naledi.

    PubMed

    Harcourt-Smith, W E H; Throckmorton, Z; Congdon, K A; Zipfel, B; Deane, A S; Drapeau, M S M; Churchill, S E; Berger, L R; DeSilva, J M

    2015-10-06

    Modern humans are characterized by a highly specialized foot that reflects our obligate bipedalism. Our understanding of hominin foot evolution is, although, hindered by a paucity of well-associated remains. Here we describe the foot of Homo naledi from Dinaledi Chamber, South Africa, using 107 pedal elements, including one nearly-complete adult foot. The H. naledi foot is predominantly modern human-like in morphology and inferred function, with an adducted hallux, an elongated tarsus, and derived ankle and calcaneocuboid joints. In combination, these features indicate a foot well adapted for striding bipedalism. However, the H. naledi foot differs from modern humans in having more curved proximal pedal phalanges, and features suggestive of a reduced medial longitudinal arch. Within the context of primitive features found elsewhere in the skeleton, these findings suggest a unique locomotor repertoire for H. naledi, thus providing further evidence of locomotor diversity within both the hominin clade and the genus Homo.

  18. The many mysteries of Homo naledi

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    More than 1500 fossils from the Rising Star cave system in South Africa have been assigned to a new human species, Homo naledi, which displays a unique combination of primitive and derived traits throughout the skeleton. PMID:26354290

  19. [A new mutation c.422C>G (p.S141C) in homo- and heterozygous forms of the human leptin gene].

    PubMed

    Chekhranova, M K; Karpova, S K; Iatsyshina, S B; Pankov, Iu A

    2008-01-01

    Mutation g.15409C>G, c.422C>G (p.S141C) in homo- and heterozygous forms of the human LEP gene was identified among some patients of the high mountain village of Karaul, Ashkhabad oblast, Turkmenistan, some of which suffer from adiposity. It causes the substitution S120C in the secreted leptin. The mature leptin molecule (146 aa) has only two Cys residues (C96 and C146) forming an S-S bridge, which is important for the hormone function. A third mutation, C120, in the molecule might disturb the correct formation of the S-S bond and could alter the leptin activity.

  20. Tropical forests and the genus Homo.

    PubMed

    Roberts, Patrick; Boivin, Nicole; Lee-Thorp, Julia; Petraglia, Michael; Stock, Jay

    2016-11-01

    Tropical forests constitute some of the most diverse and complex terrestrial ecosystems on the planet. From the Miocene onward, they have acted as a backdrop to the ongoing evolution of our closest living relatives, the great apes, and provided the cradle for the emergence of early hominins, who retained arboreal physiological adaptations at least into the Late Pliocene. There also now exists growing evidence, from the Late Pleistocene onward, for tool-assisted intensification of tropical forest occupation and resource extraction by our own species, Homo sapiens. However, between the Late Pliocene and Late Pleistocene there is an apparent gap in clear and convincing evidence for the use of tropical forests by hominins, including early members of our own genus. In discussions of Late Pliocene and Early Pleistocene hominin evolution, including the emergence and later expansion of Homo species across the globe, tropical forest adaptations tend to be eclipsed by open, savanna environments. Thus far, it is not clear whether this Early-Middle Pleistocene lacuna in Homo-rainforest interaction is real and representative of an adaptive shift with the emergence of our species or if it is simply reflective of preservation bias.

  1. Paleoneurology of two new neandertal occipitals from El Sidrón (asturias, Spain) in the context of homo endocranial evolution.

    PubMed

    Peña-Melián, Angel; Rosas, Antonio; García-Tabernero, Antonio; Bastir, Markus; De La Rasilla, Marco

    2011-08-01

    The endocranial surface description and comparative analyses of two new neandertal occipital fragments (labelled SD-1149 and SD-370a) from the El Sidrón site (Asturias, Spain) reveal new aspects of neandertal brain morphological asymmetries. The dural sinus drainage pattern, as observed on the sagittal-transverse system, as well as the cerebral occipito-petalias, point out a slightly differential configuration of the neandertal brain when compared to other Homo species, especially H. sapiens. The neandertal dural sinus drainage pattern is organized in a more asymmetric mode, in such a way that the superior sagittal sinus (SSS) drains either to the right or to the left transverse sinuses, but in no case in a confluent mode (i.e. simultaneous continuation of SSS with both right (RTS) and left (LTS) transverse sinuses). Besides, the superior sagittal sinus shows an accentuated deviation from of the mid-sagittal plane in its way to the RTS in 35% of neandertals. This condition, which increases the asymmetry of the system, is almost nonexistent neither in the analyzed Homo fossil species sample nor in that of anatomically modern humans. Regarding the cerebral occipito-petalias, neandertals manifest one of the lowest percentages of left petalia of the Homo sample (including modern H. sapiens). As left occipito-petalia is the predominant pattern in hominins, it seems as if neandertals would have developed a different pattern of brain hemispheres asymmetry. Finally, the relief and position of the the cerebral sulci and gyri impressions observed in the El Sidrón occipital specimens look similar to those observed in modern H. sapiens. Copyright © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  2. A tentative framework for the acquisition of language and modern human cognition.

    PubMed

    Tattersall, Ian

    2016-06-20

    Modern human beings process information symbolically, rearranging mental symbols to envision multiple potential realities. They also express the ideas they form using structured articulate language. No other living creature does either of these things. Yet it is evident that we are descended from a non-symbolic and non-linguistic ancestor. How did this astonishing transformation occur? Scrutiny of the fossil and archaeological records reveals that the transition to symbolic reasoning happened very late in hominid history - indeed, within the tenure of anatomically recognizable Homo sapiens. It was evidently not simply a passive result of the increase in brain size that typified multiple lineages of the genus Homo over the Pleistocene. Instead, a brain exaptively capable of complex symbolic manipulation and language acquisition was acquired in the major developmental reorganization that gave rise to the anatomically distinctive species Homo sapiens. The new capacity it conferred was later recruited through the action of a cultural stimulus, most plausibly the spontaneous invention of language.

  3. Gamma-ray spectrometric dating of late Homo erectus skulls from Ngandong and Sambungmacan, Central Java, Indonesia.

    PubMed

    Yokoyama, Yuji; Falguères, Christophe; Sémah, François; Jacob, Teuku; Grün, Rainer

    2008-08-01

    Hominid fossils from Ngandong and Sambungmacan, Central Java, Indonesia, are considered to be the most anatomically derived and youngest representatives of Homo erectus. Nondestructive gamma-ray spectrometric dating of three of these Homo erectus skulls showed that all samples underwent uranium leaching. Nevertheless, we could establish minimum age estimates of around 40ka, with an upper age limit of around 60 to 70ka. This means that the Homo erectus of Java very likely survived the Toba eruption and may have been contemporaneous with the earliest Homo sapiens in Southeast Asia and Australasia.

  4. More on the Liang Bua finds and modern human cretins.

    PubMed

    Oxnard, Charles; Obendorf, Peter J; Kefford, Ben J; Dennison, John

    2012-12-01

    Brown (2012: LB1 and LB6 Homo floresiensis are not modern human (Homo sapiens) cretins, Journal of Human Evolution) makes errors of fact, omission and interpretation. Brown's comments refer, among others, to (1) delayed growth and development indicated by unfused epiphyses, (2) postcranial limb proportions: limbs to trunk, between limbs, and within limbs, (3) postcranial bone torsions and angles, (4) postcranial robusticity, real and apparent, (5) skull features, and (6) cretinism on Flores. In each of these areas, much information about cretins is incorrect and much information (Oxnard et al., 2010) comparing the Liang Bua remains with cretins is ignored.

  5. Evolution of the base of the brain in highly encephalized human species.

    PubMed

    Bastir, Markus; Rosas, Antonio; Gunz, Philipp; Peña-Melian, Angel; Manzi, Giorgio; Harvati, Katerina; Kruszynski, Robert; Stringer, Chris; Hublin, Jean-Jacques

    2011-12-13

    The increase of brain size relative to body size-encephalization-is intimately linked with human evolution. However, two genetically different evolutionary lineages, Neanderthals and modern humans, have produced similarly large-brained human species. Thus, understanding human brain evolution should include research into specific cerebral reorganization, possibly reflected by brain shape changes. Here we exploit developmental integration between the brain and its underlying skeletal base to test hypotheses about brain evolution in Homo. Three-dimensional geometric morphometric analyses of endobasicranial shape reveal previously undocumented details of evolutionary changes in Homo sapiens. Larger olfactory bulbs, relatively wider orbitofrontal cortex, relatively increased and forward projecting temporal lobe poles appear unique to modern humans. Such brain reorganization, beside physical consequences for overall skull shape, might have contributed to the evolution of H. sapiens' learning and social capacities, in which higher olfactory functions and its cognitive, neurological behavioral implications could have been hitherto underestimated factors.

  6. Homo naledi, a new species of the genus Homo from the Dinaledi Chamber, South Africa.

    PubMed

    Berger, Lee R; Hawks, John; de Ruiter, Darryl J; Churchill, Steven E; Schmid, Peter; Delezene, Lucas K; Kivell, Tracy L; Garvin, Heather M; Williams, Scott A; DeSilva, Jeremy M; Skinner, Matthew M; Musiba, Charles M; Cameron, Noel; Holliday, Trenton W; Harcourt-Smith, William; Ackermann, Rebecca R; Bastir, Markus; Bogin, Barry; Bolter, Debra; Brophy, Juliet; Cofran, Zachary D; Congdon, Kimberly A; Deane, Andrew S; Dembo, Mana; Drapeau, Michelle; Elliott, Marina C; Feuerriegel, Elen M; Garcia-Martinez, Daniel; Green, David J; Gurtov, Alia; Irish, Joel D; Kruger, Ashley; Laird, Myra F; Marchi, Damiano; Meyer, Marc R; Nalla, Shahed; Negash, Enquye W; Orr, Caley M; Radovcic, Davorka; Schroeder, Lauren; Scott, Jill E; Throckmorton, Zachary; Tocheri, Matthew W; VanSickle, Caroline; Walker, Christopher S; Wei, Pianpian; Zipfel, Bernhard

    2015-09-10

    Homo naledi is a previously-unknown species of extinct hominin discovered within the Dinaledi Chamber of the Rising Star cave system, Cradle of Humankind, South Africa. This species is characterized by body mass and stature similar to small-bodied human populations but a small endocranial volume similar to australopiths. Cranial morphology of H. naledi is unique, but most similar to early Homo species including Homo erectus, Homo habilis or Homo rudolfensis. While primitive, the dentition is generally small and simple in occlusal morphology. H. naledi has humanlike manipulatory adaptations of the hand and wrist. It also exhibits a humanlike foot and lower limb. These humanlike aspects are contrasted in the postcrania with a more primitive or australopith-like trunk, shoulder, pelvis and proximal femur. Representing at least 15 individuals with most skeletal elements repeated multiple times, this is the largest assemblage of a single species of hominins yet discovered in Africa.

  7. The first archaic Homo from Taiwan

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Chun-Hsiang; Kaifu, Yousuke; Takai, Masanaru; Kono, Reiko T.; Grün, Rainer; Matsu’ura, Shuji; Kinsley, Les; Lin, Liang-Kong

    2015-01-01

    Recent studies of an increasing number of hominin fossils highlight regional and chronological diversities of archaic Homo in the Pleistocene of eastern Asia. However, such a realization is still based on limited geographical occurrences mainly from Indonesia, China and Russian Altai. Here we describe a newly discovered archaic Homo mandible from Taiwan (Penghu 1), which further increases the diversity of Pleistocene Asian hominins. Penghu 1 revealed an unexpectedly late survival (younger than 450 but most likely 190–10 thousand years ago) of robust, apparently primitive dentognathic morphology in the periphery of the continent, which is unknown among the penecontemporaneous fossil records from other regions of Asia except for the mid-Middle Pleistocene Homo from Hexian, Eastern China. Such patterns of geographic trait distribution cannot be simply explained by clinal geographic variation of Homo erectus between northern China and Java, and suggests survival of multiple evolutionary lineages among archaic hominins before the arrival of modern humans in the region. PMID:25625212

  8. Conduction Abnormalities and Pacemaker Implantations After SAPIEN 3 Vs SAPIEN XT Prosthesis Aortic Valve Implantation.

    PubMed

    Husser, Oliver; Kessler, Thorsten; Burgdorf, Christof; Templin, Christian; Pellegrini, Costanza; Schneider, Simon; Kasel, Albert Markus; Kastrati, Adnan; Schunkert, Heribert; Hengstenberg, Christian

    2016-02-01

    Transcatheter aortic valve implantation is increasingly used in patients with aortic stenosis. Post-procedural intraventricular conduction abnormalities and permanent pacemaker implantations remain a serious concern. Recently, the Edwards SAPIEN 3 prosthesis has replaced the SAPIEN XT. We sought to determine the incidences of new-onset intraventricular conduction abnormalities and permanent pacemaker implantations by comparing the 2 devices. We analyzed the last consecutive 103 patients undergoing transcatheter aortic valve implantation with SAPIEN XT before SAPIEN 3 was used in the next 105 patients. To analyze permanent pacemaker implantations and new-onset intraventricular conduction abnormalities, patients with these conditions at baseline were excluded. Electrocardiograms were recorded at baseline, after the procedure, and before discharge. SAPIEN 3 was associated with higher device success (100% vs 92%; P=.005) and less paravalvular leakage (0% vs 7%; P<.001). The incidence of permanent pacemaker implantations was 12.6% (23 of 183) with no difference between the 2 groups (SAPIEN 3: 12.5% [12 of 96] vs SAPIEN XT: 12.6% [11 of 87]; P=.99). SAPIEN 3 was associated with a higher rate of new-onset intraventricular conduction abnormalities (49% vs 27%; P=.007) due to a higher rate of fascicular blocks (17% vs 5%; P=.021). There was no statistically significant difference in transient (29% [20 of 69] vs persistent 19% [12 of 64]; P=.168) left bundle branch blocks (28% [19 of 69] vs 17% [11 of 64]; P=.154) when SAPIEN 3 was compared with SAPIEN XT. We found a trend toward a higher rate of new-onset intraventricular conduction abnormalities with SAPIEN 3 compared with SAPIEN XT, although this did not result in a higher permanent pacemaker implantation rate. Copyright © 2015 Sociedad Española de Cardiología. Published by Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  9. Tracing the origin of functional and conserved domains in the human proteome: implications for protein evolution at the modular level.

    PubMed

    Pal, Lipika R; Guda, Chittibabu

    2006-11-07

    The functional repertoire of the human proteome is an incremental collection of functions accomplished by protein domains evolved along the Homo sapiens lineage. Therefore, knowledge on the origin of these functionalities provides a better understanding of the domain and protein evolution in human. The lack of proper comprehension about such origin has impelled us to study the evolutionary origin of human proteome in a unique way as detailed in this study. This study reports a unique approach for understanding the evolution of human proteome by tracing the origin of its constituting domains hierarchically, along the Homo sapiens lineage. The uniqueness of this method lies in subtractive searching of functional and conserved domains in the human proteome resulting in higher efficiency of detecting their origins. From these analyses the nature of protein evolution and trends in domain evolution can be observed in the context of the entire human proteome data. The method adopted here also helps delineate the degree of divergence of functional families occurred during the course of evolution. This approach to trace the evolutionary origin of functional domains in the human proteome facilitates better understanding of their functional versatility as well as provides insights into the functionality of hypothetical proteins present in the human proteome. This work elucidates the origin of functional and conserved domains in human proteins, their distribution along the Homo sapiens lineage, occurrence frequency of different domain combinations and proteome-wide patterns of their distribution, providing insights into the evolutionary solution to the increased complexity of the human proteome.

  10. Early stone technology on Flores and its implications for Homo floresiensis.

    PubMed

    Brumm, Adam; Aziz, Fachroel; van den Bergh, Gert D; Morwood, Michael J; Moore, Mark W; Kurniawan, Iwan; Hobbs, Douglas R; Fullagar, Richard

    2006-06-01

    In the Soa Basin of central Flores, eastern Indonesia, stratified archaeological sites, including Mata Menge, Boa Lesa and Kobatuwa (Fig. 1), contain stone artefacts associated with the fossilized remains of Stegodon florensis, Komodo dragon, rat and various other taxa. These sites have been dated to 840-700 kyr bp (thousand years before present). The authenticity of the Soa Basin artefacts and their provenance have been demonstrated by previous work, but to quell lingering doubts, here we describe the context, attributes and production modes of 507 artefacts excavated at Mata Menge. We also note specific similarities, and apparent technological continuity, between the Mata Menge stone artefacts and those excavated from Late Pleistocene levels at Liang Bua cave, 50 km to the west. The latter artefacts, dated to between 95-74 and 12 kyr ago, are associated with the remains of a dwarfed descendent of S. florensis, Komodo dragon, rat and a small-bodied hominin species, Homo floresiensis, which had a brain size of about 400 cubic centimetres. The Mata Menge evidence negates claims that stone artefacts associated with H. floresiensis are so complex that they must have been made by modern humans (Homo sapiens).

  11. Trabecular architecture in the thumb of Pan and Homo: implications for investigating hand use, loading, and hand preference in the fossil record.

    PubMed

    Stephens, Nicholas B; Kivell, Tracy L; Gross, Thomas; Pahr, Dieter H; Lazenby, Richard A; Hublin, Jean-Jacques; Hershkovitz, Israel; Skinner, Matthew M

    2016-12-01

    Humans display an 85-95% cross-cultural right-hand bias in skilled tasks, which is considered a derived behavior because such a high frequency is not reported in wild non-human primates. Handedness is generally considered to be an evolutionary byproduct of selection for manual dexterity and augmented visuo-cognitive capabilities within the context of complex stone tool manufacture/use. Testing this hypothesis requires an understanding of when appreciable levels of right dominant behavior entered the fossil record. Because bone remodels in vivo, skeletal asymmetries are thought to reflect greater mechanical loading on the dominant side, but incomplete preservation of external morphology and ambiguities about past loading environments complicate interpretations. We test if internal trabecular bone is capable of providing additional information by analyzing the thumb of Homo sapiens and Pan. We assess trabecular structure at the distal head and proximal base of paired (left/right) first metacarpals using micro-CT scans of Homo sapiens (n = 14) and Pan (n = 9). Throughout each epiphysis we quantify average and local bone volume fraction (BV/TV), degree of anisotropy (DA), and elastic modulus (E) to address bone volume patterning and directional asymmetry. We find a right directional asymmetry in H. sapiens consistent with population-level handedness, but also report a left directional asymmetry in Pan that may be the result of postural and/or locomotor loading. We conclude that trabecular bone is capable of detecting right/left directional asymmetry, but suggest coupling studies of internal structure with analyses of other skeletal elements and cortical bone prior to applications in the fossil record. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  12. Homo- and hetero-dimerization of human UDP-glucuronosyltransferase 2B7 (UGT2B7) wild type and its allelic variants affect zidovudine glucuronidation activity.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Lingmin; Qian, Sainan; Xiao, Yongsheng; Sun, Hongying; Zeng, Su

    2015-05-01

    Most human UDP-glucuronosyltransferase (UGT; EC 2.4.1.17) genes contain non-synonymous single nucleotide polymorphisms (nsSNPs) which cause amino acid substitutions. Allelic variants caused by nsSNPs may exhibit absent or reduced enzyme activity. UGT2B7 is one of the most important UGTs that glucuronidates abundant endobiotics and xenobiotics, such as estriol, morphine, and anticancer drugs. Three nsSNPs, UGT2B7*71S (211G>T), UGT2B7*2 (802C>T) and UGT2B7*5 (1192G>A) are observed in the UGT2B7 gene, and they code for allozymes UGT2B7*71S (A71S), UGT2B7*2 (H268Y), and UGT2B7*5 (D398N). UGT2B7 has been observed to form oligomers that affect its enzymatic activity and in this study, we investigated protein-protein interactions among UGT2B7 allozymes wild type (WT), A71S, H268Y and D398N, by performing a systematic quantitative fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) analysis in combination with co-immunoprecipitation assay. Quantitative FRET analysis revealed that UGT2B7 allozymes formed homo- and hetero-dimers and showed distinct features in donor-acceptor distances. Both codon 71 and codon 268 in the N-terminal domain were involved in the dimeric interaction. Co-immunoprecipitation experiments also proved that UGT2B7 allozymes formed stable dimers. The glucuronidation activities of homo- and hetero-dimers were further tested with zidovudine as the substrate. An increase in activity was observed when WT hetero-dimerized with A71S compared with homo-dimers, while both H268Y and D398N impaired the activity of WT and A71S by forming hetero-dimers. In addition, zidovudine glucuronidation activity is associated with FRET distance. These findings provide insights into the consequences of amino acid substitution in UGT2B7 on zidovudine glucuronidation and the association between protein-protein interaction and glucuronidation activity.

  13. [Mitochondrial DNA polymorphisms shared between modern humans and neanderthals: adaptive convergence or evidence for interspecific hybridization?].

    PubMed

    Maliarchuk, B A

    2013-09-01

    An analysis of the variability of the nucleotide sequences in the mitochondrial genome of modern humans, neanderthals, Denisovans, and other primates has shown that there are shared polymorphisms at positions 2758 and 7146 between modern Homo sapiens (in phylogenetic cluster L2'3'4'5'6) and Homo neanderthalensis (in the group of European neanderthals younger than 48000 years). It is suggested that the convergence may be due to adaptive changes in the mitochondrial genomes of modern humans and neanderthals or interspecific hybridization associated with mtDNA recombination.

  14. Extreme mobility in the Late Pleistocene? Comparing limb biomechanics among fossil Homo, varsity athletes and Holocene foragers.

    PubMed

    Shaw, Colin N; Stock, Jay T

    2013-04-01

    Descriptions of Pleistocene activity patterns often derive from comparisons of long bone diaphyseal robusticity across contemporaneous fossilized hominins. The purpose of this study is to augment existing understanding of Pleistocene hominin mobility patterns by interpreting fossil variation through comparisons with a) living human athletes with known activity patterns, and b) Holocene foragers where descriptions of group-level activity patterns are available. Relative tibial rigidity (midshaft tibial rigidity (J)/midshaft humeral rigidity (J)) was compared amongst Levantine and European Neandertals, Levantine and Upper Palaeolithic Homo sapiens, Holocene foragers and living human athletes and controls. Cross-country runners exhibit significantly (p<0.05) greater relative tibial rigidity compared with swimmers, and higher values compared with controls. In contrast, swimmers displayed significantly (p<0.05) lower relative tibial rigidity than both runners and controls. While variation exists among all Holocene H. sapiens, highly terrestrially mobile Later Stone Age (LSA) southern Africans and cross-country runners display the highest relative tibial rigidity, while maritime Andaman Islanders and swimmers display the lowest, with controls falling between. All fossil hominins displayed relative tibial rigidity that exceeded, or was similar to, the highly terrestrially mobile Later Stone Age southern Africans and modern human cross-country runners. The more extreme skeletal structure of most Neandertals and Levantine H. sapiens, as well as the odd Upper Palaeolithic individual, appears to reflect adaptation to intense and/or highly repetitive lower limb (relative to upper limb) loading. This loading may have been associated with bipedal travel, and appears to have been more strenuous than that encountered by even university varsity runners, and Holocene foragers with hunting grounds 2000-3000 square miles in size. Skeletal variation among the athletes and foraging

  15. Homo-trimeric Structure of the Type IVb Minor Pilin CofB Suggests Mechanism of CFA/III Pilus Assembly in Human Enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Kawahara, Kazuki; Oki, Hiroya; Fukakusa, Shunsuke; Yoshida, Takuya; Imai, Tomoya; Maruno, Takahiro; Kobayashi, Yuji; Motooka, Daisuke; Iida, Tetsuya; Ohkubo, Tadayasu; Nakamura, Shota

    2016-03-27

    In gram-negative bacteria, the assembly of type IV pilus (T4P) and the evolutionally related pseudopilus of type II secretion system involves specialized structural proteins called pilins and pseudopilins, respectively, and is dynamically regulated to promote bacterial pathogenesis. Previous studies have suggested that a structural "tip"-like hetero-complex formed through the interaction of at least three minor (pseudo) pilins plays an important role in this process, while some members of the pathogenic type IVb subfamily are known to have only one such minor pilin subunit whose function is still unknown. Here, we determined the crystal structure of the type IVb minor pilin CofB of colonization factor antigen/III from human enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli at 1.88-Å resolution. The crystal structure, in conjunction with physicochemical analysis in solution, reveals a symmetrical homo-trimeric arrangement distinct from the hetero-complexes of minor (pseudo) pilins observed in other T4P and type II secretion systems. Each CofB monomer adopts a unique three-domain architecture, in which the C-terminal β-sheet-rich lectin domain can effectively initiate trimer association of its pilin-like N-terminal domain through extensive hydrophobic interactions followed by domain swapping at the central hinge-like domain. Deletion of cofB produces a phenotype with no detectable pili formation on the cell surface, while molecular modeling indicates that the characteristic homo-trimeric structure of CofB is well situated at the pilus tip of colonization factor antigen/III formed by the major pilin CofA, suggesting a role for the minor pilin in the efficient initiation of T4P assembly. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Bioethics, technology and human dignity: the Roman Catholic viewpoint.

    PubMed

    Zyciński, J

    2006-01-01

    Many important questions dealing with human dignity in medical research are raised by new medical technologies. The paper presents the Roman Catholic approach to the use of new technologies, the research on human embryos, the ethical aspects of studies on human genome. The concept of "human ecology", as proposed by John Paul II, is to reconcile human dignity, the academic freedom of research, the sacredness of life understood as its quality so important for the cultural growth of Homo sapiens. To protect human ecology it is our moral duty to defend human dignity and to recognize the importance of those values that are fundamental in the process of development of human species.

  17. Transaortic transcatheter aortic valve implantation using SAPIEN XT or SAPIEN 3 valves in the ROUTE registry†.

    PubMed

    Romano, Mauro; Frank, Derk; Cocchieri, Riccardo; Jagielak, Dariusz; Bonaros, Nikolaos; Aiello, Marco; Lapeze, Joel; Laine, Mika; Chocron, Sidney; Muir, Douglas; Eichinger, Walter; Thielmann, Matthias; Labrousse, Louis; Arne Rein, Kjell; Verhoye, Jean-Philippe; Gerosa, Gino; Baumbach, Hardy; Deutsch, Cornelia; Bramlage, Peter; Thoenes, Martin; Bapat, Vinayak

    2017-06-05

    Transaortic (TAo) access for transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI) is an alternative to the conventional transfemoral or transapical routes. Data comparing the characteristics and outcomes of TAo-TAVI using the SAPIEN XT and SAPIEN 3 heart valves are scarce. The objective of the current analysis was to provide such information. ROUTE is an international, prospective, observational registry. Patients with severe calcific aortic stenosis scheduled for TAo-TAVI with an Edwards SAPIEN XT or a SAPIEN 3 heart valve were consecutively enrolled at 22 centres across Europe between February 2013 and February 2015. Periprocedural, in-hospital and 30-day complication rates were assessed. Of the 301 patients included, 126 (41.9%) received a SAPIEN 3 and 175 (58.1%) a SAPIEN XT. The SAPIEN 3 was associated with shorter procedure time (101 ± 35 vs 111 ± 40 min; P  = 0.031) and a lower quantity of contrast agent used (87 ± 43 vs 112 ± 50 ml; P  < 0.001). Balloon dilation was performed less often before (68.0% vs 78.3%; P  = 0.045) and after implantation (13.6% vs 30.1%; P  = 0.001). No statistically significant differences between the valve types were documented for overall (4.1% SAPIEN 3 vs 7.6% SAPIEN XT; P  = 0.21), TAVI-related (0.8% vs 4.7%; P  = 0.084) and cardiovascular mortality (2.4% vs 5.9%; P  = 0.158). Major vascular complications were less frequent (0.8% vs 5.3%; P  = 0.049), and there was a lower rate of moderate-to-severe paravalvular regurgitation (0.8% vs 5.1%; P  = 0.050) in the SAPIEN 3 group. Both the SAPIEN XT and SAPIEN 3 were safely implanted via the TAo route, though the SAPIEN 3 may be associated with a higher procedural success rate and improved prognosis. NCT01991431.

  18. The upper limb of Homo naledi.

    PubMed

    Feuerriegel, Elen M; Green, David J; Walker, Christopher S; Schmid, Peter; Hawks, John; Berger, Lee R; Churchill, Steven E

    2017-03-01

    The evolutionary transition from an ape-like to human-like upper extremity occurred in the context of a behavioral shift from an upper limb predominantly involved in locomotion to one adapted for manipulation. Selection for overarm throwing and endurance running is thought to have further shaped modern human shoulder girdle morphology and its position about the thorax. Homo naledi (Dinaledi Chamber, Rising Star Cave, Cradle of Humankind, South Africa) combines an australopith-like cranial capacity with dental characteristics akin to early Homo. Although the hand, foot, and lower limb display many derived morphologies, the upper limb retains many primitive traits. Here, we describe the H. naledi upper extremity (excluding the hand) in detail and in a comparative context to evaluate the diversity of clavicular, scapular, humeral, radial, and ulnar morphology among early hominins and later Homo. Homo naledi had a scapula with a markedly cranially-oriented glenoid, a humerus with extremely low torsion, and an australopith-like clavicle. These traits indicate that the H. naledi scapula was situated superiorly and laterally on the thorax. This shoulder girdle configuration is more similar to that of Australopithecus and distinct from that of modern humans, whose scapulae are positioned low and dorsally about the thorax. Although early Homo erectus maintains many primitive clavicular and humeral features, its derived scapular morphology suggests a loss of climbing adaptations. In contrast, the H. naledi upper limb is markedly primitive, retaining morphology conducive to climbing while lacking many of the derived features related to effective throwing or running purported to characterize other members of early Homo.

  19. New wrist bones of Homo floresiensis from Liang Bua (Flores, Indonesia).

    PubMed

    Orr, Caley M; Tocheri, Matthew W; Burnett, Scott E; Awe, Rokus Due; Saptomo, E Wahyu; Sutikna, Thomas; Jatmiko; Wasisto, Sri; Morwood, Michael J; Jungers, William L

    2013-02-01

    The carpals from the Homo floresiensis type specimen (LB1) lack features that compose the shared, derived complex of the radial side of the wrist in Neandertals and modern humans. This paper comprises a description and three-dimensional morphometric analysis of new carpals from at least one other individual at Liang Bua attributed to H. floresiensis: a right capitate and two hamates. The new capitate is smaller than that of LB1 but is nearly identical in morphology. As with capitates from extant apes, species of Australopithecus, and LB1, the newly described capitate displays a deeply-excavated nonarticular area along its radial aspect, a scaphoid facet that extends into a J-hook articulation on the neck, and a more radially-oriented second metacarpal facet; it also lacks an enlarged palmarly-positioned trapezoid facet. Because there is no accommodation for the derived, palmarly blocky trapezoid that characterizes Homo sapiens and Neandertals, this individual most likely had a plesiomorphically wedge-shaped trapezoid (like LB1). Morphometric analyses confirm the close similarity of the new capitate and that of LB1, and are consistent with previous findings of an overall primitive articular geometry. In general, hamate morphology is more conserved across hominins, and the H. floresiensis specimens fall at the far edge of the range of variation for H. sapiens in a number of metrics. However, the hamate of H. floresiensis is exceptionally small and exhibits a relatively long, stout hamulus lacking the oval-shaped cross-section characteristic of human and Neandertal hamuli (variably present in australopiths). Documentation of a second individual with primitive carpal anatomy from Liang Bua, along with further analysis of trapezoid scaling relative to the capitate in LB1, refutes claims that the wrist of the type specimen represents a modern human with pathology. In total, the carpal anatomy of H. floresiensis supports the hypothesis that the lineage leading to the

  20. The hand of Homo naledi

    PubMed Central

    Kivell, Tracy L.; Deane, Andrew S.; Tocheri, Matthew W.; Orr, Caley M.; Schmid, Peter; Hawks, John; Berger, Lee R.; Churchill, Steven E.

    2015-01-01

    A nearly complete right hand of an adult hominin was recovered from the Rising Star cave system, South Africa. Based on associated hominin material, the bones of this hand are attributed to Homo naledi. This hand reveals a long, robust thumb and derived wrist morphology that is shared with Neandertals and modern humans, and considered adaptive for intensified manual manipulation. However, the finger bones are longer and more curved than in most australopiths, indicating frequent use of the hand during life for strong grasping during locomotor climbing and suspension. These markedly curved digits in combination with an otherwise human-like wrist and palm indicate a significant degree of climbing, despite the derived nature of many aspects of the hand and other regions of the postcranial skeleton in H. naledi. PMID:26441219

  1. Craniofacial morphology of Homo floresiensis: description, taxonomic affinities, and evolutionary implication.

    PubMed

    Kaifu, Yousuke; Baba, Hisao; Sutikna, Thomas; Morwood, Michael J; Kubo, Daisuke; Saptomo, E Wahyu; Jatmiko; Awe, Rokhus Due; Djubiantono, Tony

    2011-12-01

    This paper describes in detail the external morphology of LB1/1, the nearly complete and only known cranium of Homo floresiensis. Comparisons were made with a large sample of early groups of the genus Homo to assess primitive, derived, and unique craniofacial traits of LB1 and discuss its evolution. Principal cranial shape differences between H. floresiensis and Homo sapiens are also explored metrically. The LB1 specimen exhibits a marked reductive trend in its facial skeleton, which is comparable to the H. sapiens condition and is probably associated with reduced masticatory stresses. However, LB1 is craniometrically different from H. sapiens showing an extremely small overall cranial size, and the combination of a primitive low and anteriorly narrow vault shape, a relatively prognathic face, a rounded oval foramen that is greatly separated anteriorly from the carotid canal/jugular foramen, and a unique, tall orbital shape. Whereas the neurocranium of LB1 is as small as that of some Homo habilis specimens, it exhibits laterally expanded parietals, a weak suprameatal crest, a moderately flexed occipital, a marked facial reduction, and many other derived features that characterize post-habilis Homo. Other craniofacial characteristics of LB1 include, for example, a relatively narrow frontal squama with flattened right and left sides, a marked frontal keel, posteriorly divergent temporal lines, a posteriorly flexed anteromedial corner of the mandibular fossa, a bulbous lateral end of the supraorbital torus, and a forward protruding maxillary body with a distinct infraorbital sulcus. LB1 is most similar to early Javanese Homo erectus from Sangiran and Trinil in these and other aspects. We conclude that the craniofacial morphology of LB1 is consistent with the hypothesis that H. floresiensis evolved from early Javanese H. erectus with dramatic island dwarfism. However, further field discoveries of early hominin skeletal remains from Flores and detailed analyses of the

  2. Structure of filamin A immunoglobulin-like repeat 10 from Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Page, Richard C; Clark, Jeffrey G; Misra, Saurav

    2011-08-01

    Filamin A (FlnA) plays a critical role in cytoskeletal organization, cell motility and cellular signaling. FlnA utilizes different binding sites on a series of 24 immunoglobulin-like domains (Ig repeats) to interact with diverse cytosolic proteins and with cytoplasmic portions of membrane proteins. Mutations in a specific domain, Ig10 (FlnA-Ig10), are correlated with two severe forms of the otopalatodigital syndrome spectrum disorders Melnick-Needles syndrome and frontometaphyseal dysplasia. The crystal structure of FlnA-Ig10 determined at 2.44 Å resolution provides insight into the perturbations caused by these mutations.

  3. Referential understanding of videos in chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes), orangutans (Pongo pygmaeus), and children (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    Poss, Sarah R; Rochat, Philippe

    2003-12-01

    Performance on identical search tasks based on cues directly perceived or indirectly perceived through video were compared among a group of 4 adult chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes), a group of 2 adult orangutans (Pongo pygmaeus), and a group of 36 children (between 2 and 3 years of age). Children comprehended directly perceived cues but had difficulty with video cues. In contrast, chimpanzees and 1 orangutan were successful in using video to guide their search for a hidden object. Two follow-up studies with 3-year-old children demonstrated the importance of more distinct perceptual and verbal cues in aiding children's understanding of video as referring to real-world events.

  4. Homology modeling of Homo sapiens lipoic acid synthase: Substrate docking and insights on its binding mode.

    PubMed

    Krishnamoorthy, Ezhilarasi; Hassan, Sameer; Hanna, Luke Elizabeth; Padmalayam, Indira; Rajaram, Rama; Viswanathan, Vijay

    2017-05-07

    Lipoic acid synthase (LIAS) is an iron-sulfur cluster mitochondrial enzyme which catalyzes the final step in the de novo pathway for the biosynthesis of lipoic acid, a potent antioxidant. Recently there has been significant interest in its role in metabolic diseases and its deficiency in LIAS expression has been linked to conditions such as diabetes, atherosclerosis and neonatal-onset epilepsy, suggesting a strong inverse correlation between LIAS reduction and disease status. In this study we use a bioinformatics approach to predict its structure, which would be helpful to understanding its role. A homology model for LIAS protein was generated using X-ray crystallographic structure of Thermosynechococcus elongatus BP-1 (PDB ID: 4U0P). The predicted structure has 93% of the residues in the most favour region of Ramachandran plot. The active site of LIAS protein was mapped and docked with S-Adenosyl Methionine (SAM) using GOLD software. The LIAS-SAM complex was further refined using molecular dynamics simulation within the subsite 1 and subsite 3 of the active site. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to report a reliable homology model of LIAS protein. This study will facilitate a better understanding mode of action of the enzyme-substrate complex for future studies in designing drugs that can target LIAS protein. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Ontogenetic changes in cranial vault thickness in a modern sample of Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Anzelmo, Marisol; Ventrice, Fernando; Barbeito-Andrés, Jimena; Pucciarelli, Héctor M; Sardi, Marina L

    2015-01-01

    This work assesses cranial vault thickness (CVT) ontogenetic changes using a computed tomography database to register thickness across multiple regions. Vault images of 143 individuals from 0 to 31 years old were analyzed by thickness semiautomatic measurements. For each individual, we obtained a thickness mean measure (TMM) and its coefficient of variation, a measure of endocranial volume (EV), the distribution of relative frequencies of thickness-relative frequency polygon, and a topographic mapping that shows the thickness arrangement through a chromatic scale. Ontogenetic changes of these variables were evaluated by different regression models (TMM vs. age, EV vs. age, TMM vs. EV) and visual comparisons between the age groups. TMM increased during ontogeny until the onset of adulthood without sex differences, but the most accelerated growth rates occur during the first 6 years of postnatal life. TMM variations were associated with EV only in infants and children, but not in later periods. The polygons showed a flattening during ontogeny, probably due to an increase in thickness variation within individuals. However, the adult pattern of thickness arrangement, with the lateral region thinner than the regions near sagittal plane, was detected from infancy. The pattern of thickness arrangement is established early in ontogeny but CVT increases and changes in distribution until adolescence. Several factors may influence CVT, such as the brain, muscles, vessels, and sutures. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  6. Frequency-dependent performance and handedness in professional baseball players (Homo sapiens).

