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We're All Mutants: The Average Human Has 60 New Genetic Mutations

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posted on Jun, 21 2011 @ 08:17 PM
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I just stumbled across this article and I thought it was interesting. They are saying now that there is an average of 60 mutations introduced into our genes when we come into existence. We're all Mutants

So, I am curious about what phenotype you think would be the kind of new trait that would be selected for in today's society.

I was recently trying to understand how our ability to consciously think affects our evolution. We provide care for the sick and poor, and they can reproduce just fine, if not at a higher rate, than individuals that seem to be quite 'fit' for life in our present environment.

Does this mean that we have thwarted the one thing that will make us stronger... the slow progression into a more fit form?

And, after reading this article, what mutations would really have an effect on us in today's world?

Anything that is a disease may not be negatively selected for, since we have modern medicine. But what about positive selection? Aside from the fantastical idea of mutating to become a superhero, are there any possible mutations that would spread like wild-fire through our gene pool, because they provided such an awesome benefit to the mutated person that they were able to shag a huge portion of our population and spread the mutation around?





posted on Jun, 21 2011 @ 08:26 PM
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Horrendous study, horrible excuse for science.

Two families? WHAT A JOKE!

Human beings in our current form haven't changed in any way for 20,000 years. That's not to say certain superficial things haven't adjusted for a variety of reasons, but we have not changed.

Evolution is not driven by breeding of slight changes amplified over millions of years.

Evolution happens at breakneck speed, it's brutal, violent and deadly. It's driven by radiation.



posted on Jun, 21 2011 @ 08:44 PM
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reply to post by AlphaBetaGammaX
 



what mutations would really have an effect on us in today's world?

On a serious note:
Losing the ability to reproduce, either form egg or sperm alterations.
Finally beating cancer, by a mutation that somehow disables the cancers ability to form or grow maybe.
Communicate in a telepathic way, so we can really utilize the speed of thought as opposed to the conveyance of them, via writing, speaking or typing.

On a not so serious note:
A shell like a turtle so when we get sceered from all the fear mongering, we can withdraw.
A new organ that can derive nutrients from air, water and dirt, so that we don't have to ingest GMO's, or eat.
A new appendage that facilitates multi tasking.


spec







edit on 21-6-2011 by speculativeoptimist because: spelling



posted on Jun, 21 2011 @ 08:46 PM
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reply to post by AlphaBetaGammaX
 

The opposite is happening.. Every generation gets more sick and more stupid based on what seems to be happening now.
The toxins and vaccines are killing our gene pool in my opinion.



posted on Jun, 21 2011 @ 08:49 PM
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Interesting idea. I been thinking for a while now that if its true all this stuff coming out about we had nuclear wars and worse in the past then we probably dont look like the original humans. I know before i was always joking about we used to have tails, maybe we used to look like the ones in avatar lol.

how you is saying about not needing to eat or stuff maybe could be connected to these light rods in the morgellons.



posted on Jun, 21 2011 @ 09:23 PM
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Originally posted by speculativeoptimist
reply to post by AlphaBetaGammaX
 



what mutations would really have an effect on us in today's world?

On a serious note:
Losing the ability to reproduce, either form egg or sperm alterations.
Finally beating cancer, by a mutation that somehow disables the cancers ability to form or grow maybe.
Communicate in a telepathic way, so we can really utilize the speed of thought as opposed to the conveyance of them, via writing, speaking or typing.

On a not so serious note:
A shell like a turtle so when we get sceered from all the fear mongering, we can withdraw.
A new organ that can derive nutrients from air, water and dirt, so that we don't have to ingest GMO's, or eat.
A new appendage that facilitates multi tasking.


spec







edit on 21-6-2011 by speculativeoptimist because: sp


I have a great deal of respect for you!



posted on Jun, 22 2011 @ 07:29 AM
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Originally posted by speculativeoptimist
Communicate in a telepathic way, so we can really utilize the speed of thought as opposed to the conveyance of them, via writing, speaking or typing.


I think this is a really interesting one. At first,the only person that would have this trait is the person who had the original mutated gene.

This would definitely give them a serious advantage over the rest of us, if they could sense what our thoughts were! If this gave them a good enough reproductive strategy, then that trait could easily spread...(and I'm thinking it really would be a good reproductive help. "You want to sail around the world helping the Blooper Fishes too? Soul mates! Come to me, darling!")

I wonder if the mutation would spread faster if it were to appear in a man.

He would definitely be able to pass it on more than a woman could, as she would not be able to have as many children...But, one mutated man might be able to pass the gene on to hundreds of children in his lifetime. (As an example of prolific breeding, dIdn't they find out that 16 million men today carry Genghis Khan's Y chromosome? Sheesh.)



posted on Jun, 22 2011 @ 07:34 AM
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Originally posted by Tephra
Horrendous study, horrible excuse for science.

