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Cody Stumph

ePortfolio Signature Assignment


Which of our Genes makes us Human

The main point of this article was to introduce the fact that humans and
many great apes are 98-99% genetically similar. It introduced some theories of what
makes us different, but that major studies to find out havent been started until
now. The author wants the reader to understand that while humans are 98%
genetically similar to apes, the 1-2% of genes that arent similar make huge
differences in the organisms.
I found it interesting that the chunk of DNA which contains AF4 is in all
humans and apes. What interested me about this was that just be being on a
different spot of the chromosome while also being inverted, would cause such a
huge change such as making chimps more immune to cancers such as leukemia.
One question I had from reading this article was that if scientists have known
for decades that apes and humans are 98.5% genetically similar, why are they now
only beginning to study the differences in our genetic material in the 21 st century? I
would think that a discovery this big would instantly cause scientists to scramble to
find answers.
This was my favorite reading because the genetic similarity between humans
and great apes surprised me. Based on the visual characteristics of humans and
apes, I never would guess that their genetic makeup is 98-99% similar. This article
made me wonder what the 1-2% difference in genes are. This small percentage of
genes makes a huge difference in brain capacity, physical characteristics, and
cultural traits. I liked that this article explained how such small differences can make
such huge changes.
This paper fits into biological anthropology because it explains the similarities
of one of humans greatest common ancestors. Humans evolved from great apes, so
although there are many differences in the characteristics of humans and great
apes, it isnt surprising that there are so many similarities in the genetic makeup of
the two. It also fits into biological anthropology because it shows how one species
can develops new traits over time to evolve and become more fit for their
surroundings. Although these genetic changes are small, the effects make a huge
difference in the fitness of these two species.

Annotated Bibliography

Boffelli, Dario, et al. "Phylogenetic Shadowing Of Primate Sequences To Find

Functional Regions Of The Human Genome. (Reports)." Science 5611 (2003):
1391. Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Web. 7 Dec. 2016.
This article talks about the relevance of understanding the human genome by
using knowledge of primates. It talks about how using the genomes of different
primates will help answer some of the questions about the human genome. One of
the authors, Dario Bofellii, has a PhD. And is a well- respected researcher at
Childrens Hospital Oakland Research Institute. His audience is mainly to other
researchers on the topic. This article is similar to the original article I wrote because
they both talk about how the genomes of both humans and primates are so similar,
and studying the differences could make advances in the medical field.

Enard, Wolfgang, and Svante Pbo. "Comparative Primate Genomics." Annual

Review Of Genomics & Human Genetics 5.1 (2004): 351-378. Academic Search
Premier. Web. 7 Dec. 2016.
This article talks about how new ways to study genomes will make it easier to
compare the similarities between humans and non-human primates. It talks about
how comparing the two genomes will show important features in the human
genome. One of the authors, Wolfgang Enard, is a professor at Max-Planck Institute
for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany. Because this article was for the
Annual Review of Genomics and Human Genetics, the intended audience is most
likely peer researches to explain to them how far they have come in their individual
studies. This article is like my first article. Although it doesnt talk about how similar
humans are to non-human primates, it talks about how studying the two genomes
will greatly advance knowledge of the human genome.

Fuentes, Agustin, and Linda D. Wolfe. Primates Face To Face : The Conservation
Implications Of Human-Nonhuman Primate Interconnections. Cambridge, UK:
Cambridge University Press, 2002. eBook Collection (EBSCOhost). Web. 7 Dec. 2016.
This book talks about how the similarities between humans and non-human
primates is a crucial topic of discussion for the conservation of primates and their
habitats. It talks about how much of our human traits come from primates, so I
believe the authors uses ethos to appeal to their readers. Both authors, Agustin
Fuentes and Linda D. Wolfe study biological and evolutionary anthropology at
Cambridge University. This book was written for multiple audiences to bring to light
the issue of conservation of primate habitats. This article relates to my original
article because it uses similarities of humans and non-human primates to appeal to
its readers. Although this book focuses on conservation of habitats while the original
article focuses on the similarities, both use the similarities to support their ideas.