Since the findings from the Human Genome Project and other studies linking human DNA to that of primates, there has been an enormous amount of research producing powerful evidence of evolution in DNA. Professor and research geneticist Daniel J. Fairbanks explores some of the many relics of evolution found in the DNA of every person on the planet in RELICS OF EDEN: THE POWERFUL EVIDENCE OF EVOLUTION IN HUMAN DNA (Prometheus Books, $24.95).
This book comes at a time when the clash between those who perceive evolution as a threat to religious faith and those who view religious fervor as a threat to science is as intense as it ever has been, he says.
Since the publication in 1859 of Darwins ORIGIN OF SPECIES, debate over the theory of evolution has been continuous and often impassioned. In recent years, opponents of Darwins dangerous idea have mounted historys most sophisticated and generously funded attack, claiming that evolution is a theory in crisis. Ironically, these claims are being made at a time when the explosion of information from genome projects has revealed the most compelling and overwhelming evidence of evolution ever discovered. Much of the latest evidence of human evolution comes not from our genes, but from so-called junk DNA, leftover relics of our evolutionary history that make up the vast majority of our DNA.
RELICS OF EDEN explores this powerful DNA-based evidence of human evolution. The relics are the millions of functionally useless but scientifically informative remnants of our evolutionary ancestry trapped in the human genetic code. For example, the analysis of the chimpanzee and Rhesus monkey genomes shows indisputable evidence of the human evolutionary relationship with other primates. Over 95 percent of our genome is identical with that of chimpanzees and we also have a good deal in common with other animal species.
James F. Crow, Emeritus Professor of Genetics at the University of Wi
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