Okay, so human activity has degraded the integrity of ecosystems and richness of biodiversity. What are we doing about that?
How can we use the concepts we’ve discussed to understand the nature and origins of cooperation and altruism? How does cooperation in humans differ from the cooperation of chimpanzees in this TED Talk by Frans de Waal?
To wrap up our look at evolution, we’re going beyond what’s in our textbooks to look at some related topics that connect with more recent developments in Biology. The TED Talk by Jonathan Haidt below should provide a nice introduction to the concept of group selection, another means by which species can change over time. The portion of the TED Radio Hour will then give you a sense of how group selection may have shaped us as a species. Also included here are excerpts from The Social Conquest of Earth, in case you’d like to get more familiarized with group selection.
Now that you’ve looked at the fundamentals of cell biology, it’s time to go beyond the textbook and consider the bacteria that live in and on us. For class on Wednesday March 23th, watch this TED talk by Rob Knight and work through the items below.
- Jot down three specific takeaways in your notebook.
- Consider the image of “microbes” found in the gut shown at 1:15. What kind of microscope was used to produce this image? Why does it have color?
- How are microbes in the human microbiome identified and characterized?
- According to Rob Knight, how many “human” cells make up a typical person’s body? How many “other” cells are there?
- What happens to many children who are given antibiotics within 6 months of birth?
- What connection (even if only speculative) can you draw between this talk relate to the probiotic items in the recent class discussion post?