Sunday, July 30, 2006

 

Revolutionary thinking on evolution forces rethink on species

Simon Ho grew up near the surf beach at Maroubra. Now the 25-year-old Australian is making big waves in the scientific world.

Dr Ho, a biologist and computer scientist, has uncovered flaws in the method other researchers have been using for decades to estimate when different species evolved, forcing many to reconsider their dates.

His research suggests modern humans arose much more recently than had been thought.

'Basically, any studies that look at evolution in the past million years need to be re-evaluated, so a lot of people are quite defensive about that,' said Dr Ho, who has just been awarded a doctoral degree at Oxford University in Britain for his findings.

See "Relaxed Phylogenetics and Dating with Confidence" (pdf file)

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