Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Possible Monogamy Gene Found In People

kdawson posted more than 5 years ago | from the walking-the-line dept.

Biotech 440

Calopteryx sends in a New Scientist summary of research from Sweden pointing toward the existence of a gene that influences monogamy in men. (The article doesn't mention women, and the study subjects were all men at least 5 years into a heterosexual relationship.) "There has been speculation about the role of the hormone vasopressin in humans ever since we discovered that variations in where receptors for the hormone are expressed makes prairie voles strictly monogamous but meadow voles promiscuous; vasopressin is related to the 'cuddle chemical' oxytocin. Now it seems variations in a section of the gene coding for a vasopressin receptor in people help to determine whether men are serial commitment-phobes or devoted husbands."

cancel ×

440 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

George Clooney dubs it: (5, Funny)

Kingrames (858416) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847761)

The pussy gene.

Re:George Clooney dubs it: (-1, Offtopic)

ginbot462 (626023) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847971)

This was going to be a:
        Sad news ... Don LaFontaine, dead at 68
But, it turns out that's true.

In a world where people are controlled by a facist goverment ... Becky Staylacey
and Bob Gonaway run for their lives. Having chips implanted in them after the
Korean War II: Total Nuclear Achievemnt, they struggle to find one to bring them
peace. At the newly constructed Freedom tower in NYC, they find one called only
ver. 13.0.0.0.0 who knows the secrets of the chips. Turns out megacoorp YahM00$
and GoogZilla (formally Boobworks) implemented different derivations on a
standards on supposedly redundant identity chips. Having one chip meet the other
results in a complete meltdown. Ooops. Spoiler alert.

Re:George Clooney dubs it: (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848475)

The pussy gene is typically found in people with XX chromosomes and prominently displayed in XXX movies.

Re:George Clooney dubs it: (4, Funny)

Sponge Bath (413667) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848719)

Of course.
Those in monogamