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  #16  
Old 02-03-2011, 03:40 PM
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Default Re: Lesbian mouse gene found

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Originally Posted by TitaniumAnimations View Post
Ah, so it is an anomaly now. A mistake? Something of a defect? Strange... Even though I am straight, I feel offended... xD

Nah, I am kidding. I have nothing against gays, but I still do not know why the hell a human would experience a genetic mutation, since they are affected by one's surroundings... Maybe there were just not enough of the opposite sex at the time xD (Take it as a joke for God's sake)
Genetic mutation is completely random. A human's body does not mutate to its surroundings humans adapt because of their surrounds but such a genetic mutation has nothing to do the surroundings of an individual. Also the gene that causes homosexual tendencies in males is a female increased fertility gene. Random genes, random combinations, random expressions that's all there is to it.

Calling such a random occurrence a "mistake"or "accident" still brings a negative connotation to it. Its just a rare occurrence that doesn't happen all that often in humans its completely neutral to the whole beneficial/harmful judgment because does neither harm nor help.
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  #17  
Old 02-03-2011, 03:50 PM
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Default Re: Lesbian mouse gene found

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Originally Posted by Blood Red Lucario View Post
Genetic mutation is completely random. A human's body does not mutate to its surroundings humans adapt because of their surrounds but such a genetic mutation has nothing to do the surroundings of an individual.

Calling such a random occurrence a "mistake"or "accident" still brings a negative connotation to it. Its just a rare occurrence that doesn't happen all that often in humans its completely neutral to the whole beneficial/harmful judgment because does neither harm nor help.
According to Exon Auxus, it is an anomaly.


And most genetic mutations are not random. They happen over time, but they are not random. Skin color, hair length and type, etc. Those are all unique to a certain area.
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Old 02-03-2011, 08:25 PM
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Default Re: Lesbian mouse gene found

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Originally Posted by TitaniumAnimations View Post
Ah, so it is an anomaly now. A mistake? Something of a defect? Strange... Even though I am straight, I feel offended... xD

Nah, I am kidding. I have nothing against gays, but I still do not know why the hell a human would experience a genetic mutation, since they are affected by one's surroundings... Maybe there were just not enough of the opposite sex at the time xD (Take it as a joke for God's sake)
An anomaly is something out of the ordinary, not a mistake.

And yes, that gene is out of the ordinary.
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  #19  
Old 02-03-2011, 08:48 PM
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Default Re: Lesbian mouse gene found

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Originally Posted by TitaniumAnimations View Post
According to Exon Auxus, it is an anomaly.


And most genetic mutations are not random. They happen over time, but they are not random. Skin color, hair length and type, etc. Those are all unique to a certain area.

Those aren't mutations. Skin color is ultimately an adaptation to the environment. The base amount of pigment in ones skin is random or genetic based on one's parents and adjusts based on the environment. I don't expect to join the X-Men the next time I get a tan.

Same thing with hair. A mutation is when you break the norm in genetic patterns. If a human started growing purple hair for no reason at all then he/she has a mutation. Short, bald, and long hair are all different expressions of the hair gene a mutation of these would be hard to imagine but is still possible. Having traits like hair and what not came from some ancestor having a mutation and passing it down to his offspring.

Mutations spread over time but occur randomly and have a chance of being passed down based on whether or not the individual who has the mutation survives and passes down its genetic makeup.
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Old 02-03-2011, 09:15 PM
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Default Re: Lesbian mouse gene found

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Originally Posted by TitaniumAnimations View Post
According to Exon Auxus, it is an anomaly.


And most genetic mutations are not random. They happen over time, but they are not random. Skin color, hair length and type, etc. Those are all unique to a certain area.
Mutations aren't random in a sense that our genome has some hotspots that have higher rates of mutation. If you take a random strand of DNA and track its mutations, it would be random. Therefore, it is random in a sense that we can't predict where the next mutation is going to be, and even probabilistically speaking we can only guess at the regions.

