[Paleopsych] It pays to lick the rich

Steve shovland at mindspring.com
Thu Jul 29 00:50:24 UTC 2004

Remittance Men and Trust Babies are probably
the instruments of this exploration.  Lacking
any duties, they go where they will, sometimes
to destruction, sometimes to better places.

Steve Hovland

-----Original Message-----
From:	Val Geist [SMTP:kendulf at shaw.ca]
Sent:	Wednesday, July 28, 2004 5:15 PM
To:	The new improved paleopsych list
Subject:	Re: [Paleopsych] It pays to lick the rich

This is a quick one, Howard. Here you are on the same trail I was when I 
first saw that the rich in human society are the usually the biological 
dispersal phenotype. Indeed, the rich are notoriously our pioneers! And 
they are BIOLOGICALLY! structured to be that way thanks to luxurious 
nutrition beginning with conception. See my old Life Strategies...(1978) 
book on this issue, chapter 6 entitled "How genes communicate with the 
environment - the biology of inequity" . Yes, yes and yes again to your 
musings. You are on track. Cheers, Val Geist

----- Original Message -----
  From: HowlBloom at aol.com
  To: paleopsych at paleopsych.org
  Sent: Wednesday, July 28, 2004 6:51 AM
  Subject: [Paleopsych] It pays to lick the rich

        Can the balance of nerve growth factor and of glucorticoids be one 
of the stress balancers in the brain, the ones Ia?Tve been hunting down, 
the one that can cave in in chronic fatigue syndrome?

        Different strokes produce different folksa?"provided those folks 
are rats.

        A loving mother, a mother who pets and licks you, makes you 
confident.  A skittish mother who hesitates to touch you preordains you to 
be easily spooked.  Hugsa?"or the lack of thema?"change the way genes 
function.  Those genes boost or block nerve growth factor and the way your 
brain handles stress hormones. This reset of genes resets something 

        Pulling out to look at the slightly larger picture, if your mother 
was under lots of threat and was too nervous to cuddle you, you may well be 
born into the high-risk world that made her so distraught.  In a world 
filled with danger, it may make sense to be fearful and hide.  On the other 
hand, if your mom felt rosy, confident, and on top of her world, she may 
have been cruising along in an atmosphere of privilege, abundance, and 
safety.  If youa?Tre born into her sphere of rank and guaranteed plenty, 
confident exploration may be a luxury you can well afford.

        Earlier research once convinced me that the rich do much to explore 
the strange on our behalf.  They play status games by competing to own 
things that are rare and strange.  As a consequence, they act as antennae, 
feeding novelty and fresh possibilities into our brains.  The status 
symbols of the rich are often goods from exotic cultures or from mine 
shafts half way round the world, shafts in diamond or titanium tunnels it 
takes a huge investment to excavate.  Or the rich go for ancient 
masterpieces and archaelogical treasures from digs in obscure places and 
from layers left by the people of even more obscure periods of time.  The 
rich, with their smug self-confidence bring riches like the rarities at the 
Museum of Natural History, the Field Museum, the Louvre, the Getty, and the 
Tate into the mainstream.

        Ita?Ts a drag to praise the rich for anything.  They have so much 
more money than you and me that envya?Ts more the order of the day.  But 
apparently if their momsa?"or nanniesa?"lick them regularly, they can 
boldly buy where no man has bought before, and in the process add to our 
middle-class lives.  Howard

