Skip to main content Text Only version of this page
BBC
Home
TV
Radio
Talk
Where I Live
A-Z Index
Games
Games
Chat
Chat
Vote
Vote
Win
Win
Quiz
Quiz
Club
Club
 Homepage
 UK
 World
 Sport
 Music
 TV/Film
 Animals
 Sci/Tech
 Weather
 Pictures
 Find Out
 The Team

Contact Us
Help
Teachers





  Scientists say we are 'bigheads'
Updated 25 March 2004, 18.21
Sabre-tooth tiger's jaw and a girl's jaw
Scientists think they now know why all people have big brains and little jaws.

They say our heads look the way they do today because one of our genes - which determine things like your hair colour and height - changed during evolution.

They say early primate skulls - which look like today's gorillas and chimpanzees - had been "locked" by big muscley jaws that stopped skull growth.

But when the gene mutated, our jaws got weaker and our skulls could increase along with our brain size, they say.

Big head

Today's humans have massive brains compared to all other mammals.

Fossils of prehistoric humans feature rounder skulls, flatter faces, smaller teeth and weaker jaws.

They show how we have dramatically changed over the ages.

But they are all examples of the post-gene mutation, as it is suggested by the scientists.

Watch/ListenBORDER=0
Hear storyHear story
BORDER=0

More InfoBORDER=0
Sci/TechAncient tools prove cavemen were clever

BORDER=0

Past StoriesBORDER=0
Scientists find 300,000 year old footprints

BORDER=0


 


E-mail this page to a friend



Full Sci/Tech Section
Also in Sci Tech now:
New Beagle mission plan revealed
Antarctic food chain under threat
Arctic 'to melt within 70 years'
Science book Science discovery set up for grabs!
Mobie phone Get Newsround stories on your phone!
New games are shown off at E3 Gamers wait for E3 sneak peak of the future
Find out about the outer planets at the BBC Norfolk site Find out about the outer planets
Skull of Egyptian mummy Face of Egyptian mummy revealed!
Turn tail and try our comet quiz!
Safe surfing:
Our guide to internet safety
Volcano errupts What causes volcanoes? Find out here
© BBC Back to top^^
Homepage | UK | World | Sport | Music | TV/Film | Animals | Sci/Tech | Weather
Pictures | Find Out | The Team | Games | Chat | Vote | Win | Quiz | Club