Something like skin colour is just a small change in a DNA sequence. It's certainly not as complicated as say hair colour (btw, hair length is invalid as an example simply due to the fact that hair length is a function of time) or eye colour. What's interesting is that the actual place of where the gene is really doesn't matter. If I somehow transpose the skin colour gene from one chromosome to another with its full sequence (i.e. including its control mechanisms), it would still function just as well as if it was in its previous state. Therefore, we can't really say that it's "unique to a certain area" either, since we can't define the area that works for a small percentage of the population.

It's not correct to say that we would mutate our genes through our surroundings. Something like homosexuality, where there is say a known gene, deals with developmental issues rather than an environmental issue.

Here's a thought experiment:
Suppose I have a mutation in the CFTR gene in my genome and I am homozygous for this mutation. If under the circumstance that I started out with this and I develop into a fully grown baby, I would have defective CFTR in all of my 10 million cells. If I somehow have a reverse mutation in one of my cells due to my environment and therefore I revert back to normal for that cell, I still have the other 999,999 cells that have the defect and I would still have cystic fibrosis.

The issue of the environment are several fold:
1. The environment plays a role in development, especially early development. We'll take the role of diabetes in this case. If under the abnormal circumstance that my mother was in a famine due to a war, my start-up genes early in development would guess on the nutritional factors to be low. My genes would be methylated/demethylated (i.e. not mutated, but change in expression) to accomidate for this and I would end up having a higher chance of getting type 2 diabetes. If this war happened during the third trimester of my development, I would still be normal. Therefore, we can infer that we can change the way we develop through the environment via methods like methylation early in life.

2. Environmental changes in the outside world tend to be less important. Cancer, for example, is an accumulation of mutations that lead to this large growth of cells. This change in itself is usually because of a single cell that does so. Just like the cystic fibrosis example given above, we notice that it is just very small changes to the cells themselves accumulated over time that causes the case of cancer.

3. Mutations we accumulate throughout our lives don't get passed on. First thing: humans do not adapt by changing DNA code. We adapt because our DNA code allows for us to adapt. Our mechanisms of adaptation vary from things like methylation to complicated epigenetic responses that is beyond the scope of this conversation. The only exception to this rule is if our gametes somehow acquire mutations. In that case, it is unknown how that would be affected since the mutation in itself would be semi-random.

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Originally Posted by Exon Auxus View Post
An anomaly is something out of the ordinary, not a mistake.

And yes, that gene is out of the ordinary.
We define genes as either wild type or not from whether or not it's common or not. If we consider something as "common" to be ordinary, and we use the scientific definition of wild type as >1% of a particular population, then homosexuality is an actual wild type in itself. It therefore becomes a polymorphism rather than a mutation or an anomaly. Thus while we can say it is a mutation of sorts, we can't really define whether it's a mutation of which one to the other, since either way can potentially occur. That is, the population of homosexuals is too high for something that relates to it to be "not ordinary".

So how do we define "out of the ordinary"? We can only do so under the circumstance that this is some sort of a rare event. An example of this would be something like tracheaoesophageal fistula, where the appearance rate would be something like 1 in 20,000. That would be "rare" and thus "not ordinary". even then, a presence of something that's like 1 in 20,000 isn't that uncommon either. Most certainly a gynocologist or a pediatrician would bump into at least 1 or two within years of practice. Hence we routinely screen for things that are "out of the ordinary" like cystic fibrosis or PKU. So can we even state that something that rare to be out of the ordinary when we routinely screen for them either?

Homosexuality is an interesting issue, since it seems to be multifactorial plus multigene for humans. Obviously natural selection doesn't apply to homosexuality as it has a grand total of 0 fitness (fitness is defined as offspring given, not survivability). It is maintained by another mechanism. Possibly it is maintained by mechanisms similar to how cystic fibrosis is maintained throughout the population, as in the past X generations it was a death sentence and yet we still have it to this day. Secondarily, some have suggested homosexuality as nature's method of keeping a population count low. There have been studies that show that overcrowdedness is enough to cause mice to exhibit behaviour that is not heterosexual. Some mice are even suicidal. It's a paper in the 70's that discovered that remarkable trait and has since not been talked about and forgotten.

