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Does the mouth have any natural resistance to plaque? © Getty Images

Which part of the human body evolved most recently?

Asked by: Luca Blackwell

Evolution doesn’t just hand out useful traits such as opposable thumbs or colour vision like lottery prizes. Natural selection is constantly tinkering, and no part of our body is more ‘recent’ than another. But some are changing faster.

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One of the fastest movers is the human jaw, which has been steadily shrinking over the last 10,000 years, as the invention of agriculture and cooking gave us softer foods that need less chewing.

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Authors

luis villazon
Luis VillazonQ&A expert

Luis trained as a zoologist, but now works as a science and technology educator. In his spare time he builds 3D-printed robots, in the hope that he will be spared when the revolution inevitably comes.

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