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Kevin Bonham
03-01-2004, 01:04 AM
This thread-drifted from "announcement: post quoting", believe it or not. These are the last two posts.



I think what happened was climate change in Africa. All of humans came from a common ancestor in the Rif Valley in Africa

I don't believe climate change is the whole story. Perhaps some freak mutation changing the neural topology also had an effect. The climate in Africa was already different to that in Europe but the neandertals were quickly displaced even in climates (like Nth Europe) which favoured their anatomy. AMH with higher tech clothes and weapons easily competed and won outside their ideal climate.


There is work on going to determine if AMH and neanderthal were interbreading. If so, then same species, if not, not.

Interbreeding is not the criterion for speciation but the ability to interbred. Perhaps in the future they may be considered a separate species but at present they are generally not.

Do you know if a name for this new species (should it eventuate) been proposed?

I suspect the main reasons for there inclusion in H sapien at present is their anatomical similarities and the recency of their coexistence with AMH.


Species. A laypersons rule of thumb is if the cross produces fertile offspring , then they are the same species. Unfortunately it is more complicated than that. A high school definition is that the individuals must also have the opportunity under normal natural enviromental conditions to interbreed as well. Without out that opportunity, genetic drift will quickly lead to "infertility" based criteria being satifified.

It also get messy with individual that are theoretically in the same gene pool but have geographically correlated morphalogical differences over a range of environments. These individuals may/may not interbreed because they don't dig their tail-feathers. This helps speciation to occur.
Once speciation has begun it is not likely to reverse once the "fertile offspring" test begins to fail. eg. AxB=fertile, BxC=fertile, AxC?fertile.

How this effects AMH x neanderthal, I don't know, other than to say that mitachondrial DNA studies are underway. The lumping together of all the recent Man Version 1.1, 1.2, 1.3 has traditionally been done because the anatomy of fossiles was the only most important objective point of comparison. Anthropologists, using recovered artifacts and induction, also contribute usefully to the debate. However, molecular genetics is really hot right now. Stay tuned.

Kevin Bonham
03-01-2004, 02:12 AM
As I understand it, the picture with DNA testing is that Neanderthals have been shown to be well outside the genetic range of modern humans, with likely reproductive seperations of hundreds of thousands of years. This is said to be consistent with fossil evidence which places Neanderthals in Europe for at least 200 ky before us louts (AMH) showed up. However there is then the question of how meaningful anatomical differences are.

Also the interpretation of this evidence still seems to be up in the air - it's not really sufficient to prove species-level distinction on commonly used standards of "species" based on the present incomplete DNA evidence, and in any case it doesn't prove Neanderthals couldn't interbreed. (It's very rare for "different" vertebrate animal species to interbreed with fertile offspring, but in some species concepts it can still happen sometimes. Much more of a problem with plants, where in some cases the whole species concept is in serious disrepute.) Some fossils have been interpreted as Neanderthal - AMH hybrids. There is an enormous lot of detail about all this on http://www.neanderthal-modern.com/ but not being an expert on this stuff I have no idea whether it is a fair summary or not.

Something I do have some idea what I'm talking about in - taxonomy. There are currently numerous competing species concepts with no one concept having clear superiority. Matt mentions the key problem of groups where A breeds with B and B breeds with C but A doesn't breed with C. This can happen for a range of reasons - genetic inability, physical inability, aversion etc. I don't have any trouble treating these superspecies, species aggregates, whatever as single "species" because even if A can't interbreed directly with C, genetic material can still be transferred between A and C over generations quite easily, provided this is geographically possible. However, using this concept, if B suddenly becomes extinct, then A and C may soon become genetically seperated for good, and speciate. Perhaps either A or C will speciate anyway even if B survives, but there is no reason why it has to happen unless one of the forms becomes reproductively isolated (and again, this can happen in a range of ways).

What Matt mentions about speciation by aversion is a current hot potato. Parapatric speciation (where two species' geographic ranges run up to each other but don't overlap) and sympatric speciation (where a species develops within the range of a species it splits off from) used to be no-nos but are now well and truly on the agenda. Probably not much of an issue in the neanderthal-AMH case where if there are different species involved, then it seems to be through a long period of geographic isolation.

It's important to remember that "species" is a label we put on things that exist in nature. But individuals don't always slot neatly into that, eg if a population of species A evolves and becomes species B, there isn't a neat line in the sand that you can draw and say that objectively the switch has just occurred - rather "species" refers to clusters that are easy to recognise after that sort of process has finished.

