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News From the Field

Genes tell story of birdsong and human speech


December 11, 2014

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A massive international effort to sequence and compare the entire genomes of 48 species of birds, representing every major order of the bird family tree, reveals that vocal learning evolved twice or maybe three times among songbirds, parrots and hummingbirds. Even more striking, the set of genes employed in each of those song innovations is remarkably similar to the genes involved in human speaking ability.Full Story

Source
Duke University

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