One peculiarity of Human genetic history is “where did we come from” in relation to the “other great apes”.
Generally, this is held to be a more or less linear advance off of the Chimpanzee line. Some speculate on a Chimp / Gorilla hybrid. (Modulo the religious belief that we were created de novo by God and the Flaky Alien theories that have various sorts of Space Alien creation myths – from the Sumerian ‘created as workers’ that got out of hand to the ‘alien hybrids’ to … well, you get the idea. LOTS of imagination, facts on the ground, or in it, not so much.)
Not willing to let such fertile ground for speculation be left just to the whims of Religious Nuts, Space Alien Enthusiasts, or Scientists (but I repeat myself…) I feel compelled to jump in myself. Unfortunately, while I have lots of imagination, it finds wholesale invention just too easy / boring, and much prefers to start with a limiting subset of “known facts” and then try to imagine the missing bits.
So, right up front, my speculation is simple: The folks who come up with the crazy hybrid ideas have missed the most important player. The Old Man Of The Forest. The Orangutan.
First time I saw one I understood the “Old Man” name. These guys look at you and you can tell they are thinking. Contemplating life. Examining YOU. (Though often a bit bored with it, having seen lots of human samples they now know us already…) Looking at one, then looking at the average Football Fan with a paunch, the physical comparison is, er, obvious.
Besides, they have red hair. Never seen a Gorilla with Red Hair (though I suppose one might exist) nor a chimp (a redhead chimp would be interesting…) But we KNOW that Neanderthals had red hair and we know that many modern humans have red hair. Either there is one heck of a strong selection for Red Hair (and some of us would argue there is ;-) enough to cause three independent evolutions of it, or, well, “we’ve met” and knew each other… (including in the Biblical sense.)
Traditions Of Climate Science
So, in the best traditions of Climate “Science”, if we set out to find data that confirms our preconceived notions, can we turn up anything?
Well, mostly, no. Large swaths of data claim that the Orangs split off from the Human/ Chimp/ Gorilla group some 12 Million years ago and then the Human / Chimp group split about 6 million years ago (but with the occasional inter-species hanky panky for about another 1.2 million years. Hey, folks have to party, don’t they?)
I think they have it wrong.
My reasoning is pretty simple. Most of the ‘duration of divergence’ comes out of gross averages. Averages are used to hide things. (This is used to great effect in Climate “Science”…) One could easily have a chunk of DNA from Orangs that hangs around more or less unchanged, and another chunk from Chimps that has changed more, and the average stats would say that while we had a common ancestor “way back when” we were more recently related to chimps. One could just as ‘recently’ be related to Orangutans and have a large chunk of common DNA, but with the “Chimp bits” being in the more change prone areas of DNA causing a false divergence time.
Alternatively, the original Human line might well have had a lot of Orangutan DNA. Then we mixed in with Chimps. Now we’re going to classify all that Orangutan DNA as “Human” and only the divergent bits where our more distant Orang relatives (perhaps even different species of Orangutan Cousins) off in South East Asia managed to survive as “Orangutan”… Basically, we’re using the wrong baseline for what is “Human” DNA.
An example of “that problem” shows up in this paper. It is looking for some decent modern orangutan samples so that a decent non-chimp non-gorilla non-human sample can be used to compare our relative distances inside that group. (Basically, figuring out how much is in common with something “more distant” so you know where to look for the ‘interesting bits’. It spends some amount of time complaining about the lack of analysis and samples for Orangs and more time complaining about other problems, but it’s still a decent summary of the state of things.
Re: Proposal for BAC library construction of Orangutan (Pongo pygmaeus)
Date: November 15, 2001
From: Evan Eichler, Ph.D., Dept. of Genetics, Case Western Reserve University
To: BAC Library Resource Network, National Human Genome Research Institute
Importance: The orangutan is considered as the outgroup hominoid species for most great ape/human genetic studies. Its estimated divergence from the human lineage (12-14 mya) places it at an evolutionary midpoint between human and Old World monkeys (separation 25 mya) (Chen and Li 2001; Goodman 1999). It is, therefore, considerably sought after for comparative sequencing for molecular evolutionary analysis and testing for models of selection. Among immunologists, for example, comparative sequencing between human and orangutan has been used to provide compelling evidence for models of balancing selection regarding genes associated with human blood group antigens (Adams et al. 1999; Bontrop et al. 1991; Otting et al. 1998). Recently published SNP studies emphasize the value of genomic sequence from this organism to determine the ancestral and derived status of human alleles (Chen and Li 2001; Kaessmann et al. 2001). This species is particularly valuable when data from gorilla and chimpanzee are ambiguous with respect to the ancestral status of a common human polymorphism. Genetic data from both subspecies of orangutan suggest extensive polymorphism (Warren et al. 2001; Zhang and Ryder 2001). Unlike human and most African great apes, there is no evidence for a recent genetic bottleneck in the population history of this species. Coalescent ages of 1.1 –2.1 million years have been proposed for orangutan alleles (nearly 10-20 fold that of human), providing a critical backdrop for testing the impact of genetic drift and rapid expansion on the frequency and structure of contemporary human haplotypes.