Rincewind
03-01-2004, 08:10 AM
This is all realy off-topic of my original point which is that neadertal and AMH are currently not distinguished at the species boundary. Both are currently classed as H sapien.

As Kevin points out there is dispute in this are. Some paleoanthropologists thinking there may have been interbreeding between the two, others thinking not. This is mainly based on a fossil evidence where some specimens have displayed features of both andbeen interpreted by some as the result of cross-breeding.

It seems that neandertals were converging in certian traits with AMH which may have been the result of cross breeding ro may have been just the result of natural selection independant of the AMH.

Either way, I stand by my original point. There is no established species for neandertals and any cranial capacity is no means to the judge intellectual capacity. Otherwise the Blue Whale would have had us all in its thrall millenia ago. ;)

chesslover
03-01-2004, 08:11 AM
this of course assumes that evoltuion is the way we developed.

I am still undecided on that. but there are many creationists who would dispute this whole topic, and state that the Bible tells how we as a species came about

Rincewind
03-01-2004, 08:13 AM
this of course assumes that evoltuion is the way we developed.

I am still undecided on that. but there are many creationists who would dispute this whole topic, and state that the Bible tells how we as a species came about

Creationism is an intellectually bankrupt position.

PHAT
03-01-2004, 12:57 PM
It seems that neandertals were converging in certian traits with AMH which may have been the result of cross breeding ro may have been just the result of natural selection independant of the AMH.


Convergent evolution does not, as far as we understand, occur with different gene pools competing for dominance in the same niche. Either one gene pool will be out competed, or the two pools will mix.


Either way, I stand by my original point. There is no established species for neandertals ...

I am not disputing that. I am agreeing with you that the area is still being researched. The Out-Of-Africa theoryhas the current upperhand against the All-Together theory. However, that may change.



...any cranial capacity is no means to the judge intellectual capacity. Otherwise the Blue Whale would have had us all in its thrall millenia ago.

Snot the capacity that that matters. It is the "superfluous" grey matter, over and above that required to construct sufficiently suffisticated figments to control the generationation of successful locomotion. ie to facilitate the: fight, flight, feed an f.uck subroutines. The greatest contributing factor to raising the total brain mass is a rise in the physical size of the animal. It is the extra stuff - like our prefrontals - that result in "intelegence".

The extra brain mass of the Neanderthal may been required control the larger msucule bulk of their bodies. This being so, Neanderthal may well have been about as "smart" as us. In fact, I have a shy idea (Mine!) that individual Neanderthals could have been even smarter than AMH individuals. Their is evidence suggesting that Neanderthals had poor communication/language [and spelling]. If that is so, then individually they must have been pretty smart to be able to have had art and culture. Why? because memic transference of knowledge would have been reduced. Much of our so called "intelegence" is realy "exteligence" - the intelegence of the group as a functioning unit.

Kevin Bonham
03-01-2004, 12:59 PM
this of course assumes that evoltuion is the way we developed.

The scientific evidence for this is extremely strong.


I am still undecided on that. but there are many creationists who would dispute this whole topic, and state that the Bible tells how we as a species came about

They should see http://www.talkorigins.org/origins/faqs-qa.html for comprehensive and detailed discussion of all major creationist objections to evolution.

Young Earth Creationism is only tenable if one assumes that every time something contradicts anything in the Bible it must be false, even if it is something they would otherwise happily accept as true. If one is willing to accept the Bible as open to disproof then Young Earth Creationism is indefensible.

Rincewind
03-01-2004, 01:15 PM
Young Earth Creationism is only tenable if one assumes that every time something contradicts anything in the Bible it must be false, even if it is something they would otherwise happily accept as true. If one is willing to accept the Bible as open to disproof then Young Earth Creationism is indefensible.

One also has to pretty much assume a world-wide conspiracy amongst pretty much all the sciences. ;)

Kevin Bonham
03-01-2004, 01:23 PM
One also has to pretty much assume a world-wide conspiracy amongst pretty much all the sciences. ;)

How did they find out about that? :shock:

Rincewind
03-01-2004, 01:31 PM
Convergent evolution does not, as far as we understand, occur with different gene pools competing for dominance in the same niche. Either one gene pool will be out competed, or the two pools will mix.