    PubMed

    Clotfelter, Ethan D

    2008-02-01

    I used data on handedness and pitching and hitting performance in annual cohorts of professional baseball players (1957-2005) to test the hypothesis that handedness among pitchers was subject to negative frequency-dependent selection. As predicted by this hypothesis, right-handed pitchers were more successful (i.e., opposing batters hit more poorly against them) when they were relatively rare in the population. Contrary to the predictions of this hypothesis, however, left-handed pitchers were more successful when they were relatively common. Both right- and left-handed batters performed better in years dominated by right-handed pitchers, despite the fact that right-handed batters perform relatively poorly against right-handed pitchers. I suggest that batters form cognitive representations based on pitcher handedness, and that these representations are strengthened by repeated exposure or priming. When the pitcher handedness polymorphism is more balanced (e.g., 67% right-handed, 33% left-handed), these cognitive representations are less effective, which leads to decreased batting averages and improved performance by all pitchers. Furthermore, these cognitive representations are likely to be more critical to the success of right-handed hitters, who have reduced visuomotor skills relative to left-handed hitters. (c) 2008 APA.

  7. CRYPTOSPORIDIUM HOMINIS N. SP (APICOMPLEXA : CRYPTOSPORIDIIDAE) FROM HOMO SAPIENS. (R826138)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  8. Geochronology and geochemistry of volcanic glasses associated with early Homo sapiens in Ethiopia.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morgan, L. E.; Renne, P. R.; Woldegabriel, G.; White, T. D.

    2005-12-01

    In past work at hominid sites in Ethiopia, 40Ar/39Ar dating was used to constrain obsidian from the base of the Upper Herto Member of the Bouri Formation to 160 ± 2 ka. An overlying vitric tuff was then geochemically correlated to one from the Konso region of Ethiopia, which is constrained to be older than 154 ± 7 ka, thus leaving only 6 ± 7 ky between eruption and deposition of the fossils and artifacts at Herto. To continue these studies, we have collected and are currently analyzing obsidian and associated volcanic ashes from Middle Stone Age (MSA) archaeological and paleontological sites in the Middle Awash, Ethiopia. Distinctive geochemical signatures among most obsidian fragments collected (n=20 per site) suggest that obsidian was being derived from a variety of sources. By comparing our geochemical data with that from known obsidian deposits in Ethiopia and elsewhere in East Africa, we hope to determine the source localities for the obsidian and thus gauge the extent of trade networks during the MSA. Thus, by characterizing obsidian using both 40Ar/39Ar geochronology and trace element geochemistry, will make it possible to temporally refine the stratigraphy and prehistory at hominid sites, which in turn improves understanding of hominid behavior and evolution.

  9. Finding genes on the X chromosome by which homo may have become sapiens

    SciTech Connect

    Turner, G.

    1996-06-01

    The map of the X chromosome is now littered, from one telomere to the other, with genes for mental handicap, alone or in combination with other features. In this issue of the journal, report such an entity from the Scottish Highlands, which they give the catchy title of {open_quotes}PPM-X syndrome,{close_quotes} denoting the association of pyramidal tract signs, psychosis, and macroorchidism with mental handicap (XLMR). They have localized this to Xq28 and discuss other genes in the same area, which include L1CAM (associated with MASA [mental retardation, aphasia, shuffling gait, and adducted thumbs] and X-linked hydrocephalus) and two genes for nonspecific XLMR-MRX3 and MRX25. It is also the localization of the gene for G6PD deficiency, which, in earlier studies, had demonstrated linkage to bipolar affective disorders, although this has been questioned in more recent studies. There may well be other families with this pattern of abnormalities who have remained undescribed because depression is so often not diagnosed in those with moderate mental handicap. The occurrence, in this family, of mental handicap with a bipolar disorder may be the chance association of two common disorders, or it may a significant association; at this stage, one cannot judge. 8 refs.

  10. African Homo erectus: Old radiometric ages and young Oldowan assemblages in the middle Awash Valley, Ethiopia

    SciTech Connect

    Clark, J.D.; White, T.D.; Selassie, Y.H. ); Heinzelin, J. de ); Schick, K.D. ); Hart, W.K. ); WoldeGabriel, G. ); Walter, R.C. ); Suwa, G. ); Asfaw, B. )

    1994-06-24

    Fossils and artifacts recovered from the middle Awash Valley of Ethiopia's Afar depression sample the Middle Pleistocene transition from Homo erectus to Homo sapiens. Ar/Ar ages, biostratigraphy, and tephrachronology from this area indicate that the Pleistocene Bodo hominid cranium and newer specimens are approximately 0.6 million years old. Only Oldowan chopper and flake assemblages are present in the lower stratigraphic units but Acheulean bifacial artifacts are consistently prevalent and widespread in directly overlying deposits. This technological transition is related to a shift in sedimentary regime, supporting the hypothesis that Middle Pleistocene Oldowan assemblages represent a behavioral facies of the Acheulean industrial complex.

  11. The Sambungmacan 3 Homo erectus calvaria: a comparative morphometric and morphological analysis.

    PubMed

    Delson, E; Harvati, K; Reddy, D; Marcus, L F; Mowbray, K; Sawyer, G J; Jacob, T; Márquez, S

    2001-04-01

    The Sambungmacan (Sm) 3 calvaria, discovered on Java in 1977, was illegally removed from Indonesia in 1998 and appeared in New York City in early 1999 at the Maxilla & Mandible, Ltd. natural history shop. Here we undertake an analysis of its phylogenetic and systematic position using geometric morphometrics and comparative morphology. The coordinates of points in the sagittal plane from glabella to opisthion were resampled to yield "lines" of 50 semi-landmarks. Coordinates of glabella, bregma, lambda, inion, and opisthion were also collected and analyzed separately. Casts of Homo erectus fossils from Indonesia, China, and Kenya and of "archaic H. sapiens" from Kabwe and Petralona, as well as 10 modern human crania, were used as the primary comparative sample. The modern humans were well separated from the fossils in a graphical superimposition of Procrustes-aligned semi-landmarks as well as in principal component and canonical discriminant analyses. In all of these, Sm 3 falls intermediate between the fossil and modern groups. Morphological comparisons of Sm 3 with a selection of Homo erectus fossils revealed its greatest similarity to specimens from Ngandong and the Sm 1 calvaria. Compared to all other H. erectus, Sm 3 was distinctive in its more vertical supratoral plane, less anteriorly projecting glabella and less sharply angled occiput. In these features it was somewhat similar to modern humans. It is not yet possible to determine if this similarity implies an evolutionary relationship or (more likely) individual or local populational variation. Several features of Sm 3 (small size, gracile supraorbital torus and lack of angular torus, and position in principal component analysis) suggest that it was a female. The use of geometric morphometrics provides a means to statistically test the shapes of such fossils in a manner not easily duplicated by other methods. The intermediate position of Sm 3 between fossil and modern samples in several different subanalyses

  12. Tempo and mode in human evolution.

    PubMed Central

    McHenry, H M

    1994-01-01

    The quickening pace of paleontological discovery is matched by rapid developments in geochronology. These new data show that the pattern of morphological change in the hominid lineage was mosaic. Adaptations essential to bipedalism appeared early, but some locomotor features changed much later. Relative to the highly derived postcrania of the earliest hominids, the craniodental complex was quite primitive (i.e., like the reconstructed last common ancestor with the African great apes). The pattern of craniodental change among successively younger species of Hominidae implies extensive parallel evolution between at least two lineages in features related to mastication. Relative brain size increased slightly among successively younger species of Australopithecus, expanded significantly with the appearance of Homo, but within early Homo remained at about half the size of Homo sapiens for almost a million years. Many apparent trends in human evolution may actually be due to the accumulation of relatively rapid shifts in successive species. PMID:8041697

  13. The uptake of hydroxypropyl methacrylamide based homo, random and block copolymers by human multi-drug resistant breast adenocarcinoma cells

    PubMed Central

    Barz, Matthias; Luxenhofer, Robert; Zentel, Rudolf; Kabanov, Alexander V.

    2011-01-01

    A series of well defined, fluorescently labelled homopolymers, random and block copolymers based on N-(2-hydroxypropyl)-methacrylamide was prepared by reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer polymerization (RAFT-polymerization). The polydispersity indexes for all polymers were in the range of 1.2 to 1.3 and the number average of the molar mass (Mn) for each polymer was set to be in the range of 15 kDa to 30 kDa. The cellular uptake of these polymers was investigated in the human multi-drug resistant breast adenocarcinoma cell line MCF7/ADR. The uptake greatly depended on the polymer molecular mass and structure. Specifically, smaller polymers (approx. 15 kDa) were taken up by the cells at much lower concentrations than larger polymers (approx. 30 kDa). Furthermore, for polymers of the same molar mass, the random copolymers were more easily internalized in cells than block copolymers or homopolymers. This is attributed to the fact that random copolymers form micelle-like aggregates by intra- and interchain interactions, which are smaller and less stable than the block copolymer structures in which the hydrophobic domain is buried and thus prevented from unspecific interaction with the cell membrane. Our findings underline the need for highly defined polymeric carriers and excipients for future applications in the field of nanomedicine. PMID:19631373

  14. The skull of Homo naledi.

    PubMed

    Laird, Myra F; Schroeder, Lauren; Garvin, Heather M; Scott, Jill E; Dembo, Mana; Radovčić, Davorka; Musiba, Charles M; Ackermann, Rebecca R; Schmid, Peter; Hawks, John; Berger, Lee R; de Ruiter, Darryl J

    2017-03-01

    The species Homo naledi was recently named from specimens recovered from the Dinaledi Chamber of the Rising Star cave system in South Africa. This large skeletal sample lacks associated faunal material and currently does not have a known chronological context. In this paper, we present comprehensive descriptions and metric comparisons of the recovered cranial and mandibular material. We describe 41 elements attributed to Dinaledi Hominin (DH1-DH5) individuals and paratype U.W. 101-377, and 32 additional cranial fragments. The H. naledi material was compared to Plio-Pleistocene fossil hominins using qualitative and quantitative analyses including over 100 linear measurements and ratios. We find that the Dinaledi cranial sample represents an anatomically homogeneous population that expands the range of morphological variation attributable to the genus Homo. Despite a relatively small cranial capacity that is within the range of australopiths and a few specimens of early Homo, H. naledi shares cranial characters with species across the genus Homo, including Homo habilis, Homo rudolfensis, Homo erectus, and Middle Pleistocene Homo. These include aspects of cranial form, facial morphology, and mandibular anatomy. However, the skull of H. naledi is readily distinguishable from existing species of Homo in both qualitative and quantitative assessments. Since H. naledi is currently undated, we discuss the evolutionary implications of its cranial morphology in a range of chronological frameworks. Finally, we designate a sixth Dinaledi Hominin (DH6) individual based on a juvenile mandible.

  15. Recent origin of low trabecular bone density in modern humans.

    PubMed

    Chirchir, Habiba; Kivell, Tracy L; Ruff, Christopher B; Hublin, Jean-Jacques; Carlson, Kristian J; Zipfel, Bernhard; Richmond, Brian G

    2015-01-13

    Humans are unique, compared with our closest living relatives (chimpanzees) and early fossil hominins, in having an enlarged body size and lower limb joint surfaces in combination with a relatively gracile skeleton (i.e., lower bone mass for our body size). Some analyses have observed that in at least a few anatomical regions modern humans today appear to have relatively low trabecular density, but little is known about how that density varies throughout the human skeleton and across species or how and when the present trabecular patterns emerged over the course of human evolution. Here, we test the hypotheses that (i) recent modern humans have low trabecular density throughout the upper and lower limbs compared with other primate taxa and (ii) the reduction in trabecular density first occurred in early Homo erectus, consistent with the shift toward a modern human locomotor anatomy, or more recently in concert with diaphyseal gracilization in Holocene humans. We used peripheral quantitative CT and microtomography to measure trabecular bone of limb epiphyses (long bone articular ends) in modern humans and chimpanzees and in fossil hominins attributed to Australopithecus africanus, Paranthropus robustus/early Homo from Swartkrans, Homo neanderthalensis, and early Homo sapiens. Results show that only recent modern humans have low trabecular density throughout the limb joints. Extinct hominins, including pre-Holocene Homo sapiens, retain the high levels seen in nonhuman primates. Thus, the low trabecular density of the recent modern human skeleton evolved late in our evolutionary history, potentially resulting from increased sedentism and reliance on technological and cultural innovations.

  16. Recent origin of low trabecular bone density in modern humans

    PubMed Central

    Chirchir, Habiba; Kivell, Tracy L.; Ruff, Christopher B.; Hublin, Jean-Jacques; Carlson, Kristian J.; Zipfel, Bernhard; Richmond, Brian G.

    2015-01-01

    Humans are unique, compared with our closest living relatives (chimpanzees) and early fossil hominins, in having an enlarged body size and lower limb joint surfaces in combination with a relatively gracile skeleton (i.e., lower bone mass for our body size). Some analyses have observed that in at least a few anatomical regions modern humans today appear to have relatively low trabecular density, but little is known about how that density varies throughout the human skeleton and across species or how and when the present trabecular patterns emerged over the course of human evolution. Here, we test the hypotheses that (i) recent modern humans have low trabecular density throughout the upper and lower limbs compared with other primate taxa and (ii) the reduction in trabecular density first occurred in early Homo erectus, consistent with the shift toward a modern human locomotor anatomy, or more recently in concert with diaphyseal gracilization in Holocene humans. We used peripheral quantitative CT and microtomography to measure trabecular bone of limb epiphyses (long bone articular ends) in modern humans and chimpanzees and in fossil hominins attributed to Australopithecus africanus, Paranthropus robustus/early Homo from Swartkrans, Homo neanderthalensis, and early Homo sapiens. Results show that only recent modern humans have low trabecular density throughout the limb joints. Extinct hominins, including pre-Holocene Homo sapiens, retain the high levels seen in nonhuman primates. Thus, the low trabecular density of the recent modern human skeleton evolved late in our evolutionary history, potentially resulting from increased sedentism and reliance on technological and cultural innovations. PMID:25535354

  17. Dental development in Homo naledi.

    PubMed

    Cofran, Zachary; Walker, Christopher S

    2017-08-01

    Humans' prolonged somatic development and life history are unique among primates, yet their evolutionary origins remain unclear. Dental development has been used as a proxy to reconstruct life history evolution in the hominin clade and indicates a recent emergence of the human developmental pattern. Here, we analyse tooth formation and eruption in two developing dentitions of Homo naledi, a late-surviving, morphologically mosaic hominin species. Deciduous dental development is more similar to humans than to chimpanzees, probably reflecting hominin symplesiomorphy rather than bearing life history significance. The later stages of permanent tooth development present a mix of human- and chimpanzee-like patterns. Surprisingly, the M2 of H. naledi emerges late in the eruption sequence, a pattern previously unknown in fossil hominins and common in modern humans. This pattern has been argued to reflect a slow life history and is unexpected in a small-brained hominin. The geological age of H. naledi (approx. 300 kya), coupled with its small brain size and the dental development data presented here, raise questions about the relationship between dental development and other variables associated with life history. © 2017 The Authors.

  18. Paleoanthropology: Homo erectus and the limits of a paleontological species.

    PubMed

    Hublin, Jean-Jacques

    2014-01-20

    The bushy nature of the human evolutionary tree in the past 3 million years is widely accepted. Yet, a spectacular new fossil of early Homo has prompted some paleoanthropologists to prune our family tree.

  19. Rift Valley lake fish and shellfish provided brain-specific nutrition for early Homo.

    PubMed

    Broadhurst, C L; Cunnane, S C; Crawford, M A

    1998-01-01

    An abundant, balanced dietary intake of long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids is an absolute requirement for sustaining the very rapid expansion of the hominid cerebral cortex during the last one to two million years. The brain contains 600 g lipid/kg, with a long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acid profile containing approximately equal proportions of arachidonic acid and docosahexaenoic acid. Long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acid deficiency at any stage of fetal and/or infant development can result in irreversible failure to accomplish specific components of brain growth. For the past fifteen million years, the East African Rift Valley has been a unique geological environment which contains many enormous freshwater lakes. Paleoanthropological evidence clearly indicates that hominids evolved in East Africa, and that early Homo inhabited the Rift Valley lake shores. Although earlier hominid species migrated to Eurasia, modern Homo sapiens is believed to have originated in Africa between 100 and 200 thousand years ago, and subsequently migrated throughout the world. A shift in the hominid resource base towards more high-quality foods occurred approximately two million years ago; this was accompanied by an increase in relative brain size and a shift towards modern patterns of fetal and infant development. There is evidence for both meat and fish scavenging, although sophisticated tool industries and organized hunting had not yet developed. The earliest occurrences of modern H. sapiens and sophisticated tool technology are associated with aquatic resource bases. Tropical freshwater fish and shellfish have long-chain polyunsaturated lipid ratios more similar to that of the human brain than any other food source known. Consistent consumption of lacustrine foods could have provided a means of initiating and sustaining cerebral cortex growth without an attendant increase in body mass. A modest intake of fish and shellfish (6-12% total dietary energy intake) can provide more

  20. Comparative Transcriptomics Reveals Discrete Survival Responses of S. aureus and S. epidermidis to Sapienic Acid.

    PubMed

    Moran, Josephine C; Alorabi, Jamal A; Horsburgh, Malcolm J

    2017-01-01

    Staphylococcal colonization of human skin is ubiquitous, with particular species more frequent at different body sites. Whereas Staphylococcus epidermidis can be isolated from the skin of every individual tested, Staphylococcus aureus is isolated from <5% of healthy individuals. The factors that drive staphylococcal speciation and niche selection on skin are incompletely defined. Here we show that S. aureus is inhibited to a greater extent than S. epidermidis by the sebaceous lipid sapienic acid, supporting a role for this skin antimicrobial in selection of skin staphylococci. We used RNA-Seq and comparative transcriptomics to identify the sapienic acid survival responses of S. aureus and S. epidermidis. Consistent with the membrane depolarization mode of action of sapienic acid, both species shared a common transcriptional response to counteract disruption of metabolism and transport. The species differed in their regulation of SaeRS and VraRS regulons. While S. aureus upregulated urease operon transcription, S. epidermidis upregulated arginine deiminase, the oxygen-responsive NreABC nitrogen regulation system and the nitrate and nitrite reduction pathways. The role of S. aureus ACME and chromosomal arginine deiminase pathways in sapienic acid resistance was determined through mutational studies. We speculate that ammonia production could contribute to sapienic acid resistance in staphylococci.

  1. Comparative Transcriptomics Reveals Discrete Survival Responses of S. aureus and S. epidermidis to Sapienic Acid

    PubMed Central

    Moran, Josephine C.; Alorabi, Jamal A.; Horsburgh, Malcolm J.

    2017-01-01

    Staphylococcal colonization of human skin is ubiquitous, with particular species more frequent at different body sites. Whereas Staphylococcus epidermidis can be isolated from the skin of every individual tested, Staphylococcus aureus is isolated from <5% of healthy individuals. The factors that drive staphylococcal speciation and niche selection on skin are incompletely defined. Here we show that S. aureus is inhibited to a greater extent than S. epidermidis by the sebaceous lipid sapienic acid, supporting a role for this skin antimicrobial in selection of skin staphylococci. We used RNA-Seq and comparative transcriptomics to identify the sapienic acid survival responses of S. aureus and S. epidermidis. Consistent with the membrane depolarization mode of action of sapienic acid, both species shared a common transcriptional response to counteract disruption of metabolism and transport. The species differed in their regulation of SaeRS and VraRS regulons. While S. aureus upregulated urease operon transcription, S. epidermidis upregulated arginine deiminase, the oxygen-responsive NreABC nitrogen regulation system and the nitrate and nitrite reduction pathways. The role of S. aureus ACME and chromosomal arginine deiminase pathways in sapienic acid resistance was determined through mutational studies. We speculate that ammonia production could contribute to sapienic acid resistance in staphylococci. PMID:28179897

  2. Evolved developmental homeostasis disturbed in LB1 from Flores, Indonesia, denotes Down syndrome and not diagnostic traits of the invalid species Homo floresiensis.

    PubMed

    Henneberg, Maciej; Eckhardt, Robert B; Chavanaves, Sakdapong; Hsü, Kenneth J

    2014-08-19

    Human skeletons from Liang Bua Cave, Flores, Indonesia, are coeval with only Homo sapiens populations worldwide and no other previously known hominins. We report here for the first time to our knowledge the occipitofrontal circumference of specimen LB1. This datum makes it possible to link the 430-mL endocranial volume of LB1 reported by us previously, later confirmed independently by other investigators, not only with other human skeletal samples past and present but also with a large body of clinical data routinely collected on patients with developmental disorders. Our analyses show that the brain size of LB1 is in the range predicted for an individual with Down syndrome (DS) in a normal small-bodied population from the geographic region that includes Flores. Among additional diagnostic signs of DS and other skeletal dysplasiae are abnormally short femora combined with disproportionate flat feet. Liang Bua Cave femora, known only for LB1, match interlimb proportions for DS. Predictions based on corrected LB1 femur lengths show a stature normal for other H. sapiens populations in the region.

  3. Evolved developmental homeostasis disturbed in LB1 from Flores, Indonesia, denotes Down syndrome and not diagnostic traits of the invalid species Homo floresiensis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Henneberg, Maciej; Eckhardt, Robert B.; Chavanaves, Sakdapong; Hsü, Kenneth J.

    2014-08-01

    Human skeletons from Liang Bua Cave, Flores, Indonesia, are coeval with only Homo sapiens populations worldwide and no other previously known hominins. We report here for the first time to our knowledge the occipitofrontal circumference of specimen LB1. This datum makes it possible to link the 430-mL endocranial volume of LB1 reported by us previously, later confirmed independently by other investigators, not only with other human skeletal samples past and present but also with a large body of clinical data routinely collected on patients with developmental disorders. Our analyses show that the brain size of LB1 is in the range predicted for an individual with Down syndrome (DS) in a normal small-bodied population from the geographic region that includes Flores. Among additional diagnostic signs of DS and other skeletal dysplasiae are abnormally short femora combined with disproportionate flat feet. Liang Bua Cave femora, known only for LB1, match interlimb proportions for DS. Predictions based on corrected LB1 femur lengths show a stature normal for other H. sapiens populations in the region.

  4. Homo naledi, a new species of the genus Homo from the Dinaledi Chamber, South Africa

    PubMed Central

    Berger, Lee R; Hawks, John; de Ruiter, Darryl J; Churchill, Steven E; Schmid, Peter; Delezene, Lucas K; Kivell, Tracy L; Garvin, Heather M; Williams, Scott A; DeSilva, Jeremy M; Skinner, Matthew M; Musiba, Charles M; Cameron, Noel; Holliday, Trenton W; Harcourt-Smith, William; Ackermann, Rebecca R; Bastir, Markus; Bogin, Barry; Bolter, Debra; Brophy, Juliet; Cofran, Zachary D; Congdon, Kimberly A; Deane, Andrew S; Dembo, Mana; Drapeau, Michelle; Elliott, Marina C; Feuerriegel, Elen M; Garcia-Martinez, Daniel; Green, David J; Gurtov, Alia; Irish, Joel D; Kruger, Ashley; Laird, Myra F; Marchi, Damiano; Meyer, Marc R; Nalla, Shahed; Negash, Enquye W; Orr, Caley M; Radovcic, Davorka; Schroeder, Lauren; Scott, Jill E; Throckmorton, Zachary; Tocheri, Matthew W; VanSickle, Caroline; Walker, Christopher S; Wei, Pianpian; Zipfel, Bernhard

    2015-01-01

    Homo naledi is a previously-unknown species of extinct hominin discovered within the Dinaledi Chamber of the Rising Star cave system, Cradle of Humankind, South Africa. This species is characterized by body mass and stature similar to small-bodied human populations but a small endocranial volume similar to australopiths. Cranial morphology of H. naledi is unique, but most similar to early Homo species including Homo erectus, Homo habilis or Homo rudolfensis. While primitive, the dentition is generally small and simple in occlusal morphology. H. naledi has humanlike manipulatory adaptations of the hand and wrist. It also exhibits a humanlike foot and lower limb. These humanlike aspects are contrasted in the postcrania with a more primitive or australopith-like trunk, shoulder, pelvis and proximal femur. Representing at least 15 individuals with most skeletal elements repeated multiple times, this is the largest assemblage of a single species of hominins yet discovered in Africa. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.09560.001 PMID:26354291

  5. Comparative skeletal features between Homo floresiensis and patients with primary growth hormone insensitivity (Laron Syndrome).

    PubMed

    Hershkovitz, Israel; Kornreich, Liora; Laron, Zvi

    2007-10-01

    Comparison between the skeletal remains of Homo floresiensis and the auxological and roentgenological findings in a large Israeli cohort of patients with Laron Syndrome (LS, primary or classical GH insensitivity or resistance) revealed striking morphological similarities, including extremely small stature and reduced cranial volume. LS is an autosomal recessive disease caused by a molecular defect of the Growth Hormone (GH) receptor or in the post-receptor cascades. Epidemiological studies have shown that LS occurs more often in consanguineous families and isolates, and it has been described in several countries in South East Asia. It is our conclusion that the findings from the island of Flores, which were attributed to a new species of the genus Homo, may in fact represent a local, highly inbred, Homo sapiens population in whom a mutation for the GH receptor had occurred.

  6. The evolutionary relationships and age of Homo naledi: An assessment using dated Bayesian phylogenetic methods.

    PubMed

    Dembo, Mana; Radovčić, Davorka; Garvin, Heather M; Laird, Myra F; Schroeder, Lauren; Scott, Jill E; Brophy, Juliet; Ackermann, Rebecca R; Musiba, Chares M; de Ruiter, Darryl J; Mooers, Arne Ø; Collard, Mark

    2016-08-01

    Homo naledi is a recently discovered species of fossil hominin from South Africa. A considerable amount is already known about H. naledi but some important questions remain unanswered. Here we report a study that addressed two of them: "Where does H. naledi fit in the hominin evolutionary tree?" and "How old is it?" We used a large supermatrix of craniodental characters for both early and late hominin species and Bayesian phylogenetic techniques to carry out three analyses. First, we performed a dated Bayesian analysis to generate estimates of the evolutionary relationships of fossil hominins including H. naledi. Then we employed Bayes factor tests to compare the strength of support for hypotheses about the relationships of H. naledi suggested by the best-estimate trees. Lastly, we carried out a resampling analysis to assess the accuracy of the age estimate for H. naledi yielded by the dated Bayesian analysis. The analyses strongly supported the hypothesis that H. naledi forms a clade with the other Homo species and Australopithecus sediba. The analyses were more ambiguous regarding the position of H. naledi within the (Homo, Au. sediba) clade. A number of hypotheses were rejected, but several others were not. Based on the available craniodental data, Homo antecessor, Asian Homo erectus, Homo habilis, Homo floresiensis, Homo sapiens, and Au. sediba could all be the sister taxon of H. naledi. According to the dated Bayesian analysis, the most likely age for H. naledi is 912 ka. This age estimate was supported by the resampling analysis. Our findings have a number of implications. Most notably, they support the assignment of the new specimens to Homo, cast doubt on the claim that H. naledi is simply a variant of H. erectus, and suggest H. naledi is younger than has been previously proposed.

  7. Postnatal temporal bone ontogeny in Pan, Gorilla, and Homo, and the implications for temporal bone ontogeny in Australopithecus afarensis.

    PubMed

    Terhune, Claire E; Kimbel, William H; Lockwood, Charles A

    2013-08-01

    Assessments of temporal bone morphology have played an important role in taxonomic and phylogenetic evaluations of fossil taxa, and recent three-dimensional analyses of this region have supported the utility of the temporal bone for testing taxonomic and phylogenetic hypotheses. But while clinical analyses have examined aspects of temporal bone ontogeny in humans, the ontogeny of the temporal bone in non-human taxa is less well documented. This study examines ontogenetic allometry of the temporal bone in order to address several research questions related to the pattern and trajectory of temporal bone shape change during ontogeny in the African apes and humans. We further apply these data to a preliminary analysis of temporal bone ontogeny in Australopithecus afarensis. Three-dimensional landmarks were digitized on an ontogenetic series of specimens of Homo sapiens, Pan troglodytes, Pan paniscus, and Gorilla gorilla. Data were analyzed using geometric morphometric methods, and shape changes throughout ontogeny in relation to size were compared. Results of these analyses indicate that, despite broadly similar patterns, African apes and humans show marked differences in development of the mandibular fossa and tympanic portions of the temporal bone. These findings indicate divergent, rather than parallel, postnatal ontogenetic allometric trajectories for temporal bone shape in these taxa. The pattern of temporal bone shape change with size exhibited by A. afarensis showed some affinities to that of humans, but was most similar to extant African apes, particularly Gorilla. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  8. Endurance running and the evolution of Homo.

    PubMed

    Bramble, Dennis M; Lieberman, Daniel E

    2004-11-18

    Striding bipedalism is a key derived behaviour of hominids that possibly originated soon after the divergence of the chimpanzee and human lineages. Although bipedal gaits include walking and running, running is generally considered to have played no major role in human evolution because humans, like apes, are poor sprinters compared to most quadrupeds. Here we assess how well humans perform at sustained long-distance running, and review the physiological and anatomical bases of endurance running capabilities in humans and other mammals. Judged by several criteria, humans perform remarkably well at endurance running, thanks to a diverse array of features, many of which leave traces in the skeleton. The fossil evidence of these features suggests that endurance running is a derived capability of the genus Homo, originating about 2 million years ago, and may have been instrumental in the evolution of the human body form.

  9. Spinal cord evolution in early Homo.

    PubMed

    Meyer, Marc R; Haeusler, Martin

    2015-11-01

    The discovery at Nariokotome of the Homo erectus skeleton KNM-WT 15000, with a narrow spinal canal, seemed to show that this relatively large-brained hominin retained the primitive spinal cord size of African apes and that brain size expansion preceded postcranial neurological evolution. Here we compare the size and shape of the KNM-WT 15000 spinal canal with modern and fossil taxa including H. erectus from Dmanisi, Homo antecessor, the European middle Pleistocene hominins from Sima de los Huesos, and Pan troglodytes. In terms of shape and absolute and relative size of the spinal canal, we find all of the Dmanisi and most of the vertebrae of KNM-WT 15000 are within the human range of variation except for the C7, T2, and T3 of KNM-WT 15000, which are constricted, suggesting spinal stenosis. While additional fossils might definitively indicate whether H. erectus had evolved a human-like enlarged spinal canal, the evidence from the Dmanisi spinal canal and the unaffected levels of KNM-WT 15000 show that unlike Australopithecus, H. erectus had a spinal canal size and shape equivalent to that of modern humans. Subadult status is unlikely to affect our results, as spinal canal growth is complete in both individuals. We contest the notion that vertebrae yield information about respiratory control or language evolution, but suggest that, like H. antecessor and European middle Pleistocene hominins from Sima de los Huesos, early Homo possessed a postcranial neurological endowment roughly commensurate to modern humans, with implications for neurological, structural, and vascular improvements over Pan and Australopithecus.

  10. Tracing the origin of functional and conserved domains in the human proteome: implications for protein evolution at the modular level

    PubMed Central

    Pal, Lipika R; Guda, Chittibabu

    2006-01-01

    Background The functional repertoire of the human proteome is an incremental collection of functions accomplished by protein domains evolved along the Homo sapiens lineage. Therefore, knowledge on the origin of these functionalities provides a better understanding of the domain and protein evolution in human. The lack of proper comprehension about such origin has impelled us to study the evolutionary origin of human proteome in a unique way as detailed in this study. Results This study reports a unique approach for understanding the evolution of human proteome by tracing the origin of its constituting domains hierarchically, along the Homo sapiens lineage. The uniqueness of this method lies in subtractive searching of functional and conserved domains in the human proteome resulting in higher efficiency of detecting their origins. From these analyses the nature of protein evolution and trends in domain evolution can be observed in the context of the entire human proteome data. The method adopted here also helps delineate the degree of divergence of functional families occurred during the course of evolution. Conclusion This approach to trace the evolutionary origin of functional domains in the human proteome facilitates better understanding of their functional versatility as well as provides insights into the functionality of hypothetical proteins present in the human proteome. This work elucidates the origin of functional and conserved domains in human proteins, their distribution along the Homo sapiens lineage, occurrence frequency of different domain combinations and proteome-wide patterns of their distribution, providing insights into the evolutionary solution to the increased complexity of the human proteome. PMID:17090320

  11. Evolution of the human brain: changing brain size and the fossil record.

    PubMed

    Park, Min S; Nguyen, Andrew D; Aryan, Henry E; U, Hoi Sang; Levy, Michael L; Semendeferi, Katerina

    2007-03-01

    Although the study of the human brain is a rapidly developing and expanding science, we must take pause to examine the historical and evolutionary events that helped shape the brain of Homo sapiens. From an examination of the human lineage to a discussion of evolutionary principles, we describe the basic principles and theories behind the evolution of the human brain. Specifically, we examine several theories concerning changes in overall brain size during hominid evolution and relate them to the fossil record. This overview is intended to provide a broad understanding of some of the controversial issues that are currently being debated in the multidisciplinary field of brain evolution research.

  12. Energetic consequences of being a Homo erectus female.

    PubMed

    Aiello, Leslie C; Key, Cathy

    2002-01-01

    Body size is one of the most important characteristics of any animal because it affects a range of behavioral, ecological, and physiological traits including energy requirements, choice of food, reproductive strategies, predation risk, range size, and locomotor style. This article focuses on the implications of being large bodied for Homo erectus females, estimated to have been over 50% heavier than average australopithecine females. The energy requirements of these hominins are modeled using data on activity patterns, body mass, and life history from living primates. Particular attention is given to the inferred energetic costs of reproduction for Homo erectus females based on chimpanzee and human reproductive scheduling. Daily energy requirements during gestation and lactation would have been significantly higher for Homo erectus females, as would total energetic cost per offspring if the australopithecines and Homo erectus had similar reproductive schedules (gestation and lactation lengths and interbirth intervals). Shortening the interbirth interval could considerably reduce the costs per offspring to Homo erectus and have the added advantage of increasing reproductive output. The mother would, however, incur additional daily costs of caring for the dependent offspring. If Homo erectus females adopted this reproductive strategy, it would necessarily imply a revolution in the way in which females obtained and utilized energy to support their increased energetic requirements. This transformation is likely to have occurred on several levels involving cooperative economic division of labor, locomotor energetics, menopause, organ size, and other physiological mechanisms for reducing the energetic load on females.

  13. Hominid mandibular corpus shape variation and its utility for recognizing species diversity within fossil Homo.

    PubMed

    Lague, Michael R; Collard, Nicole J; Richmond, Brian G; Wood, Bernard A

    2008-12-01

    Mandibular corpora are well represented in the hominin fossil record, yet few studies have rigorously assessed the utility of mandibular corpus morphology for species recognition, particularly with respect to the linear dimensions that are most commonly available. In this study, we explored the extent to which commonly preserved mandibular corpus morphology can be used to: (i) discriminate among extant hominid taxa and (ii) support species designations among fossil specimens assigned to the genus Homo. In the first part of the study, discriminant analysis was used to test for significant differences in mandibular corpus shape at different taxonomic levels (genus, species and subspecies) among extant hominid taxa (i.e. Homo, Pan, Gorilla, Pongo). In the second part of the study, we examined shape variation among fossil mandibles assigned to Homo (including H. habilis sensu stricto, H. rudolfensis, early African H. erectus/H. ergaster, late African H. erectus, Asian H. erectus, H. heidelbergensis, H. neanderthalensis and H. sapiens). A novel randomization procedure designed for small samples (and using group 'distinctness values') was used to determine whether shape variation among the fossils is consistent with conventional taxonomy (or alternatively, whether a priori taxonomic groupings are completely random with respect to mandibular morphology). The randomization of 'distinctness values' was also used on the extant samples to assess the ability of the test to recognize known taxa. The discriminant analysis results demonstrated that, even for a relatively modest set of traditional mandibular corpus measurements, we can detect significant differences among extant hominids at the genus and species levels, and, in some cases, also at the subspecies level. Although the randomization of 'distinctness values' test is more conservative than discriminant analysis (based on comparisons with extant specimens), we were able to detect at least four distinct groups among the

  14. The earliest unequivocally modern humans in southern China.

    PubMed

    Liu, Wu; Martinón-Torres, María; Cai, Yan-jun; Xing, Song; Tong, Hao-wen; Pei, Shu-wen; Sier, Mark Jan; Wu, Xiao-hong; Edwards, R Lawrence; Cheng, Hai; Li, Yi-yuan; Yang, Xiong-xin; de Castro, José María Bermúdez; Wu, Xiu-jie

    2015-10-29

    The hominin record from southern Asia for the early Late Pleistocene epoch is scarce. Well-dated and well-preserved fossils older than ∼45,000 years that can be unequivocally attributed to Homo sapiens are lacking. Here we present evidence from the newly excavated Fuyan Cave in Daoxian (southern China). This site has provided 47 human teeth dated to more than 80,000 years old, and with an inferred maximum age of 120,000 years. The morphological and metric assessment of this sample supports its unequivocal assignment to H. sapiens. The Daoxian sample is more derived than any other anatomically modern humans, resembling middle-to-late Late Pleistocene specimens and even contemporary humans. Our study shows that fully modern morphologies were present in southern China 30,000-70,000 years earlier than in the Levant and Europe. Our data fill a chronological and geographical gap that is relevant for understanding when H. sapiens first appeared in southern Asia. The Daoxian teeth also support the hypothesis that during the same period, southern China was inhabited by more derived populations than central and northern China. This evidence is important for the study of dispersal routes of modern humans. Finally, our results are relevant to exploring the reasons for the relatively late entry of H. sapiens into Europe. Some studies have investigated how the competition with H. sapiens may have caused Neanderthals' extinction (see ref. 8 and references therein). Notably, although fully modern humans were already present in southern China at least as early as ∼80,000 years ago, there is no evidence that they entered Europe before ∼45,000 years ago. This could indicate that H. neanderthalensis was indeed an additional ecological barrier for modern humans, who could only enter Europe when the demise of Neanderthals had already started.

