Ecologically adapted human mating sans evolution

April 22, 2014 | James Kohl

The evolution of human mating: David Puts at TEDxPSU

Video published on 18 Apr 2014

Description: David Puts discusses the evolution of human mating and reproduction, illustrating how evolutionary biology can help us understand ourselves and each other. Topics include how people compete for and choose mates, men’s care for their children, infidelity, and women’s orgasms (This talk describes explicit sexual content and contains graphic images)

My comment: Reconstructing the DNA Methylation Maps of the Neandertal and the Denisovan‘ provides experimental evidence that links the fossil record to the conserved molecular mechanisms, which enable ecological adaptation in species from microbes to man. Our species has all the hallmarks of nutrient-dependent pheromone-controlled epigenetically-effected differences in morphological and behavioral phenotypes exhibited in other species.

DNA methylation links ecological variation to ecological adaptations in morphology and behavior in the birds and the bees. Thinking like an evolutionist has prevented many researchers from realizing that Darwin’s ‘conditions of life’ are nutrient dependent and that the physiology of reproduction is pheromone-controlled. Some researchers only think in terms of mutations, natural selection, and evolution.

Based on biological facts about differences in archaic and modern human populations, serious scientists have now eliminated evolution and extended the role of ecological variation via DNA methylation to ecological adaptations in a modern human population that supposedly arose in what is now central China during the past ~30,000 years. See, for a 5.5 minute video representation of facts: Nutrient-dependent / Pheromone-controlled adaptive evolution: (a mammalian model of thermodynamics and organism-level thermoregulation).

David Puts is one of the most personable and professional people I have ever met. However, he seems incapable of changing the wrong-headed views he expressed in his review of my 2007 book chapter, Puts wrote (link opens .pdf):

“Kohl marshals supporting evidence, though it is often subject to alternative interpretation. For example, Kohl suggests that exposure to sex pheromones is “the most likely explanation for the recent finding that saliva [testosterone] levels in men increase with exposure to a young woman, but do not increase with exposure to a young man” (p. 327). Is it not likely that the young woman’s appearance raised men’s testosterone levels?

Multiple studies by independent researchers leave little doubt that odor affects human mate choice, but Kohl probably grossly overstates its importance. Why postulate that humans evolved only obligate olfactory/pheromonal preferences?”

My comment: Obviously, I did not “… postulate that humans evolved only obligate olfactory/pheromonal preferences?” In LeVay’s comments about my book chapter, he wrote:

p. 210 “This model is attractive in that it solves the “binding problem” of sexual attraction. By that I mean the problem of why all the different features of men or women (visual appearance and feel of face, body, and genitals; voice quality, smell; personality and behavior, etc.) attract people as a more or less coherent package representing one sex, rather than as an arbitrary collage of male and female characteristics. If all these characteristics come to be attractive because they were experienced in association with a male- or female-specific pheromone, then they will naturally go together even in the absence of complex genetically coded instructions.”

More than 7 years after publication of my award-winning journal article and concurrently published book chapter, what we see in the jokingly cordial but horribly inaccurate video representation by Puts is the regurgitation of theory consistent with portrayals in the decades-old 1993 book “The Red Queen.”  However, see page 265: “The genes for height are really only genes for responding to diet by growing.”

That fact links nutrient-dependent cell type sexual differentiation in yeasts to the pheromone-controlled physiology of human reproduction and behavior via conserved molecular mechanisms. Whether the conserved molecular mechanisms are detailed in the context of hormone-organized and hormone-activated behavioral development in vertebrates or invertebrates, it has become clear that Physiology is rocking the foundations of evolutionary biology.

Unfortunately, Puts is still missing the explanatory power that physiology has added in the context of the biology of behavior. He seems to want evolution to somehow explain something about humans that has consistently been explained in the context of conserved molecular mechanisms that enable food acquisition and mate acquisition associated with food odors and pheromones in every species from yeasts: Signaling Crosstalk: Integrating Nutrient Availability and Sex,  to other mammals: Feedback loops link odor and pheromone signaling with reproduction. Food acquisition must occur in the context of Darwin’s ‘conditions of life’ that lead to metabolism of food to species-specific pheromones that control reproduction.  If anything involved in nutrient-dependent pheromone-controlled reproduction somehow evolved, the conserved molecular mechanisms that enable evolution have not yet been described. If olfactory/pheromonal input in species from microbes to man controls cell type differentiation that leads to differences in morphological and behavioral phenotypes in all other species, which is clear, how could the evolution of anything be responsible for sex differences in ecologically adapted human mating behavior?

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James Vaughn Kohl

James Vaughn Kohl

James Vaughn Kohl was the first to accurately conceptualize human pheromones, and began presenting his findings to the scientific community in 1992. He continues to present to, and publish for, diverse scientific and lay audiences, while constantly monitoring the scientific presses for new information that is relevant to the development of his initial and ongoing conceptualization of human pheromones.