PS: I love how we have renewed discussion because of a spambot. XD
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  #21  
Old 02-03-2011, 10:06 PM
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Default Re: Lesbian mouse gene found

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Originally Posted by TitaniumAnimations View Post
According to Exon Auxus, it is an anomaly.


And most genetic mutations are not random. They happen over time, but they are not random. Skin color, hair length and type, etc. Those are all unique to a certain area.
No, they are completely random. There is no way to predict when and where and how a gene will be mutated. What is not random is which mutations are kept. Typically, only positive or neutral mutations will be kept, while detrimental mutations will be eradicated. Long-term adaptation occurs when mutations that positively affect an organism's chances of survival and reproduction are passed down and proliferate. If homosexuality is indeed a recessive trait (certainly it's not a dominant one), then carriers of the trait will be neutrally affect by the gene, and thus pass it down. While assuming that homosexuality is the result of a single gene is a gross oversimplification, the concept remains the same.
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  #22  
Old 02-04-2011, 05:44 AM
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Default Re: Lesbian mouse gene found

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I advise you stop being an offensive bigot, and let him/her speak his/her piece. While I disagree with it, I do not go out of my way to tell the person to stop contributing to the argument.
With respect, a person made a claim, I told them to either back up their claim with evidence or concede. That's not offensive, that's not bigoted, that's called debating.

Additionally, I postulate that homosexuality may not just be neutral, but potentially beneficial to a species as a whole, as a limiter to prevent population overgrowth. After all, it is known that a surge in a species' population can cause drastic changes to the ecosystem, and lead to a shortage of food supply. With genetic limiters causing infertility or homosexuality, ensuring that breeding cannot happen, it prevents the population from going out of control. Homosexuality, in fact, is even more beneficial than infertility, as in the event of a drastic population reduction they would still be able to breed out of necessity for the species.
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  #23  
Old 02-04-2011, 01:22 PM
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Default Re: Lesbian mouse gene found

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With respect, a person made a claim, I told them to either back up their claim with evidence or concede. That's not offensive, that's not bigoted, that's called debating.

Additionally, I postulate that homosexuality may not just be neutral, but potentially beneficial to a species as a whole, as a limiter to prevent population overgrowth. After all, it is known that a surge in a species' population can cause drastic changes to the ecosystem, and lead to a shortage of food supply. With genetic limiters causing infertility or homosexuality, ensuring that breeding cannot happen, it prevents the population from going out of control. Homosexuality, in fact, is even more beneficial than infertility, as in the event of a drastic population reduction they would still be able to breed out of necessity for the species.
Except by definition, an expressed homosexuality trait cannot be passed down. It therefore cannot be an adaptation because it prevents reproduction. Whenever a homosexuality trait has an influence on an organism, that organism cannot pass that trait down to its children, therefore it can have no influence on the genetic makeup of the next generation.
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  #24  
Old 02-04-2011, 02:43 PM
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Default Re: Lesbian mouse gene found

I see, danka for the reeducation xD

Anyway, Khajmer, try putting more lightly next time then. The way you word it makes you sound offensive.
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Old 02-05-2011, 04:37 AM
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Default Re: Lesbian mouse gene found

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Originally Posted by Lusankya View Post
Except by definition, an expressed homosexuality trait cannot be passed down. It therefore cannot be an adaptation because it prevents reproduction. Whenever a homosexuality trait has an influence on an organism, that organism cannot pass that trait down to its children, therefore it can have no influence on the genetic makeup of the next generation.
Except that the point is less that the trait is expressed in the organism that survives and reproduces, and more that it is expressed in the species that survives and reproduces. Scenario:

A species which has had issues reproducing heavily in its current environment, due to some either evolutionary or environmental changed, has become much more viable in its environment. It ends up migrating and splitting off into two groups going in two different directions, as species have often done throughout organic history. As it happens, one of the two has a random genetic mutation which cultivates a recessive homosexuality gene in the population, not widespread but still there.

