How Blood Evolved (Many Times)

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  • Published: 16 January 2019
  • Blood is one of the most revolutionary features in our evolutionary history. Over hundreds of millions of years, the way in which blood does its job has changed over and over again. As a result, we animals have our familiar red blood. But also blue blood. And purple, and green, and even white.

    Thanks to Julio Lacerda, Lucas Lima, Franz Anthony of Studio 252mya for several illustrations throughout this episode. You can find more of their work here: 252mya.com/

    Produced in collaboration with PBS Digital Studios: cepnet.mobi/user/pbsdigitalstudios

    Super special thanks to the following Patreon patrons for helping make Eons possible:

    Katie Fichtner, Anthony Callaghan, Renzo Caimi Ordenes, John Vanek, Neil H. Gray, Marilyn Wolmart, Esmeralda Rupp-Spangle, Gregory Donovan, Ehit Dinesh Agarwal, الخليفي سلطان , Gabriel Cortez, Marcus Lejon, Robert Arévalo, Robert Hill, Kelby Reid, Todd Dittman, Betsy Radley, PS, Colin Sylvester, Philip Slingerland, Jose Garcia, Eric Vonk, Tony Wamsley, Henrik Peteri, Jonathan Wright, Jon Monteiro, James Bording, Brad Nicholls, Miles Chaston, Michael McClellan, Jeff Graham, Maria Humphrey, Nathan Paskett, Connor Jensen, Daisuke Goto, Hubert Rady, Yuntao Zhou, Gregory Kintz, Tyson Cleary, Chandler Bass, Maly Lor, Joao Ascensao, Tsee Lee, Sarah Fritts, Ruben Winter, Ron Harvey Jr, Jacob Gerke, Alex Yan

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    References:
    ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5378490/
    ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3097462/
    ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17120194
    hindawi.com/journals/ijz/2009/301284/
    sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0012160612006343?via%3Dihub
    .estrellamountain.edu/faculty/farabee/biobk/BioBookcircSYS.html
    citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.456.5625&rep=rep1&type=pdf
    books.google.com/books?id=pKlVDwAAQBAJ&pg=PA35&lpg=PA35&dq=origin+of+blood+triploblasts&source=bl&ots=OofsZKI3SN&sig=I6Y92wODJah2vWgtPShcnPtR5eI&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjZ5Lmz6NveAhVPslMKHdOeCSoQ6AEwDXoECAMQAQ#v=onepage&q=origin%20of%20blood%20triploblasts&f=false
    thebiologyprimer.com/the-origin-and-evolution-of-animals/
    researchgate.net/profile/Thorsten_Burmester/publication/11448732_Origin_and_evolution_of_arthropod_hemocyanins_and_related_proteins/links/558c352e08ae1f30aa809ad6.pdf
    courses.lumenlearning.com/wm-biology2/chapter/circulatory-system-variation-in-animals/
    jeb.biologists.org/content/jexbio/201/8/1099.full.pdf
    ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3543078/
    physiology.org/doi/full/10.1152/physrev.2001.81.2.569?url_ver=Z39.88-2003&rfr_id=ori%3Arid%3Acrossref.org&rfr_dat=cr_pub%3Dpubmed
    britannica.com/science/circulatory-system/The-vertebrate-circulatory-system
    nhm.ac.uk/discover/news/2014/april/earliest-heart-blood-discovered.html
    ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2614223/
    nature.com/articles/ncomms4560
    onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1502-3931.1997.tb00458.x
    nrcresearchpress.com/doi/10.1139/e06-012
    britannica.com/animal/mollusk#ref35787
    forbes.com/sites/shaenamontanari/2016/04/20/oldest-example-of-a-chambered-heart-found-in-a-113-million-year-old-fossil/#468a52b026d4
    sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1570963913000836
    jstor.org/stable/30158158?seq=3#metadata_info_tab_contents
    sci-news.com/paleontology/science-fossil-oldest-known-cardiovascular-system-01839.html
    academic.oup.com/icb/article/55/5/792/604091
    mdpi.com/2308-3425/2/1/2/pdf
  • Science and Technology Science and Technology

Comments • 1 887

  • Pablo Sirius EscoBARZ
    Pablo Sirius EscoBARZ  36 minutes back

    8:40 lizard people r resistant to disease. Illuminati confirmed 🤔

    • Topten Dawg
      Topten Dawg  2 days back

      Omgosh like what is these guys life like.
      Guys: ok finished report of newly discovered species...nothing new apparently... next!

