Neuroanthropology Interest Group: It’s Cultural Evolution; no epigenetics allowed

Neuroanthropology Interest Group

Daniel Lende posted a link to New paper in Current Anthropology: An Evolutionary Developmental Approach to Cultural Evolution and discussion ensued. As occurred on the BioAnthropology News group, however, the ensuing discussion got me banned from further participation.

I wrote: I’d like the narrow interests of those who consistently make claims about mutations, natural selection, and evolution to not limit discussion of topics. The complaints of theorists tend to prevent progress that could be made by those willing to link neuroscience to anthropology. If you and others agree that the focus of the group must be on things like cultural evolution (in this thread), I will bow out — or at least try not to offend anyone, again and again and again. For example, I’ll avoid posting comments on the course Epigenetic Control of Gene Expression (a free course).

My final comment was on the news article: Mother’s diet affects the ‘silencing’ of her child’s genes

“A mother’s diet before conception can permanently affect how her child’s genes function, according to a study published in Nature Communications.”

I wrote: This is what’s exemplified via a link from dietary choline to species-specific pheromone production in mammals. I became concerned when the dose was doubled for choline supplementation during human pregnancy. Hopefully, no harm was done, but when the conserved molecular mechanisms that link microbes to man are ignored, we’ve seen what happens with drug development.

Had I not been banned, I would have added more information about Nutrition and epigenetics: an interplay of dietary methyl donors, one-carbon metabolism and DNA methylation. I think that information is important to those interested in neuroanthropology because the link from nutrient uptake to one-carbon methylation and differences in the morphological and behavioral phenotypes of archaic and modern humans just became perfectly clear in Reconstructing the DNA Methylation Maps of the Neandertal and the Denisovan. Taken together, however, the latest research on nutritional epigenetics from serious scientists includes experimental evidence that refutes the pseudoscientific nonsense of cultural evolution, which may be what the Neuroanthropology Interest Group wants to discuss.

It seems that there are many “Interest Groups” that might appear to be interested in discussion of neuroscientifically-established biologically-based cause and effect. That’s the type of discussion I would expect on a Neuroanthropology Interest Group or a BioAnthropology News group. Instead, they seem only interested in continuing discussions of ridiculous ideas and experimentally unsubstantiated theories.

For example, on the BioAnthropology News group I wrote and referenced this fact: “…the recent annotation of new miRNA SNPs paves the way to a growing research in this field. The study of miRNA CNVs is an even more unexplored area…” However, I have an invited review, which is currently under review, that details how the miRNA SNPs, alternative splicings, and CNVs contribute to ecological adaptations and species diversity. Now see: Nutrition and epigenetics: an interplay of dietary methyl donors, one-carbon metabolism and DNA methylation

Excerpt: “Epigenetic modifications include chromatin remodeling, histone tail modifications, DNA methylation and, more recently, have expanded to include non-coding RNA and microRNA gene regulation [3].”

My comment: The link from nutrient uptake to epigenetic effects on the differentiation of cell types that are manifested in morphological and behavioral diversity across species has been clear since we first addressed in in our section on molecular epigenetics in our 1996 review. It is equally clear that many social scientists do not want anyone to learn that their theories about cultural evolution et al., are nothing more than pseudoscientific nonsense. However, as more information becomes available on nutrient-dependent changes in the microRNA/messenger RNA balance, one-carbon metabolism, DNA methylation and the alternative splicings of pre-mRNA that are manifested in cell type differentiation, nonsensical theories will surely be removed from discussion except in groups interested in discussion of pseudoscience.



Susan Guise Sheridan, Greg Downey, and Julienne Rutherford have since commented repeatedly about my posts with additional comments by Kathy Dettwyler, Marc Myers, and Pablito Locito. Four of these 6 people may be teaching your descendents the pseudoscientific nonsense they were taught to believe in. None have addressed the content of my posts or the detailed model on which my comments are based.

It’s as if all these Neuroanthropology Interest Group participants can do is attack after I have been removed from participation, which means I cannot respond to their nonsense. Fortunately, I am not one of the students who are forced to not challenge these fools, instead of someone with a history of publications that shows how foolish they are. Meanwhile, serious scientists reported unsuspected natural genetic variations in yeast cells that link nutrient-dependent pheromone-controlled ecological adaptations in species from microbes to man via the conserved molecular mechanisms I have detailed. Genetic Interactions Involving Five or More Genes Contribute to a Complex Trait in Yeast was reported on 5/2/14 as Small variations in genetic code, previously thought to be inconsequential, can team up to have a big impact


Author: James Kohl

2 thoughts on “Neuroanthropology Interest Group: It’s Cultural Evolution; no epigenetics allowed

  1. Do you think it true that Madagascar population became small because insects impacted disease in taller genetic blueprints?

  2. Thanks for asking. I have linked the virus-driven degradation of messenger RNA to all morphological and behavioral phenotypes in species from microbes to humans via the physiology of pheromone-controlled reproduction and the transgenerational epigenetic inheritance of viral latency that prevents stress-linked diseases. Given the fact that all disease is either linked to nutrient stress or social stress, it is not possible to make a claim about any specific human population except for those in North and East Asia with the EDAR V370A variant, which is obviously linked to populations in the New World via the mouse-to-human model.

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