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Chapter 4 Genes Evolution and Behaviour Genetic Influences Chromosomes and Genes How are physical characteristics passed

d on from parents to their offspring? o Hippocrates provided a semi-correct answer Suggested that semen contains not body parts but a design for the formation of offspring o Later Gregor Mendel confirmed this as a monk who researched garden peas Showed that heredity involves the passing on of specific organic factors and is not a simple blending of the parents characteristics These specific factors might produce visible characteristics in the offspring or might simply be carried for the possible transmission to another generation The offspring of one set of parents do not all inherit the same traits o Early 20th century geneticists made an important distinction between Genotype The specific genetic makeup of an individual Eg. Like commands in a computer software program Present from conception and never change Phenotype The observable characteristics produced by that genetic endowment Can be affected by other genes and the environment How does genetic transmission pass on from parents to offspring? o Union of two cells, the egg from the mother and sperm from the father Beginning of individual o The egg and sperm carry in them a material of heredity called chromosomes o Chromosome Tightly coiled molecule of deoxyribonucleic acid(DNA) that is partly covered by protein So tightly coiled that if DNA was stretched out, it would be almost 2 meters long DNA portion of chromosome carries the hereditary blueprint in units called genessort of like giant computer file of info about characteristics etc. In humans every cell in the body except one type has 46 chromosomes Exception is sex cell o Egg/sperm has 23 chromosomes o At conception the egg and sperm combine to form a zygote(46 chromosomes) o Genes of chromosomes occur in pairs so the offspring receives one of each gene pair from each parent o Every cell nucleus in your body has genetic code for entire body except sex cells o Alternative forms of a gene that produce different characteristics are called alleles

Genes code the production of proteins This affects our bodys development and functioning Responsible for controlling the structure of every cell and the chemical reactions that are in those cells whether they are needed to keep life or changes induced by maturation Half of genes target brain structure and function Each gene carries code for a specific protein and when gene is activated, cell produces protein At different points in development, in response to different metabolic/environment factors, a gene may be activated and protein produced or already activated gene may be turned off decreasing a specific protein Change with protein levels causes change within a neuron and the activities it does

Dominant Recessive and Polygenic Effects What is the difference between dominant, recessive, and polygenic Genotypes and phenotypes are no identical If a gene is the pair received from the mother and father is dominant the characteristics that it controls will be displayed If the gene is recessive, the characteristics will not show up unless the partner gene inherited from the other parent is also recessive Even when hidden recessive genes are passed to their offspring In many cases, gene pairs combine to create a single phenotypic trait known as polygenic transmission o Complicates that people would be determined by 1 gene o Stresses the possible number of traits that can occur

Mapping the Genetic Code Human Genome Project 2001, genetic map published Mapping of human genetic code was done by the International Human Genome Sequencing Consortium o Mapped genetic structure in every one of the 23 chromosome pairs o Found humans have less genes than expected 25000

Genetic Engineering Describe the methods used in recombinant DNA research Advances in technology allows us to duplicate/modify the structure of genes themselves Recombinant DNA procedures

Researchers use certain enzymes to cut the long threadlike molecules of genetic DNA into pieces o Then they combine them with DNA from another organism and insert them into a host organism eg. Bacterium o In the host, the new DNA combination continues to divide and produce copies of itself This procedure created Human Growth Hormone o Helps treat abnormal short people o Consequences are not yet known Molecular biologists learned how to insert new genetic material into viruses that can infiltrate neurons and change their genetic structure o Used to study genetic influences on behaviour eg. Learning, memory, emotion Gene knockout procedure o What is it and how is it used by psychologists to study behaviour o Eliminates a particular function of a gene, then observes the effects on behaviour o Eg. Animal experiment alter a specific gene that prevents it from carrying out its normal function o may insert genetic material that will prevent neurons from responding to a neurotransmitter and measure if the animals ability to learn/remember is affected o Holmes, Mrphy, Crawley used mice with knockout for the mechanism involved in the reuptake of the neurotransmitter serotonin Loss of serotonin reuptake mechanism resulted in serotonin remaining in the synapse after its release and resulted in the alternation in the activity of serotonin releasing neurons and serotonin receptors causing anxiety like behaviour and exaggerated stress response like human depression o Although very useful procedure researchers need to be careful because very few behaviours are controlled by a single gene and it may disrupt a wide range of functions o Hope to cure psychological disorders Genetic engineering allows humans to have potential control over the processes of heredity and evolution but it also spurs ethical/moral issues

Behaviour Genetics Techniques What is the percentage of genetic resemblance between parents and children, identical and fraternal twins, brothers and sisters and grandparents and grandchildren b/c children get half of their genetic material from each parent, the probability of sharing any particular gene with one of your parents is 0.5, brothers and sisters also have a probability of 0.5 of sharing the same gene and grandparents is 0.25. Half siblings 0.25 and adopted is none Behaviour geneticists are interested in studying how hereditary and environmental factors combine to influence psychological characteristics Heritability Coefficient o Extent to which variation in a particular characteristic within a group can be attributed to genetic factors estimated statistically

Heredity means passage of characteristics from parents to offspring by way of genes Heritability means how much of the variation in a characteristic within a population can be attributed to genetic differences o Note this means the variance in the trait across individuals and not the trait itself o If weight has a heritability coef of 0.6 then it means how much of that variation in weight is attributable to genetic factors o Applies to only differences within a group and NOT between groups because if it is in the same group the environmental factors can be counted out and then the coef would be more meaningful Knowing the level of genetic similarity in family members and relatives provides a basis for estimating the relative contributions of heredity and environment to a physical or psychological characteristic If a characteristic has higher concordance/co-occurrence, in people who are high related to another, then this shows a possible genetic contribution especially if they lived in different environments How are adoption and twin studies used to achieve heritability estimates? What have such studies shown? o One research study is the adoption study o A person who was adopted early in life is compared to some characteristics with his/her biological parents and then with the adoptive parents with whom no genes are shared If biological parents had more similarities then genetic influence and vice versa o Study with schizophrenia showed a hereditary link Twin studies are one of the more powerful techniques used in behaviour genetics Monozygotic twins develop from the same fertilized egg so they are genetically identical Dizygotic(fraternal) twins develop from 2 fertilized eggs so they share 50% of their genetic endowment like any other brothers and sisters A effective research method to examine concordance rates/behaviour similarities between identical twins and fraternal twins if identical more similar than genetic factor is strong o Find and compare sets of identical and fraternal twins who were separated early in life and raised in different environments Adoption and twin studies led behavioural geneticists to conclude that psychological characteristics like intelligence, personality traits, psychological disorders all have a genetic contribution Environment and genes are related to criminal activity

Genetic Influences on Behaviour Heredity, Environment and Intelligence Main controversial question-to what extent are differences in intelligence due to genetic factors and to what extent does environment determine differences in intelligence? o Genetic argument-suppose intelligence is determined by genes

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Any 2 individuals with the same genes would have same test scores so the correlation between the test scores of identical twins would be +1; fraternal twins share only half and therefore their correlation should be lower To extend, the correlation between a parents test scores and his/her childrens scores should be about the same as that between siblings because a child only gets half his genes from the parent A study was done and identical twins separated early in life-different environment but same genes; theyre correlation is almost as high as identical twins in the same environment and higher than fraternal twins in the same environment The more genes in common, the more similar theyre IQ Findings show both environment and genes determine IQ but how do both interact to affect intelligence?

Biological Reaction Range, The Environment, Personality and Intelligence How does the concept of reaction range illustrate the interaction between heredity and environment Reaction range helps us understand genetic environmental interactions o The reaction range for a genetically influenced trait is the range of possibilities( the upper and lower limits) that the genetic code allows o Eg. Intelligence is genetically influenced does not mean that it is fixed at birth but means that an individual inherits a range for potential intelligence that has upper and lower limits and the environmental effects will determine where the person falls within the reaction range o We cannot determine the size of this range but studies suggest that it could be as large as 15-20 points on the IQ scale- if this is the case then environmental factors would be highly significant

Behaviour Genetics and Personality Hans Eysenck argued that personality differences could be traced to differences in brain development or function The personality of extraversion/introversion was argued to reflect differences in brain arousal First to suggest a biological basis for major personality traits Led other researchers to find a relationship between neuroticism and a gene allele that increases the action of the neurotransmitter serotonin And a relationship between novelty seeking and a single gene allele that deceases the action of the neurotransmitter dopamine Prominent personality trait theory Five Factor Model o Five factor theorists like Robert McCrae and Paul Costa believe that individual differences in personality can be accounted for by variation along five broad personality dimensions or traits known as the big five


Extraversion/introversion(sociable, outgoing, adventuresome versus queit, inhibited, solitary) Agreeableness ( cooperative, helpful, good natured versus antagonistic, uncooperative, helpful, suspicious) Conscientiousness ( responsible, goal-directed, dependable versus undependable, careless, irresponsible) Neuroticism (worrying, anxious, emotionally unstable versus well adjusted, secure, calm Openness to experience (imaginative, artistically sensitive versus unreflective, lacking in intellectual curiosity) Twin studies of heritability of the Big Five personality traits found heritability coef ranging from 0;42 to 0;57 which is consistent of other studies indicates that 40-50% of the personality variations among people are attributable to genotype differences Genetic factors account for a significant amount of a personality difference not as much as IQ

A study compared personality traits in identical and fraternal twins who were raised together or reared apart If identical twins reared in different environments by different families are as similar as those reared together, a strong argument is made for the role of genetic factors o This research design divided the variation among individuals on each personality trait into 3 components Variation attributable to genetic factors Variation due to a shared family environment among those reared together Variation attributable to other factors such as unique individual experiences o Compared influence of these sources of variation by comparing personality test correlations among 4 groups Identical twins reared apart/together Fraternal twins reared together/reared apart o Studies shown that identical twins are far more similar in personality traits than fraternal twins and reared together/apart makes little difference-family influence has little influence on personality differences According to the results of the Minnesota Twin Study, what factors were the most important in determining personality? o One of the largest/best known studies wa the Minnesota Twin Study o Assessed more than 400 twins both reared apart and reared togetherbut didnt really affect the results o little shared experience within the same family environmentfamily environment accounted for little/no variation in any of the personality traits o Individuals unique experience like school experiences, social interactions, and individual learning experiences accounted for 36-56% of the variation in personality traits

Results showed that genetic factors accounted for 39-58 personality trait scores Within the same family, individual children have different experiences while growing up and this collective experience shape personality Another study o shows highest heritability coefficients >0.5 were found for attitudes toward reading books, abortion without restriction , playing organized sports, riding roller coasters, death penaltyin general attitudes toward preservation of life, equality, and athleticism had highest genetic component o suggested rollercoaster gene or that certain inherited factors like physical characteristics may predispose individuals to prefer certain activities o genetic influence has been reported for a tendency to abuse alcohol

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Evolution and Behaviour Define evolution and explain how genetic variation and natural selection produce adaptations Evolutionary psychology o Seeks to understand how behavioural abilities and tendencies have evolved over the course of millions of years in response to environmental demands o Biologically based mechanisms No behaviour by any organism can occur with this mechanism Receive input from the environment, process the information and respond to it We begin life with innate biologically based mechanisms that allow us to take in, process and respond to information predisposing us to behave feel and think in certain ways Allow us to have behaviour like aggression and sex roles

Evolution of Adaptive Mechanisms Evolution Change over time in the frequency with what particular genes-and the characteristics they produce- occur within an interbreeding population As particular genes become more/less frequent in a population so do the characteristics they influence Some genetic variations arise in a population through mutations o Random events and accidents in gene reproduction during the division of cells o Help create variation within a populations physical characteristics which makes evolution possible

Natural selection According to Darwins principle of natural selection, characteristics that increase the likelihood of survival and ability to reproduce within a particular environment will be more likely to be preserved in the population and therefore will become more common in the species over time

Acts as a set of filters allowing survivors to become more common and non-survivors to become extinct The filters also allow Neutral variations-aka variational noise- that neither facilitate nor impede fitness to pass through and be preserved in a population o Eg. People differ in ability tolerate radiationtoday limited importance but affect survivability if a furutre nuclear war were to increase levels of radioactivity around the world

