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Mutations Degrade Inherited Intelligence

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The remarkable “powers” of evolution are now shown to degrade (aka “mutate”) the human genes essential to intelligence.

Remarkably, they found that some of the same genes that influence human intelligence in healthy people were also the same genes that cause impaired cognitive ability and epilepsy when mutated, networks which they called M1 and M3.

On discovering those who are not so impaired:

up to 65 per cent of the difference in pupil’s GCSE grades was down to genetics, after analysing genetic data fro, 12,500 twins. . . .In contrast shared environmental factors such as home and school environment contributed between 14 and 21 per cent. The rest was made up by individual external influences such as diseases or friends.

Instead of the politically correct “I’m OK You’re OK”,

Professor Robert Plomin believes that children should be genetically screened at the age of four so that an individualised curriculum could be tailored to their needs.

Science is indeed now quantifying the “descent of man” – with mutations degrading intelligent humans downward.
See: Intelligence genes discovered by scientists
“Imperial College London has found that two networks of genes determine whether people are intelligent or not so bright.”
Summarizing:
Alix Warburton, Fabio Miyajima, Kanvel Shazadi, Joanne Crossley, Michael R. Johnson, Anthony G. Marson, Gus A. Baker, John P. Quinn, Graeme J. Sills, NRSF and BDNF polymorphisms as biomarkers of cognitive dysfunction in adults with newly diagnosed epilepsy, Epilepsy & Behavior, Volume 54, January 2016, Pages 117–127

Cognitive dysfunction is a common comorbidity in people with epilepsy, but its causes remain unclear. It may be related to the etiology of the disorder, the consequences of seizures, or the effects of antiepileptic drug treatment. Genetics may also play a contributory role. We investigated the influence of variants in the genes encoding neuron-restrictive silencer factor (NRSF) and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), proteins previously associated with cognition and epilepsy, on cognitive function in people with newly diagnosed epilepsy. A total of 82 patients who had previously undergone detailed neuropsychological assessment were genotyped for single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) across the NRSF and BDNF genes. Putatively functional SNPs were included in a genetic association analysis with specific cognitive domains, including memory, psychomotor speed, and information processing. Cross-sectional and longitudinal designs were used to explore genetic influences on baseline cognition at diagnosis and change from baseline over the first year since diagnosis, respectively. We found a statistically significant association between genotypic variation and memory function at both baseline (NRSF: rs1105434, rs2227902 and BDNF: rs1491850, rs2030324, rs11030094) and in our longitudinal analysis (NRSF: rs2227902 and BDNF: rs12273363). Psychomotor speed was also associated with genotype (NRSF rs3796529) in the longitudinal assessment. In line with our previous work on general cognitive function in the healthy aging population, we observed an additive interaction between risk alleles for the NRSF rs2227902 (G) and BDNF rs6265 (A) polymorphisms which was again consistent with a significantly greater decline in delayed recall over the first year since diagnosis. These findings support a role for the NRSF–BDNF pathway in the modulation of cognitive function in patients with newly diagnosed epilepsy.

I wonder when scientists will have the courage to publicly recognize that mutations are probably >>99.99999999% harmful?

30 Replies to “Mutations Degrade Inherited Intelligence

  1. 1
    Mung says:

    I just need to know if I can blame my parents.

  2. 2
    wd400 says:

    If, as you claim, mutations are nearly universally harmful then why aren’t we all dead? We each have 50 or more new mutations so how did we survive this?

  3. 3
    daveS says:

    Professor Robert Plomin believes that children should be genetically screened at the age of four so that an individualised curriculum could be tailored to their needs.

    I really don’t like the sound of that.

  4. 4
  5. 5
    RexTugwell says:

    If, as you claim, mutations are nearly universally harmful then why aren’t we all dead? We each have 50 or more new mutations so how did we survive this?

    If those mutations are distributed over the entire human genome (which presumably is 98% junk) then that would translate into only 1 or 2 mutations in the coding region of the genome. With DNA being a degenerate code, those one or two mutations may have little or no effect at all and that would explain why we’re not all dead. It would also confer an important function on said junk. No?

  6. 6
    PaV says:

    wd400:

    There was a study done on mutations back in the 60’s which found that mutations are almost completely deleterious.

    Shall we invoked “junk-DNA” to answer your question?

    How about error correction mechanisms, and how about “neutral,” but not “junk” portions of DNA.

    Finally, per Behe, ‘harmful’ mutations are the first line of defense for organisms needing to adapt. In fact, that’s exactly why mutation occur with the frequency they do.

