ScienceScience Sunday

Science Sunday: Battle Monkeys!

OK, so this post doesn’t really have anything to do with battle monkeys except in the loosest sense, as Hank Green from Crash Course explains in yet another kick-ass video explaining science concepts.

The discussion in this video is about evolutionary development, including the basics of regulatory genes, hox genes, and gap genes, with some illustrative examples involving a butt eye (yes, an eye on a butt) and, as the video title suggests, chicken teeth.

Watch all the way to the end for a clear explanation of why huge evolutionary changes (such as dinosaurs to birds) are shown in the fossil record to have happened much more quickly than you would expect if you’re picturing each gene coded for something (such as teeth, feathers, etc.) changing individually. The answer lies in how regulatory genes work. It’s fascinating.

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Melanie Mallon

Melanie Mallon

Melanie is a freelance editor and writer who just moved to a small town outside Minneapolis with her husband and two young kids. When not counting how often the words "pride," "liberty," and "freedom" are used in local business, road, and pet names, she spends her time wrangling commas, making colon jokes, and raising her two kids to be critical thinkers. She is the managing editor of Skepchick Events, a Grounded Parents admin, and a Skepchick contributor. You can find her on Twitter as @MelMall, on Facebook, and on Google+

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