By Bernard Wood

ISBN-10: 0192803603

ISBN-13: 9780192803603

The hot discovery of the diminutive Homo floresiensis (nicknamed "the Hobbit") in Indonesia has sparked new curiosity within the research of human evolution. during this Very brief advent, well known evolutionary student Bernard wooden strains the heritage of paleoanthropology from its beginnings within the eighteenth century to today's most modern fossil unearths. alongside the way in which we're brought to the energetic solid of characters, previous and current, fascinated about evolutionary research.

even supposing targeting the fossil proof for human evolution, the e-book additionally covers the newest genetic proof approximately local diversifications within the sleek human genome that relate to our evolutionary background. wooden attracts on over thirty years of expertise to supply an insiders view of the sector, and demonstrates that our knowing of human evolution is seriously depending on advances in comparable sciences similar to paleoclimatology, geochronology, systematics, genetics, and developmental biology. this is often an excellent creation for somebody attracted to the origins and improvement of humankind.

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Additional info for Human Evolution: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions)

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Did they appear consistently in multiple appropriate methods of data analysis)? Do the molecular trees generally agree with the suspected organismal phylogenies based on conventional types of systematic evidence? Were the phenotype descriptions themselves adequate? g. . How many and what fraction of relevant extant taxa were phenotypically surveyed? Were the phenotypes scored correctly and unambiguously? How suitable were those surveyed phenotypes likely to have been for PCM analysis? Were the PCM analyses themselves properly conducted?

In the molecular phylogeny from Vidal and Hedges, however, varanids proved to be neither ancestral to nor the immediate sister group of Serpentes (Fig. 8). Thus, according to the authors’ interpretation, the hypothesized evolutionary chain of transition from mosasaurs to early marine snakes appeared to be broken; accordingly, the original marine hypothesis for snake origins was provisionally refuted. Given the back-and-forth nature of the debate over the land-first versus sea-first habits of ancestral serpents, I doubt that the molecular findings described above will be the final word on the matter.

Coiled species are few and far between in limpet phylogeny, but they do exist, and their presence would certainly seem to violate Dollo’s law. On the outside, the coiled limpets look like their many uncoiled cousins, but cross-sections through their tented shells reveal an internal spiral architecture that at least superficially resembles the coiled and tunneled designs of most other gastropods. The genetic basis of shell coiling in limpets is unknown, so any proposed mechanism underlying the re-evolution of coiling remains conjectural at present.

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Human Evolution: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) by Bernard Wood

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