What does the discovery of an additional artery mean for human evolution?

Suggested by Charles Darwin The theory of evolution by natural selection In the early nineteenth century. At the time, scientists were just beginning to understand how species evolved and adapted to changes in their environment. Even today, our understanding of human evolution continues to change. Perhaps the latest evidence that we are not quite finished with evolution is Increasing the spread of an additional artery in the arm.

The mysterious additional artery in question is median artery, the lifeline of blood supply to the human forearm and hand during early human evolution. Traditionally, the artery is an embryonic structure that forms in the mother’s womb and disappears around eight weeks. Under these conditions, arterioles are known as Radial and ulnar arteries Then he replaced the middle artery and took over the task of supplying blood to the forearm, hands and fingers.

However, recent discoveries have shown that some of us keep all three arteries well into adulthood. What does the sudden presence of this additional artery mean for human development and the future of human evolution? That’s what we know!

limb development

For centuries, human anatomy has developed at an increasingly rapid rate. An international team of researchers came together in 2020 to investigate the latest development: a large increase in the adult population with an additional supply of blood vessels in the forearms. After analyzing the anatomical literature and corpses of the twentieth century, Dr DISCOVER THE TEAM The median artery is currently present in about 35 percent of people. Apparently, the average artery has been on the rise since the mid-1880s, during which time the average artery prevalence was about 10%.

“The study shows that humans are evolving at a faster rate than at any time in the past 250 years,” said Tejan Lucas, lead author of the study and an archaeologist at Flinders University. In a press release. Indeed, Lucas expects the median artery a . to remain Common in the human forearm far into the future.

But is this sudden change in human anatomy a good or bad thing? According to the researchers, it could be both. Continued propagation of the middle artery has various benefits, such as increasing the overall blood supply in the human body. The artery can also be useful by serving as an emergency vessel; If any damage occurs to the radial or ulnar artery, the extra blood vessels will continue to supply blood to the hand. However, the median artery can also act as a double-edged sword, often putting pressure on the median nerve in adulthood and leads to pain and carpal tunnel syndrome.

A glimpse into the subtle evolution

The median artery is not the only example of continuous human evolution. Sure, we might not turn into a completely different species overnight, but that doesn’t mean evolution has stopped completely. Scientists continue to find new anatomical developments – and the appendix is ​​a shining example.

our friend Charles Darwin is famous for the theory The appendix will shrink over time as a result of changes in the human diet. His theory was based on the observation that the large appendix allows great apes and humans to digest difficult plant matter and high concentrations of cellulose. And since our source of nutrients has changed to more digestible options, we have appendix She has already undergone a transformation on her own. Today, a much smaller supplement resides within us and continues to promote the growth of beneficial bacteria in our digestive systems. Researchers come up with a theory The skeleton has evolved more than 30 times among mammals.

Similar to the appendix, humans have survived many other anatomical changes to adapt to their ever-changing environments, such as a smaller jaw, the absence of wisdom teeth and even extra bones in our arms and legs. While some changes are smaller than the emergence of an entirely new artery, all the constantly evolving parts of the body indicate that evolution is not yet over.

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