Kareklas et al 2013 - Finger Wrinkling

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Kareklas et al 2013 - Finger Wrinkling

Postby AlgisKuliukas » Sat Jan 12, 2013 10:33 am

Kareklas, K., Nettle, D., Smulders, T. Water-induced finger wrinkles improve handling of wet objects. Biology Letters 9:20120999, (2013).

Uponcontinuedsubmersion inwater, the glabrous skinonhumanhands andfeet formswrinkles. The formation of thesewrinkles is known to be an active process, controlled by the autonomic nervous system. Such an active control suggests that these wrinkles may have an important function, but this function has not been clear. In this study, we show that submerged objects are handled more quickly with wrinkled fingers than with unwrinkled fingers, whereas wrinkles make no difference to manipulating dry objects. These findings support the hypothesis that water-induced finger wrinkles improve handling submerged objects and suggest that they may be an adaptation for handling objects in wet conditions

The experiment and the discussion in the paper were clear...

Image

"This finding shows a clear advantage of having wrinkled fingers
when manipulating submerged objects, but not dry objects." (Kareklas et al 2013:2)


Kareklas, K., Nettle, D., Smulders, T. Water-induced finger wrinkles improve handling of wet objects. Biology Letters 9:20120999, (2013).

The key question is whether the same response is observed in our closest relatives, the great apes.

WHHE predict that this effect would not be as strong in chimps and gorillas than in humans.
Waterside hypotheses of human evolution assert that selection from wading, swimming and diving and procurement of food from aquatic habitats have significantly affected the evolution of the lineage leading to Homo sapiens as distinct from that leading to Pan. (p118)
Kuliukas, A., Morgan, E. (2011). Aquatic scenarios in the thinking on human evolution: What are they and how do they compare?. In: Vaneechoutte, M., Verhaegen, M., Kuliukas, A. (2011). Was Man More Aquatic in the Past?
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