Saturday, March 04, 2006

 

Chimpanzees show hints of higher human traits

"Our closest relative the chimpanzee is capable of sophisticated cooperative behaviour and even rudimentary altruism, two new studies reveal. The discovery suggests that some of the underpinnings of human sociality may have been present millions of years ago.

'At least some of [those behaviours] are already present in rudimentary forms in chimps - and maybe in the common ancestor of chimps and humans,' says Alicia Melis of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany. 'Humans are biologically prepared to develop these kinds of skills.'"

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