Two families? WHAT A JOKE!

Human beings in our current form haven't changed in any way for 20,000 years. That's not to say certain superficial things haven't adjusted for a variety of reasons, but we have not changed.

Evolution is not driven by breeding of slight changes amplified over millions of years.

Evolution happens at breakneck speed, it's brutal, violent and deadly. It's driven by radiation.


I'm sorry you didn't like the study, but what I was really hoping for is for people to come up with some traits that might results from mutations and have an effect on our population. Or, what do you see as the next step in the evolution of humans? If you think it will be brutal, violent and deadly, then I'm really interested in what you think it is that will happen... Just trying to spur a little creative speculation on what could happen...



posted on Jun, 22 2011 @ 11:54 AM
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Originally posted by Tephra
Horrendous study, horrible excuse for science.

Two families? WHAT A JOKE!
Well yes and no. If they make statistical predictions from a sample size of 2 that would be an abomination.

But since they predicted 100-200 and found an average of 60 in the 2 families, I think that's enough to support the likely conclusion that we're all probably mutants with at least one mutation. It seems unlikely that anybody has zero. However some of the mutations may be on parts of the genome which either have an unknown purpose or don't affect us in any way we know about.

And in a way the article agrees with what you're saying, that mutations are a slower process than they thought since they expected 100-200 and only found 60. Who knows what the real average would be if they did a larger sample? But it's probably not zero.


Originally posted by AlphaBetaGammaX
So, I am curious about what phenotype you think would be the kind of new trait that would be selected for in today's society.

Does this mean that we have thwarted the one thing that will make us stronger... the slow progression into a more fit form?
My theory is that your last sentence is true to a large extent, though it's not necessarily the "most fit" but we've thwarted a large part of the process of natural selection upon which evolution is based.

Take for example childhood mortality rates, which have declined dramatically. Far more people survive now to pass on their genes whereas before modern medicine, children without resistance to certain types of illnesses died from them, now more often than not, they don't die from those same diseases. So from that perspective we are breeding a larger amount of disease susceptibility in the population than happened in the past. That's a good thing for the people who live instead of die. It may not be such a great thing for the future robustness of our gene pool.

White people are mutants:
Scientists said yesterday that they have discovered a tiny genetic mutation that largely explains the first appearance of white skin in humans tens of thousands of years ago
There are two ideas about why this mutation may have spread so rapidly:

Some scientists suggest that lighter skin offered a strong survival advantage for people who migrated out of Africa by boosting their levels of bone-strengthening vitamin D; others have posited that its novelty and showiness simply made it more attractive to those seeking mates.


Blue eyed people are mutants:
A team at the University of Copenhagen have tracked down a genetic mutation which took place 6-10,000 years ago and is the cause of the eye colour of all blue-eyed humans alive on the planet today
Obviously this is a very superficial mutation but it does provide evidence against the claim that there haven't been any mutations in the last 20,000 years, since that mutation is thought to have occurred more recently.

Now let's say someone gets a mutation for red eyes instead of blue eyes, would that mutation spread like the blue eye mutation did? People may not like the red eye mutation as well and some people think the red eyes in some old pictures looks a little creepy!


Several different hair colors also resulted from genetic mutations.

But other than some really superficial stuff like skin, hair and eye color, there probably haven't been any mutations in the last 20,000 years that we know of that are really significant. And the way we have seemingly thwarted natural selection so most people survive to breeding age, we haven't stopped the mutations, but we have stopped the natural selection part to a large degree which is determined by which individuals in a population survive to breed.

Regarding future evolution, I found that the common portrayals of some aliens, like the "grays" for example, actually started out as guesses about the future evolution of man. Specifically:
-More mental work needing larger brains needing larger heads
-more visual work meaning more capable eyes
-Less hunter gatherer skills needed meaning less need for the senses of smell and hearing, hence vestigal or diminished capacity noses and ears.
-Less physical work since machines do our work for us, so less physically imposing bodies

Now I think a lot of this speculation came more from people like Sci-fi authors than from the scientific community, but it's interesting to think that the so called "grays" might be one possible form that future humans could evolve into, in fact some people even suggested that the grays that some people have supposedly seen might actually be time travelers instead of aliens, though I don't think any of those sightings have been corroborated so I see that as just speculative fantasy, but still interesting speculation.

For anyone who doesn't know what these "grays" look like (everybody does, right?), here's the an action figure toy set with a Gray named "Thor" from the stargate SG-1 TV show.

www.mwctoys.com...

Is Thor what future humans will evolve to look like? I have no idea. What do you think?
edit on 22-6-2011 by Arbitrageur because: clarification



posted on Jun, 22 2011 @ 12:35 PM
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reply to post by Tephra
 



Horrendous study, horrible excuse for science.

