Category Archives: Epigenetics

January 09

Can we inherit family trauma?

The epigenetics behind “generational trauma” [En español] The 23 and Me craze has officially reached my family. Both of my parents were born in Poland, so the results haven’t been too surprising, but as we watched the site track generations of family history from a single spit sample, new questions came up. So when my […]

December 19

Genomic Imprinting: A Genetic Custody Dispute for Your Brain

During this holiday season, we would do well to reflect on what we’ve inherited from our parents. You might have your mother’s sense of humor but your father’s sense of direction. You and your Ma might share the same tastes in music, but you prefer your Pa’s tastes for ice cream. Although heavily influenced by […]

July 26

A Neuroscience Perspective on the Lifelong Consequences of Detaining Kids at the Border

[En español] If you’ve been even partially tuned in to the news over the last few months, you’ve heard about the gut-wrenching separation of children from their parents at the United States border and the detainment centers where these children have been held. You may have seen pictures of young kids in cages, been watching when […]

May 31

The Rise and Fall and Rise of Genetic Memory

We are all products of our past, for better or for worse. At first glance, such a statement seems so obvious it hardly bears mentioning; our earlier experiences, both our successes and our failures, shape our current behavior.  But dig just a bit deeper, and it becomes far murkier. What can you call your past? […]

March 28

Genetically programmed, but with options

This is a guest post by Adam Calhoun (@neuroecology), a very talented science writer and fellow member of UCSD Neurosciences.  Australia has been having a problem with discarded beer bottles. It turns out that the Australian Jewel Beetle finds these bottles so attractive that they will mate with them until they die from dehydration. The bottles, […]

February 13

Oxytocin, bonding, and breastfeeding

Valentine’s Day is a time for expressing love, and while its title may initially conjure up socially normative images of candle-lit dinners, long-stemmed roses, and canoodling with a romantic partner, I’d like to take this opportunity to talk about the kind of love that prevents our species from dying out: that of a mother and […]