OK, so about a decade old paper. Likely some results by now. Still, we can see that folks are still trying to sort out where the Orangutans fit in things and want a better sequencing done. We also see hints of the recursive definition basis of our present ‘genetic distance’. We also have a hint of why gross numbers can be misleading and why averages can hide that. Orangutans are highly divergent inside their own population. No “bottleneck”. So if one, or a few, Orangs “crossed” into our history, but those particular “variations” didn’t survive off in Borneo; then you can have an ‘average difference’ saying we are very different, when we’re really a ‘lost cousin’.
We also note that “blood groups” matter…
The next block of text is a bit thick, but I’ll translate it some. Mostly it lists a bunch of ways that “genes move”, then asserts a lot of these happened before the “trichotimization” of the Apes happened. That is just saying when Human / Chimp / Gorilla were all the same bunch of apes, before we split up in to threes… Karyotype is number and “look” of the chromosomes in the nucleus. So the first line just says “The way Orangutan chromosomes look is more like the original.” It then goes on to talk about how many and what kind of “rearrangements” it takes to get from that to other types.
The orangutan karyotype is the best representative of the ancestral hominoid ancestral state–both humans and African ape chromosomes are believed to be largely derivatives requiring a minimum of 10-15 chromosomal rearrangements from this hominoid archetype (Muller and Wienberg 2001; Yunis and Prakash 1982). Specific regions of the hominoid genome evolve much more rapidly than “generic” DNA and therefore require a closer primate outgroup species (other than macaque and baboon) in order to resolve the complexity of these regions. Processes such as Y chromosome evolution, pericentrome ric duplication, subtelomeric rearrangements and centromere repositioning necessitate the construction of this library. As an example, the orangutan genome is most frequently used to determine the timing and movement of recent segmental duplications associated with chromosomal rearrangement disorders (Velocardiofacial/DiGeorge, Prader-Willi Syndrome, Smith Magenis, etc), pericentromeric duplications and subtelomeric rearrangements. These regions comprise an estimated 5-7% of the human genome and exhibit accelerated rates of evolutionary turnover (Bailey et al. 2001; Consortium 2001; Eichler 2001). Most of the available Human Genome Project data suggest that the bulk of duplications occurred after the separation of the orangutan but before the trichotimization of the African apes.
OK, so 5% to 7% of DNA changes a whole lot faster than the rest, and “things move”. Got it… Then we have that a specific KIND of moving happened mostly after the Orangutan divergence. “Duplications” of genes. But before we split up into Human, Chimpanzee, and Gorilla. So this fairly specifically says that Orangutans show what we looked like before we split up. But IMHO the implication is also that “He’s Grampa” in the genotypic sense.
Then there is this bit:
Usage: The primary use of this library would be for comparative sequencing purposes of targeted genomic regions. It is anticipated that select regions of high biological/biomedical interest (immunological genes, genes under positive Darwinian selection, regions of rapid genomic rearrangement, haplotype characterization, etc) would be primary targets. Due to the relative high degree of genomic sequence identity between orangutan and human (95-96%) it is unlikely that the orangutan BAC library would be used for a complete genomic sequencing effort.
So we’ve got 95% to 96% identical DNA. THE major divergence is in area with “duplication” of genes (something that tends to happen in ‘odd crosses’ anyway) and THE major area of interest is all those parts that change really fast / a lot.
I think this is missing the forest for the trees…
Question: Is human DNA and chromosome structure more like old Grampa Orangutan, or more like our Chimp / Gorilla cousins? (Even if we have been “kissing cousins” for a long while…)
There are other ways that the “Out Of Chimps” thesis could have the relationship degree wrong. But in good Climate “Science” form, I’m going to just allude to them and leave it as a presumed strong reinforcement. (Waves hand dismissively and smiles at the interviewer, breaks the “Fourth Wall” with a knowing, understanding look to the camera…) With that, lets go look our our DNA…
OK, any useful stuff?
I’ve only modestly ploughed down this row. But already several very interesting bits turn up. The strongest is a comparison of the chromosomes at a gross level between Humans, Chimps, Gorilla, and Orangutan. No, not as fancy as all those DNA sequences and point mutation averages. But, IMHO, the big picture matters.
Only recently have folks found that the “Junk DNA” was in fact largely coding for control sequences. What gets turned on and off when. In most programs, that matters at least as much as which subroutines are in the library… Also, many parts of the DNA change at much higher rates than other parts. This isn’t mentioned much by the folks calculating ‘genetic distance’, but WHICH part of the DNA matters. Break your Krebs Cycle and you die. It tends to be ‘very conservative’. Change your hair color or size? Hey, might be a feature… So looking at the chromosomes in bulk, IMHO, ought to be the very first step.
As a brief ‘side bar’ on genetics: There are many specific ways that “things change”. Some packages of genes are called transposons. These are whole chunks of a chromosome that can jump around. From one copy of the chromosome to another. From one individual chromosome to another. Sometime being stuck in backwards. Sometimes duplicated (so a coding for ‘growth factor’ might suddenly give you twice as much and a bigger child) and sometimes deleted (shrinking growth factor, and giving a midget, for example.)
These large chunks of DNA might well be from a ‘well conserved’ sequence (in terms of point mutations and single point changes) yet still “they move”. Furthermore, THE single thing that most determines our “humanness” is “Neotony”. The tendency to retain juvenile traits into adult age. So humans have larger head to body ratio. We have weaker muscles (many species have deliberate reduction in per pound muscle strength in infants to prevent self injury or injury to litter mates). We have many other neotonous traits as well. It only takes a very small change to the “control group” to slow development…
In short, it may not be quantity of genetic difference that matters, but exactly where it is in the larger scheme of things. Where those transposons landed. What is next to which control sequences on the genes. Looking at the overall “pattern” of the chromosomes may have more to do with ‘what makes us human’ than just looking at point variations and their averages. (In fact, I’d assert it has way more to do with it…)
Normally I follow the path of discovery in a posting. This tends to put the Ah Hah! moment near the end. I’ve noticed some folks comment before reading the whole thing ;-) so I’m going to reverse that pattern a bit this time. The Ah Hah! came right at the moment of looking at the comparative chromosomes. Prior to that, I’d had things that lead me to this point. Some of those will be given below. Some blood group things. Some genetic distance things.
This page has a map of the chromosomes of Humans, Chimps, Gorilla, and Orangutan laid out side by side:
Looking down that set, inspecting the patterns closely, there are some very clear chromosome connections with Chimpanzees. There are some distinctly Human bits (like the fusion of 2 chimp / gorilla / orangutan chromosomes called, now, 2a and 2b into our chromosome 2, and some wandering divergence.
To me it works most easily to start at the last chromosome and work forward. (Often problems are best solved backwards, or inside out. Always look at things ‘the other way round’…)
There’s a very high def PDF version in this link to the Original PDF Source.
While looking at this, realize that we have information that some chimpanzee chromosomes came into our Human line about 1.2 million years after the first “human” separation. The general “story” is that human and chimp were still close enough genetically that crossing continued for 1.2 million years. An alternate “story” is that while we were separate, there were the occasional crossings, until we diverged so much it was not longer possible.
OK, back at that chart. It takes a close look at some tedious things, but “that’s what I do”… Folks unable to cope with that can just jump down past all the A/B stuff, assume I’ve done it right, and pick up the story there. Me? I think this matters (or I’d not have done it… ;-)
Chromosomes have a little ball that sticks them together in the middle, called a centromere. It shows up as a ‘pinch’ in the middle of the chromosome. On each side of the centromere are long stretches of DNA that stain in particular patterns. Chunks can move around (those transposons) so a given “pattern” might swap what side of the centromere it is on, or even what chromosome it is on. So really we need to look for matching patterns over the whole set. But for now, we’re just (mostly) going to compare the various species for the same chromosome number (modulo that Human 2 is Ape 2a and 2b) in bulk “look” and pattern. We’ll start with number 22 and come back to the Y and X chromosomes for special mention. Remember, during this, that the Chimp, Gorilla, and Orangutan DNA have not been static since our divergence either… The Chimp and Gorilla ‘look’ is often different due to a dark ‘end cap’ on a chromosome. It is quite possible that they developed that after a split with the human line and we are still closely related. IMHO, unlikely, but possible.
Notice that the middle two (chimp and gorilla) have a dark spot at the bottom. The first (Human) and the last (Orang) look almost identical.
The top of ours is a little shortened. Like the Gorilla one, but with a tiny deletion.
Overall, the “look” is more like Orangutan with deletion than anything else. Alternatively, it looks a whole lot like the top half is Chimpanzee or Orangutan with a deletion while the bottom is Orangutan.
Again the descending part from the pinched centromere is more like the Orang than anything else. The upper bit looks to have suffered a small deletion and the centromere is not as dark stained as any of the other apes.
Noticing a pattern here? The descending part (long part) of the chromosome is substantially identical to the Orangutan. BOTH Chimp and Gorilla have an added “dark bit” at the bottom. Above the centromere (pinched spot) we are all identical until it looks like we’ve got a bit of the “chimp / gorilla” batch glued on as a transposon to the basic Orang pattern (or a bit of deletion of the end of the Chimp pattern).
This looks to me like the Human version is substantially the same as the Orangutan version, modulo any minor drift over the millenia.
This is our first really complicated one. Follow closely…
The long hanging down part looks largely the same for us, Chimps, and Orangutans (Gorilla have an added dark band at the far end) then as we approach the centromere, it looks like the fat white band and thin grey next to it (in the other primates) has swapped to the other side of the centromere. (Not all that unusual…). Then it is a bit hard to decide if we lost the other side (the ‘arm’ could be gone entirely or might have ‘jumped’ to another chromosome) or what. It did NOT just stay on the centromere and get swapped to the other side, though. A fine toothed study of those genes, and where they might be elsewhere in our genes, would be in order. (or just finding out if they are in use at all…)
Still, the overall impression is “Orang like with an inverted centromere and a small deletion / transposition”.
Back at the Y Chromosome
OK, at this point you ought to have enough experience looking at these things to be able to match patterns more broadly. Look at the Y chrmosome (bottom row, far right). The Human one is bigger. Overall, it looks like the “Chimp one” with some added stuff on the bottom end. Two medium sized dark bands and one big fat one, with white bands in between. Rather like the parts of the Orangutan Y in the top half.
Most likely they are things “lost” from some other chromosome that ended up on this one. (Yes, genes and chromosomes do that… it’s really a very sloppy system…) Doing very targeted analysis of what those sequences are, and where they are in other hominids would be quite interesting. Though they might also just be duplicates of things already on this chromosome or on some other one.
But there is another, more interesting possibility. Notice that the Orangutan Y has more “stuff” than the Chimp? It is also more banded than the Gorilla. In fact, it looks a lot like the Human one, but with a larger ‘white patch’ below the pinch and a larger ‘grey patch’ above. Visually divide those two, the white and the grey, and rotate about the middle. Glue them together. Golly, looks a whole lot like the Human Y with a centromere inversion…
No, not perfect. a bit of ‘offset’ to one side, and a snip from the end of the Orangutan Y. But very very close.
This would clearly benefit from a very close gene map of particular genes and even alleles (variations) of them. But I’d bet a decent bottle of wine we’ll find that is the pattern.
In short, I’d bet “Grampa was an Orangutan” and then we had some inversions and transpositions over the millions of years.
It is also possible that those bands “jumped” here from some other chromosome (as duplicates or as moves). That would not be a bad thing either. It lets us have “sexual dimorphism”.
So, say, the gene for “Big and Mean” ends up on the X chromosome. Might end up with a woman who does not attract many mates, or might end up with a Matriarch Society. Nature rolls the dice and sees what happens. While most human societies today are Patriarchal, there is strong evidence that Celts and some others were Matriarchal. Also some evidence for Neanderthals being Matriarchal. Celtic women lead armies into battle, roman women generally did not.
Personally, I find the idea of a woman who can swing a sword, um, “interesting” ;-) but I’m a Celt type… Such is the stuff of what gene ends up on which chromosome… The Neander type has some evidence for higher levels of testosterone generally. BOTH in women and in men. And some evidence for high estrogen too. Generally more hormone driven ;-) So is some of that on the X or Y chromosomes? Probably. That’s the game nature plays with ‘which gene goes where’ and why it keeps rolling those dice….