  15. Homo-timeric structural model of human microsomal prostaglandin E synthase-1 and characterization of its substrate/inhibitor binding interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xing, Li; Kurumbail, Ravi G.; Frazier, Ronald B.; Davies, Michael S.; Fujiwara, Hideji; Weinberg, Robin A.; Gierse, James K.; Caspers, Nicole; Carter, Jeffrey S.; McDonald, Joseph J.; Moore, William M.; Vazquez, Michael L.

    2009-01-01

    Inducible, microsomal prostaglandin E synthase 1 (mPGES-1), the terminal enzyme in the prostaglandin (PG) biosynthetic pathway, constitutes a promising therapeutic target for the development of new anti-inflammatory drugs. To elucidate structure-function relationships and to enable structure-based design, an mPGES-1 homology model was developed using the three-dimensional structure of the closest homologue of the MAPEG family (Membrane Associated Proteins in Eicosanoid and Glutathione metabolism), mGST-1. The ensuing model of mPGES-1 is a homo-trimer, with each monomer consisting of four membrane-spanning segments. Extensive structure refinement revealed an inter-monomer salt bridge (K26-E77) as well as inter-helical interactions within each monomer, including polar hydrogen bonds (e.g. T78-R110-T129) and hydrophobic π-stacking (F82-F103-F106), all contributing to the overall stability of the homo-trimer of mPGES-1. Catalytic co-factor glutathione (GSH) was docked into the mPGES-1 model by flexible optimization of both the ligand and the protein conformations, starting from the initial location ascertained from the mGST-1 structure. Possible binding site for the substrate, prostaglandin H2 (PGH2), was identified by systematically probing the refined molecular structure of mPGES-1. A binding model was generated by induced fit docking of PGH2 in the presence of GSH. The homology model prescribes three potential inhibitor binding sites per mPGES-1 trimer. This was further confirmed experimentally by equilibrium dialysis study which generated a binding stoichiometric ratio of approximately three inhibitor molecules to three mPGES-1 monomers. The structural model that we have derived could serve as a useful tool for structure-guided design of inhibitors for this emergently important therapeutic target.

  16. Morphological variation in great ape and modern human mandibles

    PubMed Central

    HUMPHREY, L. T.; DEAN, M. C.; STRINGER, C. B.

    1999-01-01

    Adult mandibles of 317 modern humans and 91 great apes were selected that showed no pathology. Adult mandibles of Pan troglodytes troglodytes, Pongo pygmaeus pygmaeus and Gorilla gorilla gorilla and from 2 modern human populations (Zulu and Europeans from Spitalfields) were reliably sexed. Thirteen measurements were defined and included mandibular height, length and breadth in representative positions. Univariate statistical techniques and multivariate (principal component analysis and discriminant analysis) statistical techniques were used to investigate interspecific variability and sexual dimorphism in human and great ape mandibles, and intraspecific variability among the modern human mandibles. Analysis of interspecific differences revealed some pairs of variables with a tight linear relationship and others where Homo and the great apes pulled apart from one another due to shape differences. Homo and Pan are least sexually dimorphic in the mandible, Pan less so than Homo sapiens, but both the magnitude of sexual dimorphism and the distribution of sexually dimorphic measurements varied both among and between modern humans and great apes. Intraspecific variation among the 10 populations of modern humans was less than that generally reported in studies of crania (74.3% of mandibles were correctly classified into 1 of 10 populations using discriminant functions based on 13 variables as compared with 93% of crania from 17 populations based on 70 variables in one extensive study of crania). A subrecent European population (Poundbury) emerged as more different from a recent European population (Spitalfields) than other more diverse modern populations were from each other, suggesting considerable morphological plasticity in the mandible through time. This study forms a sound basis on which to explore mandibular variation in Neanderthals, early Homo sapiens and other more ancient fossil hominids. PMID:10634689

  17. Reticulate evolution and the human past: an anthropological perspective.

    PubMed

    Winder, Isabelle C; Winder, Nick P

    2014-01-01

    The evidence is mounting that reticulate (web-like) evolution has shaped the biological histories of many macroscopic plants and animals, including non-human primates closely related to Homo sapiens, but the implications of this non-hierarchical evolution for anthropological enquiry are not yet fully understood. When they are understood, the result may be a paradigm shift in evolutionary anthropology. This paper reviews the evidence for reticulated evolution in the non-human primates and human lineage. Then it makes the case for extrapolating this sort of patterning to Homo sapiens and other hominins and explores the implications this would have for research design, method and understandings of evolution in anthropology. Reticulation was significant in human evolutionary history and continues to influence societies today. Anthropologists and human scientists-whether working on ancient or modern populations-thus need to consider the implications of non-hierarchic evolution, particularly where molecular clocks, mathematical models and simplifying assumptions about evolutionary processes are used. This is not just a problem for palaeoanthropology. The simple fact of different mating systems among modern human groups, for example, may demand that more attention is paid to the potential for complexity in human genetic and cultural histories.

  18. Homo-Dimers of Vanillin and Apocynin Decrease Metastatic Potential of Human Cancer Cells by Inhibiting the FAK/PI3K/Akt Signaling Pathway.

    PubMed

    Jantaree, Phatcharida; Lirdprapamongkol, Kriengsak; Kaewsri, Wilailak; Thongsornkleeb, Charnsak; Choowongkomon, Kiattawee; Atjanasuppat, Korakot; Ruchirawat, Somsak; Svasti, Jisnuson

    2017-03-01

    The spread of cancer cells to distant organs, in a process called metastasis, is the main factor that contributes to most death in cancer patients. Vanillin, the vanilla flavoring agent, has been shown to suppress metastasis in a mouse model. Here, we evaluated the anti-metastatic potential of the food additive divanillin, the homo-dimer of vanillin, and their structurally related compounds, apocynin and diapocynin, in hepatocellular carcinoma cells. The Transwell invasion assay showed that the dimeric forms exhibited higher potency than vanillin and apocynin in inhibiting invasion, with IC50 values of 23.3±7.4 to 41.3±4.2 μM for the dimers, which are 26-34 fold lower than IC50 values of vanillin and apocynin (p<0.05). Both monomeric and dimeric forms target regulation of the invasion process, by inhibiting phosphorylation of FAK and Akt. Molecular docking studies suggested that the dimers should bind more tightly than vanillin and apocynin to the Y397 pocket of FAK FERM domain. Thus, the food additive divanillin has greater anti-metastatic potential than the flavoring agent vanillin.

  19. A re-examination of the human fossil specimen from Bački Petrovac (Serbia).

    PubMed

    Radović, Predrag; Lindal, Joshua Allan; Roksandic, Mirjana

    2014-08-01

    A fragmented human calotte was discovered during the early 1950s near Bački Petrovac (Serbia), in association with Palaeolithic stone tools. After its initial publication, the fossil specimen remained largely unknown outside of the Serbian academe and no detailed comparative study has ever been carried out. Since the whereabouts of the fossil itself are currently unknown, and given its potential significance for the Pleistocene human evolution, we re-examine the data published by Živanović (1966, 1975). Using the original measurements, mostly taken on the frontal bone, and a wide comparative sample of 68 fossil specimens, the fossil was compared and analyzed by statistical multivariate methods. We also conducted a visual examination of the morphology based on the available photographic material. Our analysis reveals phenetic similarity with Middle Pleistocene archaic Homo from Africa and anatomically modern Homo sapiens. However, the absence of primitive cranial traits in Bački Petrovac indicates a clear modern Homo sapiens designation. Although lost at the moment, there is a chance for the re-discovery of the fossil in the years to come. This would give us an opportunity to acquire absolute dates and to study the specimen in a more detailed manner.

  20. More Human than Human.

    PubMed

    Lawrence, David

    2017-07-01

    Within the literature surrounding nonhuman animals on the one hand and cognitively disabled humans on the other, there is much discussion of where beings that do not satisfy the criteria for personhood fit in our moral deliberations. In the future, we may face a different but related problem: that we might create (or cause the creation of) beings that not only satisfy but exceed these criteria. The question becomes whether these are minimal criteria, or hierarchical, such that those who fulfill them to greater degree should be afforded greater consideration. This article questions the validity and necessity of drawing divisions among beings that satisfy the minimum requirements for personhood; considering how future beings-intelligent androids, synthezoids, even alternate-substrate sentiences-might fit alongside the "baseline" human. I ask whether these alternate beings ought to be considered different to us, and why this may or may not matter in terms of a notion of "human community." The film Blade Runner, concerned in large part with humanity and its key synthezoid antagonist Roy Batty, forms a framing touchstone for my discussion. Batty is stronger, faster, more resilient, and more intelligent than Homo sapiens. His exploits, far beyond the capability of normal humans, are contrasted with his frailty and transient lifespan, his aesthetic appreciation of the sights he has seen, and his burgeoning empathy. Not for nothing does his creator within the mythos term him "more human than human."

  1. From Australopithecus to Homo: the transition that wasn't†

    PubMed Central

    Kimbel, William H.

    2016-01-01

    Although the transition from Australopithecus to Homo is usually thought of as a momentous transformation, the fossil record bearing on the origin and earliest evolution of Homo is virtually undocumented. As a result, the poles of the transition are frequently attached to taxa (e.g. A. afarensis, at ca 3.0 Ma versus H. habilis or H. erectus, at ca 2.0–1.7 Ma) in which substantial adaptive differences have accumulated over significant spans of independent evolution. Such comparisons, in which temporally remote and adaptively divergent species are used to identify a ‘transition’, lend credence to the idea that genera should be conceived at once as monophyletic clades and adaptively unified grades. However, when the problem is recast in terms of lineages, rather than taxa per se, the adaptive criterion becomes a problem of subjectively privileging ‘key’ characteristics from what is typically a stepwise pattern of acquisition of novel characters beginning in the basal representatives of a clade. This is the pattern inferred for species usually included in early Homo, including H. erectus, which has often been cast in the role as earliest humanlike hominin. A fresh look at brain size, hand morphology and earliest technology suggests that a number of key Homo attributes may already be present in generalized species of Australopithecus, and that adaptive distinctions in Homo are simply amplifications or extensions of ancient hominin trends. This article is part of the themed issue ‘Major transitions in human evolution’. PMID:27298460

  2. From Australopithecus to Homo: the transition that wasn't.

    PubMed

    Kimbel, William H; Villmoare, Brian

    2016-07-05

    Although the transition from Australopithecus to Homo is usually thought of as a momentous transformation, the fossil record bearing on the origin and earliest evolution of Homo is virtually undocumented. As a result, the poles of the transition are frequently attached to taxa (e.g. A. afarensis, at ca 3.0 Ma versus H. habilis or H. erectus, at ca 2.0-1.7 Ma) in which substantial adaptive differences have accumulated over significant spans of independent evolution. Such comparisons, in which temporally remote and adaptively divergent species are used to identify a 'transition', lend credence to the idea that genera should be conceived at once as monophyletic clades and adaptively unified grades. However, when the problem is recast in terms of lineages, rather than taxa per se, the adaptive criterion becomes a problem of subjectively privileging 'key' characteristics from what is typically a stepwise pattern of acquisition of novel characters beginning in the basal representatives of a clade. This is the pattern inferred for species usually included in early Homo, including H. erectus, which has often been cast in the role as earliest humanlike hominin. A fresh look at brain size, hand morphology and earliest technology suggests that a number of key Homo attributes may already be present in generalized species of Australopithecus, and that adaptive distinctions in Homo are simply amplifications or extensions of ancient hominin trends.This article is part of the themed issue 'Major transitions in human evolution'.

  3. Homo erectus at Trinil on Java used shells for tool production and engraving.

    PubMed

    Joordens, Josephine C A; d'Errico, Francesco; Wesselingh, Frank P; Munro, Stephen; de Vos, John; Wallinga, Jakob; Ankjærgaard, Christina; Reimann, Tony; Wijbrans, Jan R; Kuiper, Klaudia F; Mücher, Herman J; Coqueugniot, Hélène; Prié, Vincent; Joosten, Ineke; van Os, Bertil; Schulp, Anne S; Panuel, Michel; van der Haas, Victoria; Lustenhouwer, Wim; Reijmer, John J G; Roebroeks, Wil

    2015-02-12

    The manufacture of geometric engravings is generally interpreted as indicative of modern cognition and behaviour. Key questions in the debate on the origin of such behaviour are whether this innovation is restricted to Homo sapiens, and whether it has a uniquely African origin. Here we report on a fossil freshwater shell assemblage from the Hauptknochenschicht ('main bone layer') of Trinil (Java, Indonesia), the type locality of Homo erectus discovered by Eugène Dubois in 1891 (refs 2 and 3). In the Dubois collection (in the Naturalis museum, Leiden, The Netherlands) we found evidence for freshwater shellfish consumption by hominins, one unambiguous shell tool, and a shell with a geometric engraving. We dated sediment contained in the shells with (40)Ar/(39)Ar and luminescence dating methods, obtaining a maximum age of 0.54 ± 0.10 million years and a minimum age of 0.43 ± 0.05 million years. This implies that the Trinil Hauptknochenschicht is younger than previously estimated. Together, our data indicate that the engraving was made by Homo erectus, and that it is considerably older than the oldest geometric engravings described so far. Although it is at present not possible to assess the function or meaning of the engraved shell, this discovery suggests that engraving abstract patterns was in the realm of Asian Homo erectus cognition and neuromotor control.

  4. Live cell FRET microscopy: homo- and heterodimerization of two human peroxisomal ABC transporters, the adrenoleukodystrophy protein (ALDP, ABCD1) and PMP70 (ABCD3).

    PubMed

    Hillebrand, Merle; Verrier, Sophie E; Ohlenbusch, Andreas; Schäfer, Annika; Söling, Hans-Dieter; Wouters, Fred S; Gärtner, Jutta

    2007-09-14

    The adrenoleukodystrophy protein (ALDP) and the 70-kDa peroxisomal membrane protein (PMP70) are half-ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporters in the mammalian peroxisome membrane. Mutations in the gene encoding ALDP result in a devastating neurodegenerative disorder, X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy (X-ALD) that is associated with elevated levels of very long chain fatty acids because of impaired peroxisomal beta-oxidation. The interactions of peroxisomal ABC transporters, their role in the peroxisomal membrane, and their functions in disease pathogenesis are poorly understood. Studies on ABC transporters revealed that half-transporters have to dimerize to gain functionality. So far, conflicting observations are described for ALDP. By the use of in vitro methods (yeast two-hybrid and immunoprecipitation assays) on the one hand, it was shown that ALDP can form homodimers as well as heterodimers with PMP70 and ALDR, while on the other hand, it was demonstrated that ALDP and PMP70 exclusively homodimerize. To circumvent the problems of artificial interactions due to biochemical sample preparation in vitro, we investigated protein-protein interaction of ALDP in its physiological environment by FRET microscopy in intact living cells. The statistical relevance of FRET data was determined in two different ways using probability distribution shift analysis and Kolmogorov-Smirnov statistics. We demonstrate in vivo that ALDP and PMP70 form homodimers as well as ALDP/PMP70 heterodimers where ALDP homodimers predominate. Using C-terminal deletion constructs of ALDP, we demonstrate that the last 87 C-terminal amino acids harbor the most important protein domain mediating these interactions, and that the N-terminal transmembrane region of ALDP has an additional stabilization effect on ALDP homodimers. Loss of ALDP homo- or heterodimerization is highly relevant for understanding the disease mechanisms of X-ALD.

  5. Human origins: Out of Africa

    PubMed Central

    Tattersall, Ian

    2009-01-01

    Our species, Homo sapiens, is highly autapomorphic (uniquely derived) among hominids in the structure of its skull and postcranial skeleton. It is also sharply distinguished from other organisms by its unique symbolic mode of cognition. The fossil and archaeological records combine to show fairly clearly that our physical and cognitive attributes both first appeared in Africa, but at different times. Essentially modern bony conformation was established in that continent by the 200–150 Ka range (a dating in good agreement with dates for the origin of H. sapiens derived from modern molecular diversity). The event concerned was apparently short-term because it is essentially unanticipated in the fossil record. In contrast, the first convincing stirrings of symbolic behavior are not currently detectable until (possibly well) after 100 Ka. The radical reorganization of gene expression that underwrote the distinctive physical appearance of H. sapiens was probably also responsible for the neural substrate that permits symbolic cognition. This exaptively acquired potential lay unexploited until it was “discovered” via a cultural stimulus, plausibly the invention of language. Modern humans appear to have definitively exited Africa to populate the rest of the globe only after both their physical and cognitive peculiarities had been acquired within that continent. PMID:19805256

  6. Three new human skulls from the Sima de los Huesos Middle Pleistocene site in Sierra de Atapuerca, Spain.

    PubMed

    Arsuaga, J L; Martínez, I; Gracia, A; Carretero, J M; Carbonell, E

    1993-04-08

    Three important fossil hominids were found in July 1992 in the Middle Pleistocene cave site called Sima de los Huesos (Sierra de Atapuerca, Burgos, Northern Spain). One is a complete calvaria (cranium 4), the second a virtually complete cranium (cranium 5), the third represents a more fragmentary cranium of an immature individual (cranium 6). There is a large difference in size between the two adult specimens (for example endocranial volume 1,125 cm3 versus 1,390 cm3). The Atapuerca human remains are dated to > 300,000 years. The Atapuerca cranial sample fits within the 'archaic Homo sapiens' group, but is well differentiated from the Asian Homo erectus group. The extensive Atapuerca human collection is the most complete sample of Middle Pleistocene humans yet discovered from one site, and appears to document an early stage in Neanderthal evolution.

  7. Hominid mandibular corpus shape variation and its utility for recognizing species diversity within fossil Homo

    PubMed Central

    Lague, Michael R; Collard, Nicole J; Richmond, Brian G; Wood, Bernard A

    2008-01-01

    Mandibular corpora are well represented in the hominin fossil record, yet few studies have rigorously assessed the utility of mandibular corpus morphology for species recognition, particularly with respect to the linear dimensions that are most commonly available. In this study, we explored the extent to which commonly preserved mandibular corpus morphology can be used to: (i) discriminate among extant hominid taxa and (ii) support species designations among fossil specimens assigned to the genus Homo. In the first part of the study, discriminant analysis was used to test for significant differences in mandibular corpus shape at different taxonomic levels (genus, species and subspecies) among extant hominid taxa (i.e. Homo, Pan, Gorilla, Pongo). In the second part of the study, we examined shape variation among fossil mandibles assigned to Homo(including H. habilis sensu stricto, H. rudolfensis, early African H. erectus/H. ergaster, late African H. erectus, Asian H. erectus, H. heidelbergensis, H. neanderthalensis and H. sapiens). A novel randomization procedure designed for small samples (and using group ‘distinctness values’) was used to determine whether shape variation among the fossils is consistent with conventional taxonomy (or alternatively, whether a priori taxonomic groupings are completely random with respect to mandibular morphology). The randomization of ‘distinctness values’ was also used on the extant samples to assess the ability of the test to recognize known taxa. The discriminant analysis results demonstrated that, even for a relatively modest set of traditional mandibular corpus measurements, we can detect significant differences among extant hominids at the genus and species levels, and, in some cases, also at the subspecies level. Although the randomization of ‘distinctness values’ test is more conservative than discriminant analysis (based on comparisons with extant specimens), we were able to detect at least four distinct groups

  8. [Symbol-based communication in non-human primates: a C. S. Peirce's semiotic analysis].

    PubMed

    Queiroz, João

    2003-12-01

    Are (or were) there any other symbolic species? This question has been addressed by researchers from many different fields and is responsible for a historical controversy on the existence of a threshold between "symbolic creatures" vs "simple forms of language creatures". According to the mainstream ethology and comparative psychology only the Homo sapiens is cognitively equiped to produce and interpret symbols. Here, I introduce an empirically testable model of symbolic semiosis ("symbolic action of sign") supported by C.S.Peirce logical-phenomenological theory of categories. I suggest that a specific sign-user pattern of behavior, observed in non-human primate communication, indicate a transition from indexical to symbolic semiosis.

  9. Qualitative and Quantitative analysis of 3D predicted arachidonate 15-lipoxygenase-B (15-LOX-2) from Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Arora, Neha; Singh, Vinay Kumar; Shah, Kavita; Pandey-Rai, Shashi

    2012-01-01

    15-Lipoxygenase-2 protein has been reported to play an important role in normal development of prostate, lung, skin, and cornea tissues. It behaves as a suppressor of prostate cancer development by restricting cell cycle progression and implicating a possible protective role against tumor formation. On the basis of the above report, we selected 15-LOX-2 protein to study the structural classification and functional relationship with associated protein network at computational level. Sequence alignment and protein functional study shows that it contains a highly conserved LOX motif. PLAT domain with PF01477 and LH2 domain with PF00305 were successfully observed. Arachidonate 5-lipoxygenase (PDB ID: 3O8Y) was selected as a template with 42% identity. 3D structure was successfully predicted and verified. Qualitative analysis suggests that the predicted model was reliable and stable with best quality. Quantitative study shows that the model contained expected volume and area with best resolution. Predicted and best evaluated model has been successfully deposited to PMDB database with PMDB ID PM0078035. Active site identification revealed GLU(369), ALA(370), LEU(371), THR(372), HIS(373), LEU(374), HIS(376), SER(377), HIS(378), THR(385), LEU(389), HIS(394), PHE(399), LYS(400), LEU(401), ILE(403) and PRO(404) residues may play a major role during protein-protein, protein-drug and protein-cofactor interactions. STRING database result indicated that IL (4), GPX (2 and 4), PPARG, PTGS (1 and 2), CYP (2J2, 2C8, 4A11 and 2B6), PLA (2G2A, 2G4A, 2G1B and 2G6) and A LOX (5, 15, 12 and 12B) members from their respective gene families have network based functional association with 15-LOX-2.

  10. High mutation rates explain low population genetic divergence at copy-number-variable loci in Homo sapiens

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Xin-Sheng; Yeh, Francis C.; Hu, Yang; Deng, Li-Ting; Ennos, Richard A.; Chen, Xiaoyang

    2017-01-01

    Copy-number-variable (CNV) loci differ from single nucleotide polymorphic (SNP) sites in size, mutation rate, and mechanisms of maintenance in natural populations. It is therefore hypothesized that population genetic divergence at CNV loci will differ from that found at SNP sites. Here, we test this hypothesis by analysing 856 CNV loci from the genomes of 1184 healthy individuals from 11 HapMap populations with a wide range of ancestry. The results show that population genetic divergence at the CNV loci is generally more than three times lower than at genome-wide SNP sites. Populations generally exhibit very small genetic divergence (Gst = 0.05 ± 0.049). The smallest divergence is among African populations (Gst = 0.0081 ± 0.0025), with increased divergence among non-African populations (Gst = 0.0217 ± 0.0109) and then among African and non-African populations (Gst = 0.0324 ± 0.0064). Genetic diversity is high in African populations (~0.13), low in Asian populations (~0.11), and intermediate in the remaining 11 populations. Few significant linkage disequilibria (LDs) occur between the genome-wide CNV loci. Patterns of gametic and zygotic LDs indicate the absence of epistasis among CNV loci. Mutation rate is about twice as large as the migration rate in the non-African populations, suggesting that the high mutation rates play dominant roles in producing the low population genetic divergence at CNV loci. PMID:28225073

  11. Stature estimation from complete long bones in the Middle Pleistocene humans from the Sima de los Huesos, Sierra de Atapuerca (Spain).

    PubMed

    Carretero, José-Miguel; Rodríguez, Laura; García-González, Rebeca; Arsuaga, Juan-Luis; Gómez-Olivencia, Asier; Lorenzo, Carlos; Bonmatí, Alejandro; Gracia, Ana; Martínez, Ignacio; Quam, Rolf

    2012-02-01

    Systematic excavations at the site of the Sima de los Huesos (SH) in the Sierra de Atapuerca (Burgos, Spain) have allowed us to reconstruct 27 complete long bones of the human species Homo heidelbergensis. The SH sample is used here, together with a sample of 39 complete Homo neanderthalensis long bones and 17 complete early Homo sapiens (Skhul/Qafzeh) long bones, to compare the stature of these three different human species. Stature is estimated for each bone using race- and sex-independent regression formulae, yielding an average stature for each bone within each taxon. The mean length of each long bone from SH is significantly greater (p < 0.05) than the corresponding mean values in the Neandertal sample. The stature has been calculated for male and female specimens separately, averaging both means to calculate a general mean. This general mean stature for the entire sample of long bones is 163.6 cm for the SH hominins, 160.6 cm for Neandertals and 177.4 cm for early modern humans. Despite some overlap in the ranges of variation, all mean values in the SH sample (whether considering isolated bones, the upper or lower limb, males or females or more complete individuals) are larger than those of Neandertals. Given the strong relationship between long bone length and stature, we conclude that SH hominins represent a slightly taller population or species than the Neandertals. However, compared with living European Mediterranean populations, neither the Sima de los Huesos hominins nor the Neandertals should be considered 'short' people. In fact, the average stature within the genus Homo seems to have changed little over the course of the last two million years, since the appearance of Homo ergaster in East Africa. It is only with the emergence of H. sapiens, whose earliest representatives were 'very tall', that a significant increase in stature can be documented. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Transcranial sonography: a technique for the study of the temporal lobes of the human and non-human primate brain.

    PubMed

    Ruggiero, Marco; Magherini, Stefano; Fiore, Maria Giulia; Chiarelli, Brunetto; Morucci, Gabriele; Branca, Jacopo Junio Valerio; Gulisano, Massimo; Pacini, Stefania

    2013-01-01

    We developed a modified transcranial sonography technique to study the morphology of the temporal lobe, a brain region involved in language, memory and social functions in humans that can be visualized in correspondence of the acoustic window of the temporal squama. Previous studies raise the possibility that a unique derived feature of Homo sapiens is a relatively larger temporal lobe compared to those of other hominins and apes. Such a brain reorganization might have contributed to the evolution of various "higher" cognitive functions of Homo sapiens, including language. Hence, the importance of further comparative analyses of the temporal region. With the technique that we developed we were able to study the meninges, the subarachnoidal space and the cortex of the human temporal lobe. The spatial resolution and the ability to visualize structures of 200-300 microm size led us to hypothesize that the linear structures parallel to the subarachnoidal space might be referred to the neuronal layers of the cortex. The low cost, simplicity and safety of the procedure suggest that this technique may have a significant potential in the comparative study of the primate temporal lobe. Furthermore, the procedure described here can also be used for the study of vascularization of the meninges, in order to better understand the evolutionary relationships between the neurocranial shape and the middle meningeal vessels in living and fossil human species.

  13. Quantitative three-dimensional shape analysis of the proximal hallucial metatarsal articular surface in Homo, Pan, Gorilla, and Hylobates.

    PubMed

    Proctor, Daniel J; Broadfield, Douglas; Proctor, Kristopher

    2008-02-01

    Multidimensional morphometrics is used to compare the proximal articular surface of the first metatarsal between Homo, Pan, Gorilla, Hylobates, and the hominin fossils A.L. 333-54 (A. afarensis), SKX 5017 (P. robustus), and OH 8 (H. habilis). Statistically significant differences in articular surface morphology exist between H. sapiens and the apes, and between ape groups. Ape groups are characterized by greater surface depth, an obliquely curved articular surface through the dorso-lateral and medio-plantar regions, and a wider medio-lateral surface relative to the dorso-plantar height. The OH 8 articular surface is indistinguishable from H. sapiens, while A.L. 333-54 and SKX 5017 more closely resemble the apes. P. robustus and A. afarensis exhibit ape-like oblique curvature of the articular surface.

  14. Human basal body basics.

    PubMed

    Vertii, Anastassiia; Hung, Hui-Fang; Hehnly, Heidi; Doxsey, Stephen

    2016-01-01

    In human cells, the basal body (BB) core comprises a ninefold microtubule-triplet cylindrical structure. Distal and subdistal appendages are located at the distal end of BB, where they play indispensable roles in cilium formation and function. Most cells that arrest in the G0 stage of the cell cycle initiate BB docking at the plasma membrane followed by BB-mediated growth of a solitary primary cilium, a structure required for sensing the extracellular environment and cell signaling. In addition to the primary cilium, motile cilia are present in specialized cells, such as sperm and airway epithelium. Mutations that affect BB function result in cilia dysfunction. This can generate syndromic disorders, collectively called ciliopathies, for which there are no effective treatments. In this review, we focus on the features and functions of BBs and centrosomes in Homo sapiens.

  15. Positive selection on the human genome.

    PubMed

    Vallender, Eric J; Lahn, Bruce T

    2004-10-01

    Positive selection has undoubtedly played a critical role in the evolution of Homo sapiens. Of the many phenotypic traits that define our species--notably the enormous brain, advanced cognitive abilities, complex vocal organs, bipedalism and opposable thumbs--most (if not all) are likely the product of strong positive selection. Many other aspects of human biology not necessarily related to the 'branding' of our species, such as host-pathogen interactions, reproduction, dietary adaptation and physical appearance, have also been the substrate of varying levels of positive selection. Comparative genetics/genomics studies in recent years have uncovered a growing list of genes that might have experienced positive selection during the evolution of human and/or primates. These genes offer valuable inroads into understanding the biological processes specific to humans, and the evolutionary forces that gave rise to them. Here, we present a comprehensive review of these genes, and their implications for human evolution.

  16. Neanderthal brain size at birth provides insights into the evolution of human life history.

    PubMed

    Ponce de León, Marcia S; Golovanova, Lubov; Doronichev, Vladimir; Romanova, Galina; Akazawa, Takeru; Kondo, Osamu; Ishida, Hajime; Zollikofer, Christoph P E

    2008-09-16

    From birth to adulthood, the human brain expands by a factor of 3.3, compared with 2.5 in chimpanzees [DeSilva J and Lesnik J (2006) Chimpanzee neonatal brain size: Implications for brain growth in Homo erectus. J Hum Evol 51: 207-212]. How the required extra amount of human brain growth is achieved and what its implications are for human life history and cognitive development are still a matter of debate. Likewise, because comparative fossil evidence is scarce, when and how the modern human pattern of brain growth arose during evolution is largely unknown. Virtual reconstructions of a Neanderthal neonate from Mezmaiskaya Cave (Russia) and of two Neanderthal infant skeletons from Dederiyeh Cave (Syria) now provide new comparative insights: Neanderthal brain size at birth was similar to that in recent Homo sapiens and most likely subject to similar obstetric constraints. Neanderthal brain growth rates during early infancy were higher, however. This pattern of growth resulted in larger adult brain sizes but not in earlier completion of brain growth. Because large brains growing at high rates require large, late-maturing, mothers [Leigh SR and Blomquist GE (2007) in Campbell CJ et al. Primates in perspective; pp 396-407], it is likely that Neanderthal life history was similarly slow, or even slower-paced, than in recent H. sapiens.

  17. Late Pleistocene climate drivers of early human migration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Timmermann, Axel; Friedrich, Tobias

    2016-10-01

    On the basis of fossil and archaeological data it has been hypothesized that the exodus of Homo sapiens out of Africa and into Eurasia between ~50-120 thousand years ago occurred in several orbitally paced migration episodes. Crossing vegetated pluvial corridors from northeastern Africa into the Arabian Peninsula and the Levant and expanding further into Eurasia, Australia and the Americas, early H. sapiens experienced massive time-varying climate and sea level conditions on a variety of timescales. Hitherto it has remained difficult to quantify the effect of glacial- and millennial-scale climate variability on early human dispersal and evolution. Here we present results from a numerical human dispersal model, which is forced by spatiotemporal estimates of climate and sea level changes over the past 125 thousand years. The model simulates the overall dispersal of H. sapiens in close agreement with archaeological and fossil data and features prominent glacial migration waves across the Arabian Peninsula and the Levant region around 106-94, 89-73, 59-47 and 45-29 thousand years ago. The findings document that orbital-scale global climate swings played a key role in shaping Late Pleistocene global population distributions, whereas millennial-scale abrupt climate changes, associated with Dansgaard-Oeschger events, had a more limited regional effect.

  18. Late Pleistocene climate drivers of early human migration.

    PubMed

    Timmermann, Axel; Friedrich, Tobias

    2016-10-06

    On the basis of fossil and archaeological data it has been hypothesized that the exodus of Homo sapiens out of Africa and into Eurasia between ~50-120 thousand years ago occurred in several orbitally paced migration episodes. Crossing vegetated pluvial corridors from northeastern Africa into the Arabian Peninsula and the Levant and expanding further into Eurasia, Australia and the Americas, early H. sapiens experienced massive time-varying climate and sea level conditions on a variety of timescales. Hitherto it has remained difficult to quantify the effect of glacial- and millennial-scale climate variability on early human dispersal and evolution. Here we present results from a numerical human dispersal model, which is forced by spatiotemporal estimates of climate and sea level changes over the past 125 thousand years. The model simulates the overall dispersal of H. sapiens in close agreement with archaeological and fossil data and features prominent glacial migration waves across the Arabian Peninsula and the Levant region around 106-94, 89-73, 59-47 and 45-29 thousand years ago. The findings document that orbital-scale global climate swings played a key role in shaping Late Pleistocene global population distributions, whereas millennial-scale abrupt climate changes, associated with Dansgaard-Oeschger events, had a more limited regional effect.

  19. Out of Africa: modern human origins special feature: human origins: out of Africa.

    PubMed

    Tattersall, Ian

    2009-09-22

    Our species, Homo sapiens, is highly autapomorphic (uniquely derived) among hominids in the structure of its skull and postcranial skeleton. It is also sharply distinguished from other organisms by its unique symbolic mode of cognition. The fossil and archaeological records combine to show fairly clearly that our physical and cognitive attributes both first appeared in Africa, but at different times. Essentially modern bony conformation was established in that continent by the 200-150 Ka range (a dating in good agreement with dates for the origin of H. sapiens derived from modern molecular diversity). The event concerned was apparently short-term because it is essentially unanticipated in the fossil record. In contrast, the first convincing stirrings of symbolic behavior are not currently detectable until (possibly well) after 100 Ka. The radical reorganization of gene expression that underwrote the distinctive physical appearance of H. sapiens was probably also responsible for the neural substrate that permits symbolic cognition. This exaptively acquired potential lay unexploited until it was "discovered" via a cultural stimulus, plausibly the invention of language. Modern humans appear to have definitively exited Africa to populate the rest of the globe only after both their physical and cognitive peculiarities had been acquired within that continent.

  20. Human evolution: taxonomy and paleobiology

    PubMed Central

    WOOD, BERNARD; RICHMOND, BRIAN G.

    2000-01-01

    This review begins by setting out the context and the scope of human evolution. Several classes of evidence, morphological, molecular, and genetic, support a particularly close relationship between modern humans and the species within the genus Pan, the chimpanzee. Thus human evolution is the study of the lineage, or clade, comprising species more closely related to modern humans than to chimpanzees. Its stem species is the so-called ‘common hominin ancestor’, and its only extant member is Homo sapiens. This clade contains all the species more closely-related to modern humans than to any other living primate. Until recently, these species were all subsumed into a family, Hominidae, but this group is now more usually recognised as a tribe, the Hominini. The rest of the review sets out the formal nomenclature, history of discovery, and information about the characteristic morphology, and its behavioural implications, of the species presently included in the human clade. The taxa are considered within their assigned genera, beginning with the most primitive and finishing with Homo. Within genera, species are presented in order of geological age. The entries conclude with a list of the more important items of fossil evidence, and a summary of relevant taxonomic issues. PMID:10999270

  1. Twentieth anniversary of Homo antecessor (1997-2017): a review.

    PubMed

    Bermúdez de Castro, José María; Martinón-Torres, María; Arsuaga, Juan Luis; Carbonell, Eudald

    2017-07-01

    It has been twenty years since diagnosis and publication of the species Homo antecessor.(1) Since then, new human fossils recovered from the TD6 level of the Gran Dolina site (Sierra de Atapuerca, northern Spain) have helped to refine its taxonomic and phylogenetic position. In this paper, we present a synthesis of the most characteristic features of this species, as well as our interpretation derived from the latest investigations. We focus on the phylogenetic interpretation of Homo antecessor, taking into account the most recent paleogenetic analyses and a reassessment of the European Middle Pleistocene hominin record. We try to show that, twenty years after its publication, H. antecessor provides a good opportunity to address the morphology of the last common ancestor of Neandertals and modern humans. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  2. The age of the 20 meter Solo River terrace, Java, Indonesia and the survival of Homo erectus in Asia.

    PubMed

    Indriati, Etty; Swisher, Carl C; Lepre, Christopher; Quinn, Rhonda L; Suriyanto, Rusyad A; Hascaryo, Agus T; Grün, Rainer; Feibel, Craig S; Pobiner, Briana L; Aubert, Maxime; Lees, Wendy; Antón, Susan C

    2011-01-01

    Homo erectus was the first human lineage to disperse widely throughout the Old World, the only hominin in Asia through much of the Pleistocene, and was likely ancestral to H. sapiens. The demise of this taxon remains obscure because of uncertainties regarding the geological age of its youngest populations. In 1996, some of us co-published electron spin resonance (ESR) and uranium series (U-series) results indicating an age as young as 35-50 ka for the late H. erectus sites of Ngandong and Sambungmacan and the faunal site of Jigar (Indonesia). If correct, these ages favor an African origin for recent humans who would overlap with H. erectus in time and space. Here, we report (40)Ar/(39)Ar incremental heating analyses and new ESR/U-series age estimates from the "20 m terrace" at Ngandong and Jigar. Both data sets are internally consistent and provide no evidence for reworking, yet they are inconsistent with one another. The (40)Ar/(39)Ar analyses give an average age of 546±12 ka (sd±5 se) for both sites, the first reliable radiometric indications of a middle Pleistocene component for the terrace. Given the technical accuracy and consistency of the analyses, the argon ages represent either the actual age or the maximum age for the terrace and are significantly older than previous estimates. Most of the ESR/U-series results are older as well, but the oldest that meets all modeling criteria is 143 ka+20/-17. Most samples indicated leaching of uranium and likely represent either the actual or the minimum age of the terrace. Given known sources of error, the U-series results could be consistent with a middle Pleistocene age. However, the ESR and (40)Ar/(39)Ar ages preclude one another. Regardless, the age of the sites and hominins is at least bracketed between these estimates and is older than currently accepted.

