A101.03PrimEvol - ANTHROPOLOGY 101: Introduction to...

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ANTHROPOLOGY 101: Introduction to Anthropology Unit 3: Anthropologists attempt to understand humans’ physical character in terms of their relations to other animals & their evolutionary history Taxonomy Biological classification system based on degree of relationship (common descent) In past, largely based on morphological (form) similarities Now largely based on genetic similarities There are several lines of evidence supporting the notions of evolutionary relationships One is fetal development Another is comparative anatomy A third is genetic comparisons The fossil record is another Fetal Development As the fetus develops it roughly goes through all of the earlier stages of evolutionary development Early in the sequence it grows gills and later reabsorbs them It also grows a tail and later reabsorbs that Anatomical Similarities Paleoanthropologists and other scientists use comparative anatomy to suggest relationships among species Examine similarities in anatomical structures Try to understand the relationships among organisms based on similarities and differences There are two very different kinds of anatomical similarities One kind of similarity is homologies Organs show structural similarities Bat wing, whale flipper, dog leg, human arm Suggest an evolutionary relationship
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Analogies are another kind of similarity Functionally similar, but structurally different Show similar adaptation with independent origin Genetic Similarities We are also genetically more similar to some animals than others We share about 98% of our genes with chimpanzees We share about 92% of our genes with mice We share about 44% of our genes with fruit flies We share about 18% of our genes with plants Taxonomic Place of Humans Based on both morphological & genetic similarities, humans are classed as mammals & as primates
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This note was uploaded on 05/26/2011 for the course ANTH 101 taught by Professor Engelhart during the Spring '09 term at Montana.

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A101.03PrimEvol - ANTHROPOLOGY 101: Introduction to...

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