For what ever reason there is fossil evidence that neandertals were mutating towards a more modern anatomy. Some people have interpreted this as evidence of interbreeding. Others have thought that perhaps there was no interbreeding but that the neandertals were evolving features more similar to modern humans. I don't think there is no compelling evidence either way.


I am not disputing that. I am agreeing with you that the area is still being researched. The Out-Of-Africa theoryhas the current upperhand against the All-Together theory. However, that may change.

Just about everything is still being researched. Currently they are pertty universally considered the same species but anatomically distinct as a separate race.


Snot the capacity that that matters. It is the "superfluous" grey matter, over and above that required to construct sufficiently suffisticated figments to control the generationation of successful locomotion. ie to facilitate the: fight, flight, feed an f.uck subroutines. The greatest contributing factor to raising the total brain mass is a rise in the physical size of the animal. It is the extra stuff - like our prefrontals - that result in "intelegence".

Yes, of course. I was being facetious. However, as you point out the neandertals were heaver than AMH so (at least some of) the extra capacity would have been used up there.


The extra brain mass of the Neanderthal may been required control the larger msucule bulk of their bodies. This being so, Neanderthal may well have been about as "smart" as us. In fact, I have a shy idea (Mine!) that individual Neanderthals could have been even smarter than AMH individuals. Their is evidence suggesting that Neanderthals had poor communication/language [and spelling]. If that is so, then individually they must have been pretty smart to be able to have had art and culture. Why? because memic transference of knowledge would have been reduced. Much of our so called "intelegence" is realy "exteligence" - the intelegence of the group as a functioning unit.

Not if you include ability to communicate as a measure of intelligence. ;)

Something stopped the neandertals from taking the next step. Perhaps the AMH development of higher tech clothing and weapons (missile weapons, perhaps) were the killer app which the neandertals couldn't keep up with. I don't think we know for sure but whatever it was, it was big and probably related to the intelligence and/or ability to communicate of the AMH.

Cat
07-01-2004, 08:13 PM
I'm not aware that anyone has been able to obtain Neanderthal DNA. My understanding is that Neanderthals co-existed with Cro-Magnon up until 30,000 years ago. The main anatomical differences were in the larynx, where Cro-Magnon had the more elongated larynx as seen in modern humans. This permitted the development of complex language systems, but more importantly the ability to transmit information from one generation to the next - the accumulation of knowledge. It would have also been of immense benefit in hunting.

Cro-Magnon also developed more ritualistic behaviour, such as burial and probably quasi-religious beliefs, skin decoration, etc.

Kevin Bonham
07-01-2004, 11:33 PM
I'm not aware that anyone has been able to obtain Neanderthal DNA.

If you look at the website I quoted in my first post to this thread, you will become aware. :D

Garvinator
08-01-2004, 01:00 AM
Something stopped the neandertals from taking the next step. Perhaps the AMH development of higher tech clothing and weapons (missile weapons, perhaps) were the killer app which the neandertals couldn't keep up with. I don't think we know for sure but whatever it was, it was big and probably related to the intelligence and/or ability to communicate of the AMH.

hello guys, i didnt realise early on what was being discussed here, but now that I do, I would like to join in this as best I can.

first of all, why do I have a interest in the origins of species. Well in part it has confirmed why i am a devote atheist as others have said here.

Now on the topic to which the above quote is directed by barry cox.

Research has shown that the early human races gained an advantage over other species by being able to walk on two legs. This lead to the ability to use hands and arms for hunting, gathering etc. Also over generations, the early humans gained the ability to make clothes, languages etc. the neandertals race lacked this ability.

As barry has said in the above quote, something stopped the neandertals from taking the next step. I will attempt to explain what that step could have been and what is the most likely reason.

As we have said, the latter species, cro magnum et al, gain the ability to make clothes and more developed hunting weapons. this then gave the latter species the ability to hunt more effectively and efficently. Over time this allowed the latter species the ability to grow and become larger as a species, which then helped to lead the neandertals to their extinction.

Now the most major point has almost been proven- the ice ages. Genetic testing of fossils has shown that, as best as i know, the neandertals race became extinct around the time of an ice age. This combined with the other factors already detailed, lead to the neandertals extinction as a species.

PHAT
08-01-2004, 08:59 AM
... gain the ability to make clothes and more developed hunting weapons. this then gave the latter species the ability to hunt more effectively and efficently...


At least as important as fire, add string to that list. String has been as under rated as Austrailan Juniorchess players. String: for binding sone to wood, making snares, fishing nets, carrying food and babies (sometimes the same thing), controlling cothing furs and shoes ... A simple tecchnology with huge application.

