Do humans have any traits in which genes play no role and are entirely environmentally determined?

  1. I like to think about it as “everything can be traced down to your genes” in a sense, ad-infinitum. Kind of circular but it is pretty fun to contemplate how everything builds off of the fundamental DNA unit. The memories of your words are stored in your brain, how that is is because of ultimately the protein/macromolecule interactions that occur in that part of the brain (mostly hippocampus.) Neurons are able to transmit signals down their axons because of the genes that have been turned on and off to make that neuron shaped as it is.

  2. Yeah I definitely have essentially learned everything you’ve said, and that’s his main point with this question. Almost every single thing about us as people is at least a good portion because of the genes we have, as where the native language we speak, genes had no impact on that. Genes didn’t incline me in any such way at all to speak English, (apart from saying genes allowed me to learn the language or another connection similar) if I was born by English only speaking people but raised only by mandarin speaking people, the language i would have learned would be mandarin. So it’s those types of strictly environmental influence he’s looking for. I’m almost certain there isn’t any outside language as he’s an extremely smart geneticist and at this point in his life I’m sure he’d know of anything else that has no connection.

  3. Which languages you speak is also tightly correlated with genetics, even though the causation isn't very direct.

  4. I thought of this one myself too but I assume he will still somehow connect it to genes saying something like the religions you’re more likely to believe in somehow are based on the genes you have and which ones you’d believe, but I will still mention it and see what his response is. He comes from Iran and talks heavily about religion because of what it’s done to his home country, so I’m sure he’d have already considered this too.

  5. Wait I’m stupid, I’m assuming you’re not referring to polydactyly at all because of the locus-heterogeneity or cis-regulatory elements, but physically cutting off a finger? If so, I laughed in my lecture lol.

  6. It's hard to have a lot of traits/phenotypes if you die young/cells not compatible with life. No trait has a single cause. Take having hair. 100% of people who have hair had both the environment and the genetic background to live long enough to let it grow. Not killed, bathed in Nair, poisoned causing hair to fall out, genetic or environmental alopecia. That means their environment and genotype was within some pretty tight parameters. Mostly diploid, functional essential genes, good nutrition, etc.

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  8. Yeah it’s a very difficult question to find an answer since essentially everything can be tied to people genetics in one way or another. The only example he has said he knows is the language we speak, and I think it means the question is essentially like this: if you meet someone, is there anything about them that genetics did not have any role in? And their native language is the answer because yes while genetics play the role in us making noises, they play no role at all in what the language we speak is. If we’re birthed from two English only speaking parents from generations of the same, that does not make us speak English if we’re only raised by mandarin speaking people. No part of our genes makes us better at speaking English than they would have speaking Spanish if we were raised with only the Spanish language. While something like skin color has a genetic component that determines pigment and environment, the sun. Language is entirely determined from the environment we are raised in. This doesn’t count like learning languages etc, as genetics plays a part in our decision making to learn other languages or be open to it etc. but yeah nothing outside of our native language seems like it was entirely controlled by our environments.

  9. I think he’d say something about genes playing a part in your critical thinking or just decision making and empathy in general, which plays into if you’re racist or not im sure.

  10. Wouldn't weight retention be something that is environmentally controlled? Like how more fat is retained during colder seasons?

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