  7. 7
    bornagain says:

    as to:

    “If, as you claim, mutations are nearly universally harmful then why aren’t we all dead? We each have 50 or more new mutations so how did we survive this?”

    Exactly wd400, you tell em, ‘how can evolution possibly be true if random mutations are nearly universally harmful?”

    Dr. Sanford, inventor of the ‘gene-gun’ and pioneer in genetic engineering, says the implications of Genetic Entropy are obvious. i.e. There must be a Creator!

    Dr. John Sanford: Genetic Entropy and the Mystery of the Genome – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eY98io7JH-c

  8. 8
    wd400 says:

    Rex,

    The mutation rate per base doesn’t change when you add more DNA. So schemes like that don’t actually lower the probability of a deleterious mutation.

    Pav,

    No study has shown that. The rest of your comment seems unconnected to this post.

  9. 9
    DLH says:

    wd400
    The good news is that you can still read and write. Should you experiment with cannabis, you will likely cause further psychotic related mutations.
    Remember the “princess and the pea”?
    John C. Sanford in “Genetic Entropy” uses that meme with numerous mattresses covering thousands of mutations (“peas”) as a popular explanation why our genetic mutation load is increasing and can never be “selected” out. He quantitatively shows and graphs how our genetic mutational load is increasing. You can test it yourself using published population dynamic parameters and mutation rates using Sanford’s quantitative forward modeling software “Mendel’s Accountant”.
    (For the consequences of increasing mutational load, see the declining longevity. Declining longevity

  10. 10
    DLH says:

    mung
    Probably not a good idea in light of the command to “Honor your father and mother.”
    Quantitatively, assuming mutations are proportional to generations, your parents are likely responsible for =6000/20 years = ~300 generations).

    PS Rex – they are NOT distributed uniformly. Mutations in the “non-coding” area affect us in other ways.

  11. 11
    DLH says:

    See further videos by genetics John C. Sanford. He notes that BOTH DNA strands are read – showing multiple compression. Studies are now showing that multiple codes are NOT degenerate, but show different expression rates etc.

  12. 12
    DLH says:

    daveS
    Every smart parent and teacher fits teaching to the student, recognizing the differences in interest, motivation and ability. (To discover life skills/motivations See Finding a Job You Can Love.. Similarly What Color is Your Parachute?)

  13. 13
    daveS says:

    DLH,

    Every smart parent and teacher fits teaching to the student, recognizing the differences in interest, motivation and ability.

    Sure, but the idea of using genetic screening as part of this process is very troubling, isn’t it? The more I think about it, the more outrageous it sounds.

  14. 14
    RexTugwell says:

    wd400 @ 8

    The mutation rate per base doesn’t change when you add more DNA. So schemes like that don’t actually lower the probability of a deleterious mutation.

    I didn’t say anything about deleterious mutations; only that according to your number of 50 mutations per generation would amount to 1 or 2 in the coding region. If mutation rates per base don’t change when you add more DNA, why then say we each have 50 or more mutations? Either only mutations in DNA which is expressed affects us or mutations throughout the entire genome do. You can’t have it both ways.

  15. 15
    DLH says:

    daveS
    The socially troubling issue is using it for eugenics – killing people because of the presence of certain mutations – e.g., down syndrome etc.
    Conversely, politically correct public schools try to say everyone must be educated equally. The problem with that is dumbing down everyone. Consequence? US has dropped from near the top in the 1700s to very poor now. See:
    U.S. students improving – slowly – in math and science, but still lagging internationally

    The most recent PISA results, from 2012, placed the U.S. an unimpressive 35th out of 64 countries in math and 27th in science. Among the 34 members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, which sponsors the PISA initiative, the U.S. ranked 27th in math and 20th in science.

    For the antidote, see: Alex and Brett Harris, Do Hard Things, – “Rebel against LOW expectations“.

    Otherwise what is the problem?

  16. 16
    daveS says:

    DLH,

    Otherwise what is the problem?

    While such a program wouldn’t result in anyone being killed, it would involve making life-changing decisions on behalf of young children, based on very immature and possibly flawed science. If we’re going to start separating children into streams at such an early age, I would prefer that we stick to testing their aptitude(s) directly.

    Also, who is going to collect and store this data? How will it be kept secure? We’re talking about a massive screening program, and if this very sensitive information were to be leaked, it could be very damaging to the patients.

    I’m surprised to see any support at all for this on an anti-materialist blog.

  17. 17
    Mapou says:

    wd400:

    If, as you claim, mutations are nearly universally harmful then why aren’t we all dead? We each have 50 or more new mutations so how did we survive this?

