Many Human Genes Evolved Recently

Human genes involved in metabolism, skin pigmentation, brain function and reproduction have evolved in response to recent environmental changes, according to a new study of natural selection in the human genome. Researchers at the University of Chicago, US, developed a statistical test to find genomic regions that evolution has favoured over the last 15,000 years or so – when modern humans dealt with the end of the last ice age, the beginning of agriculture, and increased population densities. Many of the 700 genes the researchers identified – especially those involved in smelling, fertility, and reproduction – are also suspected of having undergone natural selection during the divergence of humans and chimpanzees millions of years ago.

Site – http://www.newscientist.com

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