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Does The Recurrent Laryngeal Nerve Really Represent A Bad Design?


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Hi all,


1. I'm looking for good answers regarding to the claims that are given in the following articles:






The wording in this documents is a little too technical/hard for me, but as I understand it claims that the recurrent laryngeal nerve is not really a bad design.


For example if I understand it right, Wolf-Ekkehard Lönnig claims that about 0.3% to 1% of the population does have a shortened laryngeal nerve (so it must have occurred already millions of times in all mammal species) but still it doesn't spread in the population, meaning that it doesn't really have a benefit, and may even cause problems.


The documents have some more claims in them, I would be happy if someone can explain this claims in a more simple words, and then say what are the arguments against it .


2. Another point that I would like to ask about this issue is this, when I'm looking at the following picture from Wikipedia:




I do see a short laryngeal nerve that goes directly from the brain to the laryngeal (the green nerve in the picture), what is the different between this nerve and the recurrent laryngeal nerve? Doesn't is serve exactly the same purpose?



Edited by DavidWhite
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:length=reaction time for nerves(roughly speed of sound in salty water) so shorter IS better as far as individual locations are concerned...but if it's part of a system, length and signal delay can actually simplify things as far as timing goes. A skim of those articles talks about engineers avoiding that kind of looped design, but that's quite wrong; just look at automobile harness'.

Vagus is what forces you to take a breath if your brain is low on oxygen, which can lead to issues for swimmers but keeps you alive in the case of temporary asphyxiation. That entire nerve cluster is probably originally branched out and multi-purposed from early amphibious ancestors, though I'm not enough of an evolutionary biologist to say with more than slight confidence. Comparison with a lungfish anatomy might reveal better insight.

edit: after further skimming it's obvious this comes from a religious dogma debate (Intelligent design) and most of the anomalies cited by both sides are likely from growth signal chemicals on-site being out of normal balance, which is readily apparent once you look into self assembly and the way those hormones and chemicals vary during growth stages. Nerves (like blood vessels and arteries) grow towards areas releasing "needed here" chemical signals, not based of of some perfected blueprint. This is why if you look at the veins on any two active male's forearms after strenuous activity they are similar in major placement but quite different in pattern. Look into how cancer tumors hijack the circulatory growth signal pathway to get giant non-standard arteries to feed them, that will get you a better understanding of the underlying mechanisms.

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