Evolutionary Adaptations Products of natural selection are called adaptations o Adaptations allow organism to meet recurring environmental challenges to their survival, increasing reproductive ability o Natural selection is to pass on ones genes-why we might risk our lives for our kin o To humans Organisms biology determines behavioural capabilities and behaviour determines survivability Successful human behaviour evolved along with changing body o One theory is when apelike animals from trees needed to hunt in open plains, chances of survival were greater for those who were capable of bipedal locomotionwalking on 2 legs Freeing the hands allowed use of tools and weapons and hunting in groups encouraged social organization Social organization promoted roles like hunter in male and development of language and transmission of knowledge o Women who were more sensitive had more kids survivesocial roles o Tool use, bipedal locomotion, social organization o Greatest pressure to brain structureattention, memory, language, and thought Progression from Australopithecus through Homo erectus to Neanderthal, the brain tripled in size Todays human brain does not differ much from the stone age brain- the fact that we are more advanced is due to cultural evolutionculture allows us to have important environmental input to evolutionary mechanisms Biological adaptation o Ability to learn language, repeat behaviours rewarded and suppress those that are punished, reason logically Domain specific adaptations o Designed to solve a particular problem like suitable mate o Suggest that the human mind is not an all purpose problem solver but a collection of specialized independent modules that evolved to handle specific adaptive problems

Evolutionary snapshot of human nature Describe examples of human behaviour that suggest innate evolved mechanisms. Differentiate between remote and proximate causal factors o Infants are born with innate ability to acquire any language spoken in the world-exposed to Deaf children innate ability to acquire an sign language Language is central to human thought and communication o Newborns Prewired to understand certain stimuli Eg. More responsive to pictures of human faces than facial features arranged randomly Discriminate odour of mothers milk from that of other women Adaptations improve human bonding with caregivers o At 1 week of age human infants show primitive math skills, discriminating between 2/3 objects Abilities improve with age in the absence of training Brain knows greater/less than judgements important in decision making o Robert Hogan Established cooperative relationship with a group is important for survival and reproductive success Thus, humans want to belong and fear rejection from the groupsocial anxiety may be an adaptive mechanism to protect against doing things that will get you rejected o Basic set of emotions universally recognized-smiling is universal of happiness and goodwill that gets positive reactions from others Emotions are important for social communication o Personal adaptations to life occur through the law of learning Predisposed to learn

Evolutionary Psychology Personality According to evolutionary theorists, what is the origin of the basic personality traits? Evolutionary personality theory o Where did personality traits come from o Current theory argues that human personality has a limited number of basic dimensions/researchers argued that basic personality traits are found in all humans o David Buss-evolutionary personality theorist says they exist in humans because they have helped us achieve two overriding goals: physical survival and reproduction of speciesextraversion and emotional stability is helpful for dominance and mate selection

Lewis Goldberg suggests that we should ask 5 questions when interacting with another person o Is person X active and dominant or passive and submissive? Can i dominate X or will i have to submit to x o Is person x agreeable and friendly or hostile and uncooperative o Can I count on X is X conscientious and dependable o Is X sand or crazy o How smart is X and how quickly can X learn and adapt One issue could be the range of human personality

Mating systems and Parental Investment Humans unlike fish invest more time in a few offspring-dichotomy What is meant by parental investment? Parental investment refers to the time, effort, energy, risk associated with caring successfully for each offspring Robert Trivers theory the parent who invests most in offspring will be more vigorously competed for and will be more discriminating when choosing a mate o Since female investment is high, they will be competed for and male investment is low so males maximize fitness by producing many offspring with many different families most mammals are polgynouspolygyny o Since females can produce a limited number of offspring they need to choose mate o If both male and female investment is high-predict a monogamous mating system Natural selection facours genes that lead to parents staying together Show little sexual dimorphism in size or strength o Polyandry Female mates with many malesrare in mammals but in some fish species females compete with one another for males o Polygynandry/promiscuity-all members mate with each other-found in primates A way to reduce competition for a mate and my help promote peace What mating described by Trivers fits experience of human society? o Human female more investment polygynous single partner prolonged periods in life How are male and female mate preferences similar? How are they different? o The most common/powerful mate preferences are all preferences that make the most sense form an evolutionary perspective o Men + women want mutual attraction, dependability, emotional stability o Men place more on physical attractiveness and good health while women place greater value on earning potential status, ambition and older men o Makes sense because young adult males rarely have the respect, status, access to resources that are achieved by older, more established males-late 20s o Women like guys with symmetrical face and other signs of physical health Suggests that he is free of parasites or genetic resistance to parasites and has healthy development

