One of the biggest advancements in science continues to be the amount that we continue to learn about DNA. Today, our DNA can tell us a lot about who we are and where we come from. While more and more people are continuing to learn more about DNA, there are still many surprising things about DNA that the general public may not know.
1. We Are All Very Similar
When you look at two different people from different areas of the world, it can seem as if these people have nothing in common. However, we are all much more similar than we realize.
When it comes to our DNA, each person on the planet shares 99% of their DNA with all other people. This makes us incredibly similar in almost all parts of our anatomy and genetic makeup.
2. We Are Close to Chimps
While all people are 99% similar when it comes to their DNA, even a 1% change in DNA structure can make a huge impact on who we are. Nothing is more evident than this than when you compare human DNA to that of a chimp.
3. We Share with All Living Things
While many people may not be surprised that we share 98% of our DNA with the chimps and other primates, many people might be surprised that we actually share our DNA with all living objects.
For example, when you are walking down the produce aisle at your grocery store, you could be surprised to learn that you have a lot in common with the food that you eat. In fact, the average person shares nearly 50% of their DNA with cabbage and other leafy vegetables.
4. DNA Makes Up a Lot of Our Body
The DNA that we find in our body is a very tangible item that can stretch for a very long distance.
In each cell in our bodies, the DNA can stretch out for more than five feet. If you were to stretch out all of the DNA in a human body, it could stretch for more than 10 billion miles.
5. Half Life
Many science fiction books and movies have taken on the stories about using DNA to recreate ancient animals that have gone extinct. However, DNA has a half-life of just 521 years.
Because of this, we could not use any DNA for any purpose that is more than 2 million years old. This would make it impossible to recreate anything that has been off the planet for at least that long.
6. DNA is Reproduced
The DNA in the human body is constantly being attacked by sunlight and other outside forces. This can cause damage that could be concerning. However, DNA has the ability to reproduce itself and regrow.
This regrowth and duplication of DNA are crucial towards the overall health of an individual and mankind would not be able to exist without it.