"Just because my sister and I look alike, does not mean she evolved from me. "
David Earl Williams III
Study: Humans' DNA not quite so similar
By MALCOLM RITTER, AP Science Writer
Mon Sep 3, 8:00 PM ET
NEW YORK - People are less alike than scientists had thought when it comes to the billions of building blocks that make up each individual's DNA, according to a new analysis.
"Instead of 99.9 percent identical, maybe we're only 99 percent (alike)," said J. Craig Venter, an author of the study "” and the person whose DNA was analyzed for it.
Several previous studies have argued for lowering the 99.9 percent estimate. Venter says this new analysis "proves the point."
The new work, in the latest issue of PLoS Biology, marks the first time a scientific journal has presented the entire DNA makeup, or human genome, of an individual. However, James D. Watson "” co-discoverer of DNA's molecular structure "” received his own personal DNA map from scientists a few months ago. And the genomes for both him and Venter are already posted on scientific Web sites.
Venter is president of the J. Craig Venter Institute in Rockville, Md., which does genetics research. He and scientists at his institute and elsewhere collaborated on the work that produced his genetic map.
The order of building blocks along a strand of DNA encodes genetic information, somewhat like the way a sequence of letters creates a sentence. Particular sequences form genes. Landmark studies published in 2001 indicated that the DNA of any two people is about 99.9 percent alike. The new paper suggests estimates of 99.5 percent to just 99 percent, Venter said.
The Venter paper joins several others published over the past three to four years that indicate an estimate of around 99 percent, said Richard Gibbs, a DNA expert at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston who didn't participate in Venter's study.
The studies produce the lower figure because they uncovered chunks of DNA that differ among people, whereas previous studies focused on differences in individual building blocks.
The 99 percent figure is close to what scientists have often estimated for the similarity between humans and chimps. But the human-chimp similarity drops to more like 95 percent when the more recently discovered kinds of DNA variation are considered, Venter said.
Gibbs called the Venter paper significant, along with a similar but not-yet-published analysis of Watson's DNA that he has worked on. That's because the analyses show more differences than expected from the standard human DNA sequence published by the federal government, he said. (The federal sequence was based on a mix of DNA from different people.)
That finding in turn is shedding light on how DNA varies among people, with implications for understanding the genetic underpinnings of disease, Gibbs said.
Although the new paper analyzes just Venter's genetic material, it can make estimates about how individuals differ in their DNA. Everybody inherits two sets of DNA, one from each parent. Venter's paper compared the DNA he inherited from his mother with the DNA from his father.
On the Net:
PLoS Biology: http://www.dnaftb.org
I don't think people came from monkeys or even believe if there is a missing link due to the fact of lack of evidences and fraud in these claims before. It was woman who was supposedly made from the rib of man. God created most things composing of energies, such as are within us. I do not see the logic in believing why humans came from monkeys through an gradual transitition. I can see the physical similarites between them and us, but my sister and I look alike too, but she did not come from me. We could try to conclude that "Big Foot" may be the "missing link" between man and ape, but then again with those "sightings" why has it been that no one has ever tried to catch this creature? I really do not believe that "Big Foot" is real. My logic for this is simple, for all the times the scientist have searched for this thing in the area which it was spotted, I do not see why they fail to find any thing in relation to this creature from a straind of hair to a finger nail. My conculsion, it's either an actual ape, a man dressed up in a costume or some individual that suffers from a bad case of excess body hair.