Two families? WHAT A JOKE!


Not really. Such a thorough analysis of genetic structures is a very time consuming and expensive process. The article draws a lot of conclusions that the scientists (and their report) do not. That, however, does not nullify the findings - which will only become more comprehensive as more research is done involving larger sample sizes as time and technology allow.


Human beings in our current form haven't changed in any way for 20,000 years. That's not to say certain superficial things haven't adjusted for a variety of reasons, but we have not changed.


That's not really true, either. Our intestines are larger than our ancestors even a thousand years ago. In that respect - our digestive systems are more efficient. Similarly, the enzyme necessary for our saliva to break down gluten bases is relatively new - it didn't exist 20,000 years ago, and has only become prominent following the widespread use of agriculture.

www.science.marshall.edu...


Human salivary amylase thus represents a recent product
of evolution. In this review, we describe the landmarks
in the molecular analysis of the amylase gene
family, our functional analysis of the salivary amylase
regulatory elements in transgenic mice, and the implications
for the evolution of other salivary proteins.


www.nytimes.com...


The variant gene rapidly degrades alcohol to a chemical that is not intoxicating but makes people flush, leaving many people of Asian descent a legacy of turning red in the face when they drink alcohol.



Scientists from the Beijing Genomics Institute last month discovered another striking instance of human genetic change. Among Tibetans, they found, a set of genes evolved to cope with low oxygen levels as recently as 3,000 years ago. This, if confirmed, would be the most recent known instance of human evolution.



So much natural selection has occurred in the recent past that geneticists have started to look for new ways in which evolution could occur very rapidly. Much of the new evidence for recent evolution has come from methods that allow the force of natural selection to be assessed across the whole human genome. This has been made possible by DNA data derived mostly from the Hap Map, a government project to help uncover the genetic roots of complex disease. The Hap Map contains samples from 11 populations around the world and consists of readings of the DNA at specific sites along the genome where variations are common.



. . .Dr. Akey believes that it is reasonable to assume that any region identified in two or more scans is probably under natural selection. By this criterion, 2,465 genes, or 13 percent, have been actively shaped by recent evolution. The genes are involved in many different biological processes, like diet, skin color and the sense of smell."



Several of the 25 skin genes bear strong signatures of natural selection, but natural selection has taken different paths to lighten people’s skin in Europe and in Asia. A special version of the golden gene, so called because it turns zebrafish a rich yellow color, is found in more than 98 percent of Europeans but is very rare in East Asians. In them, a variant version of a gene called DCT may contribute to light skin. Presumably, different mutations were available in each population for natural selection to work on. The fact that the two populations took independent paths toward developing lighter skin suggests that there was not much gene flow between them.


I am already past what is allowed in the T&C - so I will leave the rest in the article - if those excerpts don't interest you enough to read the actual article, then you're probably in the wrong discussion.

discovermagazine.com...


So to suggest that humans have undergone an evolutionary makeover from Stone Age times to the present is nothing short of blasphemous. Yet a team of researchers has done just that. They find an abundance of recent adaptive mutations etched in the human genome; even more shocking, these mutations seem to be piling up faster and ever faster, like an avalanche. Over the past 10,000 years, their data show, human evolution has occurred a hundred times more quickly than in any other period in our species’ history.



The new genetic adaptations, some 2,000 in total, are not limited to the well-recognized differences among ethnic groups in superficial traits such as skin and eye color. The mutations relate to the brain, the digestive system, life span, immunity to pathogens, sperm production, and bones—in short, virtually every aspect of our functioning.

Many of these DNA variants are unique to their continent of origin, with provocative implications. “It is likely that human races are evolving away from each other,” says University of Utah anthropologist Henry Harpending, who coauthored a major paper on recent human evolution. “We are getting less alike, not merging into a single mixed humanity.”


This should, honestly, not be surprising. Anyone who stops and thinks about the rate of mutations and the influences that come from various climates and cultures should make it pretty clear that we are evolving away from each other.


Taken together, the skeletal and genetic evidence convinced Hawks that the ruling “static” view of recent human evolution was not only wrong but also quite possibly the opposite of the truth. He discussed his ideas with Harpending, his former postdoc adviser at the University of Utah, and Gregory Cochran, a physicist and adjunct professor of anthropology there. They both agreed with Hawks’s interpretation. But why, they wondered, might evolution be picking up speed? What could be fueling the trend?

Then one day, as Hawks and Cochran mulled over the matter in a phone conversation, inspiration struck. “At exactly the same moment, both of us realized, gee, there’s a lot more people on the planet in recent times,” Hawks recalls. “In a large population you don’t have to wait so long for the rare mutation that boosts brain function or does something else desirable.”



Evolution is not driven by breeding of slight changes amplified over millions of years.

