“Ecologists uncover the packages of behaviors and classes of stimuli as they occur in their natural environment, psychologists attempt to link their processing to the rest of cognition, and neuroscientists work on figuring out how the stimuli can be linked to the behaviors by the brain.”

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“Why are rates of schizophrenia and autism higher in males? New evidence implicates an enzyme expressed in the placenta that helps protect the developing fetal brain from adverse effects of maternal stress early in pregnancy.”

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….the gene that makes the enzyme, called OGT, is expressed less in placentas of male than in female offspring. Moreover, OGT was also expressed at relatively lower levels in placentas from stressed mothers. When they looked at evidence of its expression in human placentas, they saw a similar pattern of sex differences…OGT plays a pivotal role in

  • regulating the turning on-and-off of hundreds of brain genes

  • in protecting the developing brain from insults.

  • …OGTplaces male fetuses at a disadvantage in adapting to environmental changes – a possible mechanism underlying males’ increased vulnerability to enduring effects of maternal stress on brain development.

“It is interesting and indeed pathetic to observe how long a discovery of priceless value to humanity may be hidden away, or rather lie openly revealed, before the final and apparently obvious step is taken towards its practical application.”

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John Tyndall (1881) on opposition to anesthesia during surgery.

“A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it.”

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German physicist Max Planck

“There has never been…any example of an historic medical advance that now is widely accepted without a delay of at least 40 years (usually longer) …”

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“There has never been, claims one historian of medicine,1 any example of an historic medical advance that now is widely accepted (like the germ theory of disease, or anesthetic surgery, or disproof of the efficacy of bleeding for pneumonia, or washing hands before delivery of a baby, or widespread antibiotic use) without a delay of at least 40 years (usually longer) between the presence of sufficient scientific evidence and widespread acceptance by the medical community.

How long is 40 years? Two generations of human beings.

The rule of thumb, proven by science and history, is that current generations always reject new truths.”

“No part of the brain works alone….”

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“No part of the brain works alone. Neither the cerebellum nor the hippocampus — the two areas where the future verbal geniuses showed such strong development — is considered crucial for speech. Neuroscientists typically link our language skills with areas much higher in the brain, which evolved millions of years after the two culprits in this study. Even our most advanced mental skills, it seems, depend on brain structures more ancient than the dinosaurs.”

We Know, Effectively, Nothing About Behavior – Let’s Admit

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Take Away – Time to accept that we know a little bit about behavior — but not much.  But at least we are on the path to finally have a fact and evidence-basis for future work.

We Have No Idea What Drives Behavior and What We’re Sure Does – Probably Doesn’t
I have a radical, but sensible (evidence-based), proposition – most of our ideas (all?) about human behavior are wrong and obsolete.

Brain research changes everything — just like the telescope and accurate data about celestial bodies did centuries ago — and attacked by everyone, especially those in power.  The average curious HS student knows more about brain >behaviors then Aristotle, Descartes, Kant, Adam Smith, Einstein and all the great midst of the past — combined.

We have to accept that pretty much everything academics, businesses, marketers, policy, ideology, intuition and pop beliefs preaches and follows is just dead wrong.  This probably also includes accepted psychology, economics (of course), sociology, anthropology, political science, cognitive theory, etc.  Throw it all out.  Continue reading