A very complex one.
The Gorilla version is “way out”. Not at all like the others.
The Human version looks like a ‘mush’ of some of the Chimp and some of the Orangutan. The overall size and shade density is about right, but the pattern is off and the centromere is moved. Things have jumped and swapped.
The bottom third looks like the chimp with a little ‘snip’ off the end (or Chimps have added a spot at the end). Then the middle. Sigh. What a mess. It matches the upper arm of the Chimp up until it joins the already identified lower part. Somebody had the centromere do a flip. Us? Or the modern Chimp? The “fat white and dark” of the Chimp lower looks like it moved to the upper side of the centromere in this flip; then we pick up with what looks like the rest of the Orangutan top end. Though that upper dark band could be from either the Chimp or the Orang. The key bit is a centromere inversion.
This looks, generally, like a Chimpanzee type centromere with a flip (so the dark band above gets added to the below, and the grey band below ends up above) but with Orangutan ‘arms’ glued on. That is, the banding pattern matches the Orangutan pattern down until it reaches a ‘flipped’ Chimpanzee centromere pattern. It could also just be the Orangutan type with a couple of added bands below the centromere from a transposon jumping in.
The bottom part looks very much like the Orangutan pattern, then the top looks truncated, and perhaps with a ‘flip’. It isn’t really like any of the others as it stands. But I’d guess it has some of each ancestor and mapping exactly what genes they have, there and where they end up would be enlightening.
Orang, Chimp, and Human substantially the same below the centromere. Above looks like a small truncation / deletion or density change in the human from the Orangutan type.
Near identity below the centromere. Above, it again looks like a minor deletion / change to white ‘density’ from the Orangutan to the Human type. Though from the Chimpanzee or Orangutan? It could be either (though the Chimpanzee for requires a deletion). Detail gene maps might help some, but what is missing is hard to measure…
The X Chromosome
Substantially identical between Chimpanzee, Human, and Orangutan. The Chimp has an added ‘end cap’ on the bottom; but that’s about it. Even the Gorilla mostly differs in having those end caps.
Looks to me like it’s “All Orangutan all the time”. Though the Chimpanzee is close after a centromere ‘flip’.
This one looks very much like a Chimpanzee copy with a ‘snip’ of the upper end cap.
Looks to me like a Chimpanzee lower with an Orangutan upper arm. Alternatively, could be a chimpanzee upper with an end cap deletion.
(Hooray! Single Digits!)
Another complicated one. Nobody has their centromere “pinch” lining up. Sigh…
Below the centromere of the Chimpanzee, we all match. (Modulo the Gorilla having their nearly universal added ‘end cap’)
The Orangutan and Gorilla have a near identity below their centromeres. (And very similar above it, with the Orangutan having a bit more isolated an ‘end cap’, but not much, and the Gorilla having more dense one.)
For the Human one, the part above the centromere looks like it is an inversion of the part below for some of either the Chimpanzee or Orangutan. Either the Orang version “upside down” or the Chimp version with a centromere “offset”. Overall, I’d go with “Orangutan with a centromer flip over”.
Looks to me like “mostly Chimp” with an end cap loss, or possibly an Orangutan with some small deletions internally.
Mostly I’d lean toward “Chimp with an Orangutan end cap transposon” on the top. Though it also looks a lot like a ‘Chimp lower and Orangutan upper’.
Largely “Chimp minus and end cap up top” IMHO. But a lot in common with the Orangutan. Slightly shorter than the Chimpanzee chromosome, so perhaps a couple of genes lost.
Substantially identical with the Orangutan, though also with the Chimp (modulo that end cap thing up top).
All Orang all the time! Easy Peasy… The Chimpanzee looks to have taken a centromere inversion.
A bit complex. The lower half is identical in all four. “Strongly conserved”. The centromere is a bit displaced.
Looks to me like “all Chimp” but with a centromere flip. We have “Fat White, Fat Dark, Thin White, Medium Black, Medium White, two thin grey bands” headed down from the Centromere, Chimps have it headed up. We have a medium gray band on the other ‘opposite side” too. Looks like a simple centromere flip with differential chunks.
All Chimp all the time. Doesn’t get much easier than that.
