Happy New Year ! and welcome to the 22nd edition of Mendel’s Garden. Moving into the new year, our contributors continue to push forward – equipped with their latest experimental results – sharpening our understanding of the complex interplay between an ever changing genome and environment across developmental space and time. The importance of development seems to undergird each of the posts this month – as a set of genetic programs that interact with the environment and constrain evolutionary change.
This is just the type of hard science investigation that speaks to broader philosophical questions as noted by Phil B. at Which Came First, the Chicken or the Egg? « Phil for Humanity posted at Phil for Humanity, saying, “What most people do not know is that there are 3 different answers for this question.”
GrrlScientist points to a pivotal developmental time point where genetics and environment interact to shape fitness Bright Blue Tits Make Better Mothers posted at Living the Scientific Life, saying, “Do female birds use bright plumage and elaborate ornaments to advertize their genetic quality to males?”
Human development, where the centuries old “nature vs. nurture” debate remains politicized, despite hard scientific data such as reported on by Greg Laden in Greg Laden’s Blog : Reduced Verbal Ability in African American Children posted at Greg Laden’s Blog, saying, “It turns out its not the genes but the context.”
GrrlScientist strikes a familiar chord in Ebony, Meet Irony posted at Living the Scientific Life, saying, “This is one of the funnier things I’ve read recently. It turns out that 1962 Nobel laureate, James Watson, who recently made some disparaging comments about the intelligence of Africans, probably is of African descent himself.”
That concludes this edition. Have a great 2008. Good luck with your experiments and blogging!