Excerpt: “In this review we discuss the physiological and genetic mechanisms of this behavioral transition, which include large scale changes in hormonal activity, metabolism, flight ability, circadian rhythms, sensory perception and processing, neural architecture, learning ability, memory and gene expression.”
My comment: An earlier review by Eleckonich and Robinson (2000) “Organizational and activational effects of hormones on insect behavior” cited our 1996 review of epigenetically-effected organization and activation of behavior in species from yeasts to mammals. Robinson co-authored the article from which I provided the excerpt at the beginning of this 4-part diatribe: “An alternative theory proposes environmentally induced change in an organism’s behavior as the starting point (1), and “phenotypic plasticity” that is inherited across generations through an unspecified process of “genetic assimilation” (2).”
Eighteen years later, the detailed experimental evidence from yeasts to insects to mammals, which refutes any ideas about evolutionary events or other theories about the development of sex differences in cell types and all other RNA-mediated differences in cell types in all individuals of all species, led Eric Vilain and others to ask: “Is There a Role for Epigenetics?” — in The Biological Basis of Human Sexual Orientation.
They ask their question as if it had not already been answered our 1996 review and in my subsequent published works and presentations. How can anyone simply ignore 18 years of published works that answer their question with an emphatic “OF COURSE THERE IS A ROLE FOR EPIGENETICS IN THE BIOLOGICAL BASIS OF HUMAN SEXUAL ORIENTATION!” How could there not be?
Other publications by Eric Vilain, M.D,, Ph. D. Please let me know if I have been too critical of academics like Dr. Vilain. For example, he may have cited something I published. If you find my any of my works mentioned or cited in his publications, please let me know that he has not completely ignored all the experimental evidence that support the role of RNA-mediated events during the development of sexual orientation in species from microbes to man since 1996.
See also: Can Epigenetics Explain Homosexuality?
Excerpt: Eric Vilain, a neuroscientist at the University of California, Los Angeles, worries that the model, which “might be true,” makes a few simplistic generalizations. “It assumes the same mechanism [for development of sexual orientation] in both sexes . . . and that androgen levels play an important role in the development of sexual orientation”—neither of which has been demonstrated, he said.
My comment: How can it not be obvious to everyone that the same mechanism for the development of sexual orientation has been repeatedly shown to exist in species from yeasts to mammals? Epigenetically-effected RNA-mediated events link nutrient-dependent ecological variation and pheromone-controlled ecological adaptations via the de novo Creation of olfactory receptor genes. Experience-dependent Creation of these genes links the epigenetic landscape to the physical landscape of DNA via olfactory/pheromonal input and the RNA-mediated events that link amino acid substitutions to the differentiation of all cell types, not just those that appear to vary with sexual orientation.
From my comment to The Scientist: Rice et al (2012) with my emphasis: “All of the steps in Figure 2 could also be influenced by sex-specific regulation of miRNA levels that are known to influence sexually dimorphism of mRNA concentrations in the brains of mice, and to be influenced by epigenetic control that is heritable across at least one generation (Morgan and Bale 2012).”
From LeVay (2011) (p. 179) “There is no direct evidence as yet that these hormone-independent processes influence partner preference either in mice or humans, but Sven Bocklandt and Eric Vilain (of UCLA) have raised the possibility that they do so.53”
From LeVay (2011) (p. 210) “James Kohl, an independent researcher who also markets “human pheromones” to the general public, believes that pheromones may have a primary influence in setting up a person’s basic sexual orientation. Other, more consciously perceived aspects of attractiveness, such as facial appearance, are attached to a person’s basic orientation through a process of association during early postnatal life, according to Kohl.35
This model is attractive in that it solves the “binding problem” of sexual attraction. By that I mean the problem of why all the different features of men or women (visual appearance and feel of face, body, and genitals; voice quality, smell; personality and behavior, etc.) attract people as a more or less coherent package representing one sex, rather than as an arbitrary collage of male and female characteristics. If all these characteristics come to be attractive because they were experienced in association with a male- or female-specific pheromone, then they will naturally go together even in the absence of complex, genetically coded instructions.”