Scientist: We Have Proof That The Chicken Came Before The Egg

"It had long been suspected that the egg came first, but now we have the scientific proof that shows that in fact the chicken came first," says Dr Colin Freeman, from Sheffield University. Here's the explanation:

When scientists from Sheffield University and Warwick University used a supercomputer called HECToR to take a close look at egg shells, they discovered that a protein "called ovocledidin-17 (OC-17) acts as a catalyst to speed up the development of the shell". They realised that this protein is crucial to actually forming an egg shell. They also realised that this protein is found in a chicken's ovaries. Based on this, these scientists decided that the chicken must have come before the egg.

They just fail to explain where the chicken came from in the first place. [Metro via CBS News]

Photo by Thomas Pix

WATCH MORE: Science & Health News


    "They just fail to explain where the chicken came from in the first place."


      that was not part of the argument

    The chicken must have evolved from a fish! Sad thing is, so many people beleive that and its taught at school like its a fact.

    Im a Christian, and beleive that of course the chicken came first, as it says in Genesis, "Let the earth bring forth the living creature according to its kind". While Christianity and beleiving in God can be a hard thing to beleive in at times, it sure sounds better than the theory of evolution...

      Your being sarcastic right?

      Christians are the craziest poeples, heh heh heh :)

      Your a creationist, part of Christianity. As a Catholic I see no reason to fault evoltion. God created everything, including the ability for creatures to evolve. It has been seen. It has been tested. And while nothing can be proven it is the current theory as it has held up so well so far.

      Dude.... seriously....?

      While I respect your right to think that, in the words of Jim Jefferies "Please know that you're wrong". Because the earth being only a few thousand years old makes soooooo much more sense that evolution.

      Oh.. well, if it was written in a book. lol.

      Evolution can be simply seen in a child that goes to school, learns something. That IS evolving, its not sinister like science, its just observation.

      Seems many religious people are afraid of learning anything and rather choosing to hold close their magical book thats stuck in time. Given if there was a God, he'd be pretty pissed off with how useless his believers are at utilizing his masterful creation.

        "Evolution can be simply seen in a child that goes to school, learns something. That IS evolving, its not sinister like science, its just observation." Learned knowledge is not evolutionary knowledge.

      I believe in trolls

      thank you! finally someone who agrees with me!

      Just to add to my previous point, south park sums up my thoughts of evolution perfectly...

    This is funny how this is all over the news, the news reports are incorrect, no where in the report do they mention anything about which came first, the report is about the structure of an egg and how it's made so that it's weaker on the inside and stronger on the outside...

    Bible basher's, god ! Creatures before chickens were laying eggs, end of.

    It seems to me that people who believe in the theory of evolution sometimes react like religious zealots, rather than putting forward well reasoned and researched arguments.

      I don't disagree with you, but the fault is not with the theory but how it is taught and explained. Unfortunately, religious types are used to the notion of an absolute, known truth (ie. "God did it"), and so when they hit on something that is an incomplete theory such as evolution or big-bang cosmology, they point to the gaps as proof that the theory is all completely wrong - just look at Troy MacDonald above for this effect in action.

      The fact is that science is complicated and messy, just like the universe. We haven't been studying evolution for nearly long enough to provide all answers to all questions, but unlike religion, science doesn't implicitly promise to answer any question you ask of it right now.

      Unfortunately, the idea that there are some things that have rational explanations which we as a species do not or cannot understand right now is a pretty difficult one to grasp, and not very comforting when you DO get your head around it, so a lot of amateur science advocates will attempt to 'sell' science to the religious by attempting to make it all sound a lot more concrete and certain than it really is - hence the semi-religious zealotry in defence of science that you've witnessed. A true scientist is just as happy when he's proven wrong as he is when he's proven right, simply because something has been PROVEN.

        Oh, and in my opinion, this riddle is a consequence of attempting to categorize a hugely convoluted chaotic system (the evolving ecosystem of the Earth) into the nice orderly boxes of our system of Linnaean Taxonomy (Kingdom,Phylum, Order, Class, Species, Subspecies), which is a static system that was designed before evolution was conceived. Phylogeny, which is the study of the genetic connections between species to discover their common ancestry, would be a better way to answer this question, but it tends to offer probabilities and likelihoods rather than certainties and so gets left out of the discourse.

        tl;dr - a 'kinda-chicken' laid a 'kinda-egg' at some stage in the past, and those things continually evolved into what we call chickens and eggs. These are not static points, and so asking which comes first is as silly as asking which came last.

      So,.. you would rather believe in an all seeing, all knowing, omnipotant and magical being, than actual proven, and well established facts??

    I wonder if the mentioned protein is present in other animals that produce eggs. Between this and "They just fail to explain where the chicken came from in the first place." you'd think that if a scientist was going to weigh in on such a widely known debate they'd make sure these gaps are filled.

    What many people fail to realize is that evolution is far from proven. This is usually because they wrongly equate Natural Selection, which can be observed, with evolution.

    To provide a base explanation, selection requires the picking of one trait out of a plurality of traits. Hence, whenever a variant is selected at the expense of the other variants, the number of options in the sample group is reduced. This is a net loss of information, not a gain, which evolution requires.

    Once this incorrect link is severed, it would be understood that evolution is far from a proven fact. Proper science should involve observation, and while natural selection can be observed, evolution has/can not. As such, it is still a theory, like creation.

      You left out the mutation bit, which has been observed, and increases variance.

        Yes. Without mutation there would not be variance in the first place. My emphasis was on the resultant net loss as a result of selection. After selection, the next lot of mutation would be based on that selection, and not from the initial pool. Hence, still net loss, compared to what would have been without selection.

        That would be true, Dave, if all the selection pressures across the world (universe?) were exactly the same - all life would select for similar traits, and the ecosystem would end up losing diversity.

        But conditions are different everywhere you look - what is a beneficial trait in a cave is a detriment on a savannah, which is different again from what works best in a forest. Indeed, within each environment there's also specialisation to fill open ecological niches, so an animal might chase it's prey into a nocturnal cycle and split off from a diurnal variant of the same species. It's these points of change (spatial and temporal) between homogeneous environments that most true natural selection occurs, and these can be found literally everywhere you look.

      learn to science.

    Word Flux. I want to save that

      Glad you liked it, Dan - feel free to use it in your next dialogue with a Creationist... ;)

    didnt they come from the other side of the road?

    The protein in question exists in the eggs of all animals, including dinosaurs. It doesn't even begin to prove the chicken came first. The ancestors of chickens laid eggs which contained this protein. The very idea that either came first is a mistake: evolution proceeds by tiny steps, such that the idea of the first chicken makes no sense. (I won't argue here for the truth of evolution. Sad fact: most of those who deny its truth aren't in a position to understand the arguments. Those few who are are in massive denial. To the guy who said you have to observe something to prove it: learn some science, dude! Positivism went out 40 years ago).

    I'm pretty sure eggs were around long before chickens.

    This guy is clearly wrong

    Obviously the chicken came first, otherwise the egg would be infertile.

      Surely you mean the Rooster?

    To quote Dave: "After selection, the next lot of mutation would be based on that selection, and not from the initial pool. Hence, still net loss, compared to what would have been without selection."

    This is the definition of evolution, the creature with the mutation survives and breeds, and that mutation follows through (hopefully, depending on dominant genes) to the next generation. If the continued mutations were based on the original generation then the species would be stuck...
    I hope you just worded that part wrong because it really does make no sense.

Join the discussion!