Our bodies have 3 billion genetic building blocks, or base pairs, that make us who we are.
A recent TED talk by physicist and entrepreneur Riccardo Sabatini demonstrated that a printed version of your entire genetic code would occupy some 262,000 pages, or 175 large books. Of those pages, just about 500 would be unique to us.
This is because large chunks of our genome perform similar functions across the animal kingdom.
Take a look at how genetically similar we are to everything around us:
Humans are 99.9% similar to the person sitting next to us. The rest of those genes tell us everything from our eye color to whether we’re predisposed to certain diseases.
A 2005 study found that chimpanzees — our closest living evolutionary relatives — are 96% genetically similar to humans.
Cats are more like us than you’d think. A 2007 study found that about 90% of the genes in the Abyssinian domestic cat are similar to humans.
- Samantha Lee/Business Insider