what makes us uniquely human?

We seek to find the underlying causal genes and mutations that make us uniquely human using genetics and genomics techniques. Our primary goal is to identify neural genes affecting cognition and behavior. One focus is on human gene duplication, an established mechanism contributing to phenotypic differences and speciation in other organisms. Alternatively, we aim to identify important genes contributing to human traits by identifying mutations that lead to malfunctions of these traits such as cognition (intellectual disability), social behavior (autism), language (specific language development), etc. 

 

image courtesy of Philipp Kammerer/Alamy