/ Is memory genetic?

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The Ice Doctor - on 17 Jul 2017
My neighbour thinks it is.

He is an engineer, 70 odd, and believes any 'imprints, memories from supposed former live victims (use the word loosely) are genetically gained'

Your thoughts?
Lusk - on 17 Jul 2017
In reply to The Ice Doctor:

If you, or he, is saying having a good memory or a good capacity at remembering things, is genetic, then probably yes it probably is.

If you, or he, is saying actual memories are passed on through genes, WELL ....!
JimR - on 17 Jul 2017
In reply to Lusk:

http://www.nature.com/news/fearful-memories-haunt-mouse-descendants-1.14272

there certainly seems to be such a thing as inherited memory.
Stichtplate on 17 Jul 2017
In reply to The Ice Doctor:
If I remember correctly, my grandfather thought so.

Edit: and his grandfather before him.it's all coming back now .

Post edited at 19:00
summo on 17 Jul 2017
In reply to The Ice Doctor:

They think phobias and fears of dangerous things like spiders or snakes are inherited, as it's a trait that has kept people alive long enough to pass on those genes.
Robert Durran - on 17 Jul 2017
In reply to summo:

Yes, I love the fact that a small Inuit child will instinctively recoil from a snake but not a Polar Bear.
Rob Exile Ward on 17 Jul 2017
In reply to The Ice Doctor:

Jack London (of 'Call of the Wild' fame) had the same theory. He overcooked it, and I think your neighbour has too.

Fact of the matter is, some of our fears and phobias will be genetic and hard wired, they will have accumulated since the first organic chemicals started replicating. But there will be the full spectrum of responses from 'this is an entirely learned phobia' (such as stepping in front of a train) to 'this is entirely innate and hard wired' (such as jumping into a fire.)
snoop6060 - on 17 Jul 2017
In reply to The Ice Doctor:

It's a very interesting question, which I don't know the answer (obviously) but have thought about quite a bit oddly. Fact is we don't know enough about the human brain and memory to know. But you could speculate that if its possible to pass on memory (well knowledge / learning of some sort) it surely would provide an evolutionary advantage making it quite likely. And may go some way to explain inate behaviour.



Dave - on 17 Jul 2017
In reply to The Ice Doctor:

Epigenetic.... perhaps. Things like DNA methylation.
Oliver Houston - on 18 Jul 2017
In reply to The Ice Doctor:

> He is an engineer, 70 odd, and believes any 'imprints, memories from supposed former live victims (use the word loosely) are genetically gained'

WTF are supposed former lives victims?

If genetic, they would have to be inherited from your parents/ancestors.

Define memory, things like phobias are sort of instinctive behaviours. A memory of ancestors sitting around a fire grunting and hitting things with rocks would be a bit more interesting.

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stubbed on 18 Jul 2017
In reply to The Ice Doctor:

Fear of spiders or whatever is taught. You are taught by your parents. That's why whole families are not scared of them: it is not passed on by a gene controlling fear.
krikoman - on 18 Jul 2017
In reply to The Ice Doctor:
Look up Epigenetics, there's all sorts or weird stuff


Edit: sorry just seen someone else has posted similar.
Post edited at 09:50
Kemics - on 18 Jul 2017
In reply to The Ice Doctor:

It's also interesting that so many (all?) small children complain of a fear that something with teeth will eat them. Considering if they live in a western city that's a strange fear to have over any other.
purplemonkeyelephant - on 18 Jul 2017
In reply to The Ice Doctor:

How do animals know how to have sex? It's not like they had sexual health classes or an awkward talk with their parents.
planetmarshall on 18 Jul 2017
In reply to snoop6060:

> Fact is we don't know enough about the human brain and memory to know.

This is definitely not a fact.

planetmarshall on 18 Jul 2017
In reply to krikoman:

> Look up Epigenetics, there's all sorts or weird stuff

There is. There's also a lot of pseudoscientific waffle.

https://www.theguardian.com/science/2015/jul/19/epigenetics-dna--darwin-adam-rutherford
Philip on 18 Jul 2017
In reply to purplemonkeyelephant:

> How do animals know how to have sex? It's not like they had sexual health classes or an awkward talk with their parents.

By watching birds and bees.
wercat on 18 Jul 2017
In reply to The Ice Doctor:
genetic structures can definitely be used as memory

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-40585299


if you have the means to read and decode
Post edited at 12:15
Oliver Houston - on 18 Jul 2017
In reply to planetmarshall:
> Fact is we don't know enough about the human brain and memory to know.

> This is definitely not a fact.

Really? Please enlighten all the neuroscientists who are saying there's still massive areas of the brain and pathways to be investigated before we can "know" how the brain really works.

There's currently some very good, plausible theories as to how memory works, but not a whole lot of proof yet.

Also, are we talking about behaviours here or memories? I'm still unsure as to what Ice's neighbour is talking about? Although he probably doesn't either.
snoop6060 - on 18 Jul 2017
In reply to planetmarshall:

Well I can't prove it I guess, so I'll let you have that one
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DubyaJamesDubya - on 18 Jul 2017
In reply to Kemics:

Hardly surprising that a fear of snakes can be past on but memories of complex events I don't buy.
The Ice Doctor - on 18 Jul 2017
In reply to Oliver Houston:
You may be right. I am not sure my neighbour is entirely sure what he is on about. Basically he think that memories are passed on genetically.

Past life victims, are people who claim to have memories from past lives. Don't mock the fact that there are a lot of people who believe in rebirths, reincarnation. Half of Asia might be placed into this category.
Post edited at 15:50
Oliver Houston - on 18 Jul 2017
In reply to The Ice Doctor:

I wasn't intending to mock it, just never heard of one before. There's definitely a lot of stuff we don't understand, I'd argue that a memory that is somehow inherited isn't really a memory, but somehow an innate knowledge, or something.
Robert Durran - on 18 Jul 2017
In reply to stubbed:

> Fear of spiders or whatever is taught. You are taught by your parents. That's why whole families are not scared of them: it is not passed on by a gene controlling fear.

Eh....... saying that something runs in families is hardly an argument against it being genetic! Fear of snakes is genetic. Don't know about spiders.
planetmarshall on 19 Jul 2017
In reply to Oliver Houston:

> Really? Please enlighten all the neuroscientists who are saying there's still massive areas of the brain and pathways to be investigated before we can "know" how the brain really works.

Which neuroscientists, specifically, have said that we don't know enough about how memory works to know that it isn't genetically inherited? As far as epigenetics is concerned, the results and mechanisms so far observed have only persisted across a couple of generations, which would not be sufficient to have any significant effect on evolutionary development.


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