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Could This New Fossil Discovery Prove That Humans Evolved From Fish?

First Posted: Aug 22, 2016 06:24 AM EDT
A tiny school of fish
Human tissue found in fish, will researchers prove that humans came from fish?
(Photo : Tomohiro Ohsumi/Getty Images)

Evolutionary biologist, Dr. Neil H. Shubin, discovered a fossil which leads his research to a whole new discovery. Similar tissues found in humans are also found in fish. Researchers also compared and later found that fish and mice also have the same protein composition. Upon researching about evolution, Dr. Shubin discovered a 390 million-year-old fossil of a fish, called "Tiktaalik". It has fins that look like limbs and develops endochondral bones similar to human arms.

After two decades of studying his discovery, they have developed a technology called CRISPR-Cas9 that enables researchers to edit parts of the DNA. The machine allows you to cut, replace or add parts to the DNA sequence.

They entered bits of the DNA into the HOXA-13 and Hoxd-13 genes to their model animal, zebrafish. They added a red, glowing molecule to any cells that activate Hoxa13. That technique helps them monitor the flow of Hoxa13. Student of Dr. Shubin, now co-researcher Andrew R. Gehrke discovers that the glowing red molecules would not stop glowing until it reached its destination in the body of the fish.

In an interview with New York Times, Dr. Shubin said, "Here we're finding that the digits and the fin rays have some sort of equivalence at the level of the cells that make them. It shows us how bodies are built by understanding the biology of fish. We understand the basic architecture of our bodies, how genes and cells interact to build us, and how we evolve." 

This new discovery does not prove that humans came from fish. Dr. Shubin will not stop and will research further on the Gehrke discovery. He says that it shows how the bodies are built and by understanding the biology of fish, humans understand the basic architecture of our bodies and how genes and cells interact to build humans and how they evolve, sources says.

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