[ExI] Genes aren't what we thought they were.......

BillK pharos at gmail.com
Fri Jan 4 11:46:55 UTC 2019

It’s the End of the Gene As We Know It
We are not nearly as determined by our genes as once thought.
By Ken Richardson January 3, 2019



Increasingly, we are finding that, in complex evolved traits—like
human minds—there is little prediction from DNA variation through
development to individual differences. The genes are crucial, of
course, but nearly all genetic variations are dealt with in the way
you can vary your journey from A to B: by constructing alternative
routes. “Multiple alternative pathways … are the rule rather than the
exception,” reported a paper in the journal BioSystems in 2007.

Conversely, it is now well known that a group of genetically identical
individuals, reared in identical environments—as in pure-bred
laboratory animals—do not become identical adults. Rather, they
develop to exhibit the full range of bodily and functional variations
found in normal, genetically-variable, groups. In a report in Science
in 2013, Julia Fruend and colleagues observed this effect in
differences in developing brain structures.

In the same vein, we can now understand why the same genetic resources
can be used in many different ways in different organs and tissues.
Genes now utilized in the development of our arms and legs, first
appeared in organisms that have neither. Genes used in fruit flies for
gonad development are now used in the development of human brains. And
most genes are used in several different tissues for different
purposes at the same time.

Hmmm...  New research seems to be turning Genes and DNA upside down.
Maybe environment has more importance in directing how humans develop?


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