Epigenetic ‘memory’ key to nature versus nurture
Researchers have made a discovery that explains how an organism can create a biological memory of some variable condition, such as quality of nutrition or temperature. The discovery explains the mechanism of this memory — a sort of biological switch — and how it can also be inherited by offspring. – ScienceDaily (2011-07-25)
Click on the link to this article and you should see pictures of bees on flowers. Although there is no mention of their significance, which may be unknown to the journalist, the pictures link honeybees to flowers, food odors, and social odors (called pheromones) in a manner that is now becoming understood. Simply put, the molecular biology of chemical communication is the same across all species from plants to animals. Their genetic “nature” is influenced by stimuli from the environment. Chemical stimuli are more important than any other form of sensory stimuli in this regard. Whether the chemicals are associated with pollen and the bee-assisted reproduction of flowers; the human cultivation of plants with enticing food odors, or the pheromones associated with reproduction in all animal species, the epigenetic influence of these chemicals is obviously the most important of all to species survival.