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Human Biological Diversity


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Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction p.1
Chapter Summary
Chapter 2: Concepts of Evolution p.7
A Brief History of Evolutionary Ideas
Ideas About Time
Western Ideas
Contemporary Western Views of Time
Some Non-Western Concepts of Time
The Great Chain of Being
Scientific Approaches to Evolution:
Lamarck's Theory of Evolution
Darwin's Theory of Evolution
Offspring Resemble Parents
Natural Selection
Types of Evidence for Evolution
Creationists Vs. Evolutionists
A Human Example: High Altitude Adaptation in Tibet
Imperfect Adaptations
Comparative Anatomy
Homologous Vs. Analogous Structures
Vestigial Structures
Comparative Embryology
Artificial Selection
Other Evidence for Evolution
Chapter Summary
Chapter 3: Genetics and Microevolution p.26
The Chemical Basis of Life
Protein Structure
Protein Function
Nucleic Acids
DNA Structure
DNA function
Duplication of DNA
Direction of Protein Synthesis
Messenger RNA
Transfer RNA
Sexual Reproduction
Mendelian Genetics
Alleles Vs. Loci
Principle of Dominance
Principle of Segregation
Principle of Independent Assortment
Genotype and Phenotype
Consequences of Mendel's Principles
Sex Chromosomes
Complex Traits
Introduction to Population Genetics
Hardy-Weinberg Equilibrium
Forces of Evolution
Types of Selection
Genetic Load
Migration and Gene Flow
Genetic Drift
Assortative Mating
The Synthetic Theory of Evolution
Chapter Summary
Chapter 4: Molecular Genetics, Genomics and Human Genetics p.48
A Closer Look at Chromosomes
Characteristics of Chromosomes
Chromosome Structure
Chromosome Structure and Function
Regulatory Regions of DNA
Special Features on Chromosomes
Other Types of Repeated DNA Sequences
Chromosome Mapping
Linkage Maps
Linkage Maps of the X Chromosome
Mapping By Means of RFLPs
Microsatellites in Mapping
DNA Sequencing
Polymerase Chain Reaction
Methylation of DNA
In Utero Effects
Extrachomosomal Genetics
RNA Processing
Introns and Exons
Other mRNA Processing
Why the Complexity?
When Things Go Wrong
Mitochondrial DNA
Origins of Mitochondria
Mitochondrial DNA
Chloroplast DNA
Tracing Genetic Variability and Function
Genetic Variability
Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs)
Oligonucleotide Hybridization Analysis
DNA Chips
Other Allele Differences
Understanding Gene Function
Gene Inactivation
RNA Interference
Gene Overexpression
A Brief Look at Quantitative Genetics
Basis of Quantitative Genetics
Human Genetics and the Human Genome
Family Studies in Human Genetics
Twin Studies
Adoption Studies
The Human Genome
The Human Genome Project
The Next Step?
Chapter Summary
Chapter 5: Macroevolution and Taxonomy p.66
Species and Speciation
Sibling Species and "Semispecies"
Adaptive Radiation
Rapid Divergent Evolution in Overlapping Incipient Species
Evolutionary Significance of Species
Taxonomic Units Above the Species Level
Two Taxonomic Examples: People and Dogs
Intermediate Levels of Taxonomy
Subspecies or Races
Taxonomy Debates
Some Highlights in the History of Life: An Anthropocentric View
Origin of the Earth
Earliest Life
Origin of the Eukaryotes
Multi-cellular Life
Early Vertebrates
Reptiles and Birds
The Human Journay
Early Hominids
Ardipithecus Ramidus
Homo Habilis
Plio-Pleistocene Hominids
Homo Erectus
Homo Sapiens
Macroevolutionary Processes
Tempo and Mode in Evolution
Mass Extinctions
Chapter Summary
Chapter 6: "Race" and Human Variation in Physical Traits p. 89
"Race," Population, and Ethnic Group
Clines Versus Clumps
A Short History of Western "Race" Concepts: Ancient
Ancient Views of "Race"
The Greek Myth of Phaethon
Greek Humoral View of Human Variability
Biblical View of "Races"
Other Ancient Views of Human Variation
Western Views of "Race" in the 15th - 17th Centuries
A Short History of Race Concepts: Modern
Monogenists Vs. Polygenists
"Race" and Racism
Lamarck's Evolutionary Theory and "Race"
Darwin and "Race"
Successors to Darwin
Carleton Coon and the Origin of "Races"
The "New" Physical Anthropology
American Anthropological Association Statement on "Race"
Phenotypic Characteristics of Human Variability
Nature Versus Nurture
Human Pigmentation: Skin Color
Biochemistry of Melanin Production
Environmental Effects on Melanin
Genetics of Melanin Production
Other Determinants of Skin Color
The Measurement of Skin Color
Intra-Individual Variability in Skin Color
Is There Selective Value to Differential Skin Color?
