Understanding our primate ancestors’ relationship with alcohol can inform its use by modern humans.
| June 1, 2014
Excerpt: “…if the right kinds of bacteria are also present, fermentation will stabilize certain foodstuffs (think cheese, yogurt, sauerkraut, and kimchi, for example).”
My comment: Epigenetic changes induced by ethanol in astrocytes link histone acetylation, DNA methylation, and non-coding microRNAs in the developing and adult brain from frugivory to the nutrient-dependent de novo creation of olfactory receptor genes in bats. The link from the epigenetic landscape to the physical landscape of DNA in the organized genome of humans also appears to involve classically conditioned hormone-organized and hormone-activated affects on morphological and behavioral phenotypes, which are associated with the epigenetic effects of olfactory/pheromonal input on luteinizing hormone (LH) and testosterone (T) in other mammals. For example, only the smell of ethanol was required to elicit the change in these hormones. Cause and effect was not established in 1990 because individual responses varied.
I am reminded that the clear link from human pheromones to the LH and T response via the conserved molecular mechanisms that result in sex differences in cell type differentiation also has not been established. Thus, although nutrient-dependent alternative splicings of pre-mRNA and amino acid substitutions are typically responsible for all cell type differentiation in all individuals of all species, only recently did others begin to acknowledge the concept of late-emerging epigenetic effects on hormone-organized and hormone-activated behavior in mammals.
With few exceptions social scientists have heretofore proclaimed that human pheromones do not exist because they seemingly expected our response to pheromones to be unvarying and immediate — like the response to food odors and pheromones in insects. Serious scientists have since provided details that link the conserved molecular mechanisms of cell type differentiation in species from microbes to man to the epigenetic effects of olfactory/pheormonal input on receptor-mediated differences in behaviors that social scientists portray in the context of mutation-initiated natural selection and the evolution of biodiversity.
Thus, the ongoing problem with alcoholism and with some — if not all other — addictions can be attributed to the pseudoscientific nonsense of population geneticists who invented neo-Darwinian theories. See for review: Human pheromones and food odors: epigenetic influences on the socioaffective nature of evolved behaviors.