Rincewind
08-01-2004, 10:01 AM
As we have said, the latter species, cro magnum et al, gain the ability to make clothes and more developed hunting weapons. this then gave the latter species the ability to hunt more effectively and efficently. Over time this allowed the latter species the ability to grow and become larger as a species, which then helped to lead the neandertals to their extinction.

I think you mean "races", not "species", according to current taxonomy they're all H sapien.


Now the most major point has almost been proven- the ice ages. Genetic testing of fossils has shown that, as best as i know, the neandertals race became extinct around the time of an ice age. This combined with the other factors already detailed, lead to the neandertals extinction as a species.

The oneset of an Ice Age leading to greater competition for resources could have easily accelerated the extinction of the neandertals. However, why they could not compete for resources as efficiently as the AMH is the question that interests me.

PHAT
08-01-2004, 11:01 AM
The oneset of an Ice Age leading to greater competition for resources could have easily accelerated the extinction of the neandertals. However, why they could not compete for resources as efficiently as the AMH is the question that interests me.

There may not have been a competition-for-resourses based extinction. It could been somthing biological such as a group/race specific communicable disease. It might even have been a meme of dubious worth - like Branch Davidians.

Rincewind
08-01-2004, 11:23 AM
The oneset of an Ice Age leading to greater competition for resources could have easily accelerated the extinction of the neandertals. However, why they could not compete for resources as efficiently as the AMH is the question that interests me.

There may not have been a competition-for-resourses based extinction. It could been somthing biological such as a group/race specific communicable disease. It might even have been a meme of dubious worth - like Branch Davidians.

I would have thought the neandertals culture would not have left them particularly prone to communicable deseases or memes of questionable worth. My understanding is they lived in reasonably small family based groups and given the limited communication skill they were supposedly endowed with neither explaination seems as likely, for mine.

Forthermore, I believe the fossil record points towards a relatively slow decline and as pointed out earlier there is also some indications of possible interbreeding with AMH (or perhaps convergent evolution to a more modern anatomy), rather than a catastrophic extinction event which might occur with a particularly virulent disease or mass suicide.

Mostly likely then, I think, is competition for resources. Particularly string which appearently was in short supply 30-50k years ago. Not to mention food and water which is in short supply (in liquid form) during an ice age. ;)

Cat
09-01-2004, 07:47 PM
KB thanks for your reference. I now remember this story breaking a couple of years ago. As I remember, it was heavily reported in the popular media, an Australian team published the data and it was heavily criticised at the time by British Scientists.

The problem with pcr is that, although incredibly sensitive it is extremely susceptible to contamination. Tiny amounts of genetic material can be analysed, but the problem is that the source of the material cannot always be determined. Therefore using this technique to analyse ancient DNA is potentially suspect.

We use pcr techniques widely to identify infections such as chlamydia. Although detection rates are high (96%), a small amount of genetic contamination can affect an entire batch run. I personally have known this to have happened. If contamination is such a problem in fresh specimens, one can imagine the problem in using this technique in ancient specimens. I note that the references quoted are at least 2 years old and I would draw your attention to Geigls paper, which echoes what I have been saying.

We're not talking Jurassic Park, perfect specimens of DNA preserved in amber, it's really kicking over the ashes. It's certainly interesting, it would be interesting to see more recent papers, and I think a lot more corroborative research needs to be done (and it may have been) before drawing any firm conclusions.

PHAT
09-01-2004, 10:47 PM
with so many peole wanting to do NDA tests to proove evrything from aliens to "I KNEW I WAS ADOPTED" we must tak e a dispassionate and disintrtested look at how reliabel is DNA evidence. Whan it comes to ncien t DNA SAmples , it is a matter of culing ou tthe unwanted stuff and doing lots of maths on lots of repleated samp-les. In the end, DNA evidence is pretttywell perfect. It is the interpretation that gets "manipulaterd" . Like most Scienc , and scientidsts , what "needs" to tbe seen gats seen. We try to combeat this by lettig others smash your work to bits. Mostly fellow specialist canonly doobits of help, and it all come out looking pretty good. I trust the DNAevidence until a flaw in method is found. To show that PCRing DNA is not so hit and mis , I'll tell you that bits of DNA can be literally extracted from all kinds of rubbish. It is like doing a search for the comnectutive words "... other than negative fishing ..." in all the published works in all the world. There is little chance that you won't find the exactquote you are lokking for very qickly. Anyway chiil ang let Techology be your servant.

