Friday, June 03, 2005
The research itself is amazing, and the result completely baffling - in all my years studying psychology and neuroscience, I can't think of any complex behavior patterns I can remember ever seeing controlled by one gene...Huntington's is caused by a single gene mutation, but that's a very different animal.
What is it? Researchers have found that a single gene alteration makes fruitflies gay. Assuming it's valid, this is a slightly earth-shattering discovery, both in terms of sexuality research and psychobiology in general. While humans are much more complicated than flies, discoveries in flies usually predict discoveries in humans.
UPDATE: John has some really good stuff to say about this. He doesn't want to feel the need to use DNA to get permission to be himself. I agree, now that I've gotten myself all out of the closet and settled in my own skin, but the only hope I have for more "genetic burden" here is that it gets easier for kids. Assuming parents don't start embryo-testing based on gay genes (which is inevitable).