While it may drive you crazy when someone tells you to smile, it turns out smiles may have played a very important role in our evolutionary development. According to new research out of the University of Milan, ancient humans may have developed the ability to smile in order to attract less aggressive mates, or more specifically, sexual partners.
The researchers gathered their insights by looking at genetic data from human stem cells taken from two Neanderthals and one Denisovan. They then looked at the specific gene “BAZ1B,” which had an affect on human facial expressions, noting that mutations of the gene that controlled facial expressions were absent in the samples.
Scientists believe breeding patterns may have led to Homo sapiens developing more expressive faces. Because of they believe humans were more likely than their ancestors to pick a mate that had an “I probably won’t kill you” face.
Source:New York Post