Showing posts with label mitochondrial. Show all posts
Showing posts with label mitochondrial. Show all posts

Brave New World of Criminal Investigation

We are entering a brave new world where DNA will be accurately read to predict eye color, distance between the eyes and nose shape. This will greatly improve police work in solving serious crime.

Even knowing whether a suspect is bald is helpful. Genes contain single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNPs).  These can now show whether someone is probably bald. We have some way to go because of the complex interaction of male and female chromosomes.

A rough composite picture will be soon be available. This can be used to screen out suspects. Facial metrics is advancing rapidly. Analysis of insulin-like growth hormone (IGF-1) and human growth hormone (HGH) can give a rough picture of build and height.

The importance of mitochondrial DNA which passes along the female line is well known. This can predict ancestry using Y chromosome (NRY) and autosomal markers. Patterns for Europeans, white Americans and East Asians have been identified.

In the future the crime rate could be significantly reduced and we could live in societies that are much safer than today's dangerous milieu where we are afraid to go out at night. A safe world - that is something hard to imagine.

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Neanderthals and Humans Could Have Fertile Offspring

The presumption that humans and Neanderthals interbred is gaining ground among scientists, despite the two lines having a different number of chromosomes (this is not yet absolutely proven to be scientific fact). Horses and donkeys interbreed to produce mules. Occasionally a few of these mules are fertile and can have offspring, so a different number of chromosomes is not an absolute barrier.

Neanderthal DNA is present in humans. However, there is no mitochondrial DNA: this is passed along the line of the mother. Visual evidence of interbreeding can be observed. Tatjana Schmidt-Derstroff noted decades ago that there are two types of Australian Aboriginals, desert living long-legged gracillis and coastal living muscular robustus. Both are dark skinned. Robustus carry a red/blond haired gene (not passed on by shipwrecked European sailors). The more muscular type is roughly similar in features to Neanderthals. For the most part these two different kinds of Aboriginal remained separate, though some interbreeding did occur.  Today, most Aboriginals have part European ancestry.

Tatjana Schmidt-Derstroff is happy with the hypothesis that humans and Neanderthals had fertile offspring, along the male line of course. This would engender a male Neanderthal mating with a female human. With male offspring passing on respective genes. Ms Schmidt-Derstroff also holds that the major leap from Neanderthal to human is about to take place again to modern space-travelling humans. Well, this change is already taking place as people move to new countries and different "races" interbreed to create a new tan colored human.
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Agriculture Was Brought into Western Europe by Southern European Males

Learning has not been linear for human beings. Advancement can be different from one place to another. It is now known from DNA analysis of 5,000 year old skeletons in a French cave that women did not travel into western Europe. Mitochondrial DNA is passed down only from the mother which shows that European women had local ancestry. On the other hand the Y chromosome passed down through males shows movement of males into new European regions. Knowledge of farming came into new areas when the males moved in and mated with local females.

Analysis of DNA from 29 skeletons found in France, highlighted this difference between the mitochondrial DNA and Y chromosome. Males had moved from the Mediterranean to western Europe. Most of the males in the 29 skeleton group were related, so when the males arrived they stayed on the land with their new hunter gatherer wives.

The southern males had a problem: they did not have the lactose tolerant gene of central Europeans. They had to drink fermented milk from sheep and goats. Adult central European males could easily digest milk from cows.

More work is being done to further clarify how and when agriculture spread across Europe.
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