Losing our sense of smell, Svante Paabo
Interviewee: Svante Paabo. Evolutionary geneticist Svante Paabo talks about the consequences of losing our sense of smell. (DNAi Location: Applications > Human origins > Comparisons > DNA > Losing our sense of smell)
So, and one may ask, perhaps, when did this happen, and what we can actually say, when we look between different people today, is that it's an ongoing process, because we find a lot of these genes that have these mutations in some people and not in others. So we have had these mutations and they are about spreading through the population of humans today. It's of course tempting to say, or think, that this has to do with that smell has become less important to us as humans, maybe in terms of how we're selecting things we eat, that we don't rely on our smell as much as the apes do, or mate selection, or other types of social interactions. One consequence of this is probably that we do differ in our ability to smell and we actually know that that is the case when we test people for their ability to smell. And the background for that, is probably this different amount of these pseudogenes that we have.
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