Professor Terrence Deacon
ASUC Lecture Notes Online is the only
authorized note-taking service at UC Berkeley. Do
not share, copy, or illegally distribute
(electronically or otherwise) these notes. Our
student-run program depends on your individual
subscription for its continued existence.
These notes are copyrighted by the University of California and are for your personal use only.
N O T
C O P Y
Sharing or copying these notes is illegal and could end note taking for this course.
There is a reading posted and clearly labeled on
that is going to be relevant for today’s
lecture and next week’s lectures. The questions for
are also posted.
Use the quiz questions we hand out each week as
your study guide. Most of the questions on the
midterm will be variants of ones that are posted. It’s
a good guide as to what materials are relevant.
the midterm date has changed!
It is now
Today I will talk about
, the most
important issues for the study of evolution.
I’m building up from the bottom, so to speak,
starting with genes. What we’ve been doing so far
on what genes do and how
they evolve. We can now start asking: how do
genes pass on genetic information? How do they
actually influence us? How is the way that the get
passed on crucial to how we and other species
Last time, I showed you a diagram that captured the
very first bits of evidence that primates were all
related, and that you could genetically trace their
ancestors to get a clear image of the past.
If you take the entire lengths of DNA in our human
body and the body of a chimpanzee and line them
up, base pair by base pair, you are able to see
Between humans and chimpanzees, there is very
little difference between how the genes are laid out.
On average, there are typically one or two
differences, or SNPs, for every 100 base pairs.
Chimpanzees and humans share
in which the DNA is roughly 99% identical in
, however, are
; even though they’re slightly
different, they don’t code for a different amino acid.
Therefore, it does not follow that 1 out of every 100
amino acids is different in chimps and humans.
is made up of
200-400 base pairs
so there are usually around 2-4 base substitutions
between each chimp and human gene, and maybe
one or two amino acids that are different in each
protein. This might mean that there are slight
changes in shape, but perhaps not function. Chimp
and human proteins are basically the same, and
many are even
. Differences matter, but
they are not necessarily as remarkable as we think.
All of those differences have accumulated over the