Species A, the one lacking the homosexuality gene, settles into Ecosystem A, with Species B settling into Ecosystem B. Now, let's say that because of the homosexuality gene, about 10% of Species B are homosexual members of the species. This means that, assuming there is no bisexuality (which would make for even more of a discrepancy as bisexual members of the species could only decrease the number of breeders), that the species mates for life on both sides, and that the two remain mostly the same otherwise, Species B will likely grow in population about 10% more slowly than Species A. It isn't a stretch to say that that 10% won't make a difference, as it is well known that ecosystems are fairly fragile.

Now, due to this difference in growth rates, Species A populates fairly faster than Species B. However, this is not necessarily *positive.* Their growth rate, fast as it is, causes a steady decline in their food supply as they need to consume more, and causes a steady growth in their predators' food supply, allowing their numbers to grow. Meanwhile, Species B, despite the fact that it is in fact growing, isn't quite outstripping the food that they eat, nor is it necessarily increasing the growth of the predators, both because they're really not increasing in population that quickly.

What we see here as a result of this is that the 10% difference in growth that results from that percentage of the population that is not breeding is as follows:

Species A's viability goes significantly down due to the lack of food and the surplus of predators looking to make munchies out of them, and will not be able to grow again until the predators die out as a result of lack of Species A to eat and the food comes back as a result of lack of being eaten; however, this will likely only restart the cycle.
Species B's viability and ecosystem is in a state of homeostasis. They aren't eating so much as to wipe themselves out, and they aren't being eaten so much as to make themselves in danger.

This is, of course, purely hypothetical, and doesn't take into account a number of unseen factors, but it does provide an excellent example of how a behaviorally influential recessive trait like homosexuality can in fact help a species as a whole grow and thrive.
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  #26  
Old 02-06-2011, 04:08 AM
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Default Re: Lesbian mouse gene found

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Originally Posted by Lord Khajmer View Post
Except that the point is less that the trait is expressed in the organism that survives and reproduces, and more that it is expressed in the species that survives and reproduces. Scenario:

A species which has had issues reproducing heavily in its current environment, due to some either evolutionary or environmental changed, has become much more viable in its environment. It ends up migrating and splitting off into two groups going in two different directions, as species have often done throughout organic history. As it happens, one of the two has a random genetic mutation which cultivates a recessive homosexuality gene in the population, not widespread but still there.

Species A, the one lacking the homosexuality gene, settles into Ecosystem A, with Species B settling into Ecosystem B. Now, let's say that because of the homosexuality gene, about 10% of Species B are homosexual members of the species. This means that, assuming there is no bisexuality (which would make for even more of a discrepancy as bisexual members of the species could only decrease the number of breeders), that the species mates for life on both sides, and that the two remain mostly the same otherwise, Species B will likely grow in population about 10% more slowly than Species A. It isn't a stretch to say that that 10% won't make a difference, as it is well known that ecosystems are fairly fragile.

Now, due to this difference in growth rates, Species A populates fairly faster than Species B. However, this is not necessarily *positive.* Their growth rate, fast as it is, causes a steady decline in their food supply as they need to consume more, and causes a steady growth in their predators' food supply, allowing their numbers to grow. Meanwhile, Species B, despite the fact that it is in fact growing, isn't quite outstripping the food that they eat, nor is it necessarily increasing the growth of the predators, both because they're really not increasing in population that quickly.

