Natural variation, neurogenetic networks, and neurogenic niches

By: James V. Kohl | Published on: January 26, 2013

Analysis of natural variation reveals neurogenetic networks for Drosophila olfactory behavior OPEN ACCESS ARTICLE (2013) Shilpa Swarup, Wen Huang, Trudy F. C. Mackay, and Robert R. H. Anholt. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Excerpt: “Our results suggest that polymorphisms that contribute to natural variation in olfactory perception are not restricted to peripheral chemoreceptors, but may also cause subtle variations in genes affecting neural connectivity and signaling in the olfactory projection.”
My comment: What they help to detail is epigenetic potentiation that makes a trait possible; epigenetic actualization that makes the trait manifest, and epigenetic refinement that makes the trait effective. These three steps are probably required for many new functions of adaptively evolved species.
Two of the three steps link epigenetic control of nutrient-dependent ecological niche construction and subsequent pheromone-controlled social niche construction. This takes us to neurogenetic networks as part of the third step that bring us one step closer to the obvious role of nutrient-dependent pheromone-controlled neurogenic niche construction. From there, it’s just one small step to socio-cognitive niche construction, which is exemplified in species diversity.
The three steps bring proponents of mutations as the cause of adaptive evolution one step closer to the unimagined ridicule they will be subjected to for their belief in such a ridiculous theory despite all the scientific evidence that adaptive evolution is nutrient-dependent and pheromone-controlled in species from microbes to man. The possibility remains, however, that the term mutation may be redefined to include epigenetically-effected chromatin remodeling due to olfactory/pheromonal input, which enables the epigenetic landscape to become the physical landscape of DNA, as is required for adaptively evolved changes in the brain and behavior.


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