  3. The Age of the 20 Meter Solo River Terrace, Java, Indonesia and the Survival of Homo erectus in Asia

    PubMed Central

    Indriati, Etty; Swisher, Carl C.; Lepre, Christopher; Quinn, Rhonda L.; Suriyanto, Rusyad A.; Hascaryo, Agus T.; Grün, Rainer; Feibel, Craig S.; Pobiner, Briana L.; Aubert, Maxime; Lees, Wendy; Antón, Susan C.

    2011-01-01

    Homo erectus was the first human lineage to disperse widely throughout the Old World, the only hominin in Asia through much of the Pleistocene, and was likely ancestral to H. sapiens. The demise of this taxon remains obscure because of uncertainties regarding the geological age of its youngest populations. In 1996, some of us co-published electron spin resonance (ESR) and uranium series (U-series) results indicating an age as young as 35–50 ka for the late H. erectus sites of Ngandong and Sambungmacan and the faunal site of Jigar (Indonesia). If correct, these ages favor an African origin for recent humans who would overlap with H. erectus in time and space. Here, we report 40Ar/39Ar incremental heating analyses and new ESR/U-series age estimates from the “20 m terrace" at Ngandong and Jigar. Both data sets are internally consistent and provide no evidence for reworking, yet they are inconsistent with one another. The 40Ar/39Ar analyses give an average age of 546±12 ka (sd±5 se) for both sites, the first reliable radiometric indications of a middle Pleistocene component for the terrace. Given the technical accuracy and consistency of the analyses, the argon ages represent either the actual age or the maximum age for the terrace and are significantly older than previous estimates. Most of the ESR/U-series results are older as well, but the oldest that meets all modeling criteria is 143 ka+20/−17. Most samples indicated leaching of uranium and likely represent either the actual or the minimum age of the terrace. Given known sources of error, the U-series results could be consistent with a middle Pleistocene age. However, the ESR and 40Ar/39Ar ages preclude one another. Regardless, the age of the sites and hominins is at least bracketed between these estimates and is older than currently accepted. PMID:21738710

  4. Astronomical Theory of Early Human Migration (Milutin Milankovic Medal Lecture)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Timmermann, Axel; Friedrich, Tobias

    2017-04-01

    Our climate system varies on a wide range of timescales, from seasons to several millions of years. A large part of this variability is internally generated as a result of instabilities of the coupled atmosphere-ocean-ice-carbon cycle system. Other modes of variability, such as glacial cycles, are caused by astronomical forcings with periods of 20, 40, 100 thousand years. These so-called Milankovitch Cycles are associated with earth's axis wobble, axis obliquity and shifts in the eccentricity of earth's orbit around the sun, respectively. When these cycles conspire, they can cause the climate system to plunge into an ice-age. This happened last time 110,000 years ago, when Northern Hemisphere summer radiation decreased substantially and ice-sheets started to form as a result. Around 100,000 years ago northern Hemisphere summer moved again closer to the sun and Homo sapiens started to leave Africa across vegetated corridors in Northeastern Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. This first migration wave must have been relatively weak, but it left unequivocal traces in the fossil and archaeological record. Why Homo sapiens embarked on its grand journey across our planet during glacial climate conditions has been subject of an intense debate in various scientific communities. Moreover, the archaeological records of an early exodus around 100 thousand years ago seem to be at odds with paleo-genetic evidences, that place the first dispersal out of Africa around 70-60 thousand years ago. To elucidate what role climate and environmental conditions played in the dispersal of Anatomically Modern Humans out of Africa, we have developed and applied one of the first integrated climate/human migration computer models. The model simulates ice-ages, abrupt climate change, the "peopling" of our planet and captures the arrival time of Homo sapiens in the Levant, Arabian Peninsula, Southern China and Australia in close agreement with paleo climate reconstructions, fossil and

  5. The thigh and leg of Homo naledi.

    PubMed

    Marchi, Damiano; Walker, Christopher S; Wei, Pianpian; Holliday, Trenton W; Churchill, Steven E; Berger, Lee R; DeSilva, Jeremy M

    2017-03-01

    This paper describes the 108 femoral, patellar, tibial, and fibular elements of a new species of Homo (Homo naledi) discovered in the Dinaledi chamber of the Rising Star cave system in South Africa. Homo naledi possesses a mosaic of primitive, derived, and unique traits functionally indicative of a bipedal hominin adapted for long distance walking and possibly running. Traits shared with australopiths include an anteroposteriorly compressed femoral neck, a mediolaterally compressed tibia, and a relatively circular fibular neck. Traits shared with Homo include a well-marked linea aspera, anteroposteriorly thick patellae, relatively long tibiae, and gracile fibulae with laterally oriented lateral malleoli. Unique features include the presence of two pillars on the superior aspect of the femoral neck and a tubercular distal insertion of the pes anserinus on the tibia. The mosaic morphology of the H. naledi thigh and leg appears most consistent with a species intermediate between Australopithecus spp. and Homo erectus and, accordingly, may offer insight into the nature of the earliest members of genus Homo. These fossils also expand the morphological diversity of the Homo lower limb, perhaps indicative of locomotor diversity in our genus.

  6. Human-Specific Cortical Synaptic Connections and Their Plasticity: Is That What Makes Us Human?

    PubMed Central

    Lourenço, Joana; Bacci, Alberto

    2017-01-01

    One outstanding difference between Homo sapiens and other mammals is the ability to perform highly complex cognitive tasks and behaviors, such as language, abstract thinking, and cultural diversity. How is this accomplished? According to one prominent theory, cognitive complexity is proportional to the repetition of specific computational modules over a large surface expansion of the cerebral cortex (neocortex). However, the human neocortex was shown to also possess unique features at the cellular and synaptic levels, raising the possibility that expanding the computational module is not the only mechanism underlying complex thinking. In a study published in PLOS Biology, Szegedi and colleagues analyzed a specific cortical circuit from live postoperative human tissue, showing that human-specific, very powerful excitatory connections between principal pyramidal neurons and inhibitory neurons are highly plastic. This suggests that exclusive plasticity of specific microcircuits might be considered among the mechanisms endowing the human neocortex with the ability to perform highly complex cognitive tasks. PMID:28103228

  7. The saliva microbiome of Pan and Homo

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background It is increasingly recognized that the bacteria that live in and on the human body (the microbiome) can play an important role in health and disease. The composition of the microbiome is potentially influenced by both internal factors (such as phylogeny and host physiology) and external factors (such as diet and local environment), and interspecific comparisons can aid in understanding the importance of these factors. Results To gain insights into the relative importance of these factors on saliva microbiome diversity, we here analyze the saliva microbiomes of chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) and bonobos (Pan paniscus) from two sanctuaries in Africa, and from human workers at each sanctuary. The saliva microbiomes of the two Pan species are more similar to one another, and the saliva microbiomes of the two human groups are more similar to one another, than are the saliva microbiomes of human workers and apes from the same sanctuary. We also looked for the existence of a core microbiome and find no evidence for a taxon-based core saliva microbiome for Homo or Pan. In addition, we studied the saliva microbiome from apes from the Leipzig Zoo, and found an extraordinary diversity in the zoo ape saliva microbiomes that is not found in the saliva microbiomes of the sanctuary animals. Conclusions The greater similarity of the saliva microbiomes of the two Pan species to one another, and of the two human groups to one another, are in accordance with both the phylogenetic relationships of the hosts as well as with host physiology. Moreover, the results from the zoo animals suggest that novel environments can have a large impact on the microbiome, and that microbiome analyses based on captive animals should be viewed with caution as they may not reflect the microbiome of animals in the wild. PMID:24025115

  8. How We Got Here: Evolutionary Changes in Skull Shape in Humans & Their Ancestors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Price, Rebecca M.

    2012-01-01

    This activity uses inquiry to investigate how large changes in shape can evolve from small changes in the timing of development. Students measure skull shape in fetal, infant, juvenile, and adult chimpanzees and compare them to adult skulls of "Homo sapiens," "Homo erectus," and "Australopithecus afarensis." They conclude by re-interpreting their…

  9. How We Got Here: Evolutionary Changes in Skull Shape in Humans & Their Ancestors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Price, Rebecca M.

    2012-01-01

    This activity uses inquiry to investigate how large changes in shape can evolve from small changes in the timing of development. Students measure skull shape in fetal, infant, juvenile, and adult chimpanzees and compare them to adult skulls of "Homo sapiens," "Homo erectus," and "Australopithecus afarensis." They conclude by re-interpreting their…

  10. Transcatheter Aortic Valve Implantation Experience with SAPIEN 3.

    PubMed

    Ohno, Y; Tamburino, C; Barbanti, M

    2015-06-01

    Based on randomized trials with first generation devices, transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVI) has been included into the treatment strategy for high-risk and inoperable patients with severe aortic stenosis. Procedural complications remain a concern with TAVI, including stroke, vascular complications, paravalvular leak (PVL) and conduction disturbances. Addressing these limitations will support TAVI use in lower risk populations. This review discussed features and most recent clinical evidence of the new balloon-expandable THV (SAPIEN 3, Edwards Lifescience, Irvine, CA, USA).

  11. Vasopressin Gene-Related Products in the Management of Breast Cancer

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1997-10-01

    mRNA, complete cds. ACCESSION AFO17061 NID g2394273 KEYWORDS . SOURCE human. ORGANISM Homo sapiens Eukaryotae; Metazoa; Chordata ... Chordata ; Vertebrata; Mammalia; Eutheria; Primates; Catarrhini; Hominidae; Homo. REFERENCE 1 (bases 1 to 1298) AUTHORS Thibonnier,M., Auzan.C...SOURCE human. ORGANISM Homo sapiens Eukaryotae; Metazoa; Chordata ; Vertebrata; Mammalia; Euthena; Primates; Catarrhini; Hominidae; Homo

  12. Is Homo heidelbergensis a distinct species? New insight on the Mauer mandible.

    PubMed

    Mounier, Aurélien; Marchal, François; Condemi, Silvana

    2009-03-01

    The discovery of new fossils in Africa, Asia, and Europe, and the recognition of a greater diversity in the middle Pleistocene fossil record, has led to a reconsideration of the species Homo heidelbergensis. This nomen, formulated by Schoetensack in 1908 to describe the Mauer jaw (Germany), was almost forgotten during most of the past century. Numerous fossils have been attributed to it but no consensus has arisen concerning their classification. The holotype anatomical traits are still poorly understood, and numerous fossils with no mandibular remains have been placed in the taxon. Some researchers propose H. heidelbergensis as an Afro-European taxon that is ancestral to both modern humans and Neandertals whereas others think it is a strictly European species that is part of the Neandertal lineage. We focus on the validity of H. heidelbergensis, using the traditional basis of species recognition: anatomical description. We provide a comparative morphological analysis using 47 anatomical traits of 36 Pleistocene fossils from Africa, Asia, and Europe and 35 extant human mandibles. We re-examine the mandibular features of Mauer and discuss the specimen's inclusion in H. heidelbergensis, as well as alternative evolutionary theories. To lend objectivity to specimen grouping, we use multiple correspondence analysis associated with hierarchical classification that creates clusters corresponding to phenetic similarities between jaws. Our phenetic and comparative morphological analyses support the validity of H. heidelbergensis as a taxon. A set of morphological features can be statistically identified for the definition of the species. Some traits can be used to delimit H. heidelbergensis in an evolutionary framework (e.g., foramina mentale posteriorly positioned, horizontal retromolar surface). Those traits are also present on African (e.g., Tighenif) and European (e.g., Sima de los Huesos) specimens that show a close relationship with the Mauer mandible. Therefore, the

  13. The craniomandibular mechanics of being human

    PubMed Central

    Wroe, Stephen; Ferrara, Toni L.; McHenry, Colin R.; Curnoe, Darren; Chamoli, Uphar

    2010-01-01

    Diminished bite force has been considered a defining feature of modern Homo sapiens, an interpretation inferred from the application of two-dimensional lever mechanics and the relative gracility of the human masticatory musculature and skull. This conclusion has various implications with regard to the evolution of human feeding behaviour. However, human dental anatomy suggests a capacity to withstand high loads and two-dimensional lever models greatly simplify muscle architecture, yielding less accurate results than three-dimensional modelling using multiple lines of action. Here, to our knowledge, in the most comprehensive three-dimensional finite element analysis performed to date for any taxon, we ask whether the traditional view that the bite of H. sapiens is weak and the skull too gracile to sustain high bite forces is supported. We further introduce a new method for reconstructing incomplete fossil material. Our findings show that the human masticatory apparatus is highly efficient, capable of producing a relatively powerful bite using low muscle forces. Thus, relative to other members of the superfamily Hominoidea, humans can achieve relatively high bite forces, while overall stresses are reduced. Our findings resolve apparently discordant lines of evidence, i.e. the presence of teeth well adapted to sustain high loads within a lightweight cranium and mandible. PMID:20554545

  14. A new skull of early Homo from Dmanisi, Georgia.

    PubMed

    Vekua, Abesalom; Lordkipanidze, David; Rightmire, G Philip; Agusti, Jordi; Ferring, Reid; Maisuradze, Givi; Mouskhelishvili, Alexander; Nioradze, Medea; De Leon, Marcia Ponce; Tappen, Martha; Tvalchrelidze, Merab; Zollikofer, Christoph

    2002-07-05

    Another hominid skull has been recovered at Dmanisi (Republic of Georgia) from the same strata in which hominid remains have been reported previously. The Dmanisi site dated to approximately 1.75 million years ago has now produced craniofacial portions of several hominid individuals, along with many well-preserved animal fossils and quantities of stone artifacts. Although there are certain anatomical differences among the Dmanisi specimens, the hominids do not clearly represent more than one taxon. We assign the new skull provisionally to Homo erectus (=ergaster). The Dmanisi specimens are the most primitive and small-brained fossils to be grouped with this species or any taxon linked unequivocally with genus Homo and also the ones most similar to the presumed habilis-like stem. We suggest that the ancestors of the Dmanisi population dispersed from Africa before the emergence of humans identified broadly with the H. erectus grade.

  15. Evolution and dispersal of the genus Homo: A landscape approach.

    PubMed

    Winder, Isabelle C; Devès, Maud H; King, Geoffrey C P; Bailey, Geoffrey N; Inglis, Robyn H; Meredith-Williams, Matthew

    2015-10-01

    The notion of the physical landscape as an arena of ecological interaction and human evolution is a powerful one, but its implementation at larger geographical and temporal scales is hampered by the challenges of reconstructing physical landscape settings in the geologically active regions where the earliest evidence is concentrated. We argue that the inherently dynamic nature of these unstable landscapes has made them important agents of biological change, creating complex topographies capable of selecting for, stimulating, obstructing or accelerating the latent and emerging properties of the human evolutionary trajectory. We use this approach, drawing on the concepts and methods of active tectonics, to develop a new perspective on the origins and dispersal of the Homo genus. We show how complex topography provides an easy evolutionary pathway to full terrestrialisation in the African context, and would have further equipped members of the genus Homo with a suite of adaptive characteristics that facilitated wide-ranging dispersal across ecological and climatic boundaries into Europe and Asia by following pathways of complex topography. We compare this hypothesis with alternative explanations for hominin dispersal, and evaluate it by mapping the distribution of topographic features at varying scales, and comparing the distribution of early Homo sites with the resulting maps and with other environmental variables.

  16. India at the cross-roads of human evolution.

    PubMed

    Patnaik, R; Chauhan, P

    2009-11-01

    pointing towards Indian subcontinent as a possible migration corridor between these regions. The only definite pre-Homo sapiens fossil hominin remains come from the Central Narmada Valley and are thought to be of Middle to late Pleistocene age, and the cranium has been shown to be closely linked to archaic Homo sapiens/H. heidelbergensis of Europe. Around approximately 74,000 yrs ago, a super volcanic eruption in Sumatra caused the deposition of Youngest Toba Tephra, that covered large parts of the Indian peninsula. Just around this time anatomically-and-behaviorally modern humans or Homo sapiens possibly arrived into India as evidenced by the so called Middle and Upper Palaeolithic assemblages and associated symbolic evidence. The available genetic data reveals that the gene pool to which modern Indians races belong was extremely diverse and had variable mixed links with both European and Asian populations.

  17. Computational interaction analysis of organophosphorus pesticides with different metabolic proteins in humans

    PubMed Central

    Sharma, Amit Kumar; Gaur, Karuna; Tiwari, Rajeev Kumar; Gaur, Mulayam Singh

    2011-01-01

    Pesticides have the potential to leave harmful effects on humans, animals, other living organisms, and the environment. Several human metabolic proteins inhibited after exposure to organophosphorus pesticides absorbed through the skin, inhalation, eyes and oral mucosa, are most important targets for this interaction study. The crystal structure of five different proteins, PDBIDs: 3LII, 3NXU, 4GTU, 2XJ1 and 1YXA in Homo sapiens (H. sapiens), interact with organophosphorus pesticides at the molecular level. The 3-D structures were found to be of good quality and validated through PROCHECK, ERRAT and ProSA servers. The results show that the binding energy is maximum -45.21 relative units of cytochrome P450 protein with phosmet pesticide. In terms of H-bonding, methyl parathion and parathion with acetylcholinesterase protein, parathion, methylparathion and phosmet with protein kinase C show the highest interaction. We conclude that these organophosphorus pesticides are more toxic and inhibit enzymatic activity by interrupting the metabolic pathways in H. sapiens. PMID:23554709

  18. "Small size" in the Philippine human fossil record: is it meaningful for a better understanding of the evolutionary history of the negritos?

    PubMed

    Détroit, Florent; Corny, Julien; Dizon, Eusebio Z; Mijares, Armand S

    2013-01-01

    "Pygmy populations" are recognized in several places over the world, especially in Western Africa and in Southeast Asia (Philippine "negritos," for instance). Broadly defined as "small-bodied Homo sapiens" (compared with neighboring populations), their origins and the nature of the processes involved in the maintenance of their phenotype over time are highly debated. Major results have been recently obtained from population genetics on present-day negrito populations, but their evolutionary history remains largely unresolved. We present and discuss the Upper Pleistocene human remains recovered from Tabon Cave and Callao Cave in the Philippines, which are potentially highly relevant to these research questions. Human fossils have been recovered in large numbers from Tabon Cave (Palawan Island) but mainly from reworked and mixed sediments from several archaeological layers. We review and synthesize the long and meticulous collaborative work done on the archives left from the 1960s excavations and on the field. The results demonstrate the long history of human occupations in the cave, since at least ~30,000 BP. The examination of the Tabon human remains shows a large variability: large and robust for one part of the sample, and small and gracile for the other part. The latter would fit quite comfortably within the range of variation of Philippine negritos. Farther north, on Luzon Island, the human third metatarsal recently recovered from Callao Cave and dated to ~66,000 BP is now the oldest direct evidence of human presence in the Philippines. Previous data show that, compared with H. sapiens (including Philippine negritos), this bone presents a very small size and several unusual morphological characteristics. We present a new analytical approach using three-dimensional geometric morphometrics for comparing the Callao fossil to a wide array of extant Asian mammals, including nonhuman primates and H. sapiens. The results demonstrate that the shape of the Callao

  19. Facial ontogeny in Neanderthals and modern humans

    PubMed Central

    Bastir, Markus; O'Higgins, Paul; Rosas, Antonio

    2007-01-01

    One hundred and fifty years after the discovery of Neanderthals, it is held that this morphologically and genetically distinct human species does not differ from modern Homo sapiens in its craniofacial ontogenetic trajectory after the early post-natal period. This is striking given the evident morphological differences between these species, since it implies that all of the major differences are established by the early post-natal period and carried into adulthood through identical trajectories, despite the extent to which mechanical and spatial factors are thought to influence craniofacial ontogeny. Here, we present statistical and morphological analyses demonstrating that the spatio-temporal processes responsible for craniofacial ontogenetic transformations differ. The findings emphasize that pre-natal as well as post-natal ontogeny are both important in establishing the cranial morphological differences between adult Neanderthals and modern humans. PMID:17311777

  20. Decision support system for individualized nursing procedures: SAPIEN-Tx.

    PubMed

    Ito, M; Ramos, M P; Chern, M S; Espósito, S R; Carmagnani, M I; Cunha, I C; Piveta, V M; Nespoulos, E; Iwasa, A T; Anção, M S

    1995-01-01

    The present work proposes a Decision Support System for nursing procedures: SAPIEN-Tx. The discussion includes the acquisition, modeling , and implementation of nursing expertise professionals in Renal Transplant. It was developed to obtain better quality healthcare services, as well as an effective contribution to the nursing professional in the global assistance of their clientele. We used the KADS methodology to develop the system knowledge base. This methodology permitted us to perform the knowledge modeling with quality and organization. In opposition to the old method, errors were detected before the implementation, avoiding possible modification on the whole project structure.

  1. Out of Africa: modern human origins special feature: the spread of modern humans in Europe.

    PubMed

    Hoffecker, John F

    2009-09-22

    The earliest credible evidence of Homo sapiens in Europe is an archaeological proxy in the form of several artifact assemblages (Bohunician) found in South-Central and possibly Eastern Europe, dating to < or =48,000 calibrated radiocarbon years before present (cal BP). They are similar to assemblages probably made by modern humans in the Levant (Emiran) at an earlier date and apparently represent a population movement into the Balkans during a warm climate interval [Greenland Interstadial 12 (GI 12)]. A second population movement may be represented by a diverse set of artifact assemblages (sometimes termed Proto-Aurignacian) found in the Balkans, parts of Southwest Europe, and probably in Eastern Europe, and dating to several brief interstadials (GI 11-GI 9) that preceded the beginning of cold Heinrich Event 4 (HE4) (approximately 40,000 cal BP). They are similar to contemporaneous assemblages made by modern humans in the Levant (Ahmarian). The earliest known human skeletal remains in Europe that may be unequivocally assigned to H. sapiens (Peçstera cu Oase, Romania) date to this time period (approximately 42,000 cal BP) but are not associated with artifacts. After the Campanian Ignimbrite volcanic eruption (40,000 cal BP) and the beginning of HE4, artifact assemblages assigned to the classic Aurignacian, an industry associated with modern human skeletal remains that seems to have developed in Europe, spread throughout the continent.

  2. Adult Neandertal clavicles from the El Sidrón site (Asturias, Spain) in the context of Homo pectoral girdle evolution.

    PubMed

    Rosas, Antonio; Rodriguez-Perez, Francisco Javier; Bastir, Markus; Estalrrich, Almudena; Huguet, Rosa; García-Tabernero, Antonio; Pastor, Juan Francisco; de la Rasilla, Marco

    2016-06-01

    We undertook a three-dimensional geometric morphometric (3DGM) analysis on 12 new Neandertal clavicle specimens from the El Sidrón site (Spain), dated to 49,000 years ago. The 3DGM methods were applied in a comparative framework in order to improve our understanding of trait polarity in features related to Homo pectoral girdle evolution, using other Neandertals, Homo sapiens, Pan, ATD6-50 (Homo antecessor), and KNM-WT 15000 (Homo ergaster/erectus) in the reference collection. Twenty-nine homologous landmarks were measured for each clavicle. Variation and morphological similarities were assessed through principal component analysis, conducted separately for the complete clavicle and the diaphysis. On average, Neandertal clavicles had significantly larger muscular entheses, double dorsal curvature, clavicle torsion, and cranial orientation of the acromial end than non-Neandertal clavicles; the El Sidrón clavicles fit this pattern. Variation within the samples was large, with extensive overlap between Homo species; only chimpanzee specimens clearly differed from the other specimens in morphometric terms. Taken together, our morphometric analyses are consistent with the following phylogenetic sequence. The primitive condition of the clavicle is manifest in the cranial orientation of both the acromial and sternal ends. The derived condition expressed in the H. sapiens + Neandertal clade is defined by caudal rotation of both the sternal and acromial ends, but with variation in the number of acromia remaining in a certain cranial orientation. Finally, the autapomorphic Neandertal condition is defined by secondarily acquired primitive cranial re-orientation of the acromial end, which varies from individual to individual. These results suggest that the pace of phylogenetic change in the pectoral girdle does not seem to follow that of other postcranial skeletal features. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Morphological and population genomic evidence that human faces have evolved to signal individual identity

    PubMed Central

    Nachman, Michael W

    2014-01-01

    Facial recognition plays a key role in human interactions, and there has been great interest in understanding the evolution of human abilities for individual recognition and tracking social relationships. Individual recognition requires sufficient cognitive abilities and phenotypic diversity within a population for discrimination to be possible. Despite the importance of facial recognition in humans, the evolution of facial identity has received little attention. Here we demonstrate that faces evolved to signal individual identity under negative frequency-dependent selection. Faces show elevated phenotypic variation and lower between-trait correlations compared to other traits. Regions surrounding face-associated SNPs show elevated diversity consistent with frequency-dependent selection. Genetic variation maintained by identity signaling tends to be shared across populations and, for some loci, predates the origin of Homo sapiens. Studies of human social evolution tend to emphasize cognitive adaptations but we show that social evolution has shaped patterns of human phenotypic and genetic diversity as well. PMID:25226282

  4. Nutrigenetics in the light of human evolution.

    PubMed

    Verginelli, Fabio; Aru, Federica; Battista, Pasquale; Mariani-Costantini, Renato

    2009-01-01

    Bio-cultural adaptations to new foods played a key role in human evolution. The fossil record and sequence differences between human and chimpanzee genes point to a major dietary shift at the stem of human evolution. The earliest representatives of the human lineage diverged from the ancestors of chimpanzees because of their better adaptation to hard and abrasive foods. Bipedalism and modifications of the hand, which allowed tool manufacture and use, impacted on dietary flexibility, facilitating access to foods of animal origin. This promoted major anatomic, physiologic and metabolic adaptations. Encephalization, which requires high-quality diet, characterizes the evolutionary sequence that, through the Homo ergaster/erectus stages, led to our species, Homo sapiens, which originated in Africa about 200,000 years ago. At the end of the Ice Age, climatic changes and human impact determined a major food crisis, which triggered the agricultural revolution. This affected nutrition and health, with rapid evolutionary adaptations through the selection of genetic variants that allowed better utilization of new foods, different in relation to geography and culture. Today population growth, globalization and economic pressure powerfully affect diets worldwide. We must take into account our evolutionary past to meet the present nutritional challenges.

  5. Calculation of the HOMO localization of Tetrahymena and Oxytricha telomeric quadruplex DNA.

    PubMed

    Morikawa, Masayuki; Kino, Katsuhito; Oyoshi, Takanori; Suzuki, Masayo; Kobayashi, Takanobu; Miyazawa, Hiroshi

    2015-08-15

    Several guanine-rich sequences exist in many important regions, such as telomeres, and these sequences can form quadruplex DNA structures. It was previously reported that 3'-guanines are mainly oxidized in the Tetrahymena and Oxytricha telomeric quadruplex DNA, d(TGGGGT)4, and 5'-guanines are mainly oxidized in the human telomeric quadruplex DNA, d(TAGGGT)4T. We speculated that the differences in site reactivity between d(TGGGGT)4 and d(TAGGGT)4T are induced by the localization of the HOMO. The HOMOs of the possible quadruplex structures were thus determined and the results showed that the HOMOs of d(TGGGGT)4 +3K(+) and d(TAGGGT)4T +2K(+) localized at the 5'-guanine, and that the HOMO shifted from the 5'-guanine to the 3'-guanine by the addition of a 5'-capping cation. Furthermore, we determined the influence of the cation and demonstrated that localization of the HOMO at the G-quartet plane located immediately adjacent to the cation is disfavored. The calculated HOMO localization of d(TGGGGT)4 +4K(+) and d(TAGGGT)4T +2K(+) matched the experimental results and suggest that d(TGGGGT)4 contains a 5'-capping cation in solution. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Catalytic formal Homo-Nazarov cyclization.

    PubMed

    De Simone, Filippo; Andrès, Julien; Torosantucci, Riccardo; Waser, Jérôme

    2009-02-19

    The first catalytic method for the cyclization of vinyl-cyclopropyl ketones (formal homo-Nazarov reaction) is reported. Starting from activated cyclopropanes, heterocyclic, and carbocyclic compounds were obtained under mild conditions using Brønsted acid catalysts. Preliminary investigation of the reaction mechanism indicated a stepwise process.

  7. Viral and vector zoonotic exploitation of a homo-sociome memetic complex.

    PubMed

    Rupprecht, C E; Burgess, G W

    2015-05-01

    As most newly characterized emerging infectious diseases are considered to be zoonotic, a modern pre-eminence ascribed within this classification lies clearly within the viral taxonomic realm. In particular, RNA viruses deserve special concern given their documented impact on conservation biology, veterinary medicine and public health, with an unprecedented ability to promote an evolutionary host-pathogen arms race from the ultimate infection and immunity perspective. However, besides the requisite molecular/gross anatomical and physiological bases for infectious diseases to transmit from one host to another, both viral pathogens and their reservoirs/vectors exploit a complex anthropological, cultural, historical, psychological and social suite that specifically defines the phylodynamics within Homo sapiens, unlike any other species. Some of these variables include the ecological benefits of living in groups, decisions on hunting and foraging behaviours and dietary preferences, myths and religious doctrines, health economics, travel destinations, population planning, political decisions on agricultural product bans and many others, in a homo-sociome memetic complex. Taken to an extreme, such complexities elucidate the underpinnings of explanations as to why certain viral zoonoses reside in neglected people, places and things, whereas others are chosen selectively and prioritized for active mitigation. Canine-transmitted rabies serves as one prime example of how a neglected viral zoonosis may transition to greater attention on the basis of renewed advocacy, social media, local champions and vested international community engagement. In contrast, certain bat-associated and arboviral diseases suffer from basic ignorance and perpetuated misunderstanding of fundamental reservoir and vector ecology tenets, translated into failed control policies that only exacerbate the underlying environmental conditions of concern. Beyond applied biomedical knowledge, epidemiological

  8. The living fossil of human judgment.

    PubMed

    Schwarz, Michael

    2014-06-01

    Although the biases and anomalies characterizing psychometric data should serve as conclusive evidence of systematic flaws in scientific methodology, these problems are usually ignored, which reduces empirical psychology to the closed system of its error theory. However, psychometric scores are ambiguous, and response-shifts and fluctuating validities point to fundamental differences in what the measuring-apparatus questionnaire records and how the measuring-apparatus person judges. Therefore, empirical methods fail when psychology requires evidence-based knowledge about cognitive processes and phenomena. Correcting these flaws requires a reassessment of basic scientific premises and careful consideration of Homo sapiens' biosemiotic heuristics. Based on comprehensive biopsychosocial, data, the author reconstructs the evolutionary axioms of self-referenced cognitions and reveals what is usually obscured by the axioms of normal science. He substantiates the need for a paradigm shift toward basic bio-cultural principles and an evolutionary understanding of human thinking and behavior.

  9. Direct evidence for human reliance on rainforest resources in late Pleistocene Sri Lanka.

    PubMed

    Roberts, Patrick; Perera, Nimal; Wedage, Oshan; Deraniyagala, Siran; Perera, Jude; Eregama, Saman; Gledhill, Andrew; Petraglia, Michael D; Lee-Thorp, Julia A

    2015-03-13

    Human occupation of tropical rainforest habitats is thought to be a mainly Holocene phenomenon. Although archaeological and paleoenvironmental data have hinted at pre-Holocene rainforest foraging, earlier human reliance on rainforest resources has not been shown directly. We applied stable carbon and oxygen isotope analysis to human and faunal tooth enamel from four late Pleistocene-to-Holocene archaeological sites in Sri Lanka. The results show that human foragers relied primarily on rainforest resources from at least ~20,000 years ago, with a distinct preference for semi-open rainforest and rain forest edges. Homo sapiens' relationship with the tropical rainforests of South Asia is therefore long-standing, a conclusion that indicates the time-depth of anthropogenic reliance and influence on these habitats. Copyright © 2015, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  10. A “Copernican” Reassessment of the Human Mitochondrial DNA Tree from its Root

    PubMed Central

    Behar, Doron M.; van Oven, Mannis; Rosset, Saharon; Metspalu, Mait; Loogväli, Eva-Liis; Silva, Nuno M.; Kivisild, Toomas; Torroni, Antonio; Villems, Richard

    2012-01-01

    Mutational events along the human mtDNA phylogeny are traditionally identified relative to the revised Cambridge Reference Sequence, a contemporary European sequence published in 1981. This historical choice is a continuous source of inconsistencies, misinterpretations, and errors in medical, forensic, and population genetic studies. Here, after having refined the human mtDNA phylogeny to an unprecedented level by adding information from 8,216 modern mitogenomes, we propose switching the reference to a Reconstructed Sapiens Reference Sequence, which was identified by considering all available mitogenomes from Homo neanderthalensis. This “Copernican” reassessment of the human mtDNA tree from its deepest root should resolve previous problems and will have a substantial practical and educational influence on the scientific and public perception of human evolution by clarifying the core principles of common ancestry for extant descendants. PMID:22482806

  11. Homo naledi and Pleistocene hominin evolution in subequatorial Africa

    PubMed Central

    Berger, Lee R; Hawks, John; Dirks, Paul HGM; Elliott, Marina; Roberts, Eric M

    2017-01-01

    New discoveries and dating of fossil remains from the Rising Star cave system, Cradle of Humankind, South Africa, have strong implications for our understanding of Pleistocene human evolution in Africa. Direct dating of Homo naledi fossils from the Dinaledi Chamber (Berger et al., 2015) shows that they were deposited between about 236 ka and 335 ka (Dirks et al., 2017), placing H. naledi in the later Middle Pleistocene. Hawks and colleagues (Hawks et al., 2017) report the discovery of a second chamber within the Rising Star system (Dirks et al., 2015) that contains H. naledi remains. Previously, only large-brained modern humans or their close relatives had been demonstrated to exist at this late time in Africa, but the fossil evidence for any hominins in subequatorial Africa was very sparse. It is now evident that a diversity of hominin lineages existed in this region, with some divergent lineages contributing DNA to living humans and at least H. naledi representing a survivor from the earliest stages of diversification within Homo. The existence of a diverse array of hominins in subequatorial comports with our present knowledge of diversity across other savanna-adapted species, as well as with palaeoclimate and paleoenvironmental data. H. naledi casts the fossil and archaeological records into a new light, as we cannot exclude that this lineage was responsible for the production of Acheulean or Middle Stone Age tool industries. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.24234.001 PMID:28483041

  12. Homo naledi and Pleistocene hominin evolution in subequatorial Africa.

    PubMed

    Berger, Lee R; Hawks, John; Dirks, Paul Hgm; Elliott, Marina; Roberts, Eric M

    2017-05-09

    New discoveries and dating of fossil remains from the Rising Star cave system, Cradle of Humankind, South Africa, have strong implications for our understanding of Pleistocene human evolution in Africa. Direct dating of Homo naledi fossils from the Dinaledi Chamber (Berger et al., 2015) shows that they were deposited between about 236 ka and 335 ka (Dirks et al., 2017), placing H. naledi in the later Middle Pleistocene. Hawks and colleagues (Hawks et al., 2017) report the discovery of a second chamber within the Rising Star system (Dirks et al., 2015) that contains H. naledi remains. Previously, only large-brained modern humans or their close relatives had been demonstrated to exist at this late time in Africa, but the fossil evidence for any hominins in subequatorial Africa was very sparse. It is now evident that a diversity of hominin lineages existed in this region, with some divergent lineages contributing DNA to living humans and at least H. naledi representing a survivor from the earliest stages of diversification within Homo. The existence of a diverse array of hominins in subequatorial comports with our present knowledge of diversity across other savanna-adapted species, as well as with palaeoclimate and paleoenvironmental data. H. naledi casts the fossil and archaeological records into a new light, as we cannot exclude that this lineage was responsible for the production of Acheulean or Middle Stone Age tool industries.

  13. Direct evidence for the Homo-Pan clade.

    PubMed

    Wimmer, Rainer; Kirsch, Stefan; Rappold, Gudrun A; Schempp, Werner

    2002-01-01

    For a long time, the evolutionary relationship between human and African apes, the 'trichotomy problem', has been debated with strong differences in opinion and interpretation. Statistical analyses of different molecular DNA data sets have been carried out and have primarily supported a Homo-Pan clade. An alternative way to address this question is by the comparison of evolutionarily relevant chromosomal breakpoints. Here, we made use of a P1-derived artificial chromosome (PAC)/bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) contig spanning approximately 2.8 Mb on the long arm of the human Y chromosome, to comparatively map individual PAC clones to chromosomes from great apes, gibbons, and two species of Old World monkeys by fluorescence in-situ hybridization. During our search for evolutionary breakpoints on the Y chromosome, it transpired that a transposition of an approximately 100-kb DNA fragment from chromosome 1 onto the Y chromosome must have occurred in a common ancestor of human, chimpanzee and bonobo. Only the Y chromosomes of these three species contain the chromosome-1-derived fragment; it could not be detected on the Y chromosomes of gorillas or the other primates examined. Thus, this shared derived (synapomorphic) trait provides clear evidence for a Homo-Pan clade independent of DNA sequence analysis.

