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Edward R. Jenkins

WordPress theme and plugin development, and sometimes mildly insightful musings.

Edward R. Jenkins
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Papers & Research

Here's where you'll find my latest writing and research. My academic interests center around human evolution and prehistory, but I'm also interested in genomics, immunology and cell biology.

Review: The neurobiology of pair bonding

Can Science Explain Love? The answer to that question seems to be a resounding “yes.” Fisher et al’s framework of romantic love as a system for mate choice with neural and endocrine system precursors is supported by a wide array of evidence from a number of mammals, particularly in prairie voles and humans. Some of the most exciting and informative research has been undertaken with the prairie vole (Microtus ochrogaster), a monogamous North American mammal. Young and Wang’s various contributed…

Commentary: The brain of LB1 (Homo floresiensis)

Falk, Dean, Hildebolt, Charles, Smith, Kirk, Morwood, M.J., Sutikna, Thomas, Brown, Peter, Jatmiko, Saptomo, E. Wayhu, Brunsden, Barry and Prior, Fred. 2005. The brain of LB1, Homo Floresiensis. Science 308: 242-245. Falk and colleagues created a virtual endocast of the Homo floresiensis type specimen (LB1), and compared the collected data to a number of other hominid endocasts. The endocasts include specimens classified as Homo erectus (n=5), Australopithecus africanus, Paranthropus aethiopicus, modern humans (n=10), gorillas (n=10), chimpanzees (n=18), a female pygmy,…

The reintroduction of the horse to North America and its effect on native peoples

The Wild Free-Roaming Horse and Burro Act of 1971 describes America’s wild horses as “living symbols of the historic and pioneer spirit of the West.” The debate over wild horses, such as the Mustang, is intensified when one realizes their numbers have dropped so sharply in the last century, but it is made curious when one considers the wild horse’s classification as a non-native species. Although horses did evolve in the Western hemisphere before ultimately dispersing to Europe and Asia,…

Review: The complete genome sequence of a Neanderthal from the Altai Mountains

Review: Prüfer,Kay et al. 2014. The complete genome sequence of a Neanderthal from the Altai Mountains. Nature 505: 43-49. Prüfer and colleagues sequence and analyze nuclear and mtDNA from a Neanderthal female found in the east gallery of Denisova Cave in the Altai Mountains. The DNA was extracted from a fourth or fifth toe phalanx fragment found in a layer slightly older than one absolutely dated to 50,300 (+/- 2,200) years BP. The researchers compare the Altai Neanderthal genome to…