As if men need another reason to pay close attention to their penises, apparently the mystery of how they’re formed at the cellular level is the “key to much of life on earth.” So how are they formed? And why do males have them? These are questions asked by many an inquisitive 8-year-old and distinguished scientist alike.
Two teams of researches have come to some fairly conclusive results that begin to tell the origin story of one of life’s little origins. If penises were Batman, this would be Batman Begins. Not only because the research reveals the roots of the organ, but also because Christian Bale is supposedly a real dick to work with.
By looking at how penises form in snake, lizard, mouse, and chick embryos, researches tracked the cells that would eventually produce the organs. They discovered that while the cells differed from species to species, the common thread was the cloaca, a cavity destined to become the lower part of the gut.