As #2 is very complex. we’re saving it for last.
Chimp and Orangutan nearly identical. Gorilla “close” but with some swaps. Human? A bit more complex…
The centromere is shifted. It looks like we’ve added or duplicated a couple of bits in it. Mostly, looked at from ‘the ends in” we’re identical to both Chimps and Orangs up until that centromere change where it looks like we have a couple of added bands. Duplicates? Things moved from other chromosomes? Who knows.
But generally “not a lot different” just some added…
This has the largest divergence. At some point we had 2 chromosomes for this just like the other Great Apes. They got mushed together. Hey, it’s not a perfect system…
This is why our chromosome count is not the same as the other great apes.
OK, there’s some evidence for the second centromere still in our genome. (Frankly, as that is where the spindle threads pull the copies apart in cell division, I’m surprised it works at all, but “shit happens” and life adapts).
The lower leg of our 2 matches the 2a of the Chimpanzee, then some of the bottom of 2b up to that centromere. It does look like some ‘end caps’ get lost. Wonder if they ended up on chromosome 1 as those added bits?
2b largely looks like the Chimp form down to the centromere as well.
There is an alternative explanation. Swap the centromere on the Orangutan so part of what is ‘up’ is down, then glue on the rest of the Chimp 2a. To me, that one looks like a slightly better pattern match.
Which was it? Have to look at Chimpanzee AND Orangutan AND Human sequences and mutations BY Chromosome, to know for sure.
The tyranny of “over averaging” will hide that detailed information. We really do need to remember that genes move as chunks, that transposons exists, that centromers can ‘swap ends’ or sides, and that bulk averages hide that detail. We need to sequence the WHOLE genome, find where the individual genes are located, and compare them for drift, not just gross drift.
Why? Because there may well be millions of years of “drift” in one chromosome that is not in the other, if we picked them up at different times….
Remember: The “species barrier” is only a strong “suggestion“… (And you thought folks in San Francisco were kinky ;-)
Some added bits
That’s the major evidence, and the major thesis. Here I’ve got a bit of ‘grab bag’ of backing data, other speculations, some science links, and the path I took to get to the above blended in.
First up, an interesting list. From an ant with ONE chromosome (for the boys; the girls get 2) to a fern with 1440 ( a dozen dozen times ten… odd that) chromosomes. That has got to be an exotic cell division… and I wonder how big each chromosome might be…
A fascinating site with lots of interesting articles. Looks at many things that interest me. I’ll likely spend several weeks finding out someone else is going things / has done things I’d planned to do or also did! So this article looks at blood group.
Basic thesis is that Gorillas are one blood group. Chimpanzees are another. Humans are both. Are we a hybrid Gorilla / Chimp?
I’d assert, from the above, that we’re Orangutan / Chimp; but could not find enough on Orangutan blood groups to connect the dots here. There are other possibles. Such as “Gorilla added end caps to the chromosomes” or that “we had both A & B but chimps lost one and gorilla the other”. Etc.
I’m hoping to find Orangutan blood groups match Gorilla… If not, then that we preserved both…
In an unrelated thread, this look at human blood “proximity” is interesting:
The author points out that present genetic haplogroup studies obsolete some of this. I do not agree. The haplogroup studies look at broad things. Details do NOT always move with the broad groups. So looking at things like blood group still matters. Furthermore, even if the haplogroup stuff does obsolete some of it, knowing HOW it was done (either rightly or wrongly) can also inform how better to study things.
At any rate, I like it. Period. Haplogroups be damned…
Of particular interest is the “dendrite” graph. Scroll down past the “puzzle” one to the answer one. Arabs are “off to the side” from Hebrews and Egyptians. This adds credence to the idea of Jews and Ancient Egyptians being closely related. The other interesting thing is the other side of the middle.
No surprise that New Yorkers are strongly related to Hebrews. But we also have the Celts as modestly close. Spanish have more Basque in them, and Arabs have some closer relationship to south African blacks. Egyptians and Hindus are very close. Was there a very ancient connection? Then passing through Hindus we move on out to the Asians. Oddly, Australian aborigines are nearer to French and Dutch than anyone else.
Yes, only blood group. But still very interesting.
has an interesting chart of blood type by continent / ethnicity. Type O donors in Peru, BTW! The overall sense of it, to me, is that type B is probably highest in those with Denisovian ancestors while O is likely highest in those with some Neanderthals along with A; and Rh+ being high in Africa. But with lots of variations and exceptions.