    Aren’t you a biologist? It is obviously because you are not counting the countless mutations that are constantly being repaired by the DNA repair mechanism. We would all die without it. The question you should ask is this: how did evolution work before this repair mechanism evolved?

    {{DELETED: MAPAO – Please NO ADHOMINEM ATTACKS
    Stick to the facts, the issues, the arguments: DLH}}

  18. 18
    paul sussman says:

    Mapou, my understanding is that the 50 mutations that we all have is after the repair mechanisms. Please correct me if I am wrong.

  19. 19
    DLH says:

    daveS
    I agree with the challenges you raise. Those are a subset of the larger social problem of testing for genetic diseases.

    There is further the major issue of the massive costs involved.
    A larger issue is motivation.
    Ben Carson was called “dummy” in school. His single parent mother turned off the TV and had him read two books per week. That got him interested and launched him to the pinnacle of neurosurgery, and now running for president.

  20. 20
    Mapou says:

    paul sussman:

    Mapou, my understanding is that the 50 mutations that we all have is after the repair mechanisms. Please correct me if I am wrong.

    You are correct. The 50 or so mutations are the ones that are expressly allowed by the DNA repair mechanism as a method of introducing harmless variations into the gene pool or for epigenetic adaptation. The whole thing has DESIGN written all over it. RM+NS is voodoo crap, IMO.

  21. 21
    wd400 says:

    In that scenario (which is more or less accurate) it’s not true that 99.9999999% of mutations are harmful. Which was the claim in this op. No?

    Mapou, I’ve told you this before, but mutations are random with respect to fitness. The proof reading enzymes are not choosing which errors are OK to pass on (if they were then there would be no cancer)

  22. 22
    wd400 says:

    DLH,

    Genetic load caused by rapid expansion of certainly a real thing. But that doesn’t answer my question. If you have 50 mutations, all of which are bad, and your offspring have 50 more how are we here?

  23. 23
    DLH says:

    wd400
    Re:

    If you have 50 mutations, all of which are bad, and your offspring have 50 more how are we here?

    A critically important question. John Sanford reviews leading evolutionary population geneticists who ask this very question – and who are finding neo-Darwinian population models unable to answer. Sanford has published 6 papers addressing that question – further adding nails to the coffin. Neo-Darwinism has no credible answer with any realistic measured mutation, repair, beneficial/harmful rates etc, when used in a quantitative state of the art program like Mendel’s Accountant.
    Since models of stochastic (random) chemical/biochemical processes by the 4 laws of nature cannot achieve Neo-Darwinian evolution, the necessary consequence is that there must have been a Non-stochastic process. Thus one inference of the necessity of an Intelligent Design.

    PS On mutation rate, Sean Pitman (2012) adds his analysis to John Sanford’s lecture.

    A fairly recent paper in a 2010 issue of Science attempted a direct measurement of the mutation rate by comparing the complete genome sequences of two offspring and their parents. They estimate that each offspring had only 70 new mutations (instead of previously predicted rates of around 170) for an overall mutation rate of around 1.1 * 10^-8 per site per generation (Roach et al. 2010: Link). Another paper published in a 2010 issue of PNAS suggested an overall autosomal mutation rate of 1.481 * 10^?8 base substitutions per site per generation – or approximately 89 new mutations per person per generation (Lynch, 2009: Link). Unfortunately for men, a 2009 pedigree-based estimate derived from high-throughput sequencing of Y chromosomes (~58 million bp) separated by 13 generations (Xue et al. 2009: Link) yielded a much higher base-substitutional mutation rate estimate of 3.0 * 10^?8 for the Y-chromosome (~ 1.74 mutations per person, per Y-chromosome alone, per generation – – comparable to a rate of ~180 autosomal mutations per person per generation).

    For purposes of discussion, let’s assume an average SNP mutation rate of 70 per person, per generation.

    Note per generation, not total.

  24. 24
    paul sussman says:

    Mapou: //You are correct. The 50 or so mutations are the ones that are expressly allowed by the DNA repair mechanism as a method of introducing harmless variations into the gene pool or for epigenetic adaptation. The whole thing has DESIGN written all over it. RM+NS is voodoo crap, IMO.//

    But how do you test this? It sounds like clutching at straws to me.