Cat
10-01-2004, 10:08 AM
Well this is what Geigl says



The authors state that, on the basis of three unadapted criteria, contamination of their ancient DNA extract with allochthanous DNA could be excluded. The first criterion is measurement of the D/L ratio for aspartic acid. The utility of racemization has recently been criticized because of the disparity in the fundamental process of racemization and depurination (Collins et al. 1999). Furthermore, this approach does not assess contamination with modern biological material. The second criterion is spectrometry at 240500 nm, which cannot distinguish between modern and ancient DNA. The third criterion is viscosity, as assessed with a toothpick plunged into the extract (Scholz and Pusch 1997). This latter assay can only detect contamination by a high concentration of high molecular-weight DNA, a situation easily avoided by a thorough previous cleaning of the fossils. However, it is much more difficult to prevent and to assess contamination by a lower level of modern DNA, even though this modern DNA could still far exceed traces of ancient DNA.

Scholz et al. (2000) adopt an unusual approach to probing the samples, labeling material extracted from fossil samples that do not give rise to PCR products. PCR applications suffer from the problems of inhibitors present in the samples. The presence of such inhibitors will also interfere with other DNA enzymes. Indeed, up to now, I have always observed that the PCR inhibitors present in various fossil extracts also inhibit many other DNA-modifying enzymesin particular, the Klenow fragment of DNA polymerase I used in the labeling step. What, indeed, are Scholz et al. labeling, if there is no material that can be amplified by PCR? There will be a preference for labeling undamaged DNA, most probably contamination from the soil or from the handling of samples. Contamination by soil DNA is a concern, since most fossils are buried in the soil and are infiltrated by microorganisms that release DNA during extraction (Sidow et al. 1991)



I'm not saying it can't be done, but the data needs to be viewed critically. It would be interesting to view more recent data. Compare this approach with the analysis of the DNA of the 10,000 yr old man found preserved in a cave at Cheddar, where the DNA profiling was so complete, a decendant was found living in the village only 100 yds from the cave!

PHAT
10-01-2004, 01:18 PM
Well this is what Geigl says


...The first criterion is measurement of the D/L ratio for aspartic acid. The utility of racemization has recently been criticized because of the disparity in the fundamental process of racemization and depurination (Collins et al. 1999). Furthermore, this approach does not assess contamination with modern biological material.

The second criterion is spectrometry at 240500 nm, which cannot distinguish between modern and ancient DNA.


The third criterion is viscosity, as assessed with a toothpick plunged into the extract (Scholz and Pusch 1997). This latter assay can only detect contamination by a high concentration of high molecular-weight DNA, a situation easily avoided by a thorough previous cleaning of the fossils.

However, it is much more difficult to prevent and to assess contamination by a lower level of modern DNA, even though this modern DNA could still far exceed traces of ancient DNA.



1. This is a spontainious chemical conversion from left anded to righthanded. The rate at which it occurs is proportional to several parameters: time, pH, metabolic activity that produces ROS (radical oxygen species) and (I think) UV. As such, if these parameters except for time can be estimated, time can time/age can be calculated []approximately. Aspartic acid has nothing to do with DNA - it is a chemical building (amino acid) of protein - except that they are limked in time and space to the orginal mutual biological material.

2. "240500 nm" ?? Are you sure it isn't 260/280nm ratio which is the DNA/protein purity ratio. In any case, it is true that purity cannot tell us age.

3. It sounds primative but any hint of fresh DNA (ie new undegraded contaminant DNA) will cause clumping. The smaller chunks of older degraded DNA is what you want. There are good methods for separating them out from the new stuff, eg PAGE (polyacrylamide gel electrophoreseis.)


Contamination by soil DNA is a concern, since most fossils are buried in the soil and are infiltrated by microorganisms that release DNA during extraction (Sidow et al. 1991)


I wouldn't sweat too much on this. All biological genera have in their DNA, specific A:T and G:C ratios which tell you that it is definitely not bacteria, fungi, oesteoclasts, nemotode etc. So it becomes pretty certain that what you have is primate DNA.

Cat
10-01-2004, 11:31 PM
Fair enough

antistar
11-03-2004, 10:11 PM
I think it is important to know that The bing bang theory and the "Darwin theories" are theories nothing more, nothing less.

