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A much-derided theory that five people who walk on all fours are products of “backward evolution” is plausible, and testable, said a U.S. biologist who weighed in on the controversy last week.
The debate erupted last month after a Turkish scientist proposed that the five siblings in Turkey, who also speak what he called a primitive language, had undergone backward evolution. The claim met with skepticism, even jeers, from some fellow scientists... “My opinion is that the chance that this human disorder is related to the evolution of our early ancestors and their mode of walking is remote,” he wrote in an email.
Reverse evolution would occur when genes recently acquired through evolution are lost again, or when genes become reactivated after falling into disuse.
"When these two bacteria get together in the same niche, they are perfectly capable of exchanging DNA at a very high rate," says Falush. "Differences that happened over a long time period can be reversed over a very short time period. If Falush is right, then different niches may play a crucial role in speciation in bacteria, just as they do in higher organisms. Evolutionary biologists have suspected this on theoretical grounds, but Falush's study is the first concrete evidence to support this idea."
Originally posted by 44soulslayer
Rationally speaking, severely mentally handicapped people do not reproduce. Thus their genes are taken out of the gene pool.
Eugenics is not necessary. Nature is taking its course.
If you are looking for the possibility of dysgenics (reverse evolution) you have to look at the welfare state and other modern systems of living which confer evolutionary advantage to the less desirable elements of society.
The number of diagnosed cases of autism grew dramatically in the U.S. in the 1990s and early 2000s. For example, in 1996, 21,669 children and students aged 6–11 years diagnosed with autism were served under Part B of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) in the U.S. and outlying areas; by 2001 this number had risen to 64,094, and by 2005 to 110,529. These numbers measure what is sometimes called "administrative prevalence", that is, the number of known cases per unit of population, as opposed to the true number of cases. A population-based study of one Minnesota county found that the cumulative incidence of autism grew eightfold from the 1980–83 period to the 1995–97 period. The increase occurred after the introduction of broader, more-precise diagnostic criteria, increased service availability, and increased awareness of autism
Autism is a heterogeneous syndrome defined by impairments in three core domains: social interaction, language and range of interests. Recent work has led to the identification of several autism susceptibility genes and an increased appreciation of the contribution of de novo and inherited copy number variation. Promising strategies are also being applied to identify common genetic risk variants. Systems biology approaches, including array-based expression profiling, are poised to provide additional insights into this group of disorders, in which heterogeneity, both genetic and phenotypic, is emerging as a dominant theme.