KEV Talks

My inquiry question was “How has neanderthal DNA affected humans today?”

Works Cited
Gregory, Michael D., et al. “Neanderthal-Derived Genetic Variation Shapes Modern Human Cranium and Brain.” Nature News, Nature Publishing Group, 24 July 2017,
“Neanderthal DNA Has Subtle but Significant Impact on Human Traits.” – News and Articles on Science and Technology,,
“New Clues to How Neanderthal Genes Affect Your Health.” National Geographic, National Geographic Society, 5 Oct. 2017,
Panko, Ben. “How Ancient Neanderthal DNA Still Influences Our Genes Today.”, Smithsonian Institution, 24 Feb. 2017,
Riley, Alex. “How Our Ancient Origins Are Guiding Modern Medicine.” PBS, Public Broadcasting Service, 13 July 2017,
VanderbiltUniversity. “Neanderthal DNA Has Subtle but Significant Impact on Human Traits.” YouTube, YouTube, 11 Feb. 2016,
“Why Am I Neanderthal?” Genographic Project,

8 thoughts on “KEV Talks

  1. Engaging, interactive, and interesting. Your hook caught my attention and left me with a question that would be answered throughout the video, which was really engaging. The structure and organization all make sense and flow nicely throughout the video. Transitions between points are fluid and nothing feels rigid. I like how you elaborated and backed up the numbers in your talk instead of just giving us numbers to consider. By going more “in-depth” into the 1-4%, you showed the significance of the percentage, and how that affected us. It’s easy to assume that interbreeding with a primitive or “backwards” version of us can result in only negative consequences, but you showed both the advantages and disadvantages of interbreeding with Neanderthals and cleared up some common fallacies.

    During the video, you said that Neanderthals had interbred with modern humans. By modern humans, are you referring to Homo Sapiens Sapiens or just all Homo Sapiens in general? Also, why would modern humans choose to breed with primitive versions of themselves with larger eyebrow ridges (although beauty is subjective)?

    While your voice wasn’t monotonous, I think you could have adjusted your tone, pause lengths, and pace throughout the video to “spice” up your talk and make it a bit more engaging. Other than that, this was an excellent TED talk with tons of interactive visuals.

    • Yeah, you’re right. I’ll be sure to add “spice” to my “future presentation to do list.” Acknowledging your question, I mean Homo Sapiens Sapiens. As for your second question, I know, it’s weird right? I actually wondered this as well throughout my studies, and through minor research I can tell you that there is no clear reason. Some hypothesize that modern humans believed that breeding with a Neanderthal would provide an evolved child, but I can tell you right now that there was no attractive factor about Neanderthals. I mean, maybe if you squinted hard enough.

  2. Interesting KEV talk Kevin! I particularly liked how you started off with an interesting hook, which really got me into your presentation. Another thing I really enjoyed was the way you connected back to our biology unit, and I found this to be quite cool as you were adding on to previous knowledge. Another thing you did well was discuss the positive sides of Neanderthal DNA as well as negative sides. When you first talked about all the negative sides, it seemed like it was a bad thing but after hearing about the positive effects as well, you get to weight both spectrums. You discussed interesting topics throughout your presentation, but I believe that you could have perhaps added some more emotion into your project. Remember back to Yoonha’s ZIP project. The tone that you deliver a message in can often affect how it’s interpreted more than what you are actually saying. Something I was wondering throughout your presentation is how neanderthals and modern humans would have interbred, because their eras were very far apart from each other. Overall, very informative and interesting talk with lots of visuals, which really helped us understand the points you were making. Great work!

  3. Kevin
    Great KEV Talk, Kevin! You had really interesting visuals that helped me understand your presentation more. Your tree diagram gave an interesting view of how us as humans are related to other animals such as chimpanzees. It was easy to understand how we are related to chimpanzees through our ancestor’s ancestor. Your diagram made me wonder, how closely are humans genetically related to other animals? It would be amazing to see a tree diagram that encompasses all species, even though that’s practically impossible due to the amount of animal species we don’t know about. I also found it interesting when you talked about how long it would take to find a difference between different species DNA. This relates to my question about the genetic modification of cows. In my TED Talk, I looked at how we can take parts of human genes and place them into other animals’ genes, such as cows. I was able to notice when you were starting to conclude your presentation, but I think it would be helpful to make a clearer conclusion where you sum up your presentation.
    Great work!

  4. Hi Kevin!
    I found your topic really interesting! I liked how you talked about the health implications of having Neanderthal genes. I would have liked to learn a little bit more on how researchers found the Neanderthal DNA. I did really like your visuals and I think that you did a wonderful job of illustrating your point.


  5. Very creative KEV Talk Kevin! I really enjoyed watching the video, as it was quite interesting and moved at a good pace. You explained your topic really clearly as well, and I found that I came to understand your topic to the level of depth that you provided. I also see that you structured it in a way that keeps the viewer wondering. You started out with an interesting topic, and just as I was about to say “so what”, you explained why it matters very well. However, I thought you could have gone more into depth of the practical uses of this knowledge. My question then for you is what kinds of medicine we can apply this knowledge to, and why?

  6. Hey Kev,
    I found your question was really interesting and your facts even more interesting, sometimes we forget about our neanderthal ancestors, let alone how we could still share their DNA. A question I have is, is there anyway we could find out if we share DNA with neanderthal remains? We have our ways of tracking how we connect to someone, but is there a way we could connect them to us? Again really cool idea and information. The amount of pictures and animations complimented everything quite well.
    Good job!
    -Sarah Fong

  7. Hola Kevin!
    Amazing KEV Talk, it was really interesting and insightful. The visuals were very helpful and made it easier to follow along. You chose a super cool topic, and it reminds me of a lesson I took in middle school about Neanderthals, Homo Sapiens, etc. I am curious about the different human races. Do you know if there are any ways to trace our DNA to specific groups of Neanderthals? Does this relate to our physical features in any specific way?

    The only constructive criticism I have is to possibly include more audience interactive sections of the video. Other than that, I really enjoyed your KEV Talk. Muy bien, adios!

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