Alternative splicing: nutrient-dependent and pheromone-controlled
October 3, 2013 | James Kohl
Alternative RNA Splicing in Evolution by Jon Lieff (Dec. 2012)
Excerpt 1: “Alternative splicing is most advanced and rapidly developed in the evolution of the human being. In fact, alternative RNA splicing appears to be a strong determinant of the evolution of the human being.:
My comment: In our 1996 Hormones and Behavior review section on molecular epigenetics, we (i.e., TB) wrote:” Yet another kind of epigenetic imprinting occurs in species as diverse as yeast, Drosophila, mice, and humans and is based upon small DNA-binding proteins called “chromo domain” proteins, e.g., polycomb. These proteins affect chromatin structure, often in telomeric regions, and thereby affect transcription and silencing of various genes… Small intranuclear proteins also participate in generating alternative splicing techniques of pre-mRNA and, by this mechanism, contribute to sexual differentiation in at least two species, Drosophila melanogaster and Caenorhabditis elegans… That similar proteins perform functions in humans suggests the possibility that some human sex differences may arise from alternative splicings of otherwise identical genes.”
My comment: The regulation of alternative splicing is obviously and unequivocally nutrient-dependent and pheromone-controlled. It does not involve mutations and cannot be mutation-driven. That idea is simple-minded and ridiculous in the context of the “…interlocking complex processes” mentioned by Dr. Lieff.
Two mutations that simultaneously occur would obviously be required for each interlocking complex process involved in evolution throughout the required ecological, social, neurogenic, and socio-cognitive niche construction that led Dr. Lieff to ask the question: Where is the regulation for all of this? The regulation is nutrient-dependent and pheromone-controlled and model organisms across species exemplify that fact in my model of adaptive evolution.
Dr. Lieff and others should thank Teresa Binstock for her prescient insight into the obvious causal mechanisms of adaptive evolution via alternative splicings, and stop ignoring her contributions. They could then proceed to move forward from her insight that alternative splicings are the basis for sex differences in the brain and behavior. Suddenly, others might then realize that the nutrient-dependent alternative splicings and sex differences enable pheromone-controlled adaptive evolution in all species that sexually reproduce, beginning with sexual reproduction in yeast. I reitterate: TB wrote:” Yet another kind of epigenetic imprinting occurs in species as diverse as yeast, Drosophila, mice, and humans…