Philosophers and fertility experts can rest easy as the age-old question, “Which came first, the chicken or the egg?” finally has an answer: The chicken.
The research comes from British scientists out of Sheffield and Warwick universities. It all boils down to one protein—ovocledidin-17 (OC-17)—that is only found inside a chicken’s ovaries, and is essential for eggshell formation.
Although the protein has been studied as part of eggshell development before, researchers used a super computer to ‘zoom-in’ while a shell was forming, and found that it actually serves as a catalyst. Sheffield Professor John Harding hopes that this will aid in designing new materials.
Well, that’s one mystery solved. But still no word yet on the meaning of life.