      • UDtheAesir
        UDtheAesir  3 days back

        Dexter Morgan-approved.

        • A. N.
          A. N.  3 days back

          Biliverdin sounds *sick* as h*ck.

          • hagala
            hagala  3 days back

            no what gives blood the read colour is communism

            • Robert Eischen
              Robert Eischen  4 days back

              I learned word hemoglobin is pretty fun to say. I'm not too bright though. 😅

              • ruski muejek
                ruski muejek  6 days back

                Wow so interesting!

                • HonorisCreed
                  HonorisCreed  6 days back

                  Thank you for teaching me that I have a slight fear of blood.

                  • first last
                    first last  6 days back

                    But arthropods don't have a circulatory system I thought? That's why insects can't grow too thick because they need to get oxygen from opening in their exoskeleton which can't penetrate very deep, I thought?

                    • Corleone
                      Corleone  6 days back

                      I didn't expect a cuckold to be commentating for PBS

                      • M P
                        M P  7 days back

                        We were squids, THEN we were kids.

                        • Gustavo Pomar
                          Gustavo Pomar  7 days back

                          After the second or third "improvement" (mutation), who might've been the lucky ones that survived and were even able to reproduce!!! One really needs lots, I mean loooooots of faith to believe this.

                          • _R.N.04_ Bluefaceb
                            _R.N.04_ Bluefaceb  7 days back

                            Anyone else smart that watches videos at 2x speed and still understands them, you can get thru so many videos

                            • jacob reww
                              jacob reww  7 days back

                              How can you dislike everything?! XD

                              • Commander Rockwell
                                Commander Rockwell  1 weeks back

                                Hank Green shows up at PBS, too?! He’s everywhere!

                                • Michael Lubin
                                  Michael Lubin  1 weeks back

                                  Sequel: How vampires evolved. Many times!

                                  • Dalia Capellan
                                    Dalia Capellan  1 weeks back

                                    Bloody bastards!

                                    • I Scream for Ice Ring
                                      I Scream for Ice Ring  1 weeks back

                                      5:44 LOL!!! Did you know shells of living snails carbon date to 100,000 years old?

                                      • I Scream for Ice Ring
                                        I Scream for Ice Ring  1 weeks back

                                        @Jammie! Cheers to you!

                                      • Jammie!
                                        Jammie!  1 weeks back

                                        @I Scream for Ice Ring Well, this was not a response I was expecting.

                                        Doubting scientific finds is the right thing to do, if we don't doubt it and ask for evidence science would stagnate, become full of half-arsed ideas and get very boring.


                                        *You win this.* You felt the need to apologize and that shows to me you are not the dishonest person I thought you were.


                                        You may have been wrong about the science. But I was wrong about you. My apologies.

                                      • I Scream for Ice Ring
                                        I Scream for Ice Ring  1 weeks back

                                        @Jammie! no.. it's fine. You can win.. I don't know about carbon dating and I didnt take that from a paper but was repeating what sounds like s fun fact to me all by its lonesome.
                                        Sorry to change the topic but it was more just s way to address the inconsistencies even in fundamental understandings. Hence my doubts with dating for proof of anything.

                                      • Jammie!
                                        Jammie!  1 weeks back

                                        ​@I Scream for Ice Ring Did you actually read what I said because at no point did I say or imply what you say I did, or are you just being dishonest?


