Did two pulses of evolution supercharge human cognition?
An intriguing new study tries to tabulate the ages of genetic variants associated with human phenotypes, but its claims about recent brain evolution may not pan out.
What color were Neandertals?
Even with whole genomes, scientists can't say very precisely what pattern of skin, hair, and eye pigmentation was in ancient populations like the Neandertals.
Explaining the X chromosome hole in Neandertal ancestry
Natural selection reduced the variation on human X chromosomes in populations with the most Neandertal and Denisovan mixture. It may have been meiotic drive.
How much of human evolution was due to polygenic adaptation?
This has been an eventful week for those of us who study the dynamics of recent selection in humans. The most significant event was the publication of a paper describing genetic analysis of a long selection experiment in Drosophila. Although the experiment differs from most natural instances of selection in
Human evolution stopping? Wrong, wrong, wrong.
I look into arguments by the geneticist Steve Jones that human evolution has stopped. It hasn't.
Our new paper on why human evolution accelerated
I run through our 2007 work on evidence for recent natural selection across the human genome.