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When these differences are counted, there is an additional 4 to 5% distinction between the human and chimpanzee genomes.

DNA shapes how an organism grows up and the physiology of its blood, bone, and brains.

DNA is thus especially important in the study of and another – and thus how closely or distantly related they are.

Even though Europe and Asia were scoured for early human fossils long before Africa was even thought of, ongoing fossil discoveries confirm that the first 4 million years or so of human evolutionary history took place exclusively on the African continent.

It is there that the search continues for fossils at or near the branching point of the chimpanzee and human lineages from our last common ancestor.

The human evolutionary tree is embedded the great apes.

The strong similarities between humans and the African great apes led Charles Darwin in 1871 to predict that Africa was the likely place where the human lineage branched off from other animals – that is, the place where the common ancestor of chimpanzees, humans, and gorillas once lived.

The DNA evidence shows an amazing confirmation of this daring prediction.

The African great apes, including humans, have a closer kinship bond with one another than the African apes have with orangutans or other .

We share more genes with organisms that are more closely related to us.

Humans belong to the biological group known as Primates, and are classified with the great apes, one of the major groups of the primate evolutionary tree.

Due to billions of years of evolution, humans share genes with all living organisms.