No, we know… This is not our high school genetics.
From the Salk Institute:
LA JOLLA—Our brains contain a surprising diversity of DNA. Even though we are taught that every cell in our body has the same DNA, in fact most cells in the brain have changes to their DNA that make each neuron a little different.
Now researchers at the Salk Institute and their collaborators have shown that one source of this variation—called long interspersed nuclear elements or L1s—are present in 44 to 63 percent of healthy neurons and can not only insert DNA but also remove it. Previously, these L1s were known to be small bits of DNA called “jumping genes” that copy and paste themselves throughout the genome, but the researchers found that they also cause large deletions of entire genes. What’s more, such variations can influence the expression of genes that are crucial for the developing brain.
The findings, published September 12, 2016 in the journal Nature Neuroscience, may help explain what makes us each unique—why even identical twins can be so different from one other, for example—and how jumping genes can go awry and cause disease.
Gage believes that diversity can be good for the brain—after all, about half of our brain cells have large chunks of missing or inserted DNA caused by L1s alone—but that too much of it can cause disease. More.
See also: Jumping genes? Life continues to ignore what evolution experts say
Follow UD News at Twitter!