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The Family That Walks on All Fours

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posted on Jan, 14 2016 @ 09:15 PM
(Yes, I did a search. It has been 10 years since this story was posted on ATS, and surprisingly (to me, anyway) neither of the two threads that offered it up had any flags. one of them is here and the other is here)

So - I am in the middle of watching this film

and I keep thinking how amazing it is; as it deals with brain damage, and genetics, and the evolution of humans, but all with honest skepticism.

The Family That Walks On All Fours is a documentary that explored the science and the story of five individuals in the Ulas family in Turkey that walk with a previously unreported quadruped gait.

Debate exists as to the nature and cause of their walking, including controversial speculation in the form of the Uner Tan syndrome that it may be a genetic throwback to pre-bipedal hominid locomotion.

Nicholas Humphrey, who accompanied the documentary makers, concluded that it was due to a rare set of genetic and developmental circumstances coming together.

First, their mother recalls that initially all of her 19 children started off walking with a bear-crawl (i.e. on their feet rather than their knees). Second, due to an inherited recessive genetic mutation, they have a non-progressive congenital cerebellar ataxia that impairs the balance children normally use to learn to walk bipedally. Not being able to manage the balance needed for bipedal walking, they perfected in its place their initial bear-crawl into an adult quadruped gait.

So - it's apparently still unresolved. What do you guys think of this?

Yes, brain damage. Genetic damage. The parents were very closely related. But of the 19 kids, only the youngest of them is afflicted.
I think it's very interesting to learn about how the human brain has evolved......they have MRI scans of the brains of these people, showing the cerebella are small........but yet, a guy who has none at all can still walk upright.

First think I noticed (apart from the way they move) is the nystagmus in their eyes (the shivering thing, where the eye doesn't stay still).

Here's more info, if anyone's interested. But - in any case - do you all think this is perhaps indicative of a 'missing link'? (They also show other strange things like people with hair all over their faces and necks - and others with tails.)

Ulas family wiki

Anyway - check it out if you're interested!

posted on Jan, 14 2016 @ 09:26 PM
Now I'm further in - and they touch on how in Turkey, evolution is totally rejected.....
and how religion (including Christianity) becomes offended when anything contradicts their beliefs.

Anyway - very interesting.
So - I'm going to finish it, and then I'm going to sleep (I love sleeping!).....

hope to hear from any of you interested in discussing it.

Have a great night.

posted on Jan, 17 2016 @ 04:17 PM
How about the hips, and the configuration of the spine/hip/thigh connection? the shoulders show deformity from genetic growth, or use? Body builders have shoulders that widen due to a spreading of the scapula and clavicle, and I would assume that these folks have similar. but the joint configuration, if it were a recessive trait responsible, should show signs of deformity.

posted on Jan, 17 2016 @ 04:20 PM
a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan

Good suggestion! When I first saw them close-up (in the program), I first noticed the nystagmus. Obvious brain issue....very interesting combination of genetic and environmental factors, ain't it??

posted on Jan, 17 2016 @ 04:30 PM
a reply to: BuzzyWigs

I seem to recall seeing something briefly on them, like 10 minute segment on a show.

Don't know if you've ever seen Joe Dirt, but the dad at the end..i know its supposed to be funny, but that is what i am reminded of. Like you mention, its typically a sign of some brain damage. But I wonder what effect having to look up like that, due to the gait, would have on the nerves/muscles? Would it worsen that symptom?

posted on Jan, 17 2016 @ 04:37 PM
a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan

Yeah, I've seen Joe Dirt.

My best hunch is that the brains of these people - from the time they were born, took advantage of the healthy synapses available (just like all babies' brains do). Just as blind people's hearing is enhanced....or physicall challenged people develop "compensation" skills....

the neuroplasticity of the human brain is proven. Whatever stimulus the brain is presented, or deprived of, it will do its best to adapt and to optimally facilitate the possessor (of that brain) to function according to the best possible outcome that can be achieved with the dataset/neurons/brain structure presented.

posted on Jan, 17 2016 @ 05:38 PM
Fascinating, thanks for sharing.

After having watched it I agree with the professor in that the last 7 kids born in 5 years all with brain damage, there simply wasn't any practical assistance to their special needs. Had the received help early on they undoubtedly would have been bi-pedal from the get go.

Nice to see they had improved at the end also. Honestly although intriguing, it was hard watching this family suffer and I hope they get the help they need.

posted on Jan, 17 2016 @ 07:40 PM
a reply to: Rosinitiate


The one point they made, though, about the family's faith and culture was interesting to me in terms of this forum....
About how very traditional they were, how poorly educated/unsophisticated they are (through no fault of their own), how strong their faith was (Muslim) and the attendant belief that suffering is something to be endured. It would be impertinent (in their minds), if even fathomable, to seek help.

They just accept things, it never even occurs to them that things might be different; they trust only in their god's will and acquiesce without complaint to whatever hardship presents itself. No knowledge of kinship problems with inbreeding, either.

Thanks for watching it.

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