Humans and Dolphins have even more in common than we might have thought. Biologists say they’ve found clear anatomical evidence that female have a fully functional clitoris that helps them experience pleasure during sex—just as it does for humans. The findings may one day help scientists trace back the evolutionary origins of the sexual organ and sex in general.Lead author Patricia Brennan, an assistant professor of biological sciences at Mount Holyoke College in Massachusetts, and her team have been studying the evolution of genitals in all sorts of vertebrate animals. More recently, they turned their attention to Dolphins, the marine mammals known for their playful and eerily human-like nature at times.
Brennan said that Dolphins have vaginal folds, and we were studying these folds to try to figure out their function and why they are so diverse across species. They dissected all these vaginas, the clitoris was obviously very well developed, so we decided to investigate how much we knew about it.Brennan and her team were able to closely look at the clitoral tissue of 11 bottlenose females that had died of natural causes. They examined the presence of nerve endings, muscles, and blood vessels. Everything they found pointed to the same thing: a fully working funmaker.
Dolphins aren’t the only animal besides humans that appear to enjoy sex and to do it for non-reproductive reasons; many of our primate relatives seem to as well. The fact that the clitoris is so similar to the human version, despite and humans probably being 95 million years apart in the evolutionary family tree, could suggest that the organ’s origins go way, way back.
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