What we see here as a result of this is that the 10% difference in growth that results from that percentage of the population that is not breeding is as follows:

Species A's viability goes significantly down due to the lack of food and the surplus of predators looking to make munchies out of them, and will not be able to grow again until the predators die out as a result of lack of Species A to eat and the food comes back as a result of lack of being eaten; however, this will likely only restart the cycle.
Species B's viability and ecosystem is in a state of homeostasis. They aren't eating so much as to wipe themselves out, and they aren't being eaten so much as to make themselves in danger.

This is, of course, purely hypothetical, and doesn't take into account a number of unseen factors, but it does provide an excellent example of how a behaviorally influential recessive trait like homosexuality can in fact help a species as a whole grow and thrive.
I don't know where you learned your predator-and-prey scenarios, but that's completely wrong. Except for the off chance of a species proliferating to the point where it decimates the entire ecosystem and causes an ecological collapse (which, other than human-induced extinctions and invasive species, has very rarely been observed to occur if ever, although if you provide evidence regarding this I would have to admit defeat on this point), a species that grows past the carrying capacity of its environment doesn't suddenly die off. It merely gets reduced to the carrying capacity. Unrestricted growth just doesn't happen in nature. This would occur regardless of whether the species innately reduces their reproduction or not. After all, it doesn't matter how a species reduces its numbers, but that it does. They can kill each other, be killed by predators, starve to death, or be homosexual. It's all the same. Thus a homosexuality gene wouldn't be promoted in your scenario.
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  #27  
Old 02-06-2011, 09:16 PM
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Default Re: Lesbian mouse gene found

The flaw is this, while the number of homosexuals have increased, the human population is growing in massive amounts ever year (thanks China and India). Homosexuals would, in no way, help our species. I accept it, but there is no positive or negative side to the practice (would it be a practice?).
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Old 02-08-2011, 12:09 AM
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Default Re: Lesbian mouse gene found

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The flaw is this, while the number of homosexuals have increased, the human population is growing in massive amounts ever year (thanks China and India). Homosexuals would, in no way, help our species. I accept it, but there is no positive or negative side to the practice (would it be a practice?).
???

What does this have to do with anything? Homosexuality has practically zero influence on population growth as far as humans are concerned. You could make every gay man straight tomorrow and world population growth wouldn't even notice.
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Old 02-08-2011, 12:17 AM
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Default Re: Lesbian mouse gene found

Fitness =/= survivability. A rat that dies in 1 year and has 15 ratlings has a higher fitness than a rat that dies in 5 years but has 5 ratlings.

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No, they are completely random. There is no way to predict when and where and how a gene will be mutated. What is not random is which mutations are kept. Typically, only positive or neutral mutations will be kept, while detrimental mutations will be eradicated. Long-term adaptation occurs when mutations that positively affect an organism's chances of survival and reproduction are passed down and proliferate. If homosexuality is indeed a recessive trait (certainly it's not a dominant one), then carriers of the trait will be neutrally affect by the gene, and thus pass it down. While assuming that homosexuality is the result of a single gene is a gross oversimplification, the concept remains the same.
Counterexample to homosexual genes being recessive: ABO blood type. We don't know if that is true in humans or not, therefore you cannot state that as true. It is possible that it is dominant, and it is possible that epigenetics have a lot to do with this issue.

Secondarily, detrimental mutations are maintained in the population gene pool no matter how detrimental this is. Why do you think we still see cystic fibrosis, Angelman syndrome, etc. when it very clearly is a death sentence up until the recent 30 years or so when medical technology could help?

What I'm trying to say is, it doesn't matter whether or not homosexuality is detrimental to fitness.

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Except by definition, an expressed homosexuality trait cannot be passed down. It therefore cannot be an adaptation because it prevents reproduction. Whenever a homosexuality trait has an influence on an organism, that organism cannot pass that trait down to its children, therefore it can have no influence on the genetic makeup of the next generation.
Cystic fibrosis.
However, what is interesting is the potential that the homosexual genes could be epigenetically controlled. We just don't know of that can be true or not.