  14. Brain size and encephalization in early to Mid-Pleistocene Homo.

    PubMed

    Rightmire, G Philip

    2004-06-01

    Important changes in the brain have occurred during the course of human evolution. Both absolute and relative size increases can be documented for species of Homo, culminating in the appearance of modern humans. One species that is particularly well-represented by fossil crania is Homo erectus. The mean capacity for 30 individuals is 973 cm(3). Within this group there is substantial variation, but brain size increases slightly in specimens from later time periods. Other Middle Pleistocene crania differ from those of Homo erectus. Characters of the facial skeleton, vault, and cranial base suggest that fossils from sites such as Arago Cave in France, the Sima de los Huesos in Spain, Bodo in Ethiopia, Broken Hill in Zambia, and perhaps Dali in China belong to the taxon Homo heidelbergensis. Ten of these mid-Quaternary hominins have brains averaging 1,206 cm(3) in volume, and many fall beyond the limits of size predicted for Homo erectus of equivalent age. When orbit height is used to construct an index of relative brain size, it is apparent that the (significant) increase in volume documented for the Middle Pleistocene individuals is not simply a consequence of larger body mass. Encephalization quotient values confirm this finding. These changes in absolute and relative brain size can be taken as further corroborative evidence for a speciation event, in which Homo erectus produced a daughter lineage. It is probable that Homo heidelbergensis originated in Africa or western Eurasia and then ranged widely across the Old World. Archaeological traces indicate that these populations differed in their technology and behavior from earlier hominins. Copyright 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  15. Skull diversity in the Homo lineage and the relative position of Homo naledi.

    PubMed

    Schroeder, Lauren; Scott, Jill E; Garvin, Heather M; Laird, Myra F; Dembo, Mana; Radovčić, Davorka; Berger, Lee R; de Ruiter, Darryl J; Ackermann, Rebecca R

    2017-03-01

    The discovery of Homo naledi has expanded the range of phenotypic variation in Homo, leading to new questions surrounding the mosaic nature of morphological evolution. Though currently undated, its unique morphological pattern and possible phylogenetic relationships to other hominin taxa suggest a complex evolutionary scenario. Here, we perform geometric morphometric analyses on H. naledi cranial and mandibular remains to investigate its morphological relationship with species of Homo and Australopithecus. We use Generalized Procrustes analysis to place H. naledi within the pattern of known hominin skull diversity, distributions of Procrustes distances among individuals to compare H. naledi and Homo erectus, and neighbor joining trees to investigate the potential phenetic relationships between groups. Our goal is to address a set of hypotheses relating to the uniqueness of H. naledi, its affinity with H. erectus, and the age of the fossils based on skull morphology. Our results indicate that, cranially, H. naledi aligns with members of the genus Homo, with closest affiliations to H. erectus. The mandibular results are less clear; H. naledi closely associates with a number of taxa, including some australopiths. However, results also show that although H. naledi shares similarities with H. erectus, some distances from this taxon - especially small-brained members of this taxon - are extreme. The neighbor joining trees place H. naledi firmly within Homo. The trees based on cranial morphology again indicate a close relationship between H. naledi and H. erectus, whereas the mandibular tree places H. naledi closer to basal Homo, suggesting a deeper antiquity. Altogether, these results emphasize the unique combination of features (H. erectus-like cranium, less derived mandible) defining H. naledi. Our results also highlight the variability within Homo, calling for a greater focus on the cause of this variability, and emphasizing the importance of using the

  16. Human evolution: humanistic selection and looking to the future.

    PubMed

    Krsiak, Miloslav

    2006-10-01

    Cultural evolution has predominated over biological evolution in modern man (Homo sapiens sapiens). Cultural evolution differs from biological evolution not only by inheritance of acquired characteristics but also, as is proposed in the present essay, by another kind of selection mechanism. Whereas selection in biological evolution is executed according to a criterion of reproductive success (the natural selection), selection in cultural evolution appears to be carried out according to human and humanistic criteria (success or fitness in meeting human needs, interests and humanistic values--"humanistic selection"). Many humanistic needs or values do not seem to be prerequisite for reproductive success, yet some of them (e.g. a need for freedom) seem to be inborn. Innateness, humanistic selection (decisive at a community level) and hierarchy of some human needs, interests and values appear to give cultural evolution a generally upward trend although long periods of stagnation or even regression may occur. Modern humans appear to be still at the early stage of their cultural evolution. A further cultural evolution of man appears to be, in contrast to biological evolution, predictable (with an optimistic outlook) and testable. The problem is that the hopeful result of this test will probably be known only in the fairly remote future provided that this species will not become extinct before that.

  17. Evidence for expansion of the precuneus in human evolution.

    PubMed

    Bruner, Emiliano; Preuss, Todd M; Chen, Xu; Rilling, James K

    2017-03-01

    The evolution of neurocranial morphology in Homo sapiens is characterized by bulging of the parietal region, a feature unique to our species. In modern humans, expansion of the parietal surface occurs during the first year of life, in a morphogenetic stage which is absent in chimpanzees and Neandertals. A similar variation in brain shape among living adult humans is associated with expansion of the precuneus. Using MRI-derived structural brain templates, we compare medial brain morphology between humans and chimpanzees through shape analysis and geometrical modeling. We find that the main spatial difference is a prominent expansion of the precuneus in our species, providing further evidence of evolutionary changes associated with this area. The precuneus is a major hub of brain organization, a central node of the default-mode network, and plays an essential role in visuospatial integration. Together, the comparative neuroanatomical and paleontological evidence suggest that precuneus expansion is a neurological specialization of H. sapiens that evolved in the last 150,000 years that may be associated with recent human cognitive specializations.

  18. On Some Issues of Human-Animal Studies: An Introduction.

    PubMed

    Métraux, Alexandre

    2016-03-01

    Animals are "in" - since prehistoric times when humans (or their ancient ancestors) were hunting animals, and when they fabricated the Paleolithic dog as well as the Paleolithic cat. In less general terms, animals are "in" since they received names and were listed, observed, mummified, turned into totems, and, later on, dissected, tortured under laboratory conditions, trained as experimental subjects or "purified" as model organisms. And they are massively "in" again, but now from overtly legal and moral points of view, at least since the last two decades of the twentieth century. This is to say that modern members of the species Homo sapiens have always been connected to animals of the most various kinds - from the human flea (Pulex irritans) and the cat flea (Ctenocephalides felis) to marine mammals, such as dolphins and whales, from horses to parrots, from scallops to worms, and so on.

  19. Assessing the human gut microbiota in metabolic diseases.

    PubMed

    Karlsson, Fredrik; Tremaroli, Valentina; Nielsen, Jens; Bäckhed, Fredrik

    2013-10-01

    Recent findings have demonstrated that the gut microbiome complements our human genome with at least 100-fold more genes. In contrast to our Homo sapiens-derived genes, the microbiome is much more plastic, and its composition changes with age and diet, among other factors. An altered gut microbiota has been associated with several diseases, including obesity and diabetes, but the mechanisms involved remain elusive. Here we discuss factors that affect the gut microbiome, how the gut microbiome may contribute to metabolic diseases, and how to study the gut microbiome. Next-generation sequencing and development of software packages have led to the development of large-scale sequencing efforts to catalog the human microbiome. Furthermore, the use of genetically engineered gnotobiotic mouse models may increase our understanding of mechanisms by which the gut microbiome modulates host metabolism. A combination of classical microbiology, sequencing, and animal experiments may provide further insights into how the gut microbiota affect host metabolism and physiology.

  20. Evolution of the RECQ family of helicases: A drosophila homolog, Dmblm, is similar to the human bloom syndrome gene.

    PubMed Central

    Kusano, K; Berres, M E; Engels, W R

    1999-01-01

    Several eukaryotic homologs of the Escherichia coli RecQ DNA helicase have been found. These include the human BLM gene, whose mutation results in Bloom syndrome, and the human WRN gene, whose mutation leads to Werner syndrome resembling premature aging. We cloned a Drosophila melanogaster homolog of the RECQ helicase family, Dmblm (Drosophila melanogaster Bloom), which encodes a putative 1487-amino-acid protein. Phylogenetic and dot plot analyses for the RECQ family, including 10 eukaryotic and 3 prokaryotic genes, indicate Dmblm is most closely related to the Homo sapiens BLM gene, suggesting functional similarity. Also, we found that Dmblm cDNA partially rescued the sensitivity to methyl methanesulfonate of Saccharomyces cerevisiae sgs1 mutant, demonstrating the presence of a functional similarity between Dmblm and SGS1. Our analyses identify four possible subfamilies in the RECQ family: (1) the BLM subgroup (H. sapiens Bloom, D. melanogaster Dmblm, and Caenorhabditis elegans T04A11.6); (2) the yeast RECQ subgroup (S. cerevisiae SGS1 and Schizosaccharomyces pombe rqh1/rad12); (3) the RECQL/Q1 subgroup (H. sapiens RECQL/Q1 and C. elegans K02F3.1); and (4) the WRN subgroup (H. sapiens Werner and C. elegans F18C5.2). This result may indicate that metazoans hold at least three RECQ genes, each of which may have a different function, and that multiple RECQ genes diverged with the generation of multicellular organisms. We propose that invertebrates such as nematodes and insects are useful as model systems of human genetic diseases. PMID:10049920

  1. Comparison between the SAPIEN S3 and the SAPIEN XT transcatheter heart valves: A single-center experience

    PubMed Central

    Sawaya, Fadi J; Spaziano, Marco; Lefèvre, Thierry; Roy, Andrew; Garot, Phillippe; Hovasse, Thomas; Neylon, Antoinette; Benamer, Hakim; Romano, Mauro; Unterseeh, Thierry; Morice, Marie-Claude; Chevalier, Bernard

    2016-01-01

    AIM To investigate the clinical outcomes of transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI) with the SAPIEN 3 transcatheter heart valve (S3-THV) vs the SAPIEN XT valve (XT-THV). METHODS We retrospectively analyzed 507 patients that underwent TAVI with the XT-THV and 283 patients that received the S3-THV at our institution between March 2010 and December 2015. RESULTS Thirty-day mortality (3.5% vs 8.7%; OR = 0.44, P = 0.21) and 1-year mortality (25.7% vs 20.1%, P = 0.55) were similar in the S3-THV and the XT-THV groups. The rates of both major vascular complication and paravalvular regurgitation (PVR) > 1 were almost 4 times lower in the S3-THV group than the XT-THV group (major vascular complication: 2.8% vs 9.9%, P < 0.0001; PVR > 1: 2.4% vs 9.7%, P < 0.0001). However, the rate of new pacemaker implantation was almost twice as high in the S3-THV group (17.3% vs 9.8%, P = 0.03). In the S3 group, independent predictors of new permanent pacemaker were pre-procedural RBBB (OR = 4.9; P = 0.001), pre-procedural PR duration (OR = 1.14, P = 0.05) and device lack of coaxiality (OR = 1.13; P = 0.05) during deployment. CONCLUSION The S3-THV is associated to lower rates of major vascular complications and PVR but higher rates of new pacemaker compared to the XT-THV. Sub-optimal visualization of the S3-THV in relation to the aortic valvular complex during deployment is a predictor of new permanent pacemaker. PMID:28070241

  2. Unique Dental Morphology of Homo floresiensis and Its Evolutionary Implications.

    PubMed

    Kaifu, Yousuke; Kono, Reiko T; Sutikna, Thomas; Saptomo, Emanuel Wahyu; Jatmiko; Due Awe, Rokus

    2015-01-01

    Homo floresiensis is an extinct, diminutive hominin species discovered in the Late Pleistocene deposits of Liang Bua cave, Flores, eastern Indonesia. The nature and evolutionary origins of H. floresiensis' unique physical characters have been intensively debated. Based on extensive comparisons using linear metric analyses, crown contour analyses, and other trait-by-trait morphological comparisons, we report here that the dental remains from multiple individuals indicate that H. floresiensis had primitive canine-premolar and advanced molar morphologies, a combination of dental traits unknown in any other hominin species. The primitive aspects are comparable to H. erectus from the Early Pleistocene, whereas some of the molar morphologies are more progressive even compared to those of modern humans. This evidence contradicts the earlier claim of an entirely modern human-like dental morphology of H. floresiensis, while at the same time does not support the hypothesis that H. floresiensis originated from a much older H. habilis or Australopithecus-like small-brained hominin species currently unknown in the Asian fossil record. These results are however consistent with the alternative hypothesis that H. floresiensis derived from an earlier Asian Homo erectus population and experienced substantial body and brain size dwarfism in an isolated insular setting. The dentition of H. floresiensis is not a simple, scaled-down version of earlier hominins.

  3. Unique Dental Morphology of Homo floresiensis and Its Evolutionary Implications

    PubMed Central

    Kaifu, Yousuke; Kono, Reiko T.; Sutikna, Thomas; Saptomo, Emanuel Wahyu; Jatmiko

    2015-01-01

    Homo floresiensis is an extinct, diminutive hominin species discovered in the Late Pleistocene deposits of Liang Bua cave, Flores, eastern Indonesia. The nature and evolutionary origins of H. floresiensis’ unique physical characters have been intensively debated. Based on extensive comparisons using linear metric analyses, crown contour analyses, and other trait-by-trait morphological comparisons, we report here that the dental remains from multiple individuals indicate that H. floresiensis had primitive canine-premolar and advanced molar morphologies, a combination of dental traits unknown in any other hominin species. The primitive aspects are comparable to H. erectus from the Early Pleistocene, whereas some of the molar morphologies are more progressive even compared to those of modern humans. This evidence contradicts the earlier claim of an entirely modern human-like dental morphology of H. floresiensis, while at the same time does not support the hypothesis that H. floresiensis originated from a much older H. habilis or Australopithecus-like small-brained hominin species currently unknown in the Asian fossil record. These results are however consistent with the alternative hypothesis that H. floresiensis derived from an earlier Asian Homo erectus population and experienced substantial body and brain size dwarfism in an isolated insular setting. The dentition of H. floresiensis is not a simple, scaled-down version of earlier hominins. PMID:26624612

  4. The Cytotoxicity and Genotoxicity of Hexavalent Chromium in Steller Sea Lion Lung Fibroblasts Compared to Human Lung Fibroblasts

    PubMed Central

    Wise, John Pierce; Wise, Sandra S.; Holmes, Amie L.; LaCerte, Carolyne; Shaffiey, Fariba; Aboueissa, AbouEl-Makarim

    2010-01-01

    In this study we directly compared soluble and particulate chromate cytotoxicity and genotoxicity in human (Homo sapiens) and sea lion (Eumetopias jubatus) lung fibroblasts. Our results show that hexavalent chromium induces increased cell death and chromosome damage in both human and sea lion cells with increasing intracellular chromium ion levels. The data further indicate that both sodium chromate and lead chromate are less cytotoxic and genotoxic to sea lion cells than human cells, based on administered dose. Differences in chromium ion uptake explained some but not all of the reduced amounts of sodium chromate-induced cell death. By contrast, uptake differences could explain the differences in sodium chromate-induced chromosome damage and particulate chromate-induced toxicity. Altogether they indicate that while hexavalent chromium induces similar toxic effects in sea lion and human cells, there are different mechanisms underlying the toxic outcomes. PMID:20211760

  5. A natural history of the human mind: tracing evolutionary changes in brain and cognition

    PubMed Central

    Sherwood, Chet C; Subiaul, Francys; Zawidzki, Tadeusz W

    2008-01-01

    Since the last common ancestor shared by modern humans, chimpanzees and bonobos, the lineage leading to Homo sapiens has undergone a substantial change in brain size and organization. As a result, modern humans display striking differences from the living apes in the realm of cognition and linguistic expression. In this article, we review the evolutionary changes that occurred in the descent of Homo sapiens by reconstructing the neural and cognitive traits that would have characterized the last common ancestor and comparing these with the modern human condition. The last common ancestor can be reconstructed to have had a brain of approximately 300–400 g that displayed several unique phylogenetic specializations of development, anatomical organization, and biochemical function. These neuroanatomical substrates contributed to the enhancement of behavioral flexibility and social cognition. With this evolutionary history as precursor, the modern human mind may be conceived as a mosaic of traits inherited from a common ancestry with our close relatives, along with the addition of evolutionary specializations within particular domains. These modern human-specific cognitive and linguistic adaptations appear to be correlated with enlargement of the neocortex and related structures. Accompanying this general neocortical expansion, certain higher-order unimodal and multimodal cortical areas have grown disproportionately relative to primary cortical areas. Anatomical and molecular changes have also been identified that might relate to the greater metabolic demand and enhanced synaptic plasticity of modern human brain's. Finally, the unique brain growth trajectory of modern humans has made a significant contribution to our species’ cognitive and linguistic abilities. PMID:18380864

  6. Misconceptions about mitochondria and mammalian fertilization: implications for theories on human evolution.

    PubMed

    Ankel-Simons, F; Cummins, J M

    1996-11-26

    In vertebrates, inheritance of mitochondria is thought to be predominantly maternal, and mitochondrial DNA analysis has become a standard taxonomic tool. In accordance with the prevailing view of strict maternal inheritance, many sources assert that during fertilization, the sperm tail, with its mitochondria, gets excluded from the embryo. This is incorrect. In the majority of mammals-including humans-the midpiece mitochondria can be identified in the embryo even though their ultimate fate is unknown. The "missing mitochondria" story seems to have survived--and proliferated-unchallenged in a time of contention between hypotheses of human origins, because it supports the "African Eve" model of recent radiation of Homo sapiens out of Africa. We will discuss the infiltration of this mistake into concepts of mitochondrial inheritance and human evolution.

  7. Brain size at birth throughout human evolution: a new method for estimating neonatal brain size in hominins.

    PubMed

    DeSilva, Jeremy M; Lesnik, Julie J

    2008-12-01

    An increase in brain size is a hallmark of human evolution. Questions regarding the evolution of brain development and obstetric constraints in the human lineage can be addressed with accurate estimates of the size of the brain at birth in hominins. Previous estimates of brain size at birth in fossil hominins have been calculated from regressions of neonatal body or brain mass to adult body mass, but this approach is problematic for two reasons: modern humans are outliers for these regressions, and hominin adult body masses are difficult to estimate. To accurately estimate the brain size at birth in extinct human ancestors, an equation is needed for which modern humans fit the anthropoid regression and one in which the hominin variable entered into the regression equation has limited error. Using phylogenetically sensitive statistics, a resampling approach, and brain-mass data from the literature and from National Primate Research Centers on 362 neonates and 2802 adults from eight different anthropoid species, we found that the size of the adult brain can strongly predict the size of the neonatal brain (r2=0.97). This regression predicts human brain size, indicating that humans have precisely the brain size expected as an adult given the size of the brain at birth. We estimated the size of the neonatal brain in fossil hominins from a reduced major axis regression equation using published cranial capacities of 89 adult fossil crania. We suggest that australopiths gave birth to infants with cranial capacities that were on average 180cc (95% CI: 158-205cc), slightly larger than the average neonatal brain size of chimpanzees. Neonatal brain size increased in early Homo to 225cc (95% CI: 198-257cc) and in Homo erectus to approximately 270cc (95% CI: 237-310cc). These results have implications for interpreting the evolution of the birth process and brain development in all hominins from the australopiths and early Homo, through H. erectus, to Homo sapiens.

  8. The vertebrae and ribs of Homo naledi.

    PubMed

    Williams, Scott A; García-Martínez, Daniel; Bastir, Markus; Meyer, Marc R; Nalla, Shahed; Hawks, John; Schmid, Peter; Churchill, Steven E; Berger, Lee R

    2017-03-01

    Hominin evolution featured shifts from a trunk shape suitable for climbing and housing a large gut to a trunk adapted to bipedalism and higher quality diets. Our knowledge regarding the tempo, mode, and context in which these derived traits evolved has been limited, based largely on a small-bodied Australopithecus partial skeleton (A.L. 288-1; "Lucy") and a juvenile Homo erectus skeleton (KNM-WT 15000; "Turkana Boy"). Two recent discoveries, of a large-bodied Australopithecus afarensis (KSD-VP-1/1) and two Australopithecus sediba partial skeletons (MH1 and MH2), have added to our understanding of thorax evolution; however, little is known about thorax morphology in early Homo. Here we describe hominin vertebrae, ribs, and sternal remains from the Dinaledi chamber of the Rising Star cave system attributed to Homo naledi. Although the remains are highly fragmented, the best-preserved specimens-two lower thoracic vertebrae and a lower rib-were found in association and belong to a small-bodied individual. A second lower rib may belong to this individual as well. All four of these individual elements are amongst the smallest known in the hominin fossil record. H. naledi is characterized by robust, relatively uncurved lower ribs and a relatively large spinal canal. We expect that the recovery of additional material from Rising Star Cave will clarify the nature of these traits and shed light on H. naledi functional morphology and phylogeny.

  9. Gorilla and orangutan brains conform to the primate cellular scaling rules: implications for human evolution.

    PubMed

    Herculano-Houzel, Suzana; Kaas, Jon H

    2011-01-01

    Gorillas and orangutans are primates at least as large as humans, but their brains amount to about one third of the size of the human brain. This discrepancy has been used as evidence that the human brain is about 3 times larger than it should be for a primate species of its body size. In contrast to the view that the human brain is special in its size, we have suggested that it is the great apes that might have evolved bodies that are unusually large, on the basis of our recent finding that the cellular composition of the human brain matches that expected for a primate brain of its size, making the human brain a linearly scaled-up primate brain in its number of cells. To investigate whether the brain of great apes also conforms to the primate cellular scaling rules identified previously, we determine the numbers of neuronal and other cells that compose the orangutan and gorilla cerebella, use these numbers to calculate the size of the brain and of the cerebral cortex expected for these species, and show that these match the sizes described in the literature. Our results suggest that the brains of great apes also scale linearly in their numbers of neurons like other primate brains, including humans. The conformity of great apes and humans to the linear cellular scaling rules that apply to other primates that diverged earlier in primate evolution indicates that prehistoric Homo species as well as other hominins must have had brains that conformed to the same scaling rules, irrespective of their body size. We then used those scaling rules and published estimated brain volumes for various hominin species to predict the numbers of neurons that composed their brains. We predict that Homo heidelbergensis and Homo neanderthalensis had brains with approximately 80 billion neurons, within the range of variation found in modern Homo sapiens. We propose that while the cellular scaling rules that apply to the primate brain have remained stable in hominin evolution (since they

  10. Early evidence of the genus Homo in East Asia.

    PubMed

    Zhu, R X; Potts, R; Pan, Y X; Yao, H T; Lü, L Q; Zhao, X; Gao, X; Chen, L W; Gao, F; Deng, C L

    2008-12-01

    The timing and route of the earliest dispersal from Africa to Eastern Asia are contentious topics in the study of early human evolution because Asian hominin fossil sites with precise age constraints are very limited. Here we report new high-resolution magnetostratigraphic results that place stringent age controls on excavated hominin incisors and stone tools from the Yuanmou Basin, southwest China. The hominin-bearing layer resides in a reverse polarity magnetozone just above the upper boundary of the Olduvai subchron, yielding an estimated age of 1.7Ma. The finding represents the age of the earliest documented presence of Homo, with affinities to Homo erectus, in mainland East Asia. This age estimate is roughly the same as for H. erectus in island Southeast Asia and immediately prior to the oldest archaeological evidence in northeast Asia. Mammalian fauna and pollen obtained directly from the hominin site indicate that the Yuanmou hominins lived in a varied habitat of open vegetation with patches of bushland and forest on an alluvial fan close to a lake or swamp. The age and location are consistent with a rapid southern migration route of initial hominin populations into Eastern Asia.

  11. Mitochondrial COII sequences and modern human origins.

    PubMed

    Ruvolo, M; Zehr, S; von Dornum, M; Pan, D; Chang, B; Lin, J

    1993-11-01

    The aim of this study is to measure human mitochondrial sequence variability in the relatively slowly evolving mitochondrial gene cytochrome oxidase subunit II (COII) and to estimate when the human common ancestral mitochondrial type existed. New COII gene sequences were determined for five humans (Homo sapiens), including some of the most mitochondrially divergent humans known; for two pygmy chimpanzees (Pan paniscus); and for a common chimpanzee (P. troglodytes). COII sequences were analyzed with those from another relatively slowly evolving mitochondrial region (ND4-5). From class 1 (third codon position) sequence data, a relative divergence date for the human mitochondrial ancestor is estimated as 1/27 th of the human-chimpanzee divergence time. If it is assumed that humans and chimpanzees diverged 6 Mya, this places a human mitochondrial ancestor at 222,000 years, significantly different from 1 Myr (the presumed time of an H. erectus emergence from Africa). The mean coalescent time estimated from all 1,580 sites of combined mitochondrial data, when a 6-Mya human-chimpanzee divergence is assumed, is 298,000 years, with 95% confidence interval of 129,000-536,000 years. Neither estimate is compatible with a 1-Myr-old human mitochondrial ancestor. The mitochondrial DNA sequence data from COII and ND4-5 regions therefore do not support this multiregional hypothesis for the emergence of modern humans.

  12. Distinct patterns of mitochondrial genome diversity in bonobos (Pan paniscus) and humans

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background We have analyzed the complete mitochondrial genomes of 22 Pan paniscus (bonobo, pygmy chimpanzee) individuals to assess the detailed mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) phylogeny of this close relative of Homo sapiens. Results We identified three major clades among bonobos that separated approximately 540,000 years ago, as suggested by Bayesian analysis. Incidentally, we discovered that the current reference sequence for bonobo likely is a hybrid of the mitochondrial genomes of two distant individuals. When comparing spectra of polymorphic mtDNA sites in bonobos and humans, we observed two major differences: (i) Of all 31 bonobo mtDNA homoplasies, i.e. nucleotide changes that occurred independently on separate branches of the phylogenetic tree, 13 were not homoplasic in humans. This indicates that at least a part of the unstable sites of the mitochondrial genome is species-specific and difficult to be explained on the basis of a mutational hotspot concept. (ii) A comparison of the ratios of non-synonymous to synonymous changes (dN/dS) among polymorphic positions in bonobos and in 4902 Homo sapiens mitochondrial genomes revealed a remarkable difference in the strength of purifying selection in the mitochondrial genes of the F0F1-ATPase complex. While in bonobos this complex showed a similar low value as complexes I and IV, human haplogroups displayed 2.2 to 7.6 times increased dN/dS ratios when compared to bonobos. Conclusions Some variants of mitochondrially encoded subunits of the ATPase complex in humans very likely decrease the efficiency of energy conversion leading to production of extra heat. Thus, we hypothesize that the species-specific release of evolutionary constraints for the mitochondrial genes of the proton-translocating ATPase is a consequence of altered heat homeostasis in modern humans. PMID:20813043

  13. Distinct patterns of mitochondrial genome diversity in bonobos (Pan paniscus) and humans.

    PubMed

    Zsurka, Gábor; Kudina, Tatiana; Peeva, Viktoriya; Hallmann, Kerstin; Elger, Christian E; Khrapko, Konstantin; Kunz, Wolfram S

    2010-09-02

    We have analyzed the complete mitochondrial genomes of 22 Pan paniscus (bonobo, pygmy chimpanzee) individuals to assess the detailed mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) phylogeny of this close relative of Homo sapiens. We identified three major clades among bonobos that separated approximately 540,000 years ago, as suggested by Bayesian analysis. Incidentally, we discovered that the current reference sequence for bonobo likely is a hybrid of the mitochondrial genomes of two distant individuals. When comparing spectra of polymorphic mtDNA sites in bonobos and humans, we observed two major differences: (i) Of all 31 bonobo mtDNA homoplasies, i.e. nucleotide changes that occurred independently on separate branches of the phylogenetic tree, 13 were not homoplasic in humans. This indicates that at least a part of the unstable sites of the mitochondrial genome is species-specific and difficult to be explained on the basis of a mutational hotspot concept. (ii) A comparison of the ratios of non-synonymous to synonymous changes (dN/dS) among polymorphic positions in bonobos and in 4902 Homo sapiens mitochondrial genomes revealed a remarkable difference in the strength of purifying selection in the mitochondrial genes of the F0F1-ATPase complex. While in bonobos this complex showed a similar low value as complexes I and IV, human haplogroups displayed 2.2 to 7.6 times increased dN/dS ratios when compared to bonobos. Some variants of mitochondrially encoded subunits of the ATPase complex in humans very likely decrease the efficiency of energy conversion leading to production of extra heat. Thus, we hypothesize that the species-specific release of evolutionary constraints for the mitochondrial genes of the proton-translocating ATPase is a consequence of altered heat homeostasis in modern humans.

  14. Origin and primary dispersal of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis Beijing genotype: clues from human phylogeography.

    PubMed

    Mokrousov, Igor; Ly, Ho Minh; Otten, Tatiana; Lan, Nguyen Ngoc; Vyshnevskyi, Boris; Hoffner, Sven; Narvskaya, Olga

    2005-10-01

    We suggest that the evolution of the population structure of microbial pathogens is influenced by that of modern humans. Consequently, the timing of hallmark changes in bacterial genomes within the last 100,000 yr may be attempted by comparison with relevant human migrations. Here, we used a lineage within Mycobacterium tuberculosis, a Beijing genotype, as a model and compared its phylogeography with human demography and Y chromosome-based phylogeography. We hypothesize that two key events shaped the early history of the Beijing genotype: (1) its Upper Palaeolithic origin in the Homo sapiens sapiens K-M9 cluster in Central Asia, and (2) primary Neolithic dispersal of the secondary Beijing NTF::IS6110 lineage by Proto-Sino-Tibetan farmers within east Asia (human O-M214/M122 haplogroup). The independent introductions of the Beijing strains from east Asia to northern Eurasia and South Africa were likely historically recent, whereas their differential dissemination within these areas has been influenced by demographic and climatic factors.

  15. Starch Catabolism by a Prominent Human Gut Symbiont Is Directed by the Recognition of Amylose Helices

    SciTech Connect

    Koropatkin, Nicole M.; Martens, Eric C.; Gordon, Jeffrey I.; Smith, Thomas J.

    2009-01-12

    The human gut microbiota performs functions that are not encoded in our Homo sapiens genome, including the processing of otherwise undigestible dietary polysaccharides. Defining the structures of proteins involved in the import and degradation of specific glycans by saccharolytic bacteria complements genomic analysis of the nutrient-processing capabilities of gut communities. Here, we describe the atomic structure of one such protein, SusD, required for starch binding and utilization by Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron, a prominent adaptive forager of glycans in the distal human gut microbiota. The binding pocket of this unique {alpha}-helical protein contains an arc of aromatic residues that complements the natural helical structure of starch and imposes this conformation on bound maltoheptaose. Furthermore, SusD binds cyclic oligosaccharides with higher affinity than linear forms. The structures of several SusD/oligosaccharide complexes reveal an inherent ligand recognition plasticity dominated by the three-dimensional conformation of the oligosaccharides rather than specific interactions with the composite sugars.

  16. Bone remodeling of the Homo heidelbergensis mandible; the Atapuerca-SH sample.

    PubMed

    Rosas, Antonio; Martinez-Maza, Cayetana

    2010-02-01

    Growth by bone remodeling is one of the key mechanisms responsible for skeletal morphology. This mechanism consists of the coordinated activity of two cellular groups: osteoblasts and osteoclasts, which are responsible for bone deposition and resorption, respectively. Information obtained from the study of these remodeling growth fields allows us to understand how species-specific craniofacial form is achieved. These data can help to explain the facial growth differences among Primates, both extinct and extant. The aim of this study was to obtain the distribution of growth remodeling fields of the Homo heidelbergensis mandible (Atapuerca-SH sample), and to infer the growth processes responsible for its specific morphology. A Reflected Light Microscope (RLM) was used to identify the microfeatures of the bone surface related to bone deposition and resorption. Results show that H. heidelbergensis presents a specific growth field distribution, which differs slightly between immature and adult individuals. Interpretation of these maps indicates that the mandible of H. heidelbergensis presents noteworthy variability in the symphyseal region. Two distinct patterns of growth are seen, one of those unique for this species and the other similar to that of Homo sapiens. The lingual side of the mandibular corpus has a resorption area found only in this species and one that includes a variable extension in immature and adult individuals. Finally, the mandibular ramus is characterized, among other aspects, by a large resorption field on its buccal surface. Considering the mandible as a whole, the bone remodeling pattern obtained in this work shows that lower facial growth in H. heidelbergensis is dominated mainly by forward growth, illustrated by the strong inward displacement of the ramus, which is in agreement with the Enlow's "V" growth principle.

  17. Human evolution and cognition.

    PubMed

    Tattersall, Ian

    2010-09-01

    Human beings are distinguished from all other organisms by their symbolic way of processing information about the world. This unique cognitive style is qualitatively different from all the earlier hominid cognitive styles, and is not simply an improved version of them. The hominid fossil and archaeological records show clearly that biological and technological innovations have typically been highly sporadic, and totally out of phase, since the invention of stone tools some 2.5 million years ago. They also confirm that this pattern applied in the arrival of modern cognition: the anatomically recognizable species Homo sapiens was well established long before any population of it began to show indications of behaving symbolically. This places the origin of symbolic thought in the realms of exaptation, whereby new structures come into existence before being recruited to new uses, and of emergence, whereby entire new levels of complexity are achieved through new combinations of attributes unremarkable in themselves. Both these phenomena involve entirely routine evolutionary processes; special as we human beings may consider ourselves, there was nothing special about the way we came into existence. Modern human cognition is a very recent acquisition; and its emergence ushered in an entirely new pattern of technological (and other behavioral) innovation, in which constant change results from the ceaseless exploration of the potential inherent in our new capacity.

  18. Disproportionate Cochlear Length in Genus Homo Shows a High Phylogenetic Signal during Apes’ Hearing Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Braga, J.; Loubes, J-M.; Descouens, D.; Dumoncel, J.; Thackeray, J. F.; Kahn, J-L.; de Beer, F.; Riberon, A.; Hoffman, K.; Balaresque, P.; Gilissen, E.

    2015-01-01

    Changes in lifestyles and body weight affected mammal life-history evolution but little is known about how they shaped species’ sensory systems. Since auditory sensitivity impacts communication tasks and environmental acoustic awareness, it may have represented a deciding factor during mammal evolution, including apes. Here, we statistically measure the influence of phylogeny and allometry on the variation of five cochlear morphological features associated with hearing capacities across 22 living and 5 fossil catarrhine species. We find high phylogenetic signals for absolute and relative cochlear length only. Comparisons between fossil cochleae and reconstructed ape ancestral morphotypes show that Australopithecus absolute and relative cochlear lengths are explicable by phylogeny and concordant with the hypothetized ((Pan,Homo),Gorilla) and (Pan,Homo) most recent common ancestors. Conversely, deviations of the Paranthropus oval window area from these most recent common ancestors are not explicable by phylogeny and body weight alone, but suggest instead rapid evolutionary changes (directional selection) of its hearing organ. Premodern (Homo erectus) and modern human cochleae set apart from living non-human catarrhines and australopiths. They show cochlear relative lengths and oval window areas larger than expected for their body mass, two features corresponding to increased low-frequency sensitivity more recent than 2 million years ago. The uniqueness of the “hypertrophied” cochlea in the genus Homo (as opposed to the australopiths) and the significantly high phylogenetic signal of this organ among apes indicate its usefulness to identify homologies and monophyletic groups in the hominid fossil record. PMID:26083484

  19. Human Dispersals Along the African Rift Valley in the Late Quaternary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tryon, C. A.; Faith, J. T.; Peppe, D. J.

    2014-12-01

    Climate- and tectonic-driven environmental dynamics of the East African Rift System (EARS) during the Quaternary played an important role in the demographic history of early Homo sapiens, including expansions of modern humans across and out of Africa. Human forager population size, geographic range, and behaviors such as hunting strategies and residential mobility likely varied in response to changes in the local and regional environment. Throughout the Quaternary, floral and faunal change was linked at least in part to variations in moisture availability, temperature, and atmospheric CO2, which in addition to uplift and faulting, contributed to the expansion and contraction of a number of large lakes that served as biogeographic barriers to many taxa. This is particularly clear for the Lake Victoria basin, where biogeographic, geological, and paleontological evidence documents repeated expansion and contraction of the ranges of species in response to lake level and vegetation change. Across much of eastern Africa, the topography of the rift facilitated north-south dispersals, the timing of which may have depended in part on the expansion and contraction of the equatorial forest belt. Dispersal potential likely increased during the more arid periods of the late Quaternary, when the roles of lakes and forests as dispersal barriers was reduced and the extent of low net primary productivity dry grasslands increased, the latter requiring large home ranges for human foragers, conditions suitable for range expansions within H. sapiens.

  20. Evolution of Brain Active Gene Promoters in Human Lineage Towards the Increased Plasticity of Gene Regulation.

    PubMed

    Gunbin, Konstantin V; Ponomarenko, Mikhail P; Suslov, Valentin V; Gusev, Fedor; Fedonin, Gennady G; Rogaev, Evgeny I

    2017-02-24

    Adaptability to a variety of environmental conditions is a prominent feature of Homo sapiens. We hypothesize that this feature can be explained by evolutionary changes in gene promoters active in the brain prefrontal cortex leading to a more flexible gene regulation network. The genotype-dependent range of gene expression can be broader in humans than in other higher primates. Thus, we searched for specific signatures of evolutionary changes in promoter architectures of multiple hominid genes, including the genes active in human cortical neurons that may indicate an increase of variability of gene expression rather than just changes in the level of expression, such as downregulation or upregulation of the genes. We performed a whole-genome search for genetic-based alterations that may impact gene regulation "flexibility" in a process of hominids evolution, such as (i) CpG dinucleotide content, (ii) predicted nucleosome-DNA dissociation constant, and (iii) predicted affinities for TATA-binding protein (TBP) in gene promoters. We tested all putative promoter regions across the human genome and especially gene promoters in active chromatin state in neurons of prefrontal cortex, the brain region critical for abstract thinking and social and behavioral adaptation. Our data imply that the origin of modern man has been associated with an increase of flexibility of promoter-driven gene regulation in brain. In contrast, after splitting from the ancestral lineages of H. sapiens, the evolution of ape species is characterized by reduced flexibility of gene promoter functioning, underlying reduced variability of the gene expression.

  1. The Evolution of Human Longevity: Toward a Biocultural Theory.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mayer, Peter J.

    Homo sapiens is the only extant species for which there exists a significant post-reproductive period in the normal lifespan. Explanations for the evolution of this species-specific trait are possible through "non-deterministic" theories of aging positing "wear and tear" or the failure of nature to eliminate imperfection, or…

  2. The Evolution of Human Longevity: Toward a Biocultural Theory.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mayer, Peter J.