I also ran into some links asserting that various interspecies crosses had / had not been done and that various Chimpanzees were / were not more human like than others. There are several kinds of Chimpanzee, including the Bonobo (that is more like humans than many others and like having sex just for fun / social reasons.)
is one example. (Though why they exclude humans is an interesting question).
PRIMATES (EXCLUDING HUMANS)
In “The Variation Of Animals And Plants Under Domestication” Charles Darwin noted: “Several members of the family of Lemurs have produced hybrids in the Zoological Gardens.”
In the primates, many Gibbons are hard to visually identify and are identified by their song. This has led to hybrids in zoos where the Gibbons were mis-identified. For example, some collections could not distinguish between Javan Gibbons, Lar Gibbons or Hoolocks and their supposedly pure breeding pairs were mixed pairs or hybrids from previous mixed pairs. Agile gibbons have also interbred with these. The offspring were sent to other Gibbon breeders and led to further hybridization in captive Gibbons. Hybrids also occur in wild Gibbons where the ranges overlap. Gibbon/Siamang hybrids have occurred in captivity – a female Siamang produced hybrid “Siabon” offspring on 2 occasions when housed with a male Gibbon; one hybrid survived, the other didn’t. Anubis Baboons and Hamadryas Baboons have hybridized in the wild where their ranges meet. Different Macaque species can interbreed. In “The Variation Of Animals And Plants Under Domestication” Charles Darwin wrote: “A Macacus, according to Flourens, bred in Paris; and more than one species of this genus has produced young in London, especially the Macacus rhesus, which everywhere shows a special capacity to breed under confinement. Hybrids have been produced both in Paris and London from this same genus.” In addition, the Rheboon is a captive-bred Rhesus Macaque/Hamadryas Baboon hybrid with a baboon-like body shape and Macaque-like tail.
Various hybrid monkeys are bred within the pet trade. These include hybrid Capuchins e.g. Tufted (Cebus apella) x Wedge-capped/weeper (C olivaceus); Liontail macaque X Pigtail macaque hybrids and Rhesus x Stumptail hybrids. The Japanese macaque (Macaca fuscata) has interbred with the introduced Taiwanese macacque (M cyclopis); the latter has escaped into the wild from private zoos. Among African monkeys, natural hybridization is not uncommon. There numerous field reports of hybrid monkeys and detailed studies of zones where species overlap and hybrids occur. Among the apes, Sumatran and Bornean orang-utans are separate species with anatomical differences, producing sterile hybrids. Hybrid orang utans are genetically weaker lower survival rates pure animals.
Another unknown ape (the Koolakamba) has been reported in Africa and claimed to be a Gorilla/Chimp hybrid. Larger, flatter faced, larger skulled and more bipedal than a chimp, it may also be a mutation, in which case we are witnessing evolution in action. According to von Koppenfels in 1881: “I believe it is proved that there are crosses between the male Troglodytes gorilla and the female Troglodytes niger, but for reasons easily understood, there are none in the opposite direction. I have in my possession positive proof of this. This settles all the questions about the gorilla, chimpanzee, Kooloo Kamba, N’schigo, M’bouve, the Sokos, Baboos, etc”. Yerkes reported several “unclassifiable apes” with features intermediate between chimpanzee and gorilla in his 1929 book “A Study of Anthropoid Life”. In fact most of these are regional races of chimpanzee classified as separate species by over-enthusiastic naturalists.
In short, sometimes the “Species Barrier” isn’t even a very strong suggestion…
But I’m sure humans are ‘different’… somehow… /sarcoff;>
There’s more to the path that lead here, but I’m not so sure it is very interesting. Oscar the Humanzee that was tested and found to be largely / all chimp DNA, but had more interest in human women than lady chimps. (You’d think someone would have ‘given him a whirl’, but if they did, they’re not telling) The various odd crosses (including baboons, that I thought were too far removed from other primates) that cross. Things with different chromosome counts (like sheep and goats) that produce viable and fertile offspring and are more divergent than humans and chimps (or, as we’ve seen, Orangutans).
But that’s not nearly as important, IMHO, as that chromosome map.
To me, it just SCREAMS Chimpanzee / Orangutan cross.
And near as I can tell, nobody is looking there. All due to the “bulk averages” that say we split off from them prior to becoming “human”. But averages are used to hide things…