UV Radiation and Skin Color Variation
Skin Color Variation and Vitamin D Synthesis
Skin Color Variation and Folate Photolysis
Skin Color Variation and Concealment
Skin Color as a "Racial" Marker
Human Pigmentation: Hair and Eye Color
Hair Color
Age and Hair Color
Genetics of Hair Color
Adaptive Value of Head Hair Color Variation
Eye Color
Hair Form
Epicanthic Eyefolds
Body Size and Shape
Human Variability in Stature
Secular Trend in Stature
Short Statured Populations
Human Variability in Body Weight
The Thrifty Genotype
Body Shape and Climate
Temporal Dimension of Body Shape
Head Form
Skeletal and Dental Variation
Age Differences in the Skeleton and Teeth
Sex Differences in the Skeleton
Individual Variation in Skeletal and Dental Features
"Race" and Intelligence
What Is Intelligence?
IQ Versus Intelligence
Changes in IQ Tests
IQ and Heredity
Population Differences in IQ
Asian-Americans Versus Euro-Americans
African-Americans Versus Euro-Americans
The Bell Curve
Patterns of Human Variability
Chapter Summary
Chapter 7: Genotypic Traits and the Tracing of Population Affiliations p.116
Genotypic Traits Traditionally Used in Human Biology
Blood Groups: The ABO System
Basics of the ABO System
The ABO Antigens
Genetics of the ABO System
Consequences of ABO Variation
Distribution of ABO Allele Frequencies
The MNSs Blood Group Systems
The MN Locus
Distribution of MN Alleles in Human Populations
The Ss Locus
The Rhesus (Rh) Blood Group System
The Genetics of the Rh System
Rh and Maternal-Fetal Incompatability
The Distribution of Rh Polymorphisms
Hemoglobin Variants
Hemoglobin S and Sickle Cell Anemia
Genetics of Sickle-Cell
Sickle-Cell and Falciparum Malaria
Balanced Polymorphism
Thalassemia and Malaria
Hemoglobin E
Other Variant Hemoglobins
Glucose-6-Phosphate Dehydrogenase Deficiency
Genetic Traits From Contemporary Molecular Biology Used in Human Biology
Major Types of Molecular Genetic Studies Used in Human Biology
Mitochondrial DNA
Y Chromosome
Nuclear DNA
Uses for Human Molecular Genetics Studies
The Genetic History of Homo Sapiens
Human Genetic Diversity
Dating Divergences and Ancestry: The Molecular Clock
Genetics and Human Population Affinities
The Human Genome Diversity Project
Genetics and Human Migrations
Out of Africa
Genetic Data and the Origin of Modern Humans
Where Did Pacific Islanders Come From?
The Express Train Or an Entangled Bank?
The Peopling of America
Dating American Origins
Tracing the Origins of Specific Populations Through Genetics
The Roma
African-American Admixture
How Do the Saami Relate to Other European Populations?
The Ancestry of Papuan "Pygmoid" Populations
Genetics and Disease Risk
Genetics and the Notion of "Race"
Chapter Summary
Chapter 8: Demography: Populations, Reproduction and Mortality p.142
Population Ecology
Population Growth
Specific Growth Rate
Biotic Potential and Environmental Resistance
Intrinsic Rate of Natural Increase
Population Growth Curves
Carrying Capacity
Population Structure
Age Structure of Populations
Sex Ratios
Population Ecology: Concluding Remarks
Demography of Human Populations
Fertility and Fecundity
Male Fecundity
Female Fecundity
Age and Fecundity
Hypoxia and Fecundity
Disease and Fecundity
Nutrition, Energetics and Fecundity
High Levels of Work and Fecundity
Adaptation and Reduced Fecundity
Lactation and Fecundity
Cultural Effects on Fertility
Mortality From a Global Perspective
Life Tables
Causes of Mortality
Human Population Growth
Population Increase
Global Population Growth
Regional Population Growth
Human Population Structure
Implications of Growth
Chapter Summary
Chapter 9: Life Span: Growth and Development p.161
The General Pattern of Human Growth
Prenatal Growth
Early Development
The Embryonic Period
The Fetal Period
Effects of Premature Birth or Disrupted Fetal Development
Growth After Birth: General Patterns
Whole Body Growth Pattern
A Brief Aside on Sampling Issues
Distance, Velocity and Acceleration of Growth
The Human Pattern of Growth
The Three Stages of Growth
Saltational Nature of Growth
Sex Differences
Growth of Specific Body Parts
Development of Specific Systems
Neurological Development
Immunological Development
Reproductive System Development
Development of Selected Other Systems
Dental Development
Skeletal Growth
Development of Adipose Tissue
Growth After Birth: Population Differences
Environmental Effects on Growth
Secular Trends in General Growth
Why the Secular Trend in Growth?
