Mutation and Human Evolution




Just as scientists gather evidence about prehistoric animals by examining bones and fossils, scientists also study human bones and fossils to learn about changes in human populations. In addition, scientists study changes in the human genome to track and understand changes in the human population. As you have learned in previous weeks, the process of meiosis causes genetic variation among offspring. In addition, mutations that occur during meiosis lead to changes in offspring. When these mutations are advantageous for the offspring, they may be passed to further generations. For this week’s Discussion, you explore the evidence scientists have uncovered regarding how mutations in the human genome have led to observable changes in the human population.




To prepare for this Discussion:




Select one of the following mutations to address for this discussion:




Skin color


Facial structure and brain volume


Conduct research on the mutation you selected and evaluate the significance of this mutation’s role in human evolution.


With these thoughts in mind:




Post by Day 4 two or more paragraphs evaluating the significance of your selected mutation's role in human evolution. Your evaluation should include the following:


A brief description of the mutation


A brief explanation of when and how the mutation occurred


At least two ways in which the human population benefited from the mutation


Your position on the significance of this mutation in human evolution


Reference to at least two sources outside the Required Resources


All references cited in APA format


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