Peggy La Cerra assessed whether women might want men who has high parental investment o Did study and women rated men who were interacting positively with the child the highest as a potential mate and rated the man ignoring the crying child the lowest o Man cleaning house is rated less attractive o Mens attractiveness ratings were the same across all conditions-good face and youth Women want older guys and older guys want younger women

Altruism What is the difference between cooperation and altruism Cooperation o Situations in which one individual helps another and gains some advantage Help friend work you all benefit Adaptive value is clear-you accomplish more in groups than alone Altruism o One individual helps another but accrues a cost o Eg.a bird emits a call to warn off a predator warning helps other members of flock but puts signalled in greater danger because it has revealed its location o 2 important theories Kin selection theory Argues that altruism developed to increase survival of relatives Mammals evolved living in small groups in which there was at least some genetic relatedness Predicts that we should direct more acts of altruism towards relatives than non relatives Theory of reciprocal altruism Altruism is long term cooperation Eg. One individual may help another but that assistance will be reciprocated at some time in the future-if correct then the social animals should remember who has helped them in the past and should not offer assistance to individuals who have failed to reciprocate Requires stable social group o These 2 theories are not incompatible Kin selection explains why we are more likely to act altruistically toward genetically related individuals and why we do not act the same way when genetic relatedness decreases Reciprocity explains why we offer assistance to and request assistance from nonkin Altruism does not always occur

Aggression Evolutionarily what does aggression serve?

Valued resources are limited eg. Shelter, food, desirable mates, a solution is to compete to determine who has access to the resource o Aggression developed as a means to protect ones mate, young, territory, food, resources, or gain access to resources Which members of a group are usually the most aggressive? o As animals evolved they were able to recognize others and remember past encounters o Resulted in dominance hierarchies-established in initial encounters between animals if the group is being formed or if a new member joins the group o Aggression can occur forming this hierarchy Aggression makes sense-functions to divide limited resources among a group and those who are most skilled in physical confrontation or forming social alliances gain the most Pattern of aggression observed only among chimps and humans-forms male coalitions to attack others as a group-lethal

How not to think about behaviour genetics and evolutionary psychology Scientific issues o Adaptations are forged over a long period of time and we cannot be certain what the environment was like back then therefore many conclusions are inferred o Fallacy of circular reasoning Why does behavioural tendency X exist? Because of Environmental Demand Y How do we know that environmental demand Y existed? Because otherwise behaviour X would not have developed o Not every human characteristic is because of natural selection o A capability evolved in the past for one reason may be adaptive for something else o Eg. Ability to discern shapes was advantageous for prehistoric hunters but few humans today need to hunt to survive but shape discriminating capabilities are important for reading and letters Insufficient weight to cultural learning factors-human culture evolves as both a cause and effect of brain and behavioural evolution-genes and environment affect each other over time Genetic determinism o Idea that genes have invariant and unavoidable effects that cannot be altered-genes are destiny o Not true-eg. The discovery that early diabetes has a genetic cause did not result in medical science abandoning diabetic patients because nothing could be done but instead the discovery allowed scientists to stop looking for nonexistent viral/bacterial cause freeing resources to increase understanding of the genetic basis and develop ways to compensate for the missing enzyme One reason for the Human Genome Project is that there is a genetic cause for disease such as Alzheimers disease or a genetic predisposition such as for breast cancer

Evolutionary theorists argue against the idea that if something is genetically based it is somehow natural and therefore rightargue against themselves o Conclusion is that people at the top of the social ladder are the most fit /best people o Referred as Social Darwinism Genetic superiority of those at the top of the social hierarchy Another fallacy is evolution is purposive-has a plan o There is no plan in evolutionary theory only adaptation to environmental demands and the natural selection process that results o Natures plan and social Darwinism has been used to support the morality of certain acts You cannot use this as a basis in determining what is ethically appropriate Judgements of morality are most appropriately based on cultural standards and philosophical considerations not biological imperatives