Negative Secular Trends in Growth
Effects of Undernutrition on Growth
Effects of Overnutrition on Growth
Effects of Disease on Growth
Effects of High Altitude Hypoxia on Growth
Catch Up Growth
Genetics and Population Growth Differences
African Short-Statured Populations
Short-Statured Populations in Southeast Asia
Growth and Development: A Final Consideration
Chapter Summary
Chapter 10: Life Span: Aging and Senescence p.181
The Biology of Senescence
Aging at the Cellular Level
Hayflick and Limits to Mitosis
The Cell Membrane and Cytoskeleton in Senescence
Aging and the Mitochondrion
Aging and Lysosomes
Aging at the Organismal Level
Aging of the Musculoskeletal System
Aging and the Immune System
Aging and the Cardiovascular System
Aging and the Neurological System
Aging and the Reproductive System
Superficial Changes During Senescence
The Hair Cycle
Aging and the Hair Cycle
Skin Aging
Theories of Senescence
Mechanistic Theories of Senescence
Oxidative Damage
Nonenzymatic Glycation
Mitochondrial Changes
Telomere Shortening
Evolutionary Theories of Senescence
Theory of Mutation Accumulation
Theory of Antagonistic Pleiotropy
Disposable Soma Theory
Selected System-Specific Senescence Theories
Menopause and the Grandmother Hypothesis
The Cognitive Reserve Hypothesis
Conclusion: Theories of Senescence
The Human Population Biology of Senescence
Population Differences in Life Span
Life Expectancy
Maximum Life Span
Species Differences in Maximum Life Span
Shangri-La or Bust
Sex Differences in Senescence
Population Differences in Diseases Associated With Senescence
Cardiovascular Disease
Population Differences: Conclusion
Chapter Summary
Chapter 11: Human Adaptability to Physical Stressors p.201
Limiting Factors, Tolerance and Environmental Physiology
Law of Tolerance
Environmental Physiology
Individual Level Changes: Behavioral Adaptations
Individual Level Changes: Physiological Adaptations
Individual Level Changes: Acclimatization
Individual Level Changes: Developmental Adaptations
Population Level Changes: Cultural Adaptations
Population Level Changes: Demographic Adjustments
Population Level Changes: Genetic Adaptations
Human Adaptability
The "Single-Stressor" Model
Essential and Key Resources
Properties of Stressors and Responses
Limitations of the Single Stressor Model
Adaptation to Cold and Heat
Heat Balance Equation
Cold Adaptation
Behavioral and Cultural Adaptations to Cold
Biological Responses to Cold Exposure
Metabolic Adjustments to Cold Exposure
Habituation Responses to Moderate Cold
Peripheral Cold Exposure
Adaptive Consequences of Cold Stress
Heat Adaptation
Hot-Dry Environments
Behavioral and Cultural Adaptations to Dry Heat
Biological Responses to Dry Heat Exposure
Heat Transfer
Vascular Responses
Acclimatization and Individual Differences in Heat Adaptation
Warm-Humid Environments
Behavioral and Cultural Adaptations to Humid Heat
Biological Responses to Humid Heat Exposure
Conclusion to Thermoregulation
Adaptation to High Altitude
Behavioral and Cultural Adaptations to Hypoxia
Biological Adaptations to Hypoxia
Oxygen Movement from Lungs to Blood
Tissue and Cellular Adaptations
Population Differences in Adaptability to High Altitude Hypoxia
Andean Population Adaptations
Tibetan Population Adaptations
High Activity Levels
The Requirements of Work
Behavioral and Cultural Adjustments to High Work Loads
Biological Adaptations to High Work Loads
Physical Fitness
Aerobic Capacity
Types of Muscle Fibers
Adaptive Consequences of Work Capacity
Factors Affecting Work Requirements
Impact of Modernization
Chapter Summary
Chapter 12: Human Adaptability to Biological Stressors p.226
Food Versus Nutrients
Types of Nutrients
Protein-Calorie Malnutrition
Protein Deficiency
Protein Quality of Foods
Global View of Protein Deficiency
The Biology of Protein Deficiency
Protein-Calorie Malnutrition: Total Undernutrition
Energy Reserves
Adaptations to PCM: The Cori Cycle
Responses to Prolonged Undernutrition
