Variations

Jay R. Feierman

In his posts that I have linked below, Jay R. Feierman takes us from random mutations on which natural selection acts to natural selection for phenotypes and changes in the brain that lead to increased reproductive success. According to him, the change in the brain can be called an adaptation. In my model, ecological variation and nutrient-dependent pheromone-controlled epigenetically-effected ecological, social, neurogenic, and socio-cognitive niche construction enable organismal complexity of the human brain. Ecological variation links the epigenetic landscape to…

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Pheromone-controlled thermodynamics and cancer

“If you learnt evolutionary biology and genetics a decade or more ago you need to be aware that those debates have moved on very considerably, as has the experimental and field work on which they are based.” — Denis Noble Can thermodynamics help us better understand human cancers? Excerpt: “In a new study, UCLA researchers analyzed the gene-expression profiles of more than 2,000 patients and were able to identify cancer-specific gene signatures for breast, lung, prostate and ovarian cancers. The…

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A thought experiment

I may be confused about proximate and ultimate cause, especially if the role of transgenerational epigenetic inheritance is not central to the extended evolutionary synthesis. Isn’t transgenerational epigenetic inheritance the problem that led Dickins and Rahman to suggest a thought experiment; one where epigenetic mechanisms introduce shifts in learning bias for certain associations as would endocrine functioning? If so, my model (Kohl, 2012), which combines the epigenetic effects of nutrient chemicals and pheromones with biased endocrine functioning and adaptive evolution,…

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  • What Darwin proved: there’s no such thing as a species
    GENETICS As Animals Mingle, a Baffling Genetic Barrier A short stretch of DNA is challenging what it means to be a species. By: Emily Singer August 5, 2014 Excerpt: “Scientists have dubbed such regions of the genome “islands of speciation.” The persistence of such islands is a phenomenon that has been observed in a variety of […]
  • Randomness and Divine Providence
    A Q&A on randomness and God’s providence …the main goal is to really put together a collection of scholarly studies of these issues: physicists, biologists, mathematicians, statisticians, philosophers and theologians. replaced: Randomness and Divine Providence Supported by the John Templeton...Read more