    Homo sapiens is the only extant species for which there exists a significant post-reproductive period in the normal lifespan. Explanations for the evolution of this species-specific trait are possible through "non-deterministic" theories of aging positing "wear and tear" or the failure of nature to eliminate imperfection, or…

  3. Geological and taphonomic context for the new hominin species Homo naledi from the Dinaledi Chamber, South Africa

    PubMed Central

    Dirks, Paul HGM; Berger, Lee R; Roberts, Eric M; Kramers, Jan D; Hawks, John; Randolph-Quinney, Patrick S; Elliott, Marina; Musiba, Charles M; Churchill, Steven E; de Ruiter, Darryl J; Schmid, Peter; Backwell, Lucinda R; Belyanin, Georgy A; Boshoff, Pedro; Hunter, K Lindsay; Feuerriegel, Elen M; Gurtov, Alia; Harrison, James du G; Hunter, Rick; Kruger, Ashley; Morris, Hannah; Makhubela, Tebogo V; Peixotto, Becca; Tucker, Steven

    2015-01-01

    We describe the physical context of the Dinaledi Chamber within the Rising Star cave, South Africa, which contains the fossils of Homo naledi. Approximately 1550 specimens of hominin remains have been recovered from at least 15 individuals, representing a small portion of the total fossil content. Macro-vertebrate fossils are exclusively H. naledi, and occur within clay-rich sediments derived from in situ weathering, and exogenous clay and silt, which entered the chamber through fractures that prevented passage of coarser-grained material. The chamber was always in the dark zone, and not accessible to non-hominins. Bone taphonomy indicates that hominin individuals reached the chamber complete, with disarticulation occurring during/after deposition. Hominins accumulated over time as older laminated mudstone units and sediment along the cave floor were eroded. Preliminary evidence is consistent with deliberate body disposal in a single location, by a hominin species other than Homo sapiens, at an as-yet unknown date. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.09561.001 PMID:26354289

  4. Shellfish gathering, marine paleoecology and modern human behavior: perspectives from cave PP13B, Pinnacle Point, South Africa.

    PubMed

    Jerardino, Antonieta; Marean, Curtis W

    2010-01-01

    Systematic collection of shellfish has been increasingly recognized as an important component of human adaptation to aquatic environments and as part of the archaeological evidence found in association with the appearance of early Homo sapiens. Over the last forty years, South Africa has played a prominent role in recording the earliest evidence of shellfish in and substantial expansion of the early human diets as shown by several Middle Stone Age (MSA) coastal sites along the west and south coasts. In this paper, we report on the abundance of marine invertebrate species from PP13B cave and interpret these abundances in terms of paleoenvironmental changes, the likely shellfish procurement behaviors involved in both rocky and sandy shore contexts, and the significance of the collection of marine shells for purposes other than food collection. Possible cognitive implications of shellfish gathering as a reflection of modern behavior are also suggested. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. A mandible from the Middle Pleistocene Hexian site and its significance in relation to the variability of Asian Homo erectus.

    PubMed

    Liu, Wu; Martinón-Torres, María; Kaifu, Yousuke; Wu, Xiujie; Kono, Reiko T; Chang, Chun-Hsiang; Wei, Pianpian; Xing, Song; Huang, Wanbo; Bermúdez de Castro, José María

    2017-04-01

    This study presents the first detailed morphological description and comparison of a Middle Pleistocene hominin mandibular fragment (PA 831) and associated teeth from the Hexian site in Eastern China. We aim to investigate where the Hexian mandible fits within the genus Homo variability in the light of an increased and better characterized Asian fossils record. Comparative samples include Pleistocene Homo mandibles and teeth from Africa, Asia, and Europe, as well as earlier African hominins (Australopithecus and early Homo) and Holocene recent humans. Both conventional morphological description and metric analysis were used. In addition, virtual reconstructions of the enamel dentine junction (EDJ) surface, pulp cavity, and roots with micro-CT were used to the mandible and teeth. The Hexian mandible is characterized by a plesiomorphic structural pattern for the Homo clade, with strong corpus robustness and a subparallel and low-positioned mylohyoid line that differentiates the swollen subalveolar planum from the shallow subalveolar fossa. Features that are derived compared to early Homo include a moderately curved dental arcade, a well-developed lateral prominence placed at the M2 -M3 level, and multiple mental foramina. The Hexian mandible's complex enamel surface and strong, stout root structure are primitive traits for the Homo clade. Finally, the highly crenulated "dendrite-like" EDJ found in the molars may represent a dental feature specific to the continental Asian Homo erectus, but more data is needed to confirm this. Mandibular and dental features indicate that the Hexian mandible and teeth differ from northern Chinese H. erectus and European Middle Pleistocene hominins, but show some affinities with the Early Pleistocene specimens from Africa (Homo ergaster) and Java (H. erectus), as well as the Middle-Late Pleistocene mandible from Penghu, Taiwan. Compared to contemporaneous continental Asian hominin populations, the Hexian fossils may represent the

  6. Evolution of human brain functions: the functional structure of human consciousness.

    PubMed

    Cloninger, C Robert

    2009-11-01

    The functional structure of self-aware consciousness in human beings is described based on the evolution of human brain functions. Prior work on heritable temperament and character traits is extended to account for the quantum-like and holographic properties (i.e. parts elicit wholes) of self-aware consciousness. Cladistic analysis is used to identify the succession of ancestors leading to human beings. The functional capacities that emerge along this lineage of ancestors are described. The ecological context in which each cladogenesis occurred is described to illustrate the shifting balance of evolution as a complex adaptive system. Comparative neuroanatomy is reviewed to identify the brain structures and networks that emerged coincident with the emergent brain functions. Individual differences in human temperament traits were well developed in the common ancestor shared by reptiles and humans. Neocortical development in mammals proceeded in five major transitions: from early reptiles to early mammals, early primates, simians, early Homo, and modern Homo sapiens. These transitions provide the foundation for human self-awareness related to sexuality, materiality, emotionality, intellectuality, and spirituality, respectively. The functional structure of human self-aware consciousness is concerned with the regulation of five planes of being: sexuality, materiality, emotionality, intellectuality, and spirituality. Each plane elaborates neocortical functions organized around one of the five special senses. The interactions among these five planes gives rise to a 5 x 5 matrix of subplanes, which are functions that coarsely describe the focus of neocortical regulation. Each of these 25 neocortical functions regulates each of five basic motives or drives that can be measured as temperaments or basic emotions related to fear, anger, disgust, surprise, and happiness/sadness. The resulting 5 x 5 x 5 matrix of human characteristics provides a general and testable model of the

  7. Impaired Air Conditioning within the Nasal Cavity in Flat-Faced Homo.

    PubMed

    Nishimura, Takeshi; Mori, Futoshi; Hanida, Sho; Kumahata, Kiyoshi; Ishikawa, Shigeru; Samarat, Kaouthar; Miyabe-Nishiwaki, Takako; Hayashi, Misato; Tomonaga, Masaki; Suzuki, Juri; Matsuzawa, Tetsuro; Matsuzawa, Teruo

    2016-03-01

    We are flat-faced hominins with an external nose that protrudes from the face. This feature was derived in the genus Homo, along with facial flattening and reorientation to form a high nasal cavity. The nasal passage conditions the inhaled air in terms of temperature and humidity to match the conditions required in the lung, and its anatomical variation is believed to be evolutionarily sensitive to the ambient atmospheric conditions of a given habitat. In this study, we used computational fluid dynamics (CFD) with three-dimensional topology models of the nasal passage under the same simulation conditions, to investigate air-conditioning performance in humans, chimpanzees, and macaques. The CFD simulation showed a horizontal straight flow of inhaled air in chimpanzees and macaques, contrasting with the upward and curved flow in humans. The inhaled air is conditioned poorly in humans compared with nonhuman primates. Virtual modifications to the human external nose topology, in which the nasal vestibule and valve are modified to resemble those of chimpanzees, change the airflow to be horizontal, but have little influence on the air-conditioning performance in humans. These findings suggest that morphological variation of the nasal passage topology was only weakly sensitive to the ambient atmosphere conditions; rather, the high nasal cavity in humans was formed simply by evolutionary facial reorganization in the divergence of Homo from the other hominin lineages, impairing the air-conditioning performance. Even though the inhaled air is not adjusted well within the nasal cavity in humans, it can be fully conditioned subsequently in the pharyngeal cavity, which is lengthened in the flat-faced Homo. Thus, the air-conditioning faculty in the nasal passages was probably impaired in early Homo members, although they have survived successfully under the fluctuating climate of the Plio-Pleistocene, and then they moved "Out of Africa" to explore the more severe climates of

  8. Impaired Air Conditioning within the Nasal Cavity in Flat-Faced Homo

    PubMed Central

    Nishimura, Takeshi; Mori, Futoshi; Hanida, Sho; Kumahata, Kiyoshi; Ishikawa, Shigeru; Samarat, Kaouthar; Miyabe-Nishiwaki, Takako; Hayashi, Misato; Tomonaga, Masaki; Suzuki, Juri; Matsuzawa, Tetsuro; Matsuzawa, Teruo

    2016-01-01

    We are flat-faced hominins with an external nose that protrudes from the face. This feature was derived in the genus Homo, along with facial flattening and reorientation to form a high nasal cavity. The nasal passage conditions the inhaled air in terms of temperature and humidity to match the conditions required in the lung, and its anatomical variation is believed to be evolutionarily sensitive to the ambient atmospheric conditions of a given habitat. In this study, we used computational fluid dynamics (CFD) with three-dimensional topology models of the nasal passage under the same simulation conditions, to investigate air-conditioning performance in humans, chimpanzees, and macaques. The CFD simulation showed a horizontal straight flow of inhaled air in chimpanzees and macaques, contrasting with the upward and curved flow in humans. The inhaled air is conditioned poorly in humans compared with nonhuman primates. Virtual modifications to the human external nose topology, in which the nasal vestibule and valve are modified to resemble those of chimpanzees, change the airflow to be horizontal, but have little influence on the air-conditioning performance in humans. These findings suggest that morphological variation of the nasal passage topology was only weakly sensitive to the ambient atmosphere conditions; rather, the high nasal cavity in humans was formed simply by evolutionary facial reorganization in the divergence of Homo from the other hominin lineages, impairing the air-conditioning performance. Even though the inhaled air is not adjusted well within the nasal cavity in humans, it can be fully conditioned subsequently in the pharyngeal cavity, which is lengthened in the flat-faced Homo. Thus, the air-conditioning faculty in the nasal passages was probably impaired in early Homo members, although they have survived successfully under the fluctuating climate of the Plio-Pleistocene, and then they moved “Out of Africa” to explore the more severe climates of

  9. New magnetostratigraphic dates of Lantian Homo erectus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhisheng, An; Kun, Ho Chuan

    1989-09-01

    Skeletal remains of Homo erectus found in Pleistocene loess at two sites near Lantian in central China are of greatly different geologic age. The cranium found in the fossil-bearing strata at Gongwangling is about 1.15 myr old whereas the remains found at the Chenjiawo locality in middle Pleistocene loess are about 0.65 myr old. The dating is based on new paleomagnetic polarity determinations and on the lithostratigraphic position of the fossils in the loess-paleosol sequence. Our results confirm that both localities are older than the first occupation of Zhoukoudian. New dates, palaeoenvironmental settings, and morphological features of the hominids from Lantian localities have significant bearing on the understanding of adaptive radiations of the middle and late hominids in Asia.

  10. Evolution and genomics of the human brain.

    PubMed

    Rosales-Reynoso, M A; Juárez-Vázquez, C I; Barros-Núñez, P

    2015-08-21

    Most living beings are able to perform actions that can be considered intelligent or, at the very least, the result of an appropriate reaction to changing circumstances in their environment. However, the intelligence or intellectual processes of humans are vastly superior to those achieved by all other species. The adult human brain is a highly complex organ weighing approximately 1500g, which accounts for only 2% of the total body weight but consumes an amount of energy equal to that required by all skeletal muscle at rest. Although the human brain displays a typical primate structure, it can be identified by its specific distinguishing features. The process of evolution and humanisation of the Homo sapiens brain resulted in a unique and distinct organ with the largest relative volume of any animal species. It also permitted structural reorganization of tissues and circuits in specific segments and regions. These steps explain the remarkable cognitive abilities of modern humans compared not only with other species in our genus, but also with older members of our own species. Brain evolution required the coexistence of two adaptation mechanisms. The first involves genetic changes that occur at the species level, and the second occurs at the individual level and involves changes in chromatin organisation or epigenetic changes. The genetic mechanisms include: a) genetic changes in coding regions that lead to changes in the sequence and activity of existing proteins; b) duplication and deletion of previously existing genes; c) changes in gene expression through changes in the regulatory sequences of different genes; and d) synthesis of non-coding RNAs. Lastly, this review describes some of the main documented chromosomal differences between humans and great apes. These differences have also contributed to the evolution and humanisation process of the H. sapiens brain.

  11. The evolutionary history of the hominin hand since the last common ancestor of Pan and Homo

    PubMed Central

    Tocheri, Matthew W; Orr, Caley M; Jacofsky, Marc C; Marzke, Mary W

    2008-01-01

    Molecular evidence indicates that the last common ancestor of the genus Pan and the hominin clade existed between 8 and 4 million years ago (Ma). The current fossil record indicates the Pan-Homo last common ancestor existed at least 5 Ma and most likely between 6 and 7 Ma. Together, the molecular and fossil evidence has important consequences for interpreting the evolutionary history of the hand within the tribe Hominini (hominins). Firstly, parsimony supports the hypothesis that the hand of the last common ancestor most likely resembled that of an extant great ape overall (Pan, Gorilla, and Pongo), and that of an African ape in particular. Second, it provides a context for interpreting the derived changes to the hand that have evolved in various hominins. For example, the Australopithecus afarensis hand is likely derived in comparison with that of the Pan–Homo last common ancestor in having shorter fingers relative to thumb length and more proximo-distally oriented joints between its capitate, second metacarpal, and trapezium. This evidence suggests that these derived features evolved prior to the intensification of stone tool-related hominin behaviors beginning around 2.5 Ma. However, a majority of primitive features most likely present in the Pan-Homo last common ancestor are retained in the hands of Australopithecus, Paranthropus/early Homo, and Homo floresiensis. This evidence suggests that further derived changes to the hands of other hominins such as modern humans and Neandertals did not evolve until after 2.5 Ma and possibly even later than 1.5 Ma, which is currently the earliest evidence of Acheulian technology. The derived hands of modern humans and Neandertals may indicate a morphological commitment to tool-related manipulative behaviors beyond that observed in other hominins, including those (e.g. H. floresiensis) which may be descended from earlier tool-making species. PMID:18380869

  12. Crystallization and preliminary X-ray crystallographic investigations on a betagamma-crystallin domain of absent in melanoma 1 (AIM1), a protein from Homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Aravind, Penmatsa; Rajini, Bheemreddy; Sharma, Yogendra; Sankaranarayanan, Rajan

    2006-03-01

    AIM1g1 is a single betagamma-crystallin domain from the protein absent in melanoma 1 (AIM1), which appears to play a role in the suppression of melanomas. This domain is known to bind calcium and its structure would help in identifying calcium-coordinating sites in vertebrate crystallins, which have hitherto been believed to have lost this ability during evolution. Crystallization of this domain was performed by the hanging-drop vapour-diffusion method. Crystals diffracted to a maximum resolution of 1.86 A and were found to belong to space group P6(1) or P6(5), with unit-cell parameters a = b = 54.98, c = 59.73 A. Solvent-content analysis indicated the presence of one monomer per asymmetric unit.

  13. In silico modification of Zn2+ binding group of suberoylanilide hydroxamic acid (SAHA) by organoselenium compounds as Homo sapiens class II HDAC inhibitor of cervical cancer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sumo Friend Tambunan, Usman; Bakri, Ridla; Aditya Parikesit, Arli; Ariyani, Titin; Dyah Puspitasari, Ratih; Kerami, Djati

    2016-02-01

    Cervical cancer is the most common cancer in women, and ranks seventh of all cancers worldwide, with 529000 cases in 2008 and more than 85% cases occur in developing countries. One way to treat this cancer is through the inhibition of HDAC enzymes which play a strategic role in the regulation of gene expression. Suberoyl Anilide Hydroxamic Acid (SAHA) or Vorinostat is a drug which commercially available to treat the cancer, but still has some side effects. This research present in silico SAHA modification in Zinc Binding Group (ZBG) by organoselenium compound to get ligands which less side effect. From molecular docking simulation, and interaction analysis, there are five best ligands, namely CC27, HA27, HB28, IB25, and KA7. These five ligands have better binding affinity than the standards, and also have interaction with Zn2+ cofactor of inhibited HDAC enzymes. This research is expected to produce more potent HDAC inhibitor as novel drug for cervical cancer treatment.

  14. [Natural toxins in inter- and intraspecies interaction of human being (elements of ethnotoxinology)].

    PubMed

    Gelashvili, D B

    2002-01-01

    The author considers the application of natural toxins as arrow poison by Homo sapiens from ancient time till today for hunting and ethnic wars on the example of natives of Asia, Africa, South America and Oceania. Geographic isolation was important determining the spectrum of natural toxin sources and the methods of their application. Cellular and molecular mechanisms of arrow poisons effects are considered in biogeographical context: aconitin and strychnin in Asia, diamphotoxin in Africa, indole alcaloids of plants and steroid alcaloids of amphibian in Central and South America, palytoxin in Oceania islands. High efficiency and selective effect of natural toxins allow to use them as molecular markers in current studies of functional membrane architecture and cellular structures. Great differences in pace of civilization development leads to the co-existence at the beginning of the XXI century ethnic groups that use natural toxins as arrow poison and human beings that use the same toxins in fundamental and applied investigations within international scientific society.

  15. Sexual dimorphism in Australopithecus afarensis was similar to that of modern humans.

    PubMed

    Reno, Philip L; Meindl, Richard S; McCollum, Melanie A; Lovejoy, C Owen

    2003-08-05

    The substantial fossil record for Australopithecus afarensis includes both an adult partial skeleton [Afar Locality (A.L.) 288-1, "Lucy"] and a large simultaneous death assemblage (A.L. 333). Here we optimize data derived from both to more accurately estimate skeletal size dimorphism. Postcranial ratios derived from A.L. 288-1 enable a significant increase in sample size compared with previous studies. Extensive simulations using modern humans, chimpanzees, and gorillas confirm that this technique is accurate and that skeletal size dimorphism in A. afarensis was most similar to that of contemporary Homo sapiens. These data eliminate some apparent discrepancies between the canine and skeletal size dimorphism in hominoids, imply that the species was not characterized by substantial sexual bimaturation, and greatly increase the probability that the reproductive strategy of A. afarensis was principally monogamy.

  16. Patterns of craniofacial integration in extant Homo, Pan, and Gorilla.

    PubMed

    Polanski, Joshua M; Franciscus, Robert G

    2006-09-01

    Brain size increased greatly during Pleistocene human evolution, while overall facial and dentognathic size decreased markedly. This mosaic pattern is due to either selective forces that acted uniquely on each functional unit in a modularized, developmentally uncoupled craniofacial complex, or alternatively, selection that acted primarily on one unit, with the other responding passively as part of a coevolved set of ontogenetically and evolutionarily integrated structures. Using conditional independence modeling on homologous linear measurements of the height, breadth, and depth of the cranium in Pan (n = 95), Gorilla (n = 102), and recent Homo (n = 120), we reject the null hypothesis of equal levels of overall cranial integration. While all three groups share the pattern of greater neurocranial integration with distinct separation between the face and neurocranium (modularization), family differences do exist. The apes are more integrated in their entire crania, but display a particularly strong pattern of integration within the facial complex related to prognathism. Modern humans display virtually no facial integration, a pattern which is likely related to their markedly decreased facial projection. Modern humans also differ from their great ape counterparts in being more integrated within the breadth dimension of the cranial vault, likely tied to the increase in brain size and eventual globularity seen in human evolution. That the modern human integration pattern differs from the ancestral African great ape pattern along the inverse neurocranial-facial trend seen in human evolution indicates that this shift in the pattern of integration is evolutionarily significant, and may help to clarify aspects of the current debate over defining modern humans. 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  17. Evidence of Probabilistic Behaviour in Protein Interaction Networks

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2008-01-31

    Evidence of degree-weighted connectivity in nine PPI networks. a, Homo sapiens (human); b, Drosophila melanogaster (fruit fly); c-e, Saccharomyces...illustrates maps for the networks of Homo sapiens and Dro- sophila melanogaster, while maps for the remaining net- works are provided in Additional file 2. As...protein-protein interaction networks. a, Homo sapiens ; b, Drosophila melanogaster. Distances shown as average shortest path lengths L(k1, k2) between

  18. Number of ancestral human species: a molecular perspective.

    PubMed

    Curnoe, D; Thorne, A

    2003-01-01

    Despite the remarkable developments in molecular biology over the past three decades, anthropological genetics has had only limited impact on systematics in human evolution. Genetics offers the opportunity to objectively test taxonomies based on morphology and may be used to supplement conventional approaches to hominid systematics. Our analyses, examining chromosomes and 46 estimates of genetic distance, indicate there may have been only around 4 species on the direct line to modern humans and 5 species in total. This contrasts with current taxonomies recognising up to 23 species. The genetic proximity of humans and chimpanzees has been used to suggest these species are congeneric. Our analysis of genetic distances between them is consistent with this proposal. It is time that chimpanzees, living humans and all fossil humans be classified in Homo. The creation of new genera can no longer be a solution to the complexities of fossil morphologies. Published genetic distances between common chimpanzees and bonobos, along with evidence for interbreeding, suggest they should be assigned to a single species. The short distance between humans and chimpanzees also places a strict limit on the number of possible evolutionary 'side branches' that might be recognised on the human lineage. All fossil taxa were genetically very close to each other and likely to have been below congeneric genetic distances seen for many mammals. Our estimates of genetic divergence suggest that periods of around 2 million years are required to produce sufficient genetic distance to represent speciation. Therefore, Neanderthals and so-called H. erectus were genetically so close to contemporary H. sapiens they were unlikely to have been separate species. Thus, it is likely there was only one species of human (H. sapiens) for most of the last 2 million years. We estimate the divergence time of H. sapiens from 16 genetic distances to be around 1.7 Ma which is consistent with evidence for the earliest

  19. Brief communication: An analysis of dental development in Pleistocene Homo using skeletal growth and chronological age.

    PubMed

    Šešelj, Maja

    2017-07-01

    This study takes a new approach to interpreting dental development in Pleistocene Homo in comparison with recent modern humans. As rates of dental development and skeletal growth are correlated given age in modern humans, using age and skeletal growth in tandem yields more accurate dental development estimates. Here, I apply these models to fossil Homo to obtain more individualized predictions and interpretations of their dental development relative to recent modern humans. Proportional odds logistic regression models based on three recent modern human samples (N = 181) were used to predict permanent mandibular tooth development scores in five Pleistocene subadults: Homo erectus/ergaster, Neanderthals, and anatomically modern humans (AMHs). Explanatory variables include a skeletal growth indicator (i.e., diaphyseal femoral length), and chronological age. AMHs Lagar Velho 1 and Qafzeh 10 share delayed incisor development, but exhibit considerable idiosyncratic variation within and across tooth types, relative to each other and to the reference samples. Neanderthals Dederiyeh 1 and Le Moustier 1 exhibit delayed incisor coupled with advanced molar development, but differences are reduced when femoral diaphysis length is considered. Dental development in KNM-WT 15,000 Homo erectus/ergaster, while advanced for his age, almost exactly matches the predictions once femoral length is included in the models. This study provides a new interpretation of dental development in KNM-WT 15000 as primarily reflecting his faster rates of skeletal growth. While the two AMH specimens exhibit considerable individual variation, the Neanderthals exhibit delayed incisor development early and advanced molar development later in ontogeny. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  20. Body proportions of Australopithecus afarensis and A. africanus and the origin of the genus Homo.

    PubMed

    McHenry, H M; Berger, L R

    1998-07-01

    New discoveries of A. africanus fossils from Member 4 Sterkfontein reveal a body form quite unlike earlier Australopithecus species. The new adult material consists of over 48 fore- and hindlimb specimens and includes an associated partial skeleton, Stw 431. The forelimbs and relatively large: the average size of their joints corresponds to a modern human with body mass of 53 kg. The hindlimbs are much smaller with an average size matching a modern human of only 33 kg. Analyses of the Stw 431 partial skeleton confirm these results. In contrast, A. afarensis and anamensis more closely approximate a human pattern of forelimb joint size. This is an unanticipated complication in our understanding of early human evolution. In general, craniodental morphology tracks time in species of Australopithecus: A. anamensis (3.5-4.1 Ma) is the the most primitive with a strongly sloping symphysis, large canine roots, etc., A. afarensis (3.0-3.6 Ma) is less primitive, and A. africanus (2.6-3.0 Ma) shares many derived characteristics with early Homo (e.g., expanded brain, reduced canine, bicuspid lower third premolar, reduced prognathism, greater flexion of the cranial base, deeper TMJ). the new postcranial material, however, reveals an apparently primitive morphology of relatively large forelimb and small hindlimb joints resembling more the pongid than the human pattern. More pongid-like proportions are also present in the two known associated partial skeletons of H. habilis (OH 62 KNM-ER 3735). This may imply either (1) that A. africanus and H. habilis evolved craniodental characters in parallel with the lineage leading to later Homo, or (2) that fore- to hindlimb proportions of A. afarensis (and perhaps A. anamensis) evolved independent of the lineage leading to Homo and does not imply a close phylogenetic link with Homo. Both of these explanations or any other phylogeny imply homoplasy.

  1. Protein Analysis of Sapienic Acid-Treated Porphyromonas gingivalis Suggests Differential Regulation of Multiple Metabolic Pathways

    PubMed Central

    Dawson, Deborah V.; Blanchette, Derek R.; Drake, David R.; Wertz, Philip W.; Brogden, Kim A.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Lipids endogenous to skin and mucosal surfaces exhibit potent antimicrobial activity against Porphyromonas gingivalis, an important colonizer of the oral cavity implicated in periodontitis. Our previous work demonstrated the antimicrobial activity of the fatty acid sapienic acid (C16:1Δ6) against P. gingivalis and found that sapienic acid treatment alters both protein and lipid composition from those in controls. In this study, we further examined whole-cell protein differences between sapienic acid-treated bacteria and untreated controls, and we utilized open-source functional association and annotation programs to explore potential mechanisms for the antimicrobial activity of sapienic acid. Our analyses indicated that sapienic acid treatment induces a unique stress response in P. gingivalis resulting in differential expression of proteins involved in a variety of metabolic pathways. This network of differentially regulated proteins was enriched in protein-protein interactions (P = 2.98 × 10−8), including six KEGG pathways (P value ranges, 2.30 × 10−5 to 0.05) and four Gene Ontology (GO) molecular functions (P value ranges, 0.02 to 0.04), with multiple suggestive enriched relationships in KEGG pathways and GO molecular functions. Upregulated metabolic pathways suggest increases in energy production, lipid metabolism, iron acquisition and processing, and respiration. Combined with a suggested preferential metabolism of serine, which is necessary for fatty acid biosynthesis, these data support our previous findings that the site of sapienic acid antimicrobial activity is likely at the bacterial membrane. IMPORTANCE P. gingivalis is an important opportunistic pathogen implicated in periodontitis. Affecting nearly 50% of the population, periodontitis is treatable, but the resulting damage is irreversible and eventually progresses to tooth loss. There is a great need for natural products that can be used to treat and/or prevent the overgrowth of

  2. PELDOR in rotationally symmetric homo-oligomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giannoulis, Angeliki; Ward, Richard; Branigan, Emma; Naismith, James H.; Bode, Bela E.

    2013-10-01

    Nanometre distance measurements by pulsed electron-electron double resonance (PELDOR) spectroscopy have become an increasingly important tool in structural biology. The theoretical underpinning of the experiment is well defined for systems containing two nitroxide spin-labels (spin pairs); however, recently experiments have been reported on homo-oligomeric membrane proteins consisting of up to eight spin-labelled monomers. We have explored the theory behind these systems by examining model systems based on multiple spins arranged in rotationally symmetric polygons. The results demonstrate that with a rising number of spins within the test molecule, increasingly strong distortions appear in distance distributions obtained from an analysis based on the simple spin pair approach. These distortions are significant over a range of system sizes and remain so even when random errors are introduced into the symmetry of the model. We present an alternative approach to the extraction of distances on such systems based on a minimisation that properly treats multi-spin correlations. We demonstrate the utility of this approach on a spin-labelled mutant of the heptameric Mechanosensitive Channel of Small Conductance of E. coli.

  3. Molar crown inner structural organization in Javanese Homo erectus.

    PubMed

    Zanolli, Clément

    2015-01-01

    This contribution investigates the inner organizational pattern (tooth tissue proportions and enamel-dentine junction morphology) of seven Homo erectus permanent molar crowns from the late Lower-early Middle Pleistocene Kabuh Formation of the Sangiran Dome (Central Java, Indonesia). The previous study of their external characteristics confirmed the degree of time-related structural reduction occurred in Javanese H. erectus, and also revealed a combination of nonmetric features which are rare in the Lower and early Middle Pleistocene dental record, but more frequently found in recent humans. In accordance with their outer occlusal morphology, the specimens exhibit a set of derived internal features, such as thick to hyperthick enamel, an incomplete expression of the crest patterns at the enamel-dentine junction (EDJ) level, a sharp EDJ topography. As a whole, these features differ from those expressed in some penecontemporaneous specimens/samples representing African H. erectus/ergaster and H. heidelbergensis, as well as in Neanderthals, but occur in recent human populations. Further research in virtual dental paleoanthropology to be developed at macroregional scale would clarify the polarity and intensity of the intermittent exchanges between continental and insular Southeast Asia around the Lower to Middle Pleistocene boundary, as well as should shed light on the still poorly understood longitudinal evolutionary dynamics across continental Asia.

  4. "H. Sapiens" as Ecologically Special: What Does Language Contribute?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ross, Don

    2007-01-01

    This paper inquires into the extent to which humans are specially constituted relative to other animals by their language. First a principled concept of evolutionary specialness is operationalized. Then it is agreed that humans satisfy the criteria for this sort of specialness in consequence of the kind of cultural evolution in which they have…

  5. "H. Sapiens" as Ecologically Special: What Does Language Contribute?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ross, Don

    2007-01-01

    This paper inquires into the extent to which humans are specially constituted relative to other animals by their language. First a principled concept of evolutionary specialness is operationalized. Then it is agreed that humans satisfy the criteria for this sort of specialness in consequence of the kind of cultural evolution in which they have…

  6. Evidence for a large double-cruciform DNA structure on the X chromosome of human and chimpanzee.

    PubMed

    Losch, Florian O; Bredenbeck, Anne; Hollstein, Verena M; Walden, Peter; Wrede, Paul

    2007-11-01

    The human X chromosome consists of a high number of large inverted repeat (IR) DNA sequences which fulfill all requirements for formation of cruciform DNA structures. Such alternative DNA structures are suggested to have a great impact in altering the chromatin architecture and function. Our comprehensive analysis of the corresponding orthologous nucleotide sequences of an IR sequence from Homo sapiens and Pan troglodytes revealed that most of the nucleotide differences between the two species are symmetrical to the apex of the IR, and that the spacer region of the orthologous IRs are in reverse orientation. We provide evidence that this IR forms a large non-B DNA structure containing two Holliday junctions, allowing intrastrand nucleotide pairing of the arms and interstrand pairing of the spacer region of the IR. This structure would extrude into a large double-cruciform DNA structure providing the molecular basis of translocation events and regulation of gene expression.

  7. Patterns of differences in brain morphology in humans as compared to extant apes

    PubMed Central

    Aldridge, Kristina

    2010-01-01

    Although human evolution is characterized by a vast increase in brain size, it is not clear whether or not certain regions of the brain are enlarged disproportionately in humans, or how this enlargement relates to differences in overall neural morphology. The aim of this study is to determine whether or not there are specific suites of features that distinguish the morphology of the human brain from that of apes. The study sample consists of whole brain, in vivo magnetic resonance images (MRIs) of anatomically modern humans (Homo sapiens sapiens) and five ape species (gibbons, orangutans, gorillas, chimpanzees, bonobos). Twenty-nine 3D landmarks, including surface and internal features of the brain were located on 3D MRI reconstructions of each individual using MEASURE software. Landmark coordinate data were scaled for differences in size and analyzed using Euclidean Distance Matrix Analysis (EDMA) to statistically compare the brains of each non-human ape species to the human sample. Results of analyses show both a pattern of brain morphology that is consistently different between all apes and humans, as well as patterns that differ among species. Further, both the consistent and species-specific patterns include cortical and subcortical features. The pattern that remains consistent across species indicates a morphological reorganization of 1) relationships between cortical and subcortical frontal structures, 2) expansion of the temporal lobe and location of the amygdala, and 3) expansion of the anterior parietal region. Additionally, results demonstrate that, although there is a pattern of morphology that uniquely defines the human brain, there are also patterns that uniquely differentiate human morphology from the morphology of each non-human ape species, indicating that reorganization of neural morphology occurred at the evolutionary divergence of each of these groups. PMID:21056456

  8. Reconstructing recent human evolution.

    PubMed

    Stringer, C B

    1992-08-29

    The two most distinct models of recent human evolution, the multiregional and the recent African origin models, have different retrodictions concerning specific archaic-recent population relationships. The former model infers multiple regional archaic-modern connections and the ancient establishment of regional characteristics, whereas the latter model implies only an African archaic-all modern relationship, with recent (late Pleistocene) development of regionality. In this paper, four late archaic groups from Europe, southwest Asia, Africa and East Asia are compared with various fossil and recent Homo sapiens crania or cranial samples. The results of Penrose shape comparisons narrowly favour a late archaic African-modern special relationship over an East Asian-modern one, with European and southwest Asian Neanderthal groups much more distant. No specific archaic-recent regional relationships are indicated in the shape analyses, nor in separate examinations of patterns of regionality, which indicate a recent origin for present day regionality. The Skhul-Qafzeh sample provides an excellent shape intermediate between the archaic and recent samples.

  9. Race and the odd history of human paleontology.

    PubMed

    Schwartz, Jeffrey H

    2006-11-01

    Although the late 17th century witnessed the recognition of fossils as the remains of extinct organisms-because they could be incorporated into the creation story embodied in the Great Chain of Being-acceptance of human antiquity through the indisputable demonstration of the contemporaneity of human bones, stone tools, and accepted fossils was not forthcoming for nearly 2 centuries thereafter. When it did occur, however, ancient humans were not seen as presenting a pattern of diversity similar to that seen in the fossil records of nonhuman organisms. Instead, human evolution then, as now, has typically been interpreted as being unilinear. This belief can be traced to Huxley (1863), who argued that the Feldhofer Grotto Neanderthal skullcap was merely an extension into the past of morphology seen in the Australian Aborigine, whom he took to represent the primitive end of an extreme range of variation he thought characterized Homo sapiens. During the mid-20th century, Mayr and Dobzhansky (mis)used their clout as founders of the evolutionary synthesis to cement in paleoanthropology the idea that human evolutionary history was characterized by nonspeciation. As such, anything that could be interpreted as potentially representing taxic diversity was relegated to the status of individual variation. Lack of understanding of the history of human paleontology, and the biases that constrained its perspective on human evolution, continue to affect the ways in which most paleoanthropologists pigeonhole human fossils.

  10. Descriptions of the lower limb skeleton of Homo floresiensis.

    PubMed

    Jungers, W L; Larson, S G; Harcourt-Smith, W; Morwood, M J; Sutikna, T; Due Awe, Rokhus; Djubiantono, T

    2009-11-01

    Bones of the lower extremity have been recovered for up to nine different individuals of Homo floresiensis - LB1, LB4, LB6, LB8, LB9, LB10, LB11, LB13, and LB14. LB1 is represented by a bony pelvis (damaged but now repaired), femora, tibiae, fibulae, patellae, and numerous foot bones. LB4/2 is an immature right tibia lacking epiphyses. LB6 includes a fragmentary metatarsal and two pedal phalanges. LB8 is a nearly complete right tibia (shorter than that of LB1). LB9 is a fragment of a hominin femoral diaphysis. LB10 is a proximal hallucal phalanx. LB11 includes pelvic fragments and a fragmentary metatarsal. LB13 is a patellar fragment, and LB14 is a fragment of an acetabulum. All skeletal remains recovered from Liang Bua were extremely fragile, and some were badly damaged when they were removed temporarily from Jakarta. At present, virtually all fossil materials have been returned, stabilized, and hardened. These skeletal remains are described and illustrated photographically. The lower limb skeleton exhibits a uniquely mosaic pattern, with many primitive-like morphologies; we have been unable to find this combination of ancient and derived (more human-like) features in either healthy or pathological modern humans, regardless of body size. Bilateral asymmetries are slight in the postcranium, and muscle markings are clearly delineated on all bones. The long bones are robust, and the thickness of their cortices is well within the ranges seen in healthy modern humans. LB1 is most probably a female based on the shape of her greater sciatic notch, and the marked degree of lateral iliac flaring recalls that seen in australopithecines such as "Lucy" (AL 288-1). The metatarsus has a human-like robusticity formula, but the proximal pedal phalanges are relatively long and robust (and slightly curved). The hallux is fully adducted, but we suspect that a medial longitudinal arch was absent.