Evolution and Adaptations to PCM
Micronutrient Deficiencies
Vitamin Deficiencies
Vitamin A
Thiamine (Vitamin B1)
Riboflavin (Vitamin B2)
Niacin (Vitamin B3)
Other B Vitamins
Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C)
Vitamin D
Electrolyte and Mineral Deficiencies
Conclusion: Malnutrition
Infectious Diseases
Host-Parasite Relationships
Evolution and Virulence
Considerations in Disease Transmission
Vector Borne Diseases
Malaria Transmission
Adaptations to Malaria
Direct Contact Diseases
Conditions for Transfer of Pathogens
Virgin Soil Epidemics
Diseases Due to Intimate Contact
Treponemal Diseases
Poor Sanitation Diseases
Balancing Immune Protection and Immune Damage
Conclusion: Infectious Diseases
General Conclusion: The Impact of Biological Stressors on Human Biology
Chapter Summary
Chapter 13: Human Biology in the Modern World p.251
Possible Reduced Selective Forces
The Accumulation of Minor Genetic Problems
Dental Caries
Can Cumulative Minor Effects Lead to Bigger Problems?
Reduced Selection Due to Medical Interventions
Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus
Cystic Fibrosis
Magnitude of the Problem
Genetic Engineering
General Stress
The Nature of General Stress
Stress Defined
Stress Theories
The Systemic General Stress Response
The Hypothalamus Pituitary Adrenal (HPA) Axis
The Sympathetic Adrenal Medullary (SAM) Axis
The Causes of General Stress
Stress at the Cellular Level
Effects of the General Stress Response
Stress and Heart Disease
Stress and Hypertension
Stress and Other Chronic Diseases
Adiposity and Obesity: Are We Eating Ourselves to Death?
The Obesity Epidemic
The Causes of Increased Adiposity
Genes and Environment
Proximate Causes of Obesity
Development and Obesity
Inflammation and Obesity
The Effects of Increased Adiposity
The Metabolic Syndrome
Type 2 Diabetes
Cardiovascular Disease
Pollution: The Fouling of the Environment
Air Pollution
Chemicals in Air Pollution
Particulates in Air Pollution
The Health Effects of Air Pollution
Water Pollution
Agricultural Sources of Water Pollution
Health Effects of Water Pollution
Solid Waste Pollution
Pollution and Human Variation
Chapter Summary
Chapter 14: Human Biological Variation: A Look to the Future and Some Final Thoughts on Ethics p.274
Human Biology in the Future
An Individual Level View of Future Human Biology
The Future of Human Population Variability
Genetic Variability in Our Species
Population Variability in the Future
Space Colonies
Human Biobehavioral Variability
Final Thoughts on the Ethics of Human Biology Research
Prevention of Harm to the Individual Participant
Huntington's Disease
Job and Insurance Concerns
Human Subject Committees and IRBs
Prevention of Harm to Communities
Anthropology and Ethics
Heterogeneity of Culture and of Communities
What is Normal?
Health as Normality
Biological Characteristics and Normality
Ethics and Notions of Normality
Disability Rights
Variation Is Natural
Chapter Summary

About the Author

Daniel Brown is Professor of Anthropology and Coordinator of Research and Graduate Education at the University of Hawaii at Hilo. He has taught classes in all areas of physical anthropology, as well as in cultural anthropology and archaeology. Dr. Brown's research interest focuses on variation in how humans cope with psychosocial and physical stress, and the implications of that variation for health disparities. He has received Chancellor Citations both for teaching and research at his university, and was elected as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He is a former President of the Human Biology Association, an international organization whose mission "is to advance the understanding of human biological variation, to enhance the training of professional human biologists, and to foster a better comprehension of the scope of human biology among scientific professionals and the public."

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