A skull of a Neanderthal.

Earliest interbreeding event between ancient human populations discovered

February 20, 2020

For three years, anthropologist Alan Rogers has attempted to solve an evolutionary puzzle. His research untangles millions of years of human evolution by analyzing DNA strands from ancient human species known as hominins. Like many evolutionary geneticists, Rogers compares hominin genomes looking for genetic patterns such as mutations and shared genes. He develops statistical methods […]



Variations of a single gene drive diverse pigeon feather patterns

July 17, 2018

In a new study, a University of Utah-led team has discovered that different versions of a single gene, called NDP (Norrie Disease Protein),┬áhave unexpected links between color patterns in pigeons, and vision defects in humans. These gene variations were likely bred into pigeons by humans from a different pigeon species and are now evolutionarily advantageous […]



Genomes in flux

February 6, 2017

SALT LAKE CITY – Evolution is often thought of as a gradual remodeling of the genome, the genetic blueprints for building an organism. In some instances it might be more appropriate to call it an overhaul. Over the past 100 million years, the human lineage has lost one-fifth of its DNA, while an even greater […]