  11. The Stem Species of Our Species: A Place for the Archaic Human Cranium from Ceprano, Italy

    PubMed Central

    Mounier, Aurélien; Condemi, Silvana; Manzi, Giorgio

    2011-01-01

    One of the present challenges in the study of human evolution is to recognize the hominin taxon that was ancestral to Homo sapiens. Some researchers regard H. heidelbergensis as the stem species involved in the evolutionary divergence leading to the emergence of H. sapiens in Africa, and to the evolution of the Neandertals in Europe. Nevertheless, the diagnosis and hypodigm of H. heidelbergensis still remain to be clarified. Here we evaluate the morphology of the incomplete cranium (calvarium) known as Ceprano whose age has been recently revised to the mid of the Middle Pleistocene, so as to test whether this specimen may be included in H. heidelbergensis. The analyses were performed according to a phenetic routine including geometric morphometrics and the evaluation of diagnostic discrete traits. The results strongly support the uniqueness of H. heidelbergensis on a wide geographical horizon, including both Eurasia and Africa. In this framework, the Ceprano calvarium – with its peculiar combination of archaic and derived traits – may represent, better than other penecontemporaneous specimens, an appropriate ancestral stock of this species, preceding the appearance of regional autapomorphic features. PMID:21533096

  12. The stem species of our species: a place for the archaic human cranium from Ceprano, Italy.

    PubMed

    Mounier, Aurélien; Condemi, Silvana; Manzi, Giorgio

    2011-04-20

    One of the present challenges in the study of human evolution is to recognize the hominin taxon that was ancestral to Homo sapiens. Some researchers regard H. heidelbergensis as the stem species involved in the evolutionary divergence leading to the emergence of H. sapiens in Africa, and to the evolution of the Neandertals in Europe. Nevertheless, the diagnosis and hypodigm of H. heidelbergensis still remain to be clarified. Here we evaluate the morphology of the incomplete cranium (calvarium) known as Ceprano whose age has been recently revised to the mid of the Middle Pleistocene, so as to test whether this specimen may be included in H. heidelbergensis. The analyses were performed according to a phenetic routine including geometric morphometrics and the evaluation of diagnostic discrete traits. The results strongly support the uniqueness of H. heidelbergensis on a wide geographical horizon, including both Eurasia and Africa. In this framework, the Ceprano calvarium--with its peculiar combination of archaic and derived traits--may represent, better than other penecontemporaneous specimens, an appropriate ancestral stock of this species, preceding the appearance of regional autapomorphic features.

  13. SAPIENS: Spreading Activation Processor for Information Encoded in Network Structures. Technical Report No. 296.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ortony, Andrew; Radin, Dean I.

    The product of researchers' efforts to develop a computer processor which distinguishes between relevant and irrelevant information in the database, Spreading Activation Processor for Information Encoded in Network Structures (SAPIENS) exhibits (1) context sensitivity, (2) efficiency, (3) decreasing activation over time, (4) summation of…

  14. Shared pattern of endocranial shape asymmetries among great apes, anatomically modern humans, and fossil hominins.

    PubMed

    Balzeau, Antoine; Gilissen, Emmanuel; Grimaud-Hervé, Dominique

    2011-01-01

    Anatomical asymmetries of the human brain are a topic of major interest because of their link with handedness and cognitive functions. Their emergence and occurrence have been extensively explored in human fossil records to document the evolution of brain capacities and behaviour. We quantified for the first time antero-posterior endocranial shape asymmetries in large samples of great apes, modern humans and fossil hominins through analysis of "virtual" 3D models of skull and endocranial cavity and we statistically test for departures from symmetry. Once based on continuous variables, we show that the analysis of these brain asymmetries gives original results that build upon previous analysis based on discrete traits. In particular, it emerges that the degree of petalial asymmetries differs between great apes and hominins without modification of their pattern. We indeed demonstrate the presence of shape asymmetries in great apes, with a pattern similar to modern humans but with a lower variation and a lower degree of fluctuating asymmetry. More importantly, variations in the position of the frontal and occipital poles on the right and left hemispheres would be expected to show some degree of antisymmetry when population distribution is considered, but the observed pattern of variation among the samples is related to fluctuating asymmetry for most of the components of the petalias. Moreover, the presence of a common pattern of significant directional asymmetry for two components of the petalias in hominids implicates that the observed traits were probably inherited from the last common ancestor of extant African great apes and Homo sapiens.These results also have important implications for the possible relationships between endocranial shape asymmetries and functional capacities in hominins. It emphasizes the uncoupling between lateralized activities, some of them well probably distinctive to Homo, and large-scale cerebral lateralization itself, which is not unique

  15. An earlier origin for stone tool making: implications for cognitive evolution and the transition to Homo.

    PubMed

    Lewis, Jason E; Harmand, Sonia

    2016-07-05

    The discovery of the earliest known stone tools at Lomekwi 3 (LOM3) from West Turkana, Kenya, dated to 3.3 Ma, raises new questions about the mode and tempo of key adaptations in the hominin lineage. The LOM3 tools date to before the earliest known fossils attributed to Homo at 2.8 Ma. They were made and deposited in a more C3 environment than were the earliest Oldowan tools at 2.6 Ma. Their discovery leads to renewed investigation on the timing of the emergence of human-like manipulative capabilities in early hominins and implications for reconstructing cognition. The LOM3 artefacts form part of an emerging paradigm shift in palaeoanthropology, in which: tool-use and tool-making behaviours are not limited to the genus Homo; cranial, post-cranial and behavioural diversity in early Homo is much wider than previously thought; and these evolutionary changes may not have been direct adaptations to living in savannah grassland environments.This article is part of the themed issue 'Major transitions in human evolution'. © 2016 The Author(s).

  16. Ontogeny and phylogeny of the pelvis in Gorilla, Pongo, Pan, Australopithecus and Homo.

    PubMed

    Williams, Frank L'engle; Orban, Rosine

    2007-01-01

    To examine the evolutionary differences between hominoid locomotor systems, a number of observations concerning the growth of the pelvis among the great apes as compared to modern and fossil hominids are reported. We are interested in the size and shape of the coxal bones at different developmental stages across species that may elucidate the relationship between ontogeny and phylogeny (i.e., heterochrony) in the hominoid pelvis. Our hypotheses are: (1) do rates of absolute growth differ?, (2) do rates of relative growth differ?, and (3) does heterochrony explain these differences? Bivariate and multivariate analyses of pelvic dimensions demonstrate both the diversity of species-specific ontogenetic patterns among hominoids, and an unequivocal separation of hominids and the great apes. Heterochrony alone fails to account for the ontogenetic differences between hominids and the great apes. Compared to recent Homo,Australopithecus can be described as 'hyper-human' from the relative size of the ischium, and short but broad ilium. Australopithecus afarensis differs from Australopithecus africanus by its relatively long pubis. In multivariate analyses of ilium shape, the most complete coxal bone attributed to Homo erectus, KNM-ER 3228, falls within the range of juvenile and adult Australopithecus, whereas Broken Hill falls within the range of modern Homo, suggesting that the modern human ilium shape arose rather recently. Among the great apes, patterns of pelvic ontogeny do not exclusively separate the African apes from Pongo.

  17. Characterizing the Evolutionary Path(s) to Early Homo

    PubMed Central

    Schroeder, Lauren; Roseman, Charles C.; Cheverud, James M.; Ackermann, Rebecca R.

    2014-01-01

    Numerous studies suggest that the transition from Australopithecus to Homo was characterized by evolutionary innovation, resulting in the emergence and coexistence of a diversity of forms. However, the evolutionary processes necessary to drive such a transition have not been examined. Here, we apply statistical tests developed from quantitative evolutionary theory to assess whether morphological differences among late australopith and early Homo species in Africa have been shaped by natural selection. Where selection is demonstrated, we identify aspects of morphology that were most likely under selective pressure, and determine the nature (type, rate) of that selection. Results demonstrate that selection must be invoked to explain an Au. africanus—Au. sediba—Homo transition, while transitions from late australopiths to various early Homo species that exclude Au. sediba can be achieved through drift alone. Rate tests indicate that selection is largely directional, acting to rapidly differentiate these taxa. Reconstructions of patterns of directional selection needed to drive the Au. africanus—Au. sediba—Homo transition suggest that selection would have affected all regions of the skull. These results may indicate that an evolutionary path to Homo without Au. sediba is the simpler path and/or provide evidence that this pathway involved more reliance on cultural adaptations to cope with environmental change. PMID:25470780

  18. Human occupation of the Arabian Empty Quarter during MIS 5: evidence from Mundafan Al-Buhayrah, Saudi Arabia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Groucutt, Huw S.; White, Tom S.; Clark-Balzan, Laine; Parton, Ash; Crassard, Rémy; Shipton, Ceri; Jennings, Richard P.; Parker, Adrian G.; Breeze, Paul S.; Scerri, Eleanor M. L.; Alsharekh, Abdullah; Petraglia, Michael D.

    2015-07-01

    The Empty Quarter (or Rub' al Khali) of the Arabian Peninsula is the largest continuous sandy desert in the world. It has been known for several decades that Late Pleistocene and Holocene deposits, representing phases of wetter climate, are preserved there. These sequences have yielded palaeontological evidence in the form of a variety of vertebrate and invertebrate fossils and have been dated using various radiometric techniques. However, evidence for human presence during these wetter phases has until now been ephemeral. Here, we report on the first stratified and dated archaeology from the Empty Quarter, recovered from the site of Mundafan Al-Buhayrah (MDF-61). Human occupation at the site, represented by stone tools, has been dated to the later part of Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 5 using multiple luminescence dating techniques (multigrain and single grain OSL, TT-OSL). The sequence consists primarily of lacustrine and palustrine sediments, from which evidence for changing local environmental conditions has been obtained through analysis of fossil assemblages (phytoliths and non-marine molluscs and ostracods). The discovery of securely-dated archaeological material at ∼100 to 80 ka in the Empty Quarter has important implications for hypotheses concerning the timing and routes of dispersal of Homo sapiens out of Africa, which have been much debated. Consequently, the data presented here fill a crucial gap in palaeoenvironmental and archaeological understanding of the southern Arabian interior. Fossils of H. sapiens in the Levant, also dated to MIS 5, together with Middle Palaeolithic archaeological sites in Arabia and India are thought to represent the earliest dispersal of our species out of Africa. We suggest that the widespread occurrence of similar lithic technologies across southern Asia, coupled with a growing body of evidence for environmental amelioration across the Saharo-Arabian belt, indicates that occupation of the Levant by H. sapiens during MIS 5

  19. A modern human pattern of dental development in Lower Pleistocene hominids from Atapuerca-TD6 (Spain)

    PubMed Central

    Bermúdez de Castro, J. M.; Rosas, A.; Carbonell, E.; Nicolás, M. E.; Rodríguez, J.; Arsuaga, J. L.

    1999-01-01

    The study of life history evolution in hominids is crucial for the discernment of when and why humans have acquired our unique maturational pattern. Because the development of dentition is critically integrated into the life cycle in mammals, the determination of the time and pattern of dental development represents an appropriate method to infer changes in life history variables that occurred during hominid evolution. Here we present evidence derived from Lower Pleistocene human fossil remains recovered from the TD6 level (Aurora stratum) of the Gran Dolina site in the Sierra de Atapuerca, northern Spain. These hominids present a pattern of development similar to that of Homo sapiens, although some aspects (e.g., delayed M3 calcification) are not as derived as that of European populations and people of European origin. This evidence, taken together with the present knowledge of cranial capacity of these and other late Early Pleistocene hominids, supports the view that as early as 0.8 Ma at least one Homo species shared with modern humans a prolonged pattern of maturation. PMID:10097189

  20. A modern human pattern of dental development in lower pleistocene hominids from Atapuerca-TD6 (Spain).

    PubMed

    Bermúdez de Castro, J M; Rosas, A; Carbonell, E; Nicolás, M E; Rodríguez, J; Arsuaga, J L

    1999-03-30

    The study of life history evolution in hominids is crucial for the discernment of when and why humans have acquired our unique maturational pattern. Because the development of dentition is critically integrated into the life cycle in mammals, the determination of the time and pattern of dental development represents an appropriate method to infer changes in life history variables that occurred during hominid evolution. Here we present evidence derived from Lower Pleistocene human fossil remains recovered from the TD6 level (Aurora stratum) of the Gran Dolina site in the Sierra de Atapuerca, northern Spain. These hominids present a pattern of development similar to that of Homo sapiens, although some aspects (e.g., delayed M3 calcification) are not as derived as that of European populations and people of European origin. This evidence, taken together with the present knowledge of cranial capacity of these and other late Early Pleistocene hominids, supports the view that as early as 0.8 Ma at least one Homo species shared with modern humans a prolonged pattern of maturation.

  1. The Hominin Sites and Paleolakes Drilling Project: inferring the environmental context of human evolution from eastern African rift lake deposits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cohen, A.; Campisano, C.; Arrowsmith, R.; Asrat, A.; Behrensmeyer, A. K.; Deino, A.; Feibel, C.; Hill, A.; Johnson, R.; Kingston, J.; Lamb, H.; Lowenstein, T.; Noren, A.; Olago, D.; Owen, R. B.; Potts, R.; Reed, K.; Renaut, R.; Schäbitz, F.; Tiercelin, J.-J.; Trauth, M. H.; Wynn, J.; Ivory, S.; Brady, K.; O'Grady, R.; Rodysill, J.; Githiri, J.; Russell, J.; Foerster, V.; Dommain, R.; Rucina, S.; Deocampo, D.; Russell, J.; Billingsley, A.; Beck, C.; Dorenbeck, G.; Dullo, L.; Feary, D.; Garello, D.; Gromig, R.; Johnson, T.; Junginger, A.; Karanja, M.; Kimburi, E.; Mbuthia, A.; McCartney, T.; McNulty, E.; Muiruri, V.; Nambiro, E.; Negash, E. W.; Njagi, D.; Wilson, J. N.; Rabideaux, N.; Raub, T.; Sier, M. J.; Smith, P.; Urban, J.; Warren, M.; Yadeta, M.; Yost, C.; Zinaye, B.

    2016-02-01

    The role that climate and environmental history may have played in influencing human evolution has been the focus of considerable interest and controversy among paleoanthropologists for decades. Prior attempts to understand the environmental history side of this equation have centered around the study of outcrop sediments and fossils adjacent to where fossil hominins (ancestors or close relatives of modern humans) are found, or from the study of deep sea drill cores. However, outcrop sediments are often highly weathered and thus are unsuitable for some types of paleoclimatic records, and deep sea core records come from long distances away from the actual fossil and stone tool remains. The Hominin Sites and Paleolakes Drilling Project (HSPDP) was developed to address these issues. The project has focused its efforts on the eastern African Rift Valley, where much of the evidence for early hominins has been recovered. We have collected about 2 km of sediment drill core from six basins in Kenya and Ethiopia, in lake deposits immediately adjacent to important fossil hominin and archaeological sites. Collectively these cores cover in time many of the key transitions and critical intervals in human evolutionary history over the last 4 Ma, such as the earliest stone tools, the origin of our own genus Homo, and the earliest anatomically modern Homo sapiens. Here we document the initial field, physical property, and core description results of the 2012-2014 HSPDP coring campaign.

  2. The taxonomic implications of cranial shape variation in Homo erectus.

    PubMed

    Baab, Karen L

    2008-06-01

    The taxonomic status of Homo erectus sensu lato has been a source of debate since the early 1980s, when a series of publications suggested that the early African fossils may represent a separate species, H. ergaster. To gain further resolution regarding this debate, 3D geometric morphometric data were used to quantify overall shape variation in the cranial vault within H. erectus using a new metric, the sum of squared pairwise Procrustes distances (SSD). Bootstrapping methods were used to compare the H. erectus SSD to a broad range of human and nonhuman primate samples in order to ascertain whether variation in H. erectus most clearly resembles that seen in one or more species. The reference taxa included relevant phylogenetic, ecological, and temporal analogs including humans, apes, and both extant and extinct papionin monkeys. The mean cranial shapes of different temporogeographic subsets of H. erectus fossils were then tested for significance using exact randomization tests and compared to the distances between regional groups of modern humans and subspecies/species of the ape and papionin monkey taxa. To gauge the influence of sexual dimorphism on levels of variation, comparisons were also made between the mean cranial shapes of single-sex samples for the reference taxa. Results indicate that variation in H. erectus is most comparable to single species of papionin monkeys and the genus Pan, which included two species. However, H. erectus encompasses a limited range of variation given its extensive geographic and temporal range, leading to the conclusion that only one species should be recognized. In addition, there are significant differences between the African/Georgian and Asian H. erectus samples, but not between H. ergaster (Georgia+Africa, excluding OH 9 and Daka) and H. erectus sensu stricto. This finding is in line with expectations for intraspecific variation in a long-lived species with a wide, but probably discontinuous, geographic distribution.

  3. Glycan structure and site of glycosylation in the ER-resident glycoprotein, uridine 5'-diphosphate-glucose: glycoprotein glucosyltransferases 1 from rat, porcine, bovine, and human.

    PubMed

    Daikoku, Shusaku; Seko, Akira; Ito, Yukishige; Kanie, Osamu

    2014-08-29

    Here we report glycan structures and their position of attachment to a carrier protein, uridine 5'-diphosphate-glucose: glycoprotein glucosyltransferase (UGGT1), as detected using tandem mass spectrometry. UGGT1 acts as a folding sensor of newly synthesized glycosylated polypeptides in the endoplasmic reticulum, and the transferase itself is known to be glycosylated. The structure of glycan attached to UGGT1, however, has not been investigated. In this study, we reveal the site of glycosylation (N269) and the glycan structures (Hex5-8HexNAc2) in UGGT1 obtained from rat (Rattus norvegicus), pig (Sus scrofa), cow (Bos taurus), and human (Homo sapiens). Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Exosomes in Development and Therapy of Malignant Mesothelioma

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-09-01

    homolog OS=Homo sapiens GN=PXDN PE=1 SV=2 sp|Q92626|PXDN_HUMAN 60 kDa heat shock protein , mitochondrial OS=Homo sapiens GN=HSPD1 PE=1 SV=2 CH60_HUMAN...2 SV=1 Q5VZU9_HUMAN Transitional endoplasmic reticulum ATPase OS=Homo sapiens GN=VCP PE=1 SV=4 TERA_HUMAN Cluster of Heterochromatin protein 1-binding... protein 3 OS=Homo sapiens GN=HP1BP3 PE=1 SV=1 (sp|Q5SSJ5|HP1B3_HUMAN) sp|Q5SSJ5|HP1B3_HUMAN [2] Thrombospondin-1 OS=Homo sapiens GN=THBS1 PE=1 SV=2

  5. Human talus bones from the Middle Pleistocene site of Sima de los Huesos (Sierra de Atapuerca, Burgos, Spain).

    PubMed

    Pablos, Adrián; Martínez, Ignacio; Lorenzo, Carlos; Gracia, Ana; Sala, Nohemi; Arsuaga, Juan Luis

    2013-07-01

    Here we present and describe comparatively 25 talus bones from the Middle Pleistocene site of the Sima de los Huesos (SH) (Sierra de Atapuerca, Burgos, Spain). These tali belong to 14 individuals (11 adult and three immature). Although variation among Middle and Late Pleistocene tali tends to be subtle, this study has identified unique morphological characteristics of the SH tali. They are vertically shorter than those of Late Pleistocene Homo sapiens, and show a shorter head and a broader lateral malleolar facet than all of the samples. Moreover, a few shared characters with Neanderthals are consistent with the hypothesis that the SH population and Neanderthals are sister groups. These shared characters are a broad lateral malleolar facet, a trochlear height intermediate between modern humans and Late Pleistocene H. sapiens, and a short middle calcaneal facet. It has been possible to propose sex assignment for the SH tali based on their size. Stature estimates based on these fossils give a mean stature of 174.4 cm for males and 161.9 cm for females, similar to that obtained based on the long bones from this same site. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Radiometric dating of the type-site for Homo heidelbergensis at Mauer, Germany.

    PubMed

    Wagner, Günther A; Krbetschek, Matthias; Degering, Detlev; Bahain, Jean-Jacques; Shao, Qingfeng; Falguères, Christophe; Voinchet, Pierre; Dolo, Jean-Michel; Garcia, Tristan; Rightmire, G Philip

    2010-11-16

    The Mauer mandible, holotype of Homo heidelbergensis, was found in 1907 in fluvial sands deposited by the Neckar River 10 km southeast of Heidelberg, Germany. The fossil is an important key to understanding early human occupation of Europe north of the Alps. Given the associated mammal fauna and the geological context, the find layer has been placed in the early Middle Pleistocene, but confirmatory chronometric evidence has hitherto been missing. Here we show that two independent techniques, the combined electron spin resonance/U-series method used with mammal teeth and infrared radiofluorescence applied to sand grains, date the type-site of Homo heidelbergensis at Mauer to 609 ± 40 ka. This result demonstrates that the mandible is the oldest hominin fossil reported to date from central and northern Europe and raises questions concerning the phyletic relationship of Homo heidelbergensis to more ancient populations documented from southern Europe and in Africa. We address the paleoanthropological significance of the Mauer jaw in light of this dating evidence.

  7. From Darwinian to technological evolution: forgetting the human lottery.

    PubMed

    Tintino, Giorgio

    2014-01-01

    The GRIN technologies (-geno, -robo, -info, -nano) promise to change the inner constitution of human body and its own existence. This transformation involves the structure of our lives and represent a brave new world that we have to explore and to manage. In this sense, the traditional tools of humanism seems very inadequate to think the biotech century and there is a strong demand of a new thought for the evolution and the concrete history of life. The posthuman philosophy tries to take this new path of human existence in all of its novelty since GRIN technologies seem to promise new and unexpected paths of evolution to living beings and, above all, man. For this, the post-human thought, as we see, is a new anthropological overview on the concrete evolution of human being, an overview that involves an epistemological revolution of the categories that humanism uses to conceptualize the journey that divides the Homo sapiens from the man. But, is this right?

  8. Taphonomy of the Tianyuandong human skeleton and faunal remains.

    PubMed

    Fernández-Jalvo, Yolanda; Andrews, Peter; Tong, HaoWen

    2015-06-01

    Tianyuan Cave is an Upper Palaeolithic site, 6 km from the core area of the Zhoukoudian Site Complex. Tianyuandong (or Tianyuan Cave) yielded one ancient (though not the earliest) fossil skeleton of Homo sapiens in China (42-39 ka cal BP). Together with the human skeleton, abundant animal remains were found, but no stone tools were recovered. The animal fossil remains are extremely fragmentary, in contrast to human skeletal elements that are, for the most part, complete. We undertook a taphonomic study to investigate the circumstances of preservation of the human skeleton in Tianyuan Cave, and in course of this we considered four hypotheses: funerary ritual, cannibalism, carnivore activity or natural death. Taphonomic results characterize the role of human action in the site and how these agents acted in the past. Because of disturbance of the human skeleton during its initial excavation, it is not known if it was in a grave cut or if there was any funerary ritual. No evidence was found for cannibalism or carnivore activity in relation to the human skeleton, suggesting natural death as the most reasonable possibility. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. The mitochondrial Italian Human Proteome Project initiative (mt-HPP).

    PubMed

    Urbani, Andrea; De Canio, Michele; Palmieri, Ferdinando; Sechi, Salvatore; Bini, Luca; Castagnola, Massimo; Fasano, Mauro; Modesti, Alessandra; Roncada, Paola; Timperio, Anna Maria; Bonizzi, Luigi; Brunori, Maurizio; Cutruzzolà, Francesca; De Pinto, Vito; Di Ilio, Carmine; Federici, Giorgio; Folli, Franco; Foti, Salvatore; Gelfi, Cecilia; Lauro, Davide; Lucacchini, Antonio; Magni, Fulvio; Messana, Irene; Pandolfi, Pier Paolo; Papa, Sergio; Pucci, Piero; Sacchetta, Paolo

    2013-08-01

    Mitochondria carry maternally inherited genetic material, called the mitochondrial genome (mtDNA), which can be defined as the 25th human chromosome. The chromosome-centric Human Proteome Project (c-HPP) has initially focused its activities addressing the characterization and quantification of the nuclear encoded proteins. Following the last International HUPO Congress in Boston (September 2012) it was clear that however small the mitochondrial chromosome is, it plays an important role in many biological and physiopathological functions. Mutations in the mtDNA have been shown to be associated with dozens of unexplained disorders and the information contained in the mtDNA should be of major relevance to the understanding of many human diseases. Within this paper we describe the Italian initiative of the Human Proteome Project dedicated to mitochondria as part of both programs: chromosome-centric (c-HPP) and Biology/Disease (B/D-HPP). The mt-HPP has finally shifted the attention of the HUPO community outside the nuclear chromosomes with the general purpose to highlight the mitochondrial processes influencing the human health. Following this vision and considering the large interest and evidence collected on the non-Mendelian heredity of Homo sapiens associated with mt-chromosome and with the microbial commensal ecosystem constituting our organism we may speculate that this program will represent an initial step toward other HPP initiatives focusing on human phenotypic heredity.

  10. The Menengai Tuff: A 36 ka widespread tephra and its chronological relevance to Late Pleistocene human evolution in East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blegen, Nick; Brown, Francis H.; Jicha, Brian R.; Binetti, Katie M.; Faith, J. Tyler; Ferraro, Joseph V.; Gathogo, Patrick N.; Richardson, Jonathan L.; Tryon, Christian A.

    2016-11-01

    The East African Rift preserves the world's richest Middle and Late Pleistocene (∼780-12 ka) geological, archaeological and paleontological archives relevant to the emergence of Homo sapiens. This region also provides unparalleled chronological control for many important sites through tephrochronology, the dating and correlation of volcanic ashes as widespread isochronous markers in the geological record. There are many well-characterized Pliocene-Early Pleistocene tephras that are widespread across East Africa. A comparable framework is lacking for the Middle and Late Pleistocene; a period characterized by spatially and temporally complex patterns of climate change, as well as the emergence of modern Homo sapiens and the dispersal of this species across and out of Africa. Unraveling relationships among these spatial and temporally complex phenomena requires a precise chronology. To this end we report the Menengai Tuff, a widespread volcanic ash produced by the large-scale caldera-forming eruption in Kenya and 40Ar/39Ar dated to 35.62 ± 0.26 ka. Geochemical characterization of 565 glass shards from 36 samples by wavelength-dispersive electron probe microanalysis show the Menengai Tuff was deposited over >115,000 km2 and is found in the Baringo, Chalbi, Elmenteita, Nakuru, Olorgesailie, Turkana, and Victoria basins, all of which preserve rich Late Pleistocene paleoenvironmental and archaeological archives. Correlation and dating of the Menengai Tuff demonstrate that it is the most widespread tephra and largest eruption currently known from the Late Pleistocene of East Africa. As such, it is a valuable marker in establishing a Late Pleistocene chronology for paleoclimatic, archeological, and paleontological records relevant to the study of human evolution.

  11. Out of Africa: modern human origins special feature: middle and later Pleistocene hominins in Africa and Southwest Asia.

    PubMed

    Rightmire, G Philip

    2009-09-22

    Approximately 700,000 years ago, Homo erectus in Africa was giving way to populations with larger brains accompanied by structural adjustments to the vault, cranial base, and face. Such early Middle Pleistocene hominins were not anatomically modern. Their skulls display strong supraorbital tori above projecting faces, flattened frontals, and less parietal expansion than is the case for Homo sapiens. Postcranial remains seem also to have archaic features. Subsequently, some groups evolved advanced skeletal morphology, and by ca. 200,000 years ago, individuals more similar to recent humans are present in the African record. These fossils are associated with Middle Stone Age lithic assemblages and, in some cases, Acheulean tools. Crania from Herto in Ethiopia carry defleshing cutmarks and superficial scoring that may be indicative of mortuary practices. Despite these signs of behavioral innovation, neither the Herto hominins, nor others from Late Pleistocene sites such as Klasies River in southern Africa and Skhūl/Qafzeh in Israel, can be matched in living populations. Skulls are quite robust, and it is only after approximately 35,000 years ago that people with more gracile, fully modern morphology make their appearance. Not surprisingly, many questions concerning this evolutionary history have been raised. Attention has centered on systematics of the mid-Pleistocene hominins, their paleobiology, and the timing of dispersals that spread H. sapiens out of Africa and across the Old World. In this report, I discuss structural changes characterizing the skulls from different time periods, possible regional differences in morphology, and the bearing of this evidence on recognizing distinct species.

  12. Gas-phase Dissociation of homo-DNA Oligonucleotides

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stucki, Silvan R.; Désiron, Camille; Nyakas, Adrien; Marti, Simon; Leumann, Christian J.; Schürch, Stefan

    2013-12-01

    Synthetic modified oligonucleotides are of interest for diagnostic and therapeutic applications, as their biological stability, pairing selectivity, and binding strength can be considerably increased by the incorporation of unnatural structural elements. Homo-DNA is an oligonucleotide homologue based on dideoxy-hexopyranosyl sugar moieties, which follows the Watson-Crick A-T and G-C base pairing system, but does not hybridize with complementary natural DNA and RNA. Homo-DNA has found application as a bioorthogonal element in templated chemistry applications. The gas-phase dissociation of homo-DNA has been investigated by ESI-MS/MS and MALDI-MS/MS, and mechanistic aspects of its gas-phase dissociation are discussed. Experiments revealed a charge state dependent preference for the loss of nucleobases, which are released either as neutrals or as anions. In contrast to DNA, nucleobase loss from homo-DNA was found to be decoupled from backbone cleavage, thus resulting in stable products. This renders an additional stage of ion activation necessary in order to generate sequence-defining fragment ions. Upon MS3 of the primary base-loss ion, homo-DNA was found to exhibit unspecific backbone dissociation resulting in a balanced distribution of all fragment ion series.

  13. Heterochronic processes in human evolution: an ontogenetic analysis of the hominid pelvis.

    PubMed

    Berge, C

    1998-04-01

    Changes in pelvic shape in human ontogeny and hominid phylogeny suggest that the heterochronic processes involved differ greatly from the neotenic process traditionally described in the evolution of the skull. The morphology of 150 juvenile and adult pelves of African apes, 60 juvenile and adult pelves of modern humans, two adult pelves and a juvenile hip bone of australopithecines (Sts 14, AL 288, MLD 7) was studied. Multivariate results, ontogenetic allometries, and growth curves confirm that the pelvic growth pattern in humans differs markedly from those of the African apes. The results permit the following conclusions. First, the appearance of a new feature (acetabulo-cristal buttress and cristal tubercle) at the time of human birth allows the addition of traits, such as the attainment of a proportionally narrower pelvis, with more sagittally positioned iliac blades. Pelvic proportions and orientation change progressively in early childhood as bipedalism is practiced. Other changes in pelvic proportions occur later with the adolescent growth spurt. Second, comparison of juvenile and adult australopithecines to modern humans indicates that 1) some pelvic traits of adult Australopithecus resemble those of neonate Homo; 2) the pelvic growth of Australopithecus was probably closer to that of apes, than to that of humans; and 3) prolonged growth in length of hindlimb and pelvis after sexual maturity seems to be a unique feature of Homo. The position of the acetabulo-cristal buttress and of the cristal tubercle on the ilium are similar in adult Australopithecus and neonate Homo suggesting that this feature may have been displaced later during hominid evolution. Progressive displacement of the acetabulo-cristal buttress on the ilium occurs both during hominid evolution (from Australopithecus to Homo sapiens) and human growth (from neonate to adult). This suggests peramorphic evolution of the pelvic morphology of hominids combining three processes of recapitulation

  14. Evolutionary reversals of limb proportions in early hominids? Evidence from KNM-ER 3735 (Homo habilis).

    PubMed

    Haeusler, Martin; McHenry, Henry M

    2007-10-01

    Upper-to-lower limb proportions of Homo habilis are often said to be more ape-like than those of its reputed ancestor, Australopithecus afarensis. Such proportions would either imply multiple evolutionary reversals or parallel development of a relatively short upper limb in A. afarensis and later Homo. However, assessments of limb proportions are complicated by the fragmentary nature of the two known H. habilis skeletons, OH 62 and KNM-ER 3735. Initially, KNM-ER 3735 was compared to A.L. 288-1 (A. afarensis) using a single modern human and chimpanzee as reference. Here, based on a larger comparative sample, we find that the relative size of the distal humerus, radial head, and shaft of both KNM-ER 3735 and A.L. 288-1 lie within the range of variation of modern humans, whereas their sacra are small as is the case for all early hominids. In addition, their manual phalanges are similar in having a gracile base but robust midshaft. Contrary to earlier studies, the fossils are not differentiable from each other statistically with respect to all features listed above. On the other hand, they differ in robusticity of the scapular spine and relative length of the radial neck. An exact randomization test suggests only a very low probability of finding a similar degree of difference within a single species of extant hominoids. In contrast to the consensus view, we conclude that A.L. 288-1 had a short, human-like forearm, whereas KNM-ER 3735 possessed a distinctly longer forearm and more powerful shoulder girdle. This interpretation fits with earlier conclusions that suggested human-like humerofemoral proportions but chimpanzee-like brachial proportions for Homo habilis. Thus, the scenario of a unidirectional, progressive change in limb proportions within the hominid lineage is not supported by our work.

  15. A Critical Evaluation of the Down Syndrome Diagnosis for LB1, Type Specimen of Homo floresiensis

    PubMed Central

    Baab, Karen L.; Brown, Peter; Falk, Dean; Richtsmeier, Joan T.; Hildebolt, Charles F.; Smith, Kirk; Jungers, William

    2016-01-01

    The Liang Bua hominins from Flores, Indonesia, have been the subject of intense scrutiny and debate since their initial description and classification in 2004. These remains have been assigned to a new species, Homo floresiensis, with the partial skeleton LB1 as the type specimen. The Liang Bua hominins are notable for their short stature, small endocranial volume, and many features that appear phylogenetically primitive relative to modern humans, despite their late Pleistocene age. Recently, some workers suggested that the remains represent members of a small-bodied island population of modern Austro-Melanesian humans, with LB1 exhibiting clinical signs of Down syndrome. Many classic Down syndrome signs are soft tissue features that could not be assessed in skeletal remains. Moreover, a definitive diagnosis of Down syndrome can only be made by genetic analysis as the phenotypes associated with Down syndrome are variable. Most features that contribute to the Down syndrome phenotype are not restricted to Down syndrome but are seen in other chromosomal disorders and in the general population. Nevertheless, we re-evaluated the presence of those phenotypic features used to support this classification by comparing LB1 to samples of modern humans diagnosed with Down syndrome and euploid modern humans using comparative morphometric analyses. We present new data regarding neurocranial, brain, and symphyseal shape in Down syndrome, additional estimates of stature for LB1, and analyses of inter- and intralimb proportions. The presence of cranial sinuses is addressed using CT images of LB1. We found minimal congruence between the LB1 phenotype and clinical descriptions of Down syndrome. We present important differences between the phenotypes of LB1 and individuals with Down syndrome, and quantitative data that characterize LB1 as an outlier compared with Down syndrome and non-Down syndrome groups. Homo floresiensis remains a phenotypically unique, valid species with its roots

  16. A Critical Evaluation of the Down Syndrome Diagnosis for LB1, Type Specimen of Homo floresiensis.

    PubMed

    Baab, Karen L; Brown, Peter; Falk, Dean; Richtsmeier, Joan T; Hildebolt, Charles F; Smith, Kirk; Jungers, William

    2016-01-01

    The Liang Bua hominins from Flores, Indonesia, have been the subject of intense scrutiny and debate since their initial description and classification in 2004. These remains have been assigned to a new species, Homo floresiensis, with the partial skeleton LB1 as the type specimen. The Liang Bua hominins are notable for their short stature, small endocranial volume, and many features that appear phylogenetically primitive relative to modern humans, despite their late Pleistocene age. Recently, some workers suggested that the remains represent members of a small-bodied island population of modern Austro-Melanesian humans, with LB1 exhibiting clinical signs of Down syndrome. Many classic Down syndrome signs are soft tissue features that could not be assessed in skeletal remains. Moreover, a definitive diagnosis of Down syndrome can only be made by genetic analysis as the phenotypes associated with Down syndrome are variable. Most features that contribute to the Down syndrome phenotype are not restricted to Down syndrome but are seen in other chromosomal disorders and in the general population. Nevertheless, we re-evaluated the presence of those phenotypic features used to support this classification by comparing LB1 to samples of modern humans diagnosed with Down syndrome and euploid modern humans using comparative morphometric analyses. We present new data regarding neurocranial, brain, and symphyseal shape in Down syndrome, additional estimates of stature for LB1, and analyses of inter- and intralimb proportions. The presence of cranial sinuses is addressed using CT images of LB1. We found minimal congruence between the LB1 phenotype and clinical descriptions of Down syndrome. We present important differences between the phenotypes of LB1 and individuals with Down syndrome, and quantitative data that characterize LB1 as an outlier compared with Down syndrome and non-Down syndrome groups. Homo floresiensis remains a phenotypically unique, valid species with its roots

  17. RNA editing differently affects protein-coding genes in D. melanogaster and H. sapiens

    PubMed Central

    Grassi, Luigi; Leoni, Guido; Tramontano, Anna

    2015-01-01

    When an RNA editing event occurs within a coding sequence it can lead to a different encoded amino acid. The biological significance of these events remains an open question: they can modulate protein functionality, increase the complexity of transcriptomes or arise from a loose specificity of the involved enzymes. We analysed the editing events in coding regions that produce or not a change in the encoded amino acid (nonsynonymous and synonymous events, respectively) in D. melanogaster and in H. sapiens and compared them with the appropriate random models. Interestingly, our results show that the phenomenon has rather different characteristics in the two organisms. For example, we confirm the observation that editing events occur more frequently in non-coding than in coding regions, and report that this effect is much more evident in H. sapiens. Additionally, in this latter organism, editing events tend to affect less conserved residues. The less frequently occurring editing events in Drosophila tend to avoid drastic amino acid changes. Interestingly, we find that, in Drosophila, changes from less frequently used codons to more frequently used ones are favoured, while this is not the case in H. sapiens. PMID:26169954

  18. RNA editing differently affects protein-coding genes in D. melanogaster and H. sapiens.

    PubMed

    Grassi, Luigi; Leoni, Guido; Tramontano, Anna

    2015-07-14

    When an RNA editing event occurs within a coding sequence it can lead to a different encoded amino acid. The biological significance of these events remains an open question: they can modulate protein functionality, increase the complexity of transcriptomes or arise from a loose specificity of the involved enzymes. We analysed the editing events in coding regions that produce or not a change in the encoded amino acid (nonsynonymous and synonymous events, respectively) in D. melanogaster and in H. sapiens and compared them with the appropriate random models. Interestingly, our results show that the phenomenon has rather different characteristics in the two organisms. For example, we confirm the observation that editing events occur more frequently in non-coding than in coding regions, and report that this effect is much more evident in H. sapiens. Additionally, in this latter organism, editing events tend to affect less conserved residues. The less frequently occurring editing events in Drosophila tend to avoid drastic amino acid changes. Interestingly, we find that, in Drosophila, changes from less frequently used codons to more frequently used ones are favoured, while this is not the case in H. sapiens.

