Autism Vaccine Complaint Movie: "Selective Hearing, Brian Deer and the GMC"
Winner: The Sanctity of Human Blood

Age of Autism Comment of the Week

AOAF Congrats to "Apple Bottom Genes", our commenter of the week.  (S)he commented on THIS post: Maybe the problem is that genes are a shortcut for discussing molecular biology in detail.  The fact of the matter is that genes do nothing - absolutely nothing.  They are a string of nucleotide base pairs that sit there and do zilch.  Ribosomes have to come along and translate that string of nucleotides into a linear strand of amino acids.  When that line of amino acids folds up into a three-dimensional form, well then you've got something - a protein.  Proteins do everything.  Genes do nothing.

If you're a girl, is it because you have XX chromosomes?  No.  You're a girl if you had early exposure to XX gene products AND you lacked exposure to other proteins (namely the Y gene products).  As proof (and this experiment has been done) if you take an XX mammalian zygote and allow it to develop in the presence of testosterone, the embryo becomes a boy.  You can't tell the XX zygote is a boy by looking at its DNA.  You also can't determine how it became a boy by looking at its DNA.  You'd have to understand the environmental factors to know what happened and why (i.e. that someone added testosterone to the developing embryo).

Hey we could go one further and break this thing down to the level of quarks, and somebody will undoubtedly chime in to point out that any information gained by the particle accelerator will be useful in putting together the puzzle of autism.  I disagree.

Thinking about autism on the level of genetic variance is a trap.  You will never be far enough away from the trees to see the forest.  The pace of genetic change within populations is slow; excluding major bottlenecks, it occurs on the order of millenia.  Any condition that increases or decreases significantly in a population within a shorter timeframe is de facto NOT genetic.

If the rate of autism has truly increased then it is indeed a waste of resources to target genetic changes as important etiological factors of disease.

Apple Bottom Genes, email me at [email protected] with your address and if you want L or XL.

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I read what you wrote and that's why I responded to that one pooint.


if "genes do nothing"

then try removing them from an organism and see if the organism can exist.

apple bottom genes

Hey Keith, that's not an analogy. "Genes do nothing" is a statement. And what's whack is people thinking that autism could be genetic.

Try and read what I wrote instead of making it into something easy for you to attack. I did not say that genes do not exist. I said that genes do nothing. Genes don't act, move or initiate anything. They are templates that sit there and wait to be acted on by other things. When a gene is the problem, it is actually the protein that it makes that is the problem. Sometimes a genetic mutation causes a different protein to be made and that protein causes some condition. But... (and this was the point I was trying to make)... if you think ONLY in terms of genes, then you are trapped. Most conditions, maladies, diseases, etc. are caused by environmental agents that change the proportions of normal functioning gene products. There is too much or too little of the "right" protein, or the "right" protein gets into the wrong place. Talking about genetic variance misses this picture altogether (as is intended).

Genetic change in human populations is sooooooooo slow that it precludes genetic variation as a cause of any disease that increases or decreases significantly over a relatively short period of time.


while I agree that genetics alone aren't going to solve the problem her analogy is whack.

"Genes do nothing"?

If it werent for genes the proteins wouldn't know how to arrange. They are the blueprint which directs the arrangement of the proteins.


"The Bull Stops Here!" Apple Bottom Genes, you should wear this shirt with pride.

Thank you for all the very enlightening and clever comments you've posted here at AoA.

I hope we hear more from you.

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