Fw: Chimp and human
Anders Gorm Pedersen
gorm at cbs.dtu.dk
Tue Nov 28 04:45:17 EST 2000
"Michael L. Sullivan" wrote:
> critically about science and what they read and hear. Just what does the
> 98% number mean? On the one hand you can say, "see how much we have in
> common". On the other hand, you can make the point, that small changes can
> make big differences. It's not bad to discuss things like "the number"
> with people. It makes people think a little more deeply about such things.
I thought you might be interested in a few more numbers and some refs.
The euchromatic regions of human and chimp DNA (i.e., where most of the
genes are) are about 98% similar by several criteria (hybridization,
sequencing, ...). Heterochromatic regions display considerable
The human-human similarity is about 99.9% (i.e., approximately one
difference in 1000 nucleotides).
But obviously some genes are more important than others in terms of
leading to phenotypic differences (homeotic genes, ...)
Some relevant refs:
Luke S, Verma RS. Human (Homo sapiens) and chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes)
share similar ancestral centromeric alpha satellite DNA sequences but
other fractions of heterochromatin differ considerably. Am J Phys
Anthropol. 1995 Jan;96(1):63-71.
Luke S, Verma RS. The genomic synteny at DNA level between human and
Chromosome Res. 1993 Nov;1(4):215-9.
Springer MS, Davidson EH, Britten RJ. Calculation of sequence divergence
from the thermal stability of DNA heteroduplexes. J Mol Evol. 1992
Wang DG, et al. Large-scale identification, mapping, and genotyping of
single-nucleotide polymorphisms in the human genome. Science. 1998 May
Kaessmann H, Wiebe V, Paabo S. Extensive nuclear DNA sequence diversity
Science. 1999 Nov 5;286(5442):1159-62.
Anders Gorm Pedersen, Ph.D. (gorm at cbs.dtu.dk)
Technical University of Denmark
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