Big Picture Science – You Say You Want An Evolution

by Gary Niederhoff on September 16, 2013

Big Picture Science – You Say You Want An Evolution

Imagine: Your pint-sized pup is descended from a line of predatory wolves. We have purposefully bred a new species – dogs – to live in harmony with us. But interactions between species, known as co-evolution, happen all the time, even without deliberate intervention. And it’s frequently a boon to survival: Without the symbiotic relationship we have with bugs in our gut, one that’s evolved with time, we wouldn’t exist.

Discover the Bogart-and-Bacall-like relationships between bacteria and humans, and what we learn by seeing genes mutate in the lab, real time. Also, the dog-eat-dog debate about when canines were first domesticated, and how agriculture, hip-hop music, and technology can alter our DNA (eventually).

Plus, why some of the fastest humans in history have hailed from one small area of a small Caribbean island. Is there a gene for that?

Listen to individual segments here:
Part 1: Greger Larsen on dog evolution
Part 2: Dave van Ditmarsch on real-time bacteria evolution
Part 3: Peter Richerson on human co-evolution with culture
Part 4: David Epstein on the sports gene

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