        Retrieved July 28, 2004, from the World Wide Web


         Science News Online  Week of July 17, 2004; Vol. 166, No. 3 
Groomed DNA Handles Threats: Mothering styles alter rats' stress responses 
 Bruce Bower  A rodent mother can't scold or praise her offspring, but her 
approach to mothering lays a genetic foundation for her pups' life-long 
response to threats, neuroscientists have found.  Rats raised by moms who 
frequently lick and groom them undergo permanent changes in patterns of 
gene activity, leading to a penchant for exploratory behavior in stressful 
situations, say Michael J. Meaney and his colleagues at McGill University 
in Montreal.  In contrast, rats raised with little maternal contact end up 
with gene activity that fosters fearfulness in the face of stress, the 
researchers report in the August Nature Neuroscience. From an evolutionary 
perspective, having both behaviors in a population is beneficial.  "Early 
experience can have lifelong consequences on behavior, and [this new 
report] reveals the genetic scaffolding of this phenomenon to an 
unprecedented extent," remarks neuroscientist Robert Sapolsky of Stanford 
University.  Meaney's group previously showed that female rats express 
either a high- or a low-contact mothering style. Animals raised with lots 
of physical contact later react to stress by secreting small amounts of 
glucocorticoids, a class of stress hormones. These rats also possess large 
numbers of glucocorticoid receptors in an inner-brain structure called the 
hippocampus. Rats raised with little physical contact secrete large amounts 
of glucocorticoids when stressed and possess relatively few receptors for 
these hormones.  In another study, Meaney's group found that pups raised by 
doting mothers had high concentrations of a substance called nerve growth 
factora?"inducible protein A (NGFI-A) in their hippocampi. It attaches to 
genes for glucocorticoid receptors, boosting those genes' capacity to 
regulate the hormone's secretion.  The researchers' new report shows how 
NGFI-A offers stress-fighting aid only to pampered rats. On the first day 
after birth, in all the rat pups, regulatory proteins inactivate NGFI-A's 
binding location on glucocorticoid-receptor genes. Over the next week, in 
rats raised with high-contact mothering, the concentration of these 
regulatory proteins decreases sufficiently to enable NGFI-A to do its job 
of boosting production of hormone receptors. These rats retain this genetic 
trait for life, the investigators say.  In contrast, the regulatory 
proteins in unpampered rats stay high, and the abundance of hormone 
receptors remains low.  Moreover, only high-contact animals displayed 
another biochemical change, according to Meaney's team. The change 
decreased the binding of histones to DNA, thereby letting NGFI-A attach and 
boost the activity of glucocorticoid-receptor genes.  The researchers also 
tested a drug that blocks the binding of histones to DNA. When they 
injected it into adult rats that had been raised by low-contact mothers, 
the scientists found that the animals responded to stress much as pampered 
animals do. These behaviors were reflected on the molecular level, in 
patterns of expression of stress hormones and receptors.  Whether differing 
styles by human mothers induce similar molecular changes in their offspring 
remains an open question.  If you have a comment on this article that you 
would like considered for publication in Science News, send it to 
editors at sciencenews.org. Please include your name and location.  To 
subscribe to Science News (print), go to https://www.kable.com/pub/scnw/ 
subServices.asp.  To sign up for the free weekly e-LETTER from Science 
News, go to http://www.sciencenews.org/pages/subscribe_form.asp. 
 References:  Weaver, I.C.G. . . . and M.J. Meaney. In press. Epigenetic 
programming by maternal behavior. Nature Neuroscience. Abstract available 
at http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nn1276.  Sources:  Michael J. Meaney McGill 
Program for the Study of Behaviour, Genes and Environment McGill University 
3655 Sir William Osler Promenade MontrA?al, QC H3G 1Y6 Canada  Robert 
Sapolsky Department of Neurology and Neurological Sciences Stanford 
University School of Medicine Gilbert Laboratory, MC 5020 Stanford, CA 
94305-5020  http://www.sciencenews.org/articles/20040717/fob3.asp  From 
Science News, Vol. 166, No. 3, July 17, 2004, p. 36.  Copyright (c) 2004 
Science Service. All rights reserved.

  Howard Bloom
  Author of The Lucifer Principle: A Scientific Expedition Into the Forces 
of History and Global Brain: The Evolution of Mass Mind From The Big Bang 
to the 21st Century
  Visiting Scholar-Graduate Psychology Department, New York University; 
Faculty Member, The Graduate Institute
  Founder: International Paleopsychology Project; founding board member: 
Epic of Evolution Society; founding board member, The Darwin Project; 
founder: The Big Bang Tango Media Lab; member: New York Academy of 
Sciences, American Association for the Advancement of Science, American 
Psychological Society, Academy of Political Science, Human Behavior and 
Evolution Society, International Society for Human Ethology; advisory board 
member: Youthactivism.org; executive editor -- New Paradigm book series.
  For information on The International Paleopsychology Project, see: 
  for two chapters from
  The Lucifer Principle: A Scientific Expedition Into the Forces of 
History, see www.howardbloom.net/lucifer
  For information on Global Brain: The Evolution of Mass Mind from the Big 
Bang to the 21st Century, see www.howardbloom.net


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