• Question: Have we got gentic geens with trees?

    Asked by pyebb002 to Claire, Joanna, Kapila, Renata, Suzanne on 24 Jun 2013.
    • Photo: Joanna Bryson

      Joanna Bryson answered on 24 Jun 2013:

      I am not a geneticist, but as far as I know there is no evidence yet that life on earth came from more than one initial origin event. So if that’s true, then we share some very important genes with trees, the very first genes, the ones that make genes reproduce themselves, which is what defines life. However, animals and plants are VERY different, even the cells are different, so we are not as related to plants as to animals. Being less related means having fewer genes in common.

    • Photo: Renata Medeiros

      Renata Medeiros answered on 25 Jun 2013:

      It seems that we share about 50% of our genes with banana trees, for example. It seems a lot but if you think that we share about 99% of our genes with chimpanzees you can see how just a little difference in genes might make a big difference!

    • Photo: Claire El Mouden

      Claire El Mouden answered on 25 Jun 2013:


      Yes, we share about half our genes with trees! It just goes to show how complicated the basic chemistry of life is….it take a great deal of DNA to code the proteins to make the cells and chemical reactions work that are universal to many living things.