Monday, November 2, 2015

Chicken study reveals evolution can happen much faster than thought

According to a study led by Greger Larson preformed at Oxford University Research Laboratory of Archaeology, evolution can occur much faster than previously thought. A study preformed on chickens has shown that two mutations that have arose in the mitochondrial genome of chickens occurred in just 50 years. This study involved following the pedigrees of individual chickens. It has been long believed that the rate at which mitochondrial mutations occur were not faster than 2 percent per million years. This new study shows that the rate of evolution is 15 times faster than previously thought.

Another interesting finding that came out of this study was the “discovery of a single instance of mitochondrial DNA being passed down from a father.” This was discovery was made possible because the experiment included both the identification of the genetic sequence of the chickens as well as having the pedigree of each individual chicken that was involved in the study.

This article was very interesting. I always enjoy reading about things that are thought to be a certain ways but can be proven to be untrue. I am not sure that evolution would occur this fast in other species but the fact that it only took 50 years for a mitochondrial mutation to occur in chickens is truly fascinating.

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