[Taxacom] Molecular vs. morphological evidence

Kenneth Kinman kennethkinman at webtv.net
Wed Jul 1 09:04:45 CDT 2009

John Grehan wrote: 
     Whole 'genomes' (read entire sequence) is still the same
kind of data, and taking a chunk or taking the whole (and that would be
for all species) doesn't change the ingredients and the inherent
problems of molecular bean counting. 
Dear All, 
      I guess we will just have to wait for the whole genome
analysis to appear and see whether chimps clade with gorillas or with
humans.  John seems to be pooh-poohing those results even before they
appear, but I expect that it will go well beyond "molecular bean
counting".  SINES and LINES are more like very long strings of beans,
and given the large numbers and variety of such insertions, some of them
no doubt were inserted uniquely in the ancestor of chimps and their
sister group (whether that be gorillas or humans). If humans and
orangutans uniquely share such insertions, that will be a great surprise
to most of us. We'll just have to wait and see what the results actually
are.  We can then debate just how overwhelming or underwhelming those
results turn out to be.  
               -----Ken Kinman                   
P.S. Whichever group (gorillas or humans) clade exclusively with chimps,
we should then begin an intensive search for morphological
synapomorphies which will confirm the molecular findings. It would be
unwise to merely let the molecular findings stand on their own, and I
fully expect that molecular and morphological data will be found which
clearly support each other.  

More information about the Taxacom mailing list