Weekly round up: Is evolution real? and much else(warning contains swear words)

Stories that caught our eye

Does evolution really happen? The gene that makes mice care for their young makes sheepdogs care for their flocks. Yet the common ancestor of both lived more than 75 million years ago. It’s the same with the FOXP-2 gene, so beloved of human evolutionary buffs. Actually it pops up all over the place, in lots of different creatures. Of course there are variations, which one would expect over long periods of time. Which raises the question: if the genes don’t really change, can evolution be said to have happened at the most basic level? Nature, Study uncovers dogs’ squirrel genes

A study that combined behavioural data from 46,000 dogs with 4,000 dogs’ DNA sequences has pinpointed genetic variants linked to nervousness and predatory behaviour, such as chasing squirrels. The researchers scrapped the conventional breed categories — which had been found to be a poor predictor for behaviour — and sorted dogs into ten genetic lineages. Herding sheepdogs, for example, had genes that, in mice, had been associated with mothers’ instinct to protect their pups.Nature | 4 min read
Reference: Cell paper

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FOXP2

A course in coarse language Sometimes the pressure in our offices gets so much, you’d think everyone had developed Tourette’s syndrome-in several languages! But is the actual sound of bad words random, or is there a deeper meaning? The Conversation investigates

https://theconversation.com/swear-words-we-studied-speakers-of-languages-from-hindi-to-hungarian-to-find-out-why-obscenities-sound-the-way-they-do-192473?utm_m

Boom-or crash? November 9th 2022 was the day we all watched the thrilling Argentina-Netherlands game. But will historians of the future remember it as the day the UK government unlearned the lessons of 2007 and paved the way to the next financial crash? The Guardian looks at both sides

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2022/dec/09/jeremy-hunt-sets-out-sweeping-reforms-to-financial-sector

Life on Earth Despite the valiant efforts of the COP 15 delegates, some say we are heading for a mass extinction as bad as the one that culled all the dinosaurs. So it’s important to know exactly what we’re talking about; the BBC makes a stab at it here

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-63875331

Musical number

Sorry for all the oldies, but this one illustrates a truism in music “keep it simple” Shocking Blue were a bit of a one hit wonder( well we don’t remember anything else they did!) but this was one of the most catchy ever. Maybe Holland are out of the world cup, but they’ll always have Venus

#evolution #genes #obscenities #swearing #finance #economics

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