Sumary of Rewriting evolutionary history and shape future health studies:
- The network of nerves connecting our eyes to our brains is sophisticated and researchers have now shown that it evolved much earlier than previously thought, thanks to an unexpected source:.
- Michigan State University’s Ingo Braasch has helped an international research team show that this connection scheme was already present in ancient fish at least 450 million years ago..
- “It’s the first time for me that one of our publications literally changes the textbook that I am teaching with,”.
- This work, published in the journal Science on April 8, also means that this type of eye-brain connection predates animals living on land..
- The existing theory had been that this connection first evolved in terrestrial creatures and, from there, carried on into humans where scientists believe it helps with our depth perception and 3D vision..
- And this work, which was led by researchers at France’s Inserm public research organization, does more than reshape our understanding of the past..
- Studying animal models is an invaluable way for researchers to learn about health and disease, but drawing connections to human conditions from these models can be challenging..
- Zebrafish are a popular model animal, for example, but their eye-brain wiring is very distinct from a human’s..
- In fact, that helps explain why scientists thought the human connection first evolved in four-limbed terrestrial creatures, or tetrapods….