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I don't know where you learned your predator-and-prey scenarios, but that's completely wrong. Except for the off chance of a species proliferating to the point where it decimates the entire ecosystem and causes an ecological collapse (which, other than human-induced extinctions and invasive species, has very rarely been observed to occur if ever, although if you provide evidence regarding this I would have to admit defeat on this point), a species that grows past the carrying capacity of its environment doesn't suddenly die off. It merely gets reduced to the carrying capacity. Unrestricted growth just doesn't happen in nature. This would occur regardless of whether the species innately reduces their reproduction or not. After all, it doesn't matter how a species reduces its numbers, but that it does. They can kill each other, be killed by predators, starve to death, or be homosexual. It's all the same. Thus a homosexuality gene wouldn't be promoted in your scenario.
Experimentally it seems that a decrease in heterosexual behaviour is the method that mice use to decrease their numbers when crowding happens. The experiment actually creates a scenario in which space is the only limiting factor, given abundant food and water. Therefore, it is not a matter of carrying capacity, but a matter of simple space.

Once we establish that this is not an issue of carrying capacity, it doesn't matter what you have said. However, it is true that in the circumstance that a population is above its carrying capacity, most situations a large portion of the population would die off to return to whatever stationary phase it should have been at through mechanisms you have mentioned.

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The flaw is this, while the number of homosexuals have increased, the human population is growing in massive amounts ever year (thanks China and India). Homosexuals would, in no way, help our species. I accept it, but there is no positive or negative side to the practice (would it be a practice?).
Since when did evolution "help" our species? Evolution is never a mechanism that helps a species. Theoretically adaptation increases fitness of a population, but that doesn't mean anything considering it is environment dependent. Therefore there is no "help" given, it is just a natural progression. Many of our genes, good or not, just exist for the sake of existing, and are maintained in our population "for the heck of it". I'm sorry if my posts are too technical for you, since genetics is my expertise.

In any case, what would be interesting is seeing how India's rates of homosexuality and compare it with rates of Indian people in major cities in North America (it's the highest density I can think of that is close enough in approximation to India's population density). It would certainly help us understand just how much of a genetic basis homosexuality is in humans. There are a number of problems with this, of course. One is that it's nearly impossible for Indians in India to admit that they are attracted to the same sex even if they are...
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Old 02-08-2011, 01:38 AM
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Quote:
Counterexample to homosexual genes being recessive: ABO blood type. We don't know if that is true in humans or not, therefore you cannot state that as true. It is possible that it is dominant, and it is possible that epigenetics have a lot to do with this issue.

Secondarily, detrimental mutations are maintained in the population gene pool no matter how detrimental this is. Why do you think we still see cystic fibrosis, Angelman syndrome, etc. when it very clearly is a death sentence up until the recent 30 years or so when medical technology could help?

What I'm trying to say is, it doesn't matter whether or not homosexuality is detrimental to fitness.
I was merely suggesting a possibility for why homosexuality is passed down, it wasn't an absolute statement. Either way, the fact exists that homosexuality can be passed down genetically (as it obviously is).

Quote:
Experimentally it seems that a decrease in heterosexual behaviour is the method that mice use to decrease their numbers when crowding happens. The experiment actually creates a scenario in which space is the only limiting factor, given abundant food and water. Therefore, it is not a matter of carrying capacity, but a matter of simple space.

Once we establish that this is not an issue of carrying capacity, it doesn't matter what you have said. However, it is true that in the circumstance that a population is above its carrying capacity, most situations a large portion of the population would die off to return to whatever stationary phase it should have been at through mechanisms you have mentioned.
Khaj was talking about population, not density, so I was using his argument. Even so, in nature food supply is almost always an issue long before crowding becomes a problem. Unlimited food and water supplies usually just don't occur in nature, so a population will typically start starving to death before it gets to being overcrowded to that point. Rats are also territorial, so in nature they would very rarely, if ever, become crowded like in that situation.
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