[LMB] OT: Genetics & Culture

baur baur baur at chello.at
Fri Nov 17 05:29:51 GMT 2017

humans are not the only ones who lost the ability to synthesize vitamin C -
guinea pigs for example are another species this happend to

and since many apes also have the same problem with vitamin C as humans, this
must have happened pretty early in the evolution to h. sap.



>     Matthew George <matt.msg at gmail.com> hat am 17. November 2017 um 00:22
> geschrieben:
>     No, the reason humans need dietary vitamin C is that for some unknown
>     reason our distant ancestors lost the enzymatic pathway to synthesize it.
>     Other mammals can make it - indeed, one reason Native Americans in the far
>     north didn't get scurvy is that they ate certain organs, or all their
> meat,
>     raw. I vaguely recall one ethnologist discussing how after hunting a moose
>     and butchering it for cooking and preservation, (I think) the adrenal
>     glands were carefully cubed and distributed raw to everyone in the tribe.
>     We survived despite losing the ability to make this essential nutrient
>     because our early diets were rich in it. But as far as anyone can
>     determine, there's no benefit to having lost it. Unlike the caecum or the
>     vomeronasal organ, say. (We technically still have a vestigal,
>     nonfunctional version of both.)
>     --
>     Lois-Bujold mailing list message sent to baur at chello.at
>     Lois-Bujold at lists.herald.co.uk
>     http://lists.herald.co.uk/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/lois-bujold

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