A fact is that: Of all the speciments/races we have today of animals around the world, none of them are what some would call "in between" species, that is odd isnt it? where are all the "in between" species? there must be something between each race of animal... and we have found none

SORRY ABOUT MY BAD ENGLISH.

Kevin Bonham
11-03-2004, 10:49 PM
I think it is important to know that The bing bang theory and the "Darwin theories" are theories nothing more, nothing less.

A fact is that: Of all the speciments/races we have today of animals around the world, none of them are what some would call "in between" species, that is odd isnt it? where are all the "in between" species? there must be something between each race of animal... and we have found none

SORRY ABOUT MY BAD ENGLISH.

You should be more sorry about your bad science (and I wouldn't mind betting, your bad religion too).

You have cited no evidence to back your claim that there are no "in between" species. You can't, because you are wrong - cases of animals that are intermediate between one "species" and another are uncommon but well recorded. As are "missing link" species between two higher groups. In most cases, the intermediate steps between two given closely related species or groups no longer exist. There are reasons for this that I can explain if needed.

I'm not going to cite any evidence in return, for now, apart from a few helpful URLs. I'm just going to tell you that I am a taxonomist (a person who works on trying to work out how to classify diffferent lifeforms) and that you are wrong.

If you wish to cite evidence to back your case instead of just insisting that you are right maybe we can continue this discussion.

Until then, have a nice day. :hand:

Oh, and you might like to read this (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/evolution-fact.html). And this (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-misconceptions.html#proof). And especially this (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-speciation.html) one as well. If you can't follow the English in those links, you might not be able to follow any proof I give of why you are wrong either.

antichrist
14-03-2004, 12:11 PM
I think it is important to know that The bing bang theory and the "Darwin theories" are theories nothing more, nothing less.

A fact is that: Of all the speciments/races we have today of animals around the world, none of them are what some would call "in between" species, that is odd isnt it? where are all the "in between" species? there must be something between each race of animal... and we have found none

SORRY ABOUT MY BAD ENGLISH.

Creationism and religion is communal wanking -- nothing more and nothing less

Rincewind
15-03-2004, 06:05 PM
http://dreadnought.bjcox.com/images/tumbleweed.gif

PHAT
15-03-2004, 06:52 PM
I think it is important to know that The bing bang theory and the "Darwin theories" are theories nothing more, nothing less.

A fact is that: Of all the speciments/races we have today of animals around the world, none of them are what some would call "in between" species, that is odd isnt it? where are all the "in between" species? there must be something between each race of animal... and we have found none

SORRY ABOUT MY BAD ENGLISH.

Sorry about my bad form in rubbishing your ideas, but mate, you have no idea. All species now (except for those about to become extict), are those "in between" species. They are in between what they were and what they will be.

ursogr8
15-03-2004, 08:37 PM
Sorry about my bad form in rubbishing your ideas, but mate, you have no idea. All species now (except for those about to become extict), are those "in between" species. They are in between what they were and what they will be.

hi Matt

For those of us who have difficulty in abstract concepts, could we have a for-instance on your comment.
For instance, what are you "in between"? What is your predecessor, and what is the next incarnation?

starter

PHAT
15-03-2004, 10:01 PM
For instance, what are you "in between"? What is your predecessor, and what is the next incarnation?


My predecessors are my parents and my incarnations are my children.

But seriously, I am on the line of the 3rd chimpanzee which is on the road to either being the first immortal species or extinction.

Rincewind
15-03-2004, 11:28 PM
But seriously, I am on the line of the 3rd chimpanzee which is on the road to either being the first immortal species or extinction.

I'm glad you're being serious. Some theologists and possibly cosmologists might have issues with your use of the word immortal. ;)

PHAT
16-03-2004, 04:00 PM
I'm glad you're being serious. Some theologists and possibly cosmologists might have issues with your use of the word immortal. ;)

Wellllllll, biologists have no problem with the word. eg an immortal cell line. This is (usually) a hybridoma - a cell made by combining a carcinoma cell and another normal "mortal cell". The result is a cell that can, like some stem-cells, replicate "forever" without running up against apoptosis (programmed cell death/suicide).

As is the case with all our human endevours, success is relative. I reckon living a couple of thousand years would qualify you as being an immortal.

Rincewind
16-03-2004, 04:10 PM
As is the case with all our human endevours, success is relative. I reckon living a couple of thousand years would qualify you as being an immortal.

Time enough for love, hey Lazarus?