Genetic Distances 3
Humans vs. Chimpanzees. Evolutionists say the chimpanzee is the closest living relative to humans. For two decades (1984–2004), evolutionists and the media claimed that human DNA is about 99% similar to chimpanzee DNA. These false statements had little scientific justification, because they were made before anyone had completed the sequencing of human DNA and long before the sequencing of chimpanzee DNA had begun.
Chimpanzee and human DNA have now been completely sequenced and compared. The overall differences, which are far greater and more complicated than evolutionists suspected (g), include about “thirty-five million single-nucleotide changes, five million insertions or deletions, and various chromosomal rearrangements (h).” Although only 4% of human and chimpanzee DNA differ, those critical differences amount to a vast chasm.
Moreover, differences between the male portion of the human and chimpanzee sex chromosome are huge! More than 30% of those sequences, in either the human or the chimpanzee, do not match the other at all, and those that do, contain massive rearrangements (i). The genetic differences are comparable to those between the nonsex chromosomes in chickens and humans (j). Also, humans shuffle male and female DNA to their offspring in different ways than chimpanzees (k).
Finally, evolutionary trees, based on the outward appearance of organisms, can now be compared with the organisms’ genetic information. They conflict in major ways (l).
g. After sequencing just the first chimpanzee chromosome, surprises were apparent.
“Surprisingly, though, nearly 68,000 stretches of DNA do differ to some degree between the two species…Extra sections of about 300 nucleotides showed up primarily in the human chromosome…Extra sections of other sizes—some as long as 54,000 nucleotides—appear in both species.” Bruce Bower, “Chimp DNA Yields Complex Surprises,” Science News, Vol. 165, 12 June 2004, p. 382.
“Indeed, 83% of the 231 coding sequences, including functionally important genes, show differences [even] at the amino acid sequence level….the biological consequences due to the genetic differences are much more complicated than previously speculated.” H. Watanabe et al., “DNA Sequence and Comparative Analysis of Chimpanzee Chromosome 22,” Nature, Vol. 429, 27 May 2004, pp. 382, 387.
h. Tarjei S. Mikkelsen et al., “Initial Sequence of the Chimpanzee Genome and Comparison with the Human Genome,” Nature, Vol. 437, 1 September 2005, p. 69.
i. “Surprisingly, however, >30% of chimpanzee MSY [male-specific portion of the Y chromosome] sequence has no homologous, alignable counterpart in the human MSY, and vice versa. ... Moreover, the MSY sequences retained in both lineages have been extraordinarily subject to rearrangement...” Jennifer F. Hughes et al., “Chimpanzee and Human Y Chromosomes Are Remarkably Divergent in Structure and Gene Content,” Nature, Vol. 463, 28 January 2010, p. 537.
j. “... the difference in MSY gene content in chimpanzee and human is more comparable to the difference in autosomal gene content in chicken and human, at 310 million years of separation.” Ibid. p. 538.
k. “Studying human and Western chimpanzees, we found no hotspot sharing between the two species,” Adam Auton et al., “A fine-Scale Chimpanzee Genetic Map from Population Sequencing,” Science, Vol. 336, 13 April 2012, p. 196.
“Chimpanzees’ shuffling pattern is similar to that seen in some previously studied organisms, while the human pattern is unusual...” Gil McVean, as quoted by Tina Hesman Saey, “Going Ape Offers Better Family Tree,” Science News, Vol. 181, 21 April 2012, p. 16.
l. “Instead, the comparisons [using DNA] have yielded many versions of the tree of life that differ from the rRNA tree and conflict with each other as well.” Elizabeth Pennisi, “Is It Time to Uproot the Tree of Life?” Science, Vol. 284, 21 May 1999, p. 1305.
“We are left with a conundrum. [Evolutionary trees based on bodily characteristics (morphology) differ from trees based on genetics.]” Jonathan B. Losos et al., “Who Speaks with a Forked Tongue?” Science, Vol. 338, 14 December 2012, p. 1429.