“Human By Chance? – The Gene That Made Our Brain Grow”
Autentic Distribution has added the new Science doc “Human By Chance? – The Gene That Made Our Brain Grow” to its factual catalogue. The title is produced by Hoferichter & Jacobs for German pubcaster MDR and comes as 1x52’ doc. The acquisition marks another collaboration between Hoferichter & Jacobs and Autentic Distribution.
The documentary accompanies the researchers of the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden on their way to discover the origin of humanity’s dominance on earth, which is due to the rapid growth of our brains over two million years ago.
For the first time in history, a research team succeeded in making embryonic brains of marmosets grow by using the human-specific gene ARHGAP11B. The team led by Dr. Wieland Huttner has not only discovered the reason for our larger brains but has also discovered that humans owe their tremendous cognitive abilities to a coincidence: a point mutation that occurred hundreds of thousands of years ago in one of our early ancestors, on this exact gene.
The film presents the decisive moments of their groundbreaking study and illustrates the current research results. The results are supplemented by the insights of Primatologist Dr. Roman Wittig, evolutionary researcher Dr. Philipp Gunz from the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Professor of Comparative Developmental Psychology and neuroscientist Dr. Katja Liebal, and bestselling author and scientist Dr. Franca Parianen.