                                        You seemed to think:
                                        A. we use carbon dating on fossils when we don't
                                        B. that just because carbon dating does not work in situations we know it wont work that it means the dating is always inaccurate.


                                        In response I explained what the paper really said and that carbon dating is not used on fossils as they do not contain carbon and are too old. Rather than acknowledging this you divert the conversation to another topic.


                                        I am not going to let you change the subject away from the original point to either "angular resolution" or "the horizon" as that has nothing to do with your initial scientifically ignorant comment or my rebuttal nor am I going to continue with this thread because you obviously aren't willing to stay on topic.


                                        I have no doubt you will see this as a "win" on your end, but I don't care.



                                        I tried.

                                      • I Scream for Ice Ring
                                        I Scream for Ice Ring  1 weeks back

                                        @Jammie! Oh, so newer things get an old result and older things get a newer result? Great.
                                        My friend, if you think people twiddle in the dirt and tell you the difference between 100,000 and 100,000,000 years.. you have no hope.
                                        The universities dont even teach you what the horizon is for goodness sake, but tell you that's where the literal earth falls away!
                                        Ask yourself just where on earth does angular resolution actually come into play? 😊

                                    • Helljumper
                                      Helljumper  1 weeks back

                                      Can a human lose their consciousness?

                                      • Zane Finlay
                                        Zane Finlay  2 weeks back

                                        Evolution of sap and other mechisms that plants/trees/fungi use

                                        • Gender Woman
                                          Gender Woman  2 weeks back

                                          What's the difference between a tapeworm and a human embryo?
                                          Tapeworm has other kind of blood than his host...

                                          • Gender Woman
                                            Gender Woman  2 weeks back

                                            There's an iron.
                                            So that's why fresh blood smells like warm metal...

                                            • Asto Done
                                              Asto Done  5 days back

                                              Gender Woman — In all the cases you mentioned those are metals that came into contact with countless organic materials... So those metals will have catalyzed some reactions & thus produce compounds that give them the distinct “metal” smell.

                                              But if you sterilize and clean a PURE sample of a metal, it has no smell. That’s because again, metals just don’t react with the cells in your nose. Most metals are not volatile enough to make it to your nose, but even if they DO make it (like mercury) then they won’t smell like anything. And because metals are so heavy, they can damage your lungs really badly if you breathe them in.

                                            • Gender Woman
                                              Gender Woman  5 days back

                                              @Asto Done So explain, why some metal things smells in very hot sun? Or when you are in for example a museum, where are many swords and things like that, or some metal vehicles, you can easily smell that specific metal aroma XD Or rusting metal constructions, like bridge. And the blood smells similar.
                                              I understand, that it's smell of reacting metal, but it's still a *metal* .

                                            • Asto Done
                                              Asto Done  5 days back

                                              You can’t smell metal. Metals are very unreactive and the cells responsible for SMELLING them don’t detect anything. However you can breathe metals without realizing it, like mercury, because it has no smell and can’t be seen, it’s very dangerous.

                                              You can only smell a metal when it comes into contact with a human’s skin. Because then some reactions happen which include the metal as a catalyst, and it produces some unique compounds that we associate with the smell of metals.

                                          • Gender Woman
                                            Gender Woman  2 weeks back

                                            4:23
                                            -What's that colorful painting? Is it Picasso's?
                                            -It's blood.

                                            • JustSay That
                                              JustSay That  2 weeks back

                                              A Mosquito that was hacking internet just found this video!

                                              • Veronica Obiglio
                                                Veronica Obiglio  2 weeks back

                                                Thank you
                                                Very interesting

                                                • Adannaya Elicia
                                                  Adannaya Elicia  2 weeks back

                                                  Omg thats my boy John Green

                                                  • Le nearsighted Wandering trader

                                                    Vampires be like: so wich flavor?

                                                    • Desperado070
                                                      Desperado070  2 weeks back

                                                      Told ya I got blue blood...

