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I’m sure you’ve seen the articles claiming octopuses are aliens all over social media lately. Turns out the Chicago scientists who authored the study in question didn’t mean that octopuses are literally from outer space, but that their DNA is just really really weird compared to ours.
“It’s the first sequenced genome from something like an alien,” went the original quote inNature by University of Chicago neurobiologist Clifton Ragsdale. Rather than being from outer space, humans and octopuses actually share a common Earth ancestor, likely a little worm-like creature that lived 700 million years ago.
In those millions of years a lot has changed. Some of the octopus’s close relatives, other mollusks like clams, aren’t exactly the most bright creatures on our planet. Meanwhile, octopuses can open jars.
Read full, original post: Octopuses Have Weird Genes, But They Are Not Aliens