Morphological diversity in humans is established before puberty

Forum Science Morphological diversity in humans is established before puberty

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    Morphological diversity in humans is established before puberty

    The different populations of men are distinguished by their specific morphology. Is this diversity, observed in adults, acquired during growth? In an article published in , two researchers from , from the Eco-anthropology laboratories (EAE – MNHN / CNRS) and From the diversity of populations to, from identification to identity (BABEL – CNRS / Univ. de Paris) analyzed the growth of three populations of very different morphologies. They demonstrate that the growth of these populations is comparable from the puberty period. Thus, human diversity, a consequence of adaptation to various environments, results from processes that take place during the early stages of development.

    Our , , is the species of which presents the widest morphological variation and which can be found in different environments. facilitated the geographical area of ​​man, but it is obvious that the different biological processes (growth and development) which shape morphology have played a fundamental role in the adaptation of populations to different environments.

    Despite the morphological differences between populations, humans, unlike other species, exhibit a long growth period (double that of our closest relative, the chimpanzee) and growth spurts during adolescence. In other words, certain aspects of growth and development are similar between populations despite their morphological diversity which also reveals the existence of different processes. The distinction between aspects which are constant within our species and those which vary between populations is in two ways. On the one hand, this distinction is used to better understand what characterizes our species compared to other primate species and, on the other hand, it allows to define the differences related to the adaptation of populations to the constraints of their .

    In a new study published in and conducted by two CNRS researchers, from the Eco-anthropology laboratories (EAE – MNHN / CNRS) and From the diversity of populations to the individual, from identification to identity (BABEL – CNRS / Univ. de Paris) , the growth model of a French population was extrapolated to two groups representing the extremes of the morphological variation of our species: a group of basketball players and the Baka Pygmies whose growth of individuals has been followed from childhood to ‘at the adult stage. The model is established from the , biological maturity and age at peak growth. Three growth curves were developed for each according to a advanced, standard or delayed.

    Extrapolation of the model to these two groups made it possible to predict adult stature with the same height accuracy than in the reference population (± 3 cm). Consequently, 1) the growth curves apply to all populations and 2) the growth according to the pubertal stages follows the same growth channels in the populations and this regardless of the size differences in adults.

    Such a discovery has a very important double impact. first, it points out that studies of human biological diversity should focus on the early stages of development. Then a of scalable, it highlights that the adaptations of different populations to inhabit different environments take place before the puberty period.

    Reference:
    The same growth pattern from puberty suggests that modern human diversity results from changes during pre-pubertal . Pineau J-C, Ramirez Rozzi FV. Scientific Reports, 2021

    Contacts:
    – Fernando Ramirez-Rozzi – Eco-anthropologie (EA – MNHN / CNRS) – fernando.ramirez-rozzi at mnhn.fr
    – Jean-Claude Pineau From the diversity of populations to the individual, from identification to identity (BABEL – CNRS / Univ. De Paris) – jc.pineau at .fr
    – Shelly Masi – Correspondante – Eco-anthropology laboratory (EA – CNRS / MNHN) – shelly.masi@mnhn.fr

    Reference:
    The same growth pattern from puberty suggests that modern human diversity results from changes during pre-pubertal development. Pineau J-C, Ramirez Rozzi FV. , 2021.

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Forum Science Morphological diversity in humans is established before puberty