Theory On Certain Functions Of Nervous System

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Faustino Núñez Hernández

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Apr 18, 2007, 12:41:27 PM4/18/07
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Hi , I'd like to contribute the following consideration :

1º Genes want to adapt to new environments ( evolution ) .
2º Organs , subsystems and parts of the body are instruments that
serve the genes which developed them ; ( genes want the organs ,
subsystems and parts of the body for adapting to new environments or
environmental circumstances ) .
3º Sensory nervous system is a part or subsystem of the body ( in
animal kingdom ) .
4º So , sensory nervous system is an instrument that serve the genes ,
for evolving and adapting to new environments ; ( genes want - also -
sensory nerves for adapting to new environments ) .
5º The function of sensory nervous system is to provide the ability to
refer proper motive actions to external objects or information ; the
function of sensory nervous system is to detect external information .
6º So , it seems that , in some way , genes should use the sensory
nervous system to " get information " , or to " watch " or to " know "
the environment , and , this way , to evolve ( mutate ) in an adaptive
manner . Or it seems that this idea has a certain scientific
characteristic .
7º So , nervous system should be able to influence in some manner in
some of the mutations of genes , according to environmental
information .

If it happens , it probably occurs as any chemical conditioning in the
formation of reproductive cells , where nervous system can take part .
Maybe some specialized neurons can control the release of certain
chemical substances . But a neuro-chemical mechanism of this nature
has not been described yet , and I think it should be an amazing
discovery .

Examples :
> External temperature determines the sex of eggs of crocodile .
> Recently Courtney Miller and David Sweatt have proved the
importance of methylation of DNA for cerebral retention of memories .
> An important example : the genetic internalization ( genetic
encoding ) of learning . It is specially visible in primitive animals
( conduct of bees for building the honeycomb ; conduct of many insects
for building their lairs ; conduct of certain birds or fishes in their
migrations ) . Could future human babies spontaneously develope innate
aptitudes or abilities for speaking or handling mathematical
operations ?

Orcinus

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May 5, 2007, 4:21:31 PM5/5/07
to Talk Biology
Interesting idea, however, I am forced to take issue with the
terminology.

"Genes want to adapt to new environments ( evolution )"

Firstly, I believe it a mistake to attribute conscious motivations to
a single molecular construction. For genes to posses such an ability,
it would be necessary for nucleotides, histones, etc to possess some
form of a nervous system themselves. Consciousness itself is an
emergent property of a myriad of molecular interactions that are not
entirely understood. I do not doubt that genes play a role in this
interaction. This point is exclusively a matter of semantics.

Secondly, and again refering to your point, evolution and adaptation
are dissimilar phenomena. Individuals adapt, populations evolve.
Populations evolve on the basis of the propagation of the frequency of
a particularly "fit" allele, an allele that most likely mutated by
chance. "Chance" here being the operative word. Evolution is non-
directional and thus without design.

" Organs , subsystems and parts of the body are instruments that serve

the genes which developed them."

This point echoes of Richard Dawkins' "Selfish Gene" theory. It is an
interesting point and does to some extent raise the withered and
battered "chicken or egg" question. Genes, through their coding
properties certainly have a part to play in the development of an
organism. However, to suggest that organ systems serve genes seems
contrary to experimental evidence. On a physiological level, genes
seem to serve the organism by ensuring that enzyme concentrations,
protein concentrations, etc are adequate, via transcription. As such,
they have a role in homeostasis.

My point in writing this reply, is not to contadict your argument but
rathar to bring some clarity to the terminology used. I am intrigued
by the evidence regarding the methylation of DNA that you cite. I am
unfamiliar with this work and will endeavour to read it.

Sincerely ;)

Faustino Núñez Hernández

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May 9, 2007, 11:13:07 AM5/9/07
to Talk Biology

An important addition:

What I suggest is a DIRECT connection between sensory nervous system
and genetic encoding. I don't consider necessary to sugest an INDIRECT
connection, because it is obvious that this indirect connection,
EXISTS. For example: the genetic behavioural encoding I cited, about
bees when building their honeycombs. It's evident that learning has a
genomic transcendency in nature. If a young chimpanzee has such a
genetic disability that he doesn't get to learn what his family teach
him, due to cerebral problems, probably he won't survive or have
descendants.


Faustino Núñez Hernández

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May 9, 2007, 10:02:05 AM5/9/07
to Talk Biology
Ok Orcinus, someone else also sent me a response on my consideration,
I tried to answer to him, but my message got lost due to an error of
transmission; I did not save my answer and then I felt lazy and I
tried nothing to rewrite it again....

Well, let me tell that usually I don't tend to center my writings too
much on the lexical or linguistical matter, and I rather tend to treat
language as a mean or method of transmission of meant things. If you
want to interpret my writing in a better way, according to the sense I
give it, you don't need to stop in an important manner about
linguistical or grammatical considerations. I'm not English, so
forgive my English.

I'm glad that you agree the main spot of my theory. It was a sort of
enlightening experience for me to reach it, what I did almost in a
casual manner. Imagine: after you take progressive consciousness of
some transcendental subtle ideological or philosophical implications
that derive from our modern knowledge of genetical fact, one day you
suddenly realize the possibility that any function of sensory nervous
system is related to genetical mutation ! It also seems to aim a
possibility that any real biological mechanism exists.

I'm conscious of nature of genetical information, and I'd like to
express something about it. To me, genes are a clear sign of growth of
complexity in life. Let me explain it in a graphical manner: when
living beings were very simple, in cases that they needed to assume
self or own transformations or mutations, they could assume those
changes directly by their own. But living beings became more complex.
For example, think of multicellular beings. If a multicellular being
needs to transform, to change or to mutate for adapting to new
environmental conditions (that is, to evolve*), the complexity of the
multicellular being makes impossible any viable transformation. For
these cases, when complexity of living beings became a handicap enough
for the impossibility of developing capacities of self mutation, a new
strategy was developed: to "rebuild" new specimens, separately, up
from the simplest, that is, up from zero. Rebuilding new specimens up
from the simplest makes possible the non-destructive introduction of
variations and mutations. For rebuilding a new specimen up from zero,
it was convenient to encode a plane or draft that described the
process of design, so genetical information was developed. Evolution
(adaptive mutations) occur via variations in genetical information.
Think that an adult specimen is not in conditions of mutating itself
by means of mutating the genes of all its cells. This is the reason
why I've always thought that the existence of genes is a evident sign
of growth of biological complexity. And in this context I also
understand birth and death: these are part of the process of genetical
renovation (If we had developed abilities for conveniently mutate the
genes of all our cells in the adult state, we would not need to die).

I'm not sure about the concrete way how genetical information got
formed. My theory is that it occurred in primitive protocells. I think
that primitive protocells should have had such a metabolical mechanism
that their main physiological function was simply to grow, in the
sense of becoming bigger. It occurred until they divide into two
separate protocells, with the same function. This division was the
antecedent of reproduction, but no genes were used. However, as long
as the chemical composition of those protocells became more complex,
it was necessary to develop specific substances that provided the
needed regulation to control that the new specimens resultant from
division or partition, had an adecuate chemical composition (due to
the higher chemical complexity). These new regulator substances
comported an inherent informational characteristic, and I think they
were the origin of genes.

Let me say I'm glad that you understand and partner the central idea I
formulate on the relationship between sensory nervous system and
genetical information. I think it's also important to give it its
right relativity. It resulted really interesting to me to introduce it
in the context of our actual understanding of mechanisms and nature of
life.

* I consider that to evolve is to change or mutate to adapt to new
environmental conditions

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