Are Humans as Close to Chickens as They Are to Chimps? | The Institute for Creation Research

Are Humans as Close to Chickens as They Are to Chimps?

A recent comprehensive analysis compared the human Y chromosome with the chimpanzee Y chromosome, and the researchers found that they were “remarkably divergent.”1

The Y chromosome is found only in males and contains many genes that specify male features, as well as genetic and regulatory information that is expressed throughout the whole body. In a study published in the January issue of Nature, a large team of scientists encountered so many unforeseen differences in the DNA sequences of the human and chimp Y chromosomes that the research took much longer than they had originally anticipated. Among their discoveries were interesting features unique to certain “sequence classes” within each chromosome.

Most of their findings do not fit well with the often-repeated erroneous statement that humans and chimps are 98 percent similar, nor with the more general hypothesis that they share a common ancestor.2 One sequence class within the chimpanzee Y chromosome had less than 10 percent similarity with the same class in the human Y chromosome, and vice versa. Another large class shared only half the similarities of the other species, and vice versa. And one whole class on the human Y chromosome “has no counterpart in the chimpanzee MSY [male-specific Y chromosome].”1

Under evolutionary assumptions of long and gradual genetic changes, the Y chromosome structures, layouts, genes, and other sequences should be much the same in both species, given the relatively short—according to the evolutionary timeline—six-million-year time span since chimpanzees and humans supposedly diverged from a common ancestor. Instead, the differences between the chromosomes are marked. R. Scott Hawley, a genetics researcher at the Stowers Institute in Kansas City who wasn’t involved in the research, told the Associated Press, “That result is astounding.”3

The Nature paper expressed the mismatch between this data and standard evolutionary interpretations in a more muted tone: “Indeed, at 6 million years of separation, the difference in MSY gene content in chimpanzee and human is more comparable to the difference in autosomal gene content in chicken and human, at 310 million years of separation.”1 Autosomes are the chromosomes other than the X and Y.

So, the human Y chromosome looks just as different from a chimp’s as the other human chromosomes do from a chicken’s. And to explain where all these differences between humans and chimps came from, believers in big-picture evolution are forced to invent stories of rapid wholesale rearrangements, and rapid generation of both new gene-containing and regulatory DNA.

But since each respective Y chromosome appears fully integrated and interdependent with its host organism, the most logical conclusion is that humans and chimpanzees were each specially created as distinct creatures.

References

  1. Hughes, J. F. et al. Chimpanzee and human Y chromosomes are remarkably divergent in structure and gene content. Nature. Published online January 13, 2010.
  2. Tomkins, J. 2009. Human-Chimp Similarities: Common Ancestry or Flawed Research? Acts & Facts. 38 (6): 12.
  3. Borenstein, S. Men More Evolved? Y Chromosome Study Stirs Debate. Associated Press, January 13, 2010.

* Mr. Thomas is Science Writer at the Institute for Creation Research.

Article posted on January 26, 2010.

The Latest
NEWS
Fossil Chromatin Looks Young
What are the odds that a buried animal would still have intact DNA after 125 million years? Researchers publishing in the journal Communications Biology...

NEWS
Inside October 2021 Acts & Facts
How is the Lord’s handiwork on display at John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park? Does the universe look old? What can we learn about science and...

NEWS
Two-Volume Series: Restoring the Truth about Origins
The subject of origins continues to attract interest from the public and the scientific establishment. Understanding our origins informs us of who we are...

ACTS & FACTS
Creation Kids: Floods Form Fossils Fast
Christy Hardy and Susan Windsor* You’re never too young to be a creation scientist! Kids, discover fun facts about God’s creation with...

ACTS & FACTS
A Battle for Hearts
Since the ICR Discovery Center for Science & Earth History opened in fall of 2019, tens of thousands of people have walked through our doors. They...

APOLOGETICS
Eating Bugs Isn't Always So Simple
The Lord Jesus Christ deserves glory for why He made Earth’s diverse creatures, and He also deserves glory for the complicated details of how...

ACTS & FACTS
Does the Universe Look Old?
Since distant galaxies are billions of light-years away, some understandably assume that distant starlight must have taken billions of years to reach...

ACTS & FACTS
Hawaii Behind the Scenes
ICR Research Scientist Dr. Brian Thomas and ICR Video Producer Clint Loveness, with help from friends and family, recently shot footage in Maui, Hawaii,...

ACTS & FACTS
Mutation, Design, and Faith
Any alteration in a cell’s DNA sequence is a mutation. These changes can come from copying errors, exposure to chemicals or radiation, or from...

ACTS & FACTS
Another Function of 'Junk DNA' Discovered
For decades, evolutionists suggested that huge sections of our genome (about half) did not actively code for the production of proteins or polypeptides—and...