  19. Transaortic Transcatheter Aortic valve implantation using Edwards Sapien valve: a novel approach.

    PubMed

    Bapat, Vinayak; Khawaja, Muhammed Z; Attia, Rizwan; Narayana, Ashok; Wilson, Karen; Macgillivray, Kirsty; Young, Christopher; Hancock, Jane; Redwood, Simon; Thomas, Martyn

    2012-04-01

    To evaluate feasibility and outcome of Transoartic Transcatheter Sapien valve implantation. Transcatheter Aortic valve implantation (TAVI) using the Edwards SAPIEN device (Edwards LifeScience, Irvine, CA) is usually performed via the transfemoral (TF) or transapical (TA) routes. Some patients are not suitable for these approaches. We report our experience with the novel transaortic (TAo) approach via a partial upper sternotomy and discuss the advantages and future applications. Between January 2008 to March 2011 193 patients with severe aortic stenosis underwent TAVI with the Edwards SAPIEN bioprosthesis at the St. Thomas' Hospital, London. 108 patients were unable to undergo a TF-TAVI and of those 17 were accepted for a TAo-TAVI on the basis of anatomy, risk, LV function, and significant respiratory disease. The TAo-TAVI group (n = 17) had more prevalent respiratory disease than the TA-TAVI group (47.0% vs. 18.7%, P = 0.011). Otherwise the groups were similar in demographics and history. Despite this the 30 day mortalities were not significantly different between the groups (TAo-TAVI 4.3% at 30 days versus TA-TAVI 7.7%, P = 0.670). There were no significant differences in procedural complications. The TA-TAVI approach may not be desirable in patients with severe chest deformity, poor lung function or poor left ventricular function. TAo-TAVI via a partial sternotomy is safe and feasible in these patients. Copyright © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  20. Middle Pleistocene lower back and pelvis from an aged human individual from the Sima de los Huesos site, Spain

    PubMed Central

    Bonmatí, Alejandro; Gómez-Olivencia, Asier; Arsuaga, Juan-Luis; Carretero, José Miguel; Gracia, Ana; Martínez, Ignacio; Lorenzo, Carlos; Bérmudez de Castro, José María; Carbonell, Eudald

    2010-01-01

    We report a nearly complete lumbar spine from the Middle Pleistocene site of the Sima de los Huesos (SH) that is assigned to the previously published SH male Pelvis 1 [Arsuaga JL, et al. (1999). Nature 399: 255–258]. The “SH Pelvis 1 individual” is a unique nearly complete lumbo-pelvic complex from the human Middle Pleistocene fossil record, and offers a rare glimpse into the anatomy and past lifeways of Homo heidelbergensis. A revised reconstruction of Pelvis 1, together with the current fossil evidence, confirms our previous hypothesis that the morphology of this pelvis represents the primitive pattern within the genus Homo. Here we argue that this primitive pattern is also characterized by sexual dimorphism in the pelvic canal shape, implying complicated deliveries. In addition, this individual shows signs of lumbar kyphotic deformity, spondylolisthesis, and Baastrup disease. This suite of lesions would have postural consequences and was most likely painful. As a result, the individual’s daily physical activities would have been restricted to some extent. Reexamination of the age-at-death agrees with this individual being over 45 y old, relying on the modern human pattern of changes of the articular surfaces of the os coxae. The presence of degenerative pathological lesions and the advanced age-at-death of this individual make it the most ancient postcranial evidence of an aged individual in the human fossil record. Additional nonpathological SH lumbo-pelvic remains are consistent with previous hypotheses, suggesting a less-pronounced sagittal spinal curvature in Neandertals compared with Homo sapiens. PMID:20937858

  1. Middle Pleistocene lower back and pelvis from an aged human individual from the Sima de los Huesos site, Spain.

    PubMed

    Bonmatí, Alejandro; Gómez-Olivencia, Asier; Arsuaga, Juan-Luis; Carretero, José Miguel; Gracia, Ana; Martínez, Ignacio; Lorenzo, Carlos; Bérmudez de Castro, José María; Carbonell, Eudald

    2010-10-26

    We report a nearly complete lumbar spine from the Middle Pleistocene site of the Sima de los Huesos (SH) that is assigned to the previously published SH male Pelvis 1 [Arsuaga JL, et al. (1999). Nature 399: 255-258]. The "SH Pelvis 1 individual" is a unique nearly complete lumbo-pelvic complex from the human Middle Pleistocene fossil record, and offers a rare glimpse into the anatomy and past lifeways of Homo heidelbergensis. A revised reconstruction of Pelvis 1, together with the current fossil evidence, confirms our previous hypothesis that the morphology of this pelvis represents the primitive pattern within the genus Homo. Here we argue that this primitive pattern is also characterized by sexual dimorphism in the pelvic canal shape, implying complicated deliveries. In addition, this individual shows signs of lumbar kyphotic deformity, spondylolisthesis, and Baastrup disease. This suite of lesions would have postural consequences and was most likely painful. As a result, the individual's daily physical activities would have been restricted to some extent. Reexamination of the age-at-death agrees with this individual being over 45 y old, relying on the modern human pattern of changes of the articular surfaces of the os coxae. The presence of degenerative pathological lesions and the advanced age-at-death of this individual make it the most ancient postcranial evidence of an aged individual in the human fossil record. Additional nonpathological SH lumbo-pelvic remains are consistent with previous hypotheses, suggesting a less-pronounced sagittal spinal curvature in Neandertals compared with Homo sapiens.

  2. The integration hypothesis of human language evolution and the nature of contemporary languages.

    PubMed

    Miyagawa, Shigeru; Ojima, Shiro; Berwick, Robert C; Okanoya, Kazuo

    2014-01-01

    How human language arose is a mystery in the evolution of Homo sapiens. Miyagawa et al. (2013) put forward a proposal, which we will call the Integration Hypothesis of human language evolution, that holds that human language is composed of two components, E for expressive, and L for lexical. Each component has an antecedent in nature: E as found, for example, in birdsong, and L in, for example, the alarm calls of monkeys. E and L integrated uniquely in humans to give rise to language. A challenge to the Integration Hypothesis is that while these non-human systems are finite-state in nature, human language is known to require characterization by a non-finite state grammar. Our claim is that E and L, taken separately, are in fact finite-state; when a grammatical process crosses the boundary between E and L, it gives rise to the non-finite state character of human language. We provide empirical evidence for the Integration Hypothesis by showing that certain processes found in contemporary languages that have been characterized as non-finite state in nature can in fact be shown to be finite-state. We also speculate on how human language actually arose in evolution through the lens of the Integration Hypothesis.

  3. The integration hypothesis of human language evolution and the nature of contemporary languages

    PubMed Central

    Miyagawa, Shigeru; Ojima, Shiro; Berwick, Robert C.; Okanoya, Kazuo

    2014-01-01

    How human language arose is a mystery in the evolution of Homo sapiens. Miyagawa et al. (2013) put forward a proposal, which we will call the Integration Hypothesis of human language evolution, that holds that human language is composed of two components, E for expressive, and L for lexical. Each component has an antecedent in nature: E as found, for example, in birdsong, and L in, for example, the alarm calls of monkeys. E and L integrated uniquely in humans to give rise to language. A challenge to the Integration Hypothesis is that while these non-human systems are finite-state in nature, human language is known to require characterization by a non-finite state grammar. Our claim is that E and L, taken separately, are in fact finite-state; when a grammatical process crosses the boundary between E and L, it gives rise to the non-finite state character of human language. We provide empirical evidence for the Integration Hypothesis by showing that certain processes found in contemporary languages that have been characterized as non-finite state in nature can in fact be shown to be finite-state. We also speculate on how human language actually arose in evolution through the lens of the Integration Hypothesis. PMID:24936195

  4. The social side of Homo economicus.

    PubMed

    Rankin, Daniel J

    2011-01-01

    Many recent experiments in the field of behavioural economics appear to demonstrate a willingness of humans to behave altruistically, even when it is not in their interest to do so. This has led to the assertion that humans have evolved a special predisposition towards altruism. Recent studies have questioned this, and demonstrated that selfless cooperation does not hold up in controlled experiments. As I discuss here, this calls for more economic 'field experiments' and highlights the need for greater integration of the evolutionary and economic sciences.

  5. Deep Haplotype Divergence and Long-Range Linkage Disequilibrium at Xp21.1 Provide Evidence That Humans Descend From a Structured Ancestral Population

    PubMed Central

    Garrigan, Daniel; Mobasher, Zahra; Kingan, Sarah B.; Wilder, Jason A.; Hammer, Michael F.

    2005-01-01

    Fossil evidence links human ancestry with populations that evolved from modern gracile morphology in Africa 130,000–160,000 years ago. Yet fossils alone do not provide clear answers to the question of whether the ancestors of all modern Homo sapiens comprised a single African population or an amalgamation of distinct archaic populations. DNA sequence data have consistently supported a single-origin model in which anatomically modern Africans expanded and completely replaced all other archaic hominin populations. Aided by a novel experimental design, we present the first genetic evidence that statistically rejects the null hypothesis that our species descends from a single, historically panmictic population. In a global sample of 42 X chromosomes, two African individuals carry a lineage of noncoding 17.5-kb sequence that has survived for >1 million years without any clear traces of ongoing recombination with other lineages at this locus. These patterns of deep haplotype divergence and long-range linkage disequilibrium are best explained by a prolonged period of ancestral population subdivision followed by relatively recent interbreeding. This inference supports human evolution models that incorporate admixture between divergent African branches of the genus Homo. PMID:15937130

  6. Comparison of Edwards SAPIEN 3 versus SAPIEN XT in transfemoral transcatheter aortic valve implantation: Difference of valve selection in the real world.

    PubMed

    Arai, Takahide; Lefèvre, Thierry; Hovasse, Thomas; Morice, Marie-Claude; Garot, Philippe; Benamer, Hakim; Unterseeh, Thierry; Hayashida, Kentaro; Watanabe, Yusuke; Bouvier, Erik; Cormier, Bertrand; Chevalier, Bernard

    2017-03-01

    The SAPIEN 3 (S3; Edwards Lifescience, Irvine, CA, USA) is a new-generation percutaneous aortic valve with better profile, more precise handling and positioning, designed to reduce the risk of post-procedural paravalvular aortic leak (PVL). The aim of this study was to compare the S3 valve and SAPIEN XT valve (SXT). The last 89 transfemoral transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI) cases using SXT were compared to the first 111 cases using the S3. Patient age and logistic EuroSCORE were similar (83.1 years vs 83.0 years and 18.2% vs 16.6%) in the S3 and SXT groups, respectively as were other baseline characteristics. The ratio of valve diameter/calculated annulus average diameter (CAAD) by multi-detector row computed tomography was significantly lower in the S3 group (1.06 vs 1.09, p<0.001) as was the annular area oversizing percentage (11.3% vs 20.5%, p<0.001). Furthermore, a smaller valve was selected in S3 cases with borderline CAAD compared to SXT cases. Nevertheless, the frequency of paravalvular aortic leakage (PVL) ≥2 tended to be reduced in the S3 group (5% vs 9%, p=0.339). The rate of major vascular complications was significantly lower with S3 (3% vs 12%, p=0.013). In addition, 30-day mortality was significantly lower in the S3 group (0% vs 5%, p=0.044). Although TAVI using S3 tended to be carried out with a less oversized valve compared to TAVI using SXT, the frequency of post-procedural PVL ≥2 tended to be lower in the S3 group. The outcomes including vascular complications and 30-day mortality showed a trend in favor of the S3 group. Copyright © 2016 Japanese College of Cardiology. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. The posterior border of the sphenoid greater wing and its phylogenetic usefulness in human evolution.

    PubMed

    Braga, J; Crubézy, E; Elyaqtine, M

    1998-12-01

    The elucidation of patterns of cranial skeletal maturation and growth in fossil hominids is possible not only through dental studies but also by mapping different aspects of ossification in both extant African apes and humans. However, knowledge of normal skeletal development in large samples of extant great apes is flimsy. To remedy this situation, this paper offers an extensive survey and thorough discussion of the ossification of the posterior border of the sphenoid greater wing. Indeed, this area provides much information about basicranial skeletal maturation. We investigate three variants: the absence of the foramen spinosum and the position of both the foramen spinosum and the foramen ovale in relation to the sphenosquamosal suture. Providing original data about humans and 1,425 extant great ape skulls and using a sample of 64 fossil hominids, this study aimed to test whether different ossification patterns occurred during the course of human evolution. The incidence of three derived morphologies located on the posterior border of the sphenoid greater wing increases during human evolution at different geological periods. The evolutionary polarity of these three derived morphologies is assessed by outgroup comparison and ontogenetic methods. During human evolution, there is a clear trend for the foramen spinosum to be present and wholly located on the posterior area of the sphenoid greater wing. Moreover, in all the great ape species and in Australopithecus afarensis, the sphenosquamosal suture may split the foramen ovale. Inversely, the foramen ovale always lies wholly within the sphenoid greater wing in Australopithecus africanus, robust australopithecines, early Homo, H. erectus (and/or H. ergaster), and Homo sapiens. From ontogenetic studies in humans, we conclude that, during human evolution, the ossification of the posterior area of the sphenoid greater wing progressively surrounded the middle meningeal artery (passing through the foramen spinosum) and

  8. The Homo Zappiens and its Consequences for Learning in Universities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Veen, Wim; van Staalduinen, Jan-Paul

    Homo Zappiens is the new generation that is growing up with modern communication technologies shaping their views on the world around them. Prominent characteristics of Homo Zappiens include their preference for images and symbols as an enrichment of plain text, their seemingly effortless adoption of technology, and their cooperation and sharing in networks. They use technology in a functional manner, not touching what they cannot use, and increasingly this generation seems to take exploration and learning and discovering the world, into their own hands. Homo Zappiens shows us that we can increasingly rely on technology to connect us and allow us to organize and preserve our society as a group. In a networked society, the individual has more room for contributing his/her unique value, and innovation and knowledge reside in a network, rather than in each separate individual. Higher education institutions will evolve towards institutions that will function as hubs in knowledge networks, serving students working in fluid communities of research or learning on subjects of their interest. Realizing that we need a flexible structure for organizing ourselves and the world around us, we can look at Homo Zappiens for a clue.

  9. [Beyond eugenics: posthumanism as Homo patiens denials].

    PubMed

    Ballesteros Llompart, Jesús

    2012-01-01

    Throughout history there have been attempts to overcome human limitations by means of technique. The novelty of the 20th century has been to try to extirpate all the faults, the suffering, the disease, and even the death. This power has been attributed successively to machines (the futurism), to the genetic information (the eugenism) and to the electronic information (the posthumanism). In all cases, it's unknown the distinction between inevitable faults, ontological deficiencies, as the reality of death, and avoidable ones, sociological deficiencies, as the deaths due to circumstances as lack of drinkable water, of medicaments, wars or any other type of violence. The due way of confronting the human faults is to try to eradicate their avoidable causes and at the same time to understand the sense of those that cannot be avoided, as occasion of the self-overcoming and the opening to the Transcendence.

  10. Human cloning and embryo research: the 2003 John J. Conley Lecture on medical ethics.

    PubMed

    George, Robert P

    2004-01-01

    The author, a member of the U.S. President's Council on Bioethics, discusses ethical issues raised by human cloning, whether for purposes of bringing babies to birth or for research purposes. He first argues that every cloned human embryo is a new, distinct, and enduring organism, belonging to the species Homo sapiens, and directing its own development toward maturity. He then distinguishes between two types of capacities belonging to individual organisms belonging to this species, an immediately exerciseable capacity and a basic natural capacity that develops over time. He argues that it is the second type of capacity that is the ground for full moral respect, and that this capacity (and its concomitant degree of respect) belongs to cloned human embryos no less than to adult human beings. He then considers and rejects counter-arguments to his position, including the suggestion that the capacity of embryos is equivalent to the capacity of somatic cells, that full human rights are afforded only to human organisms with functioning brains, that the possibility of twinning diminishes the moral status of embryos, that the fact that people do not typically mourn the loss of early embryos implies that they have a diminished moral status, that the fact that early spontaneous abortions occur frequently diminishes the moral status of embryos, and that his arguments depend upon a concept of ensoulment. He concludes that if the moral status of cloned human embryos is equivalent to that of adults, then public policy should be based upon this assumption.

  11. Fossil skulls reveal that blood flow rate to the brain increased faster than brain volume during human evolution

    PubMed Central

    Bosiocic, Vanya

    2016-01-01

    The evolution of human cognition has been inferred from anthropological discoveries and estimates of brain size from fossil skulls. A more direct measure of cognition would be cerebral metabolic rate, which is proportional to cerebral blood flow rate (perfusion). The hominin cerebrum is supplied almost exclusively by the internal carotid arteries. The sizes of the foramina that transmitted these vessels in life can be measured in hominin fossil skulls and used to calculate cerebral perfusion rate. Perfusion in 11 species of hominin ancestors, from Australopithecus to archaic Homo sapiens, increases disproportionately when scaled against brain volume (the allometric exponent is 1.41). The high exponent indicates an increase in the metabolic intensity of cerebral tissue in later Homo species, rather than remaining constant (1.0) as expected by a linear increase in neuron number, or decreasing according to Kleiber's Law (0.75). During 3 Myr of hominin evolution, cerebral tissue perfusion increased 1.7-fold, which, when multiplied by a 3.5-fold increase in brain size, indicates a 6.0-fold increase in total cerebral blood flow rate. This is probably associated with increased interneuron connectivity, synaptic activity and cognitive function, which all ultimately depend on cerebral metabolic rate. PMID:27853608

  12. Fossil skulls reveal that blood flow rate to the brain increased faster than brain volume during human evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seymour, Roger S.; Bosiocic, Vanya; Snelling, Edward P.

    2016-08-01

    The evolution of human cognition has been inferred from anthropological discoveries and estimates of brain size from fossil skulls. A more direct measure of cognition would be cerebral metabolic rate, which is proportional to cerebral blood flow rate (perfusion). The hominin cerebrum is supplied almost exclusively by the internal carotid arteries. The sizes of the foramina that transmitted these vessels in life can be measured in hominin fossil skulls and used to calculate cerebral perfusion rate. Perfusion in 11 species of hominin ancestors, from Australopithecus to archaic Homo sapiens, increases disproportionately when scaled against brain volume (the allometric exponent is 1.41). The high exponent indicates an increase in the metabolic intensity of cerebral tissue in later Homo species, rather than remaining constant (1.0) as expected by a linear increase in neuron number, or decreasing according to Kleiber's Law (0.75). During 3 Myr of hominin evolution, cerebral tissue perfusion increased 1.7-fold, which, when multiplied by a 3.5-fold increase in brain size, indicates a 6.0-fold increase in total cerebral blood flow rate. This is probably associated with increased interneuron connectivity, synaptic activity and cognitive function, which all ultimately depend on cerebral metabolic rate.

  13. Fossil skulls reveal that blood flow rate to the brain increased faster than brain volume during human evolution.

    PubMed

    Seymour, Roger S; Bosiocic, Vanya; Snelling, Edward P

    2016-08-01

    The evolution of human cognition has been inferred from anthropological discoveries and estimates of brain size from fossil skulls. A more direct measure of cognition would be cerebral metabolic rate, which is proportional to cerebral blood flow rate (perfusion). The hominin cerebrum is supplied almost exclusively by the internal carotid arteries. The sizes of the foramina that transmitted these vessels in life can be measured in hominin fossil skulls and used to calculate cerebral perfusion rate. Perfusion in 11 species of hominin ancestors, from Australopithecus to archaic Homo sapiens, increases disproportionately when scaled against brain volume (the allometric exponent is 1.41). The high exponent indicates an increase in the metabolic intensity of cerebral tissue in later Homo species, rather than remaining constant (1.0) as expected by a linear increase in neuron number, or decreasing according to Kleiber's Law (0.75). During 3 Myr of hominin evolution, cerebral tissue perfusion increased 1.7-fold, which, when multiplied by a 3.5-fold increase in brain size, indicates a 6.0-fold increase in total cerebral blood flow rate. This is probably associated with increased interneuron connectivity, synaptic activity and cognitive function, which all ultimately depend on cerebral metabolic rate.

  14. Beringia and the global dispersal of modern humans.

    PubMed

    Hoffecker, John F; Elias, Scott A; O'Rourke, Dennis H; Scott, G Richard; Bigelow, Nancy H

    2016-01-01

    Until recently, the settlement of the Americas seemed largely divorced from the out-of-Africa dispersal of anatomically modern humans, which began at least 50,000 years ago. Native Americans were thought to represent a small subset of the Eurasian population that migrated to the Western Hemisphere less than 15,000 years ago. Archeological discoveries since 2000 reveal, however, that Homo sapiens occupied the high-latitude region between Northeast Asia and northwest North America (that is, Beringia) before 30,000 years ago and the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM). The settlement of Beringia now appears to have been part of modern human dispersal in northern Eurasia. A 2007 model, the Beringian Standstill Hypothesis, which is based on analysis of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) in living people, derives Native Americans from a population that occupied Beringia during the LGM. The model suggests a parallel between ancestral Native Americans and modern human populations that retreated to refugia in other parts of the world during the arid LGM. It is supported by evidence of comparatively mild climates and rich biota in south-central Beringia at this time (30,000-15,000 years ago). These and other developments suggest that the settlement of the Americas may be integrated with the global dispersal of modern humans. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  15. Baboons, like humans, solve analogy by categorical abstraction of relations.

    PubMed

    Flemming, Timothy M; Thompson, Roger K R; Fagot, Joël

    2013-05-01

    Reasoning by analogy is one of the most complex and highly adaptive cognitive processes in abstract thinking. For humans, analogical reasoning entails the judgment and conceptual mapping of relations-between-relations and is facilitated by language (Gentner in Cogn Sci 7:155-170, 1983; Premack in Thought without language, Oxford University Press, New York, 1986). Recent evidence, however, shows that monkeys like "language-trained" apes exhibit similar capacity to match relations-between-relations (Fagot and Thompson in Psychol Sci 22:1304-1309, 2011; Flemming et al. in J Exp Psychol: Anim Behav Process 37:353-360, 2011; Truppa et al. in Plos One 6(8):e23809, 2011). Whether this behavior is driven by the abstraction of categorical relations or alternatively by direct perception of variability (entropy) is crucial to the debate as to whether nonhuman animals are capable of analogical reasoning. In the current study, we presented baboons (Papio papio) and humans (Homo sapiens) with a computerized same/different relational-matching task that in principle could be solved by either strategy. Both baboons and humans produced markedly similar patterns of responding. Both species responded different when the perceptual variability of a stimulus array fell exactly between or even closer to that of a same display. Overall, these results demonstrate that categorical abstraction trumped perceptual properties and, like humans, Old World monkeys can solve the analogical matching task by judging the categorical abstract equivalence of same/different relations-between-relations.

  16. Limits to human locomotor performance: phylogenetic origins and comparative perspectives.

    PubMed

    Dudley, R

    2001-09-01

    Studies of human exercise physiology have been conducted from a largely ahistorical perspective. This approach usefully elucidates proximate limits to locomotor performance, but ignores potential sources of biomechanical and physiological variation that derive from adaptation to ancestral environments. Phylogenetic reconstruction suggests that multiple hominoid lineages, including that leading to Homo sapiens, evolved in African highlands at altitudes of 1000-2000 m. The evolution of human locomotor physiology therefore occurred under conditions of hypobaric hypoxia. In contrast to present-day humans running on treadmills or exercising in otherwise rectilinear trajectories, ancestral patterns of hominid locomotion probably involved intermittent knuckle-walking over variable terrain, occasional bouts of arboreality and an evolving capacity for bipedalism. All such factors represent potential axes of locomotor variation at present unstudied in extant hominoid taxa. As with humans, hummingbirds evolved in mid-montane contexts but pose an extreme contrast with respect to body size, locomotor mode and metabolic capacity. Substantial biomechanical and physiological challenges are associated with flight in hypobaria. Nonetheless, hummingbird lineages demonstrate a progressive invasion of higher elevations and a remarkable tolerance to hypoxia during hovering. Upregulation of aerobic capacity and parallel resistance to hypoxia may represent coupled evolutionary adaptations to flight under high-altitude conditions.

  17. Major genomic mitochondrial lineages delineate early human expansions

    PubMed Central

    Maca-Meyer, Nicole; González, Ana M; Larruga, José M; Flores, Carlos; Cabrera, Vicente M

    2001-01-01

    Background The phylogeographic distribution of human mitochondrial DNA variations allows a genetic approach to the study of modern Homo sapiens dispersals throughout the world from a female perspective. As a new contribution to this study we have phylogenetically analysed complete mitochondrial DNA(mtDNA) sequences from 42 human lineages, representing major clades with known geographic assignation. Results We show the relative relationships among the 42 lineages and present more accurate temporal calibrations than have been previously possible to give new perspectives as how modern humans spread in the Old World. Conclusions The first detectable expansion occurred around 59,000–69,000 years ago from Africa, independently colonizing western Asia and India and, following this southern route, swiftly reaching east Asia. Within Africa, this expansion did not replace but mixed with older lineages detectable today only in Africa. Around 39,000–52,000 years ago, the western Asian branch spread radially, bringing Caucasians to North Africa and Europe, also reaching India, and expanding to north and east Asia. More recent migrations have entangled but not completely erased these primitive footprints of modern human expansions. PMID:11553319

  18. Are human embryos Kantian persons?: Kantian considerations in favor of embryonic stem cell research

    PubMed Central

    Manninen, Bertha Alvarez

    2008-01-01

    One argument used by detractors of human embryonic stem cell research (hESCR) invokes Kant's formula of humanity, which proscribes treating persons solely as a means to an end, rather than as ends in themselves. According to Fuat S. Oduncu, for example, adhering to this imperative entails that human embryos should not be disaggregated to obtain pluripotent stem cells for hESCR. Given that human embryos are Kantian persons from the time of their conception, killing them to obtain their cells for research fails to treat them as ends in themselves. This argument assumes two points that are rather contentious given a Kantian framework. First, the argument assumes that when Kant maintains that humanity must be treated as an end in itself, he means to argue that all members of the species Homo sapiens must be treated as ends in themselves; that is, that Kant regards personhood as co-extensive with belonging to the species Homo sapiens. Second, the argument assumes that the event of conception is causally responsible for the genesis of a Kantian person and that, therefore, an embryo is a Kantian person from the time of its conception. In this paper, I will present challenges against these two assumptions by engaging in an exegetical study of some of Kant's works. First, I will illustrate that Kant did not use the term "humanity" to denote a biological species, but rather the capacity to set ends according to reason. Second, I will illustrate that it is difficult given a Kantian framework to denote conception (indeed any biological event) as causally responsible for the creation of a person. Kant ascribed to a dualistic view of human agency, and personhood, according to him, was derived from the supersensible capacity for reason. To argue that a Kantian person is generated due to the event of conception ignores Kant's insistence in various aspects of his work that it is not possible to understand the generation of a person qua a physical operation. Finally, I will end the

  19. Are human embryos Kantian persons?: Kantian considerations in favor of embryonic stem cell research.

    PubMed

    Manninen, Bertha Alvarez

    2008-01-31

    One argument used by detractors of human embryonic stem cell research (hESCR) invokes Kant's formula of humanity, which proscribes treating persons solely as a means to an end, rather than as ends in themselves. According to Fuat S. Oduncu, for example, adhering to this imperative entails that human embryos should not be disaggregated to obtain pluripotent stem cells for hESCR. Given that human embryos are Kantian persons from the time of their conception, killing them to obtain their cells for research fails to treat them as ends in themselves. This argument assumes two points that are rather contentious given a Kantian framework. First, the argument assumes that when Kant maintains that humanity must be treated as an end in itself, he means to argue that all members of the species Homo sapiens must be treated as ends in themselves; that is, that Kant regards personhood as co-extensive with belonging to the species Homo sapiens. Second, the argument assumes that the event of conception is causally responsible for the genesis of a Kantian person and that, therefore, an embryo is a Kantian person from the time of its conception. In this paper, I will present challenges against these two assumptions by engaging in an exegetical study of some of Kant's works. First, I will illustrate that Kant did not use the term "humanity" to denote a biological species, but rather the capacity to set ends according to reason. Second, I will illustrate that it is difficult given a Kantian framework to denote conception (indeed any biological event) as causally responsible for the creation of a person. Kant ascribed to a dualistic view of human agency, and personhood, according to him, was derived from the supersensible capacity for reason. To argue that a Kantian person is generated due to the event of conception ignores Kant's insistence in various aspects of his work that it is not possible to understand the generation of a person qua a physical operation. Finally, I will end the

  20. How Dry was too Dry? Evaluating the Impact of Climatic Stress on Prehistoric Human Populations in southern Ethiopia.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Foerster, V. E.; Asrat, A.; Cohen, A. S.; Junginger, A.; Lamb, H. F.; Schaebitz, F.; Trauth, M. H.; Vogelsang, R.

    2016-12-01

    What role did abrupt climate shifts play in human evolution and the dispersal of Homo sapiens within and beyond the African continent? How did gradual climatic transitions on the other hand affect cultural and technological innovations in the source region of modern humans? In order to evaluate the effect of environmental instability on human evolution, with their cultural and technological innovations, and with their expansion out of Africa, it is essential to understand how the east African climate switches from dry to wet and back to dry. Determining the timespan of both long-term transitions and climate flickers eventually provides the much needed environmental information how much time early humans had to react (evolution, migration, adaption) to the profound changes in their living environment. As a contribution to providing an environmental context to these central questions on human-climate interaction, the Hominin Sites and Paleolakes Drilling Project (HSPDP) has successfully completed coring five fluvio-lacustrine archives of climate change during the last 3.5 Ma in East Africa. The five high-priority areas in Ethiopia and Kenya are located in close proximity to key paleoanthropological sites covering various steps in evolution. Here we present a comparison between the youngest part of our continuous climate reconstruction (temporal resolution of up to 3 years) from the Chew Bahir site in southern Ethiopia and the available archaeological record of human presence in the source region of modern humans for the past 20 ka. The results contribute to test hypotheses on the impact of climatic stress on migration, the role of human decision-making and environmental thresholds (Foerster et al., 2015, 2016). Furthermore, we match key technological innovations in the area with the profound environmental changes during the highly debated mid-Holocene wet-dry transition. Finally, we give a first overview over possible phases of climatic stress during the last >500 ka

  1. Ancient Evolution and Dispersion of Human Papillomavirus Type 58 Variants.

    PubMed

    Chen, Zigui; Ho, Wendy C S; Boon, Siaw Shi; Law, Priscilla T Y; Chan, Martin C W; DeSalle, Rob; Burk, Robert D; Chan, Paul K S

    2017-08-09

    Human papillomavirus type 58 is found in 10-18% of cervical cancers in East Asia but rather uncommon elsewhere. The distribution and oncogenic potential of HPV58 variants appear to be heterogeneous since the E7 T20I/G63S variant is more prevalent in East Asia and confers 7-9 fold higher risk for cervical precancer and cancer. However, the underlying genomic mechanisms that explain the geographic and carcinogenic diversity of HPV58 variants are still poorly understood. In this study, we used a combination of phylogenetic analyses and bioinformatics to investigate the deep evolutionary history of HPV58 complete genome variants. The initial splitting of HPV58 variants was estimated to occur 478,600 (95% HPD 391,000 - 569,600) years ago. This divergence time is well among the era of the speciation between Homo sapiens and Neanderthal/Denisova, and around three times longer than the modern Homo sapiens divergence times. The expansion of present-day variants in Eurasia could be the consequence of viral transmission from Neanderthal/Denisova to non-African modern human populations through gene flow. A whole genome sequence signature analysis identified 3 amino acid changes, 16 synonymous nucleotide changes and a 12-bp insertion strongly associated with the E7 T20I/G63S variant that represents A3 sublineage and carries higher carcinogenetic potential. Compared with the capsid proteins, the oncogenes E7 and E6 had increased substitution rates indicative of higher selection pressure. These data provide a comprehensive evolutionary history and genomic basis of HPV58 variants to assist further investigation on carcinogenic association and development of diagnostic and therapeutic strategies.Importance Papillomaviruses (PVs) are an ancient and heterogeneous group of double stranded DNA viruses preferentially infecting the cutaneous and mucocutaneous epithelium of vertebrates. Persistent infection by specific oncogenic human papillomavirus (HPV) types including HPV58 has been

  2. Reconstruction and analysis of human liver-specific metabolic network based on CNHLPP data.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Jing; Geng, Chao; Tao, Lin; Zhang, Duanfeng; Jiang, Ying; Tang, Kailin; Zhu, Ruixin; Yu, Hong; Zhang, Weidong; He, Fuchu; Li, Yixue; Cao, Zhiwei

    2010-04-05

    Liver is the largest internal organ in the body that takes central roles in metabolic homeostasis, detoxification of various substances, as well as in the synthesis and storage of nutrients. To fulfill these complex tasks, thousands of biochemical reactions are going on in liver to cope with a wide range of foods and environmental variations, which are densely interconnected into an intricate metabolic network. Here, the first human liver-specific metabolic network was reconstructed according to proteomics data from Chinese Human Liver Proteome Project (CNHLPP), and then investigated in the context of the genome-scale metabolic network of Homo sapiens. Topological analysis shows that this organ-specific metabolic network exhibits similar features as organism-specific networks, such as power-law degree distribution, small-world property, and bow-tie structure. Furthermore, the structure of liver network exhibits a modular organization where the modules are formed around precursors from primary metabolism or hub metabolites from derivative metabolism, respectively. Most of the modules are dominated by one major category of metabolisms, while enzymes within same modules have a tendency of being expressed concertedly at protein level. Network decomposition and comparison suggest that the liver network overlays a predominant area in the global metabolic network of H. sapiens genome; meanwhile the human network may develop extra modules to gain more specialized functionality out of liver. The results of this study would permit a high-level interpretation of the metabolite information flow in human liver and provide a basis for modeling the physiological and pathological metabolic states of liver.

  3. Short faces, big tongues: developmental origin of the human chin.

    PubMed

    Coquerelle, Michael; Prados-Frutos, Juan Carlos; Rojo, Rosa; Mitteroecker, Philipp; Bastir, Markus

    2013-01-01

    During the course of human evolution, the retraction of the face underneath the braincase, and closer to the cervical column, has reduced the horizontal dimension of the vocal tract. By contrast, the relative size of the tongue has not been reduced, implying a rearrangement of the space at the back of the vocal tract to allow breathing and swallowing. This may have left a morphological signature such as a chin (mental prominence) that can potentially be interpreted in Homo. Long considered an autopomorphic trait of Homo sapiens, various extinct hominins show different forms of mental prominence. These features may be the evolutionary by-product of equivalent developmental constraints correlated with an enlarged tongue. In order to investigate developmental mechanisms related to this hypothesis, we compare modern 34 human infants against 8 chimpanzee fetuses, whom development of the mandibular symphysis passes through similar stages. The study sets out to test that the shared ontogenetic shape changes of the symphysis observed in both species are driven by the same factor--space restriction at the back of the vocal tract and the associated arrangement of the tongue and hyoid bone. We apply geometric morphometric methods to extensive three-dimensional anatomical landmarks and semilandmarks configuration, capturing the geometry of the cervico-craniofacial complex including the hyoid bone, tongue muscle and the mandible. We demonstrate that in both species, the forward displacement of the mental region derives from the arrangement of the tongue and hyoid bone, in order to cope with the relative horizontal narrowing of the oral cavity. Because humans and chimpanzees share this pattern of developmental integration, the different forms of mental prominence seen in some extinct hominids likely originate from equivalent ontogenetic constraints. Variations in this process could account for similar morphologies.

  4. Short Faces, Big Tongues: Developmental Origin of the Human Chin

    PubMed Central

    Coquerelle, Michael; Prados-Frutos, Juan Carlos; Rojo, Rosa; Mitteroecker, Philipp; Bastir, Markus

    2013-01-01

    During the course of human evolution, the retraction of the face underneath the braincase, and closer to the cervical column, has reduced the horizontal dimension of the vocal tract. By contrast, the relative size of the tongue has not been reduced, implying a rearrangement of the space at the back of the vocal tract to allow breathing and swallowing. This may have left a morphological signature such as a chin (mental prominence) that can potentially be interpreted in Homo. Long considered an autopomorphic trait of Homo sapiens, various extinct hominins show different forms of mental prominence. These features may be the evolutionary by-product of equivalent developmental constraints correlated with an enlarged tongue. In order to investigate developmental mechanisms related to this hypothesis, we compare modern 34 human infants against 8 chimpanzee fetuses, whom development of the mandibular symphysis passes through similar stages. The study sets out to test that the shared ontogenetic shape changes of the symphysis observed in both species are driven by the same factor – the space restriction at the back of the vocal tract and the associated arrangement of the tongue and hyoid bone. We apply geometric morphometric methods to extensive three-dimensional anatomical landmarks and semilandmarks configuration, capturing the geometry of the cervico-craniofacial complex including the hyoid bone, tongue muscle and the mandible. We demonstrate that in both species, the forward displacement of the mental region derives from the arrangement of the tongue and hyoid bone, in order to cope with the relative horizontal narrowing of the oral cavity. Because humans and chimpanzees share this pattern of developmental integration, the different forms of mental prominence seen in some extinct hominids likely originate from equivalent ontogenetic constraints. Variations in this process could account for similar morphologies. PMID:24260566

  5. L'os temporal du Petit-Puymoyen

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elyaqtine, Mustapha

    1997-12-01

    The temporal bone discovered by Bœuf within the fauna from the Petit-Puymoyen site is studied. It is attributed to an individual whose age is estimated at 2/4 years and that possesses a mastoid fissure. This characteristic, constant in Homo sapiens neanderthalensis and absent in Homo sapiens sapiens, allows to conclude that it is more likely that this individual be allocated to the Neanderthal lineage rather than to the anatomically modern human one.

  6. Developmental patterns of chimpanzee cerebral tissues provide important clues for understanding the remarkable enlargement of the human brain

    PubMed Central

    Sakai, Tomoko; Matsui, Mie; Mikami, Akichika; Malkova, Ludise; Hamada, Yuzuru; Tomonaga, Masaki; Suzuki, Juri; Tanaka, Masayuki; Miyabe-Nishiwaki, Takako; Makishima, Haruyuki; Nakatsukasa, Masato; Matsuzawa, Tetsuro

    2013-01-01

    Developmental prolongation is thought to contribute to the remarkable brain enlargement observed in modern humans (Homo sapiens). H