Evolution happens at breakneck speed, it's brutal, violent and deadly.


It happens faster than many people give it credit for. A pandemic could wipe out all but a few genetically immune people on the planet (in the thousands) - and what would be known as "human" would forever be compared against the traits that survived. A mysterious disease could kill all but the Asians - and they would be the base-line human for the next several thousand years.

That's not "evolution" so much as it is "natural selection" - but what we commonly accept as "evolution" is the point at which a new species appears to break away from the rest - which could well be triggered by radical changes in the environment.


It's driven by radiation.


I suppose if you live in the Marvel universe. However, no - radiation doesn't drive hereditary mutations. Radiation does have something to do with cellular mutations that can lead to cancerous cellular populations. However, hereditary mutations are driven by the process of meiosis and reproduction, itself - where DNA is subjected to relatively high amounts of energy that result in genetic mutations, redundant copies, etc - a process that would almost seem intentional (though perhaps, in a rather ironic way - it was a product of evolution - species with a natural tendency for genetic diversity were more likely to survive than those without that tendency).



posted on Jun, 22 2011 @ 09:23 PM
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reply to post by Aim64C
 


I'm not speaking to the relatively insignificant hereditary changes that mean nothing. Evolution via violent radiation is the origin of species, and is totally separate from the sliders of time, Size, Prominence, Etc.

You can ridicule it, and call it science fiction, but it's not. There is no slow, orderly origin of species.

Hereditary changes? I'm talking about the extinction, creation cycle that has been creating species since the foundation of Earth.
edit on 22-6-2011 by Tephra because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 23 2011 @ 09:25 PM
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reply to post by Tephra
 



I'm not speaking to the relatively insignificant hereditary changes that mean nothing.


I think you're overlooking a few mechanics. Indeed, many "experts on evolution" fail to recognize a number of the most important factors involving the branching mechanisms. I'll elaborate a bit more later.


Evolution via violent radiation is the origin of species, and is totally separate from the sliders of time, Size, Prominence, Etc.


The problem is that you lack a theory for -how- radiation triggers the formation of a new species. Bombarding people with radiation generally tends to kill them - not turn their children into some entirely different species.


You can ridicule it, and call it science fiction, but it's not. There is no slow, orderly origin of species.


I think you need to show a little more respect. I disagree with your analysis and have explained and demonstrated some rather important reasons behind why I do. Sure - I may toss in a few appeals to humor every now and then - but you need to understand the inherent flaws with your proposal.

Further - nothing says "evolution" is a slow process. As we can see with our own genetic diversity - it only increases with the population. It is something of a statistical certainty that there will be times of growth and times of collapse. Times of growth serve to increase genetic diversity and times of collapse serve as selective events for favorable genetics - which collapses the genetic diversity into a series of genes that - after several cycles - lead to what could be considered a new species. A thousand years of genetic diversity in the building can be culled within a very short time frame of less than a century and lead to entities that have considerably different genetic properties from their direct ancestors.


Hereditary changes? I'm talking about the extinction, creation cycle that has been creating species since the foundation of Earth.


So am I. The error many people make when discussing evolution is believing that genetic mutations are immediately beneficial. The reality is that the genetic mutations tend to be far more sparse. Hundreds, thousands, possibly millions of hereditary mutations build up over thousands of years of growth and when a hard-selection event occurs (such as the rapid onset of an ice-age) - genetic traits that give even a slight edge are more likely to be passed on - others simply get passed on by accident or by some divine will (depending upon where your faith lies - I don't want to turn this into a frivolous debate about whether or not there is such a thing as a coincidence). This leads to a rapid collapse of genetic diversity with all traits that are beneficial being exponentially more likely to appear in subsequent generations.

Of course - even during the ice age - there were tropical regions of the planet, still. So, to say that one species completely dies out and is replaced is simply an inaccurate and "prissy" way of looking at evolutionary dynamics. If the two species are close enough to still interbreed - it is likely that some of the genetic diversity lost in the culling will eventually be re-introduced into the more prominent species over time, and perhaps play a role in later selection events.

This is precisely why bacteria 'evolve' at such rapid rates and can quickly become immune to a number of different antibiotics. They exist in populations that reproduce by the hour and have a countless number of individual genetic sequences ready to reproduce at any given time. While there's something of a danger in comparing the evolution of a single-celled asexual entity with a multi-celled sexual entity - the rule that a larger population with more reproducing members leads to greater "evolutionary potential" stands the same.



posted on Jun, 23 2011 @ 09:29 PM
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Originally posted by Tephra
You can ridicule it, and call it science fiction, but it's not. There is no slow, orderly origin of species.


Tell that to all the different breeds of dog out there.

Edit: I sincerely hope you're being sarcastic.


edit on 23-6-2011 by Nosred because: (no reason given)



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