                                                      • magnum opus
                                                        magnum opus  3 weeks back

                                                        Looks likes Piccolo's blood has hemerythrin who knew 😀

                                                        • Nime Ano
                                                          Nime Ano  3 weeks back

                                                          This is what youtube shall be use for 👍🏿

                                                          • bulruq
                                                            bulruq  4 weeks back

                                                            Here's an idea worthy of investigation: Does carbon monoxide poison these different types of blood equally or are some more resistant to its' toxic effects?

                                                            • K Sage
                                                              K Sage  4 weeks back

                                                              I love this channel so much!

                                                              • Luis Vigoreaux
                                                                Luis Vigoreaux  1 months back

                                                                Lol my brain hurts that's amazing tho man

                                                                • David
                                                                  David  1 months back

                                                                  I’d love for him to do a video on how butterflies evolved.

                                                                  • Alex Tiller
                                                                    Alex Tiller  1 months back

                                                                    *Happy kindred noises*

                                                                    • Jason Scully
                                                                      Jason Scully  1 months back

                                                                      What if humans used copper instead of iron? Electric powers? Lol idk

                                                                      • Pencil Shavings
                                                                        Pencil Shavings  1 months back

                                                                        Suu Whoop

                                                                        • Gunnar Gude
                                                                          Gunnar Gude  1 months back

                                                                          When the blood evolved, was the veins and heart waiting for it to evolve, or was the blood laying around waiting for evolution? Noone sees any problem here?

                                                                          • Gordon Freeman
                                                                            Gordon Freeman  2 weeks back

                                                                            What I see, is the problem and flaw in your simplistic reasoning.
                                                                            The population of an organism evolves as a whole, slowly. Things just don't pop into existence fully developed.
                                                                            Wings started as mere stubs not fully formed wings capable of flight, the same applies to what would become heart and veins.

                                                                        • I Dream In HSV
                                                                          I Dream In HSV  1 months back

                                                                          I’d love a rundown on the different eras. You mention their names but it hard to keep track of the timeline

                                                                          • Silver theDragon
                                                                            Silver theDragon  1 months back

                                                                            Family: blood is thicker than water
                                                                            Me: *angry ice fish noises*

                                                                            • Viv Wallace
                                                                              Viv Wallace  2 months back

                                                                              So theoretically could there be a creature having gold in its blood? Because copper and iron seem to be popular, maybe gold or silver or other metals could do the trick as well?

                                                                              • Lünkel
                                                                                Lünkel  2 weeks back

                                                                                @Viv Wallace I agree

                                                                              • Viv Wallace
                                                                                Viv Wallace  2 weeks back

                                                                                @Lünkel But it is still a very interesting idea to me.

                                                                              • Lünkel
                                                                                Lünkel  2 weeks back

                                                                                Well, gold is basicly the opposite of what you're looking for in a metal in this scenario. Gold is really really bad at reacting with stuff, so binding oxygen to it probably wouldn't work very well. I mean you could probably make it work but I would not expect that to last very long

                                                                            • Hello
                                                                              Hello  2 months back

                                                                              Soooo...
                                                                              Thousands of years ago our blood was a different colour

                                                                              • Jonathan Armstrong
                                                                                Jonathan Armstrong  2 months back

                                                                                Globin Fold, lol.

                                                                                • cosmicVox13
                                                                                  cosmicVox13  2 months back

                                                                                  What about RH - blood ?

                                                                                  • swomp man
                                                                                    swomp man  2 months back

                                                                                    hey idubbbz cool video!

                                                                                    • the sarcastic one
                                                                                      the sarcastic one  2 months back

                                                                                      Mosquitoes: *ight imma head out now*

                                                                                      • SoBeast27
                                                                                        SoBeast27  2 months back

                                                                                        Wow there's so much knowledge out there.

                                                                                        • Samuel Barrow
                                                                                          Samuel Barrow  2 months back

                                                                                          Gives a whole new meaning to “we all bleed red”