Kurdish family walks on all fours

Five members of a Kurdish family in Turkey, who can only walk naturally on all fours, are being hailed as a unique insight into human evolution.

Scientists told the Times of London the family might provide invaluable information on how humans evolved from four-legged hominids, developing the ability to walk on two feet more than 3 million years ago.

Two daughters and a son have only walked using two palms and two feet, with their extended legs, while another daughter and son occasionally manage a form of two-footed walking, the Times reported, noting all five can stand upright, but only for a short time.

Last year's discovery of the family in rural southern Turkey has produced a scientific debate: Some researchers believe genetic faults caused the siblings to regress in a form of "backward evolution," while other scientists claim genes triggered brain damage.

But Nicholas Humphrey, a London School of Economics evolutionary psychologist, told the Times weeks of study indicate their method of walking is a long-term pattern of behavior and not a hoax.

"However they arrived at this point, we have adult human beings walking like ancestors several million years ago," Humphrey said.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International


Explore further

Physical activity in adolescence and later life reduces the risk of colorectal adenoma

Citation: Kurdish family walks on all fours (2006, March 7) retrieved 19 September 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2006-03-kurdish-family-fours.html
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
0 shares

Feedback to editors

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more