[Fwd: [evol-psych] The worms' turn]

Sam Pawlett rsp at SPAMuniserve.com
Sat Feb 17 23:37:43 MST 2001

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: [evol-psych] The worms' turn
Date: Sat, 17 Feb 2001 09:23:25 -0000
From: "Ian Pitchford" <ian.pitchford at scientist.com>
Reply-To: "Ian Pitchford" <Ian.Pitchford at scientist.com>
Organization: http://www.human-nature.com/darwin/index.html
To: <evolutionary-psychology at yahoogroups.com>

The worms' turn
The good news: we have more genes than nematodes. The bad news: most of
them are junk
John O'Farrell

Saturday February 17, 2001

This week a team of international scientists shared the incredible
revelation that homo sapiens has about 30,000 genes. There was then a
pause while everyone
tried to gauge whether they should be amazed that this number was so
high or so low. It transpires that they'd been expecting the American
citizens from whom they took their samples to have many more genes than
the nematode worm, but I
suppose that's what happens when you base your research on the

Worms were used in the genome project because it was presumed that their
genetic code would be so simple to decipher that everyone could knock
off early
on Friday afternoon. But now the papers have had to report the
uncomfortable truth that there's not that much difference between
ourselves and the worm; the
simple, primitive, stupid worm. Frankly worms have been patronised
terribly in the media this week, and ought to take their case to the
press complaints commission, except they won't of course, because
they're so stupid.

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