  25. 25
    DLH says:

    wd400
    I know of no “beneficial” mutations, only some less harmful than others (e.g. sickle cell anemia giving some malarial relief). Consequently my own conservative guestimate of “99.9999999% of mutations are harmful” (note NOT in any referenced paper.)

    paul sussman
    What is the evidence for for “The 50 or so mutations are the ones that are expressly allowed by the DNA repair mechanism”?
    My understanding is that the repair mechanism does not catch and repair all mutations, leaving some to go through.

  26. 26
    bornagain says:

    Of related note: It is almost universally acknowledged that beneficial mutations are rare compared to deleterious mutations

    Multiple Overlapping Genetic Codes Profoundly Reduce the Probability of Beneficial Mutation George Montañez 1, Robert J. Marks II 2, Jorge Fernandez 3 and John C. Sanford 4 – May 2013
    Excerpt: It is almost universally acknowledged that beneficial mutations are rare compared to deleterious mutations [1–10].,, It appears that beneficial mutations may be too rare to actually allow the accurate measurement of how rare they are [11].
    1. Kibota T, Lynch M (1996) Estimate of the genomic mutation rate deleterious to overall fitness in E. coli . Nature 381:694–696.
    2. Charlesworth B, Charlesworth D (1998) Some evolutionary consequences of deleterious mutations. Genetica 103: 3–19.
    3. Elena S, et al (1998) Distribution of fitness effects caused by random insertion mutations in Escherichia coli. Genetica 102/103: 349–358.
    4. Gerrish P, Lenski R N (1998) The fate of competing beneficial mutations in an asexual population. Genetica 102/103:127–144.
    5. Crow J (2000) The origins, patterns, and implications of human spontaneous mutation. Nature Reviews 1:40–47.
    6. Bataillon T (2000) Estimation of spontaneous genome-wide mutation rate parameters: whither beneficial mutations? Heredity 84:497–501.
    7. Imhof M, Schlotterer C (2001) Fitness effects of advantageous mutations in evolving Escherichia coli populations. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 98:1113–1117.
    8. Orr H (2003) The distribution of fitness effects among beneficial mutations. Genetics 163: 1519–1526.
    9. Keightley P, Lynch M (2003) Toward a realistic model of mutations affecting fitness. Evolution 57:683–685.
    10. Barrett R, et al (2006) The distribution of beneficial mutation effects under strong selection. Genetics 174:2071–2079.
    11. Bataillon T (2000) Estimation of spontaneous genome-wide mutation rate parameters: whither beneficial mutations? Heredity 84:497–501.
    http://www.worldscientific.com.....08728_0006

    As well, the evidence for the detrimental nature of mutations in humans is overwhelming.

    Human Genetic Variation Recent, Varies Among Populations – (Nov. 28, 2012)
    Excerpt: Nearly three-quarters of mutations in genes that code for proteins — the workhorses of the cell — occurred within the past 5,000 to 10,000 years,,,
    “One of the most interesting points is that Europeans have more new deleterious (potentially disease-causing) mutations than Africans,”,,,
    “Having so many of these new variants can be partially explained by the population explosion in the European population. However, variation that occur in genes that are involved in Mendelian traits and in those that affect genes essential to the proper functioning of the cell tend to be much older.” (A Mendelian trait is controlled by a single gene. Mutations in that gene can have devastating effects.) The amount variation or mutation identified in protein-coding genes (the exome) in this study is very different from what would have been seen 5,000 years ago,,,
    The report shows that “recent” events have a potent effect on the human genome. Eighty-six percent of the genetic variation or mutations that are expected to be harmful arose in European-Americans in the last five thousand years, said the researchers.
    The researchers used established bioinformatics techniques to calculate the age of more than a million changes in single base pairs (the A-T, C-G of the genetic code) that are part of the exome or protein-coding portion of the genomes (human genetic blueprint) of 6,515 people of both European-American and African-American decent.,,,
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/re.....132259.htm

    In fact, scientists have already cited over 100,000 mutational disorders in humans.

    “Another compilation of gene lesions responsible for inherited diseases is the web-based Human Gene Mutation Database (HGMD). Recent versions of HGMD describe more than 75,000 different disease causing mutations identified to date in Homo-sapiens.”
    John C. Avise – Inside the Human Genome: A Case for Non-Intelligent Design – Pg. 57

    I went to the mutation database website cited by John Avise and found:

    Mutation total (as of Dec. 4, 2015) – 174,999
    http://www.hgmd.cf.ac.uk/ac/

    Dr John Sanford rightly asks, “Where are the beneficial mutations in man?”

    Critic ignores reality of Genetic Entropy – Dr John Sanford – 7 March 2013
    Excerpt: Where are the beneficial mutations in man? It is very well documented that there are thousands of deleterious Mendelian mutations accumulating in the human gene pool, even though there is strong selection against such mutations. Yet such easily recognized deleterious mutations are just the tip of the iceberg. The vast majority of deleterious mutations will not display any clear phenotype at all. There is a very high rate of visible birth defects, all of which appear deleterious. Again, this is just the tip of the iceberg. Why are no beneficial birth anomalies being seen? This is not just a matter of identifying positive changes. If there are so many beneficial mutations happening in the human population, selection should very effectively amplify them. They should be popping up virtually everywhere. They should be much more common than genetic pathologies. Where are they? European adult lactose tolerance appears to be due to a broken lactase promoter [see Can’t drink milk? You’re ‘normal’! Ed.].
    African resistance to malaria is due to a broken hemoglobin protein [see Sickle-cell disease. Also, immunity of an estimated 20% of western Europeans to HIV infection is due to a broken chemokine receptor—see CCR5-delta32: a very beneficial mutation. Ed.] Beneficials happen, but generally they are loss-of-function mutations, and even then they are very rare!
    http://creation.com/genetic-entropy

    Besides losing intelligence due to genetic deterioration, our skulls have been shrinking for the past 30,000 years or so:

    If Modern Humans Are So Smart, Why Are Our Brains Shrinking? – January 20, 2011
    Excerpt: John Hawks is in the middle of explaining his research on human evolution when he drops a bombshell. Running down a list of changes that have occurred in our skeleton and skull since the Stone Age, the University of Wisconsin anthropologist nonchalantly adds, “And it’s also clear the brain has been shrinking.”
    “Shrinking?” I ask. “I thought it was getting larger.” The whole ascent-of-man thing.,,,
    He rattles off some dismaying numbers: Over the past 20,000 years, the average volume of the human male brain has decreased from 1,500 cubic centimeters to 1,350 cc, losing a chunk the size of a tennis ball. The female brain has shrunk by about the same proportion. “I’d call that major downsizing in an evolutionary eyeblink,” he says. “This happened in China, Europe, Africa—everywhere we look.”
    http://discovermagazine.com/20.....-shrinking

    Cro Magnon skull shows that our brains have shrunk – Mar 15, 2010 by Lisa Zyga
    Excerpt: Using new technology, researchers have produced a replica of the 28,000-year-old brain and found that it is about 15-20% larger than our brains.
    http://phys.org/news187877156.html

    To put it mildly, this is NOT the type of evidence that Darwinists need in order for their theory to be considered viable. But this is exactly the type of evidence we would expect to find if Christian Theism were true.

    Verse and Music:

    Luke 2:11
    Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.

    Away in a Manger – Casting Crowns – music
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FnVorT14i4I

  27. 27
    paul sussman says:

    //Of related note: It is almost universally acknowledged that beneficial mutations are rare compared to deleterious mutations//

    I have two that will most likely shorten my life. But I lived long enough to pass them onto my children. Isn’t that all that is required to have certain mutations, even deleterious ones, to become fixed?

  28. 28
    DLH says:

    paul sussman
    Re: “Isn’t that all that is required to have certain mutations . . .become fixed?”
    No. Necessary but insufficient.
    There have to be a sufficient increase in frequency relative to the population else then are diluted out. e.g., inbreeding in Askenazi Jewish populations.
    Or a founder effect.

  29. 29
    Robert Byers says:

    Another crackpot evolutionist idea. Screening people for education is code for controlling what they are allowed to learn and get in life. ITS social eugenics. they never give up.

    Genes are irrelevant to human smarts.
    All human smarts comes from the cirves we grow up in and are motivated by.
    its so logical the results that the rise of Elvis Presley could of been predicted by curves on a graph.

    All the stuff in the gead is better explained as details of the memory operations.
    Thats why no difference between healthy and mental unhealthy people.
    its got nothing to do with brain function but instead memory function.

  30. 30
    Zachriel says:

    paul sussman: I have two that will most likely shorten my life. But I lived long enough to pass them onto my children. Isn’t that all that is required to have certain mutations, even deleterious ones, to become fixed?

    Fixation by drift is very unlikely in humans due to the population bottleneck and subsequent population explosion. However, it may remain in the population almost indefinitely for much the same reason.

    We can presume there is a slight negative selection pressure, because people who die young can provide less help to their offspring and to the offspring of their offspring. Nonetheless, you may end up with many descendants, with the mutations being slowly diluted over time (or mitigated by science). Your great-grandchildren may well migrate to Mars to found a new colony.

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