Sunday, 27 May 2018
Like to Eat Insects? Thank Our Assumed Ancestors for Your Gourmet Choices
Why do some people like to eat insects? Reporting on a new paper published in the journal Science Advances, Phys.org proposes an answer.
It has to do with our (assumed) ancestors – “small, furry creatures that scurried around the feet of the dinosaurs 66 million years ago” – who were mostly insect eaters.
“The scientists inferred this because the genes for the enzymes that allowed these early ancestors of all mammals to digest insects are still hanging around in nearly all mammal genomes today.”
These enzymes are called chitinases. Scientists think that humans also have a chitinase gene as well as “remnants of three other chitinase genes in their genome, though none of them are functional.”
This does not signify common descent, however.
While the paper never even suggests that there might be a better and more logical explanation than a typical Darwinian just-so story, common design is a far more credible one.
University of California - Berkeley. 2018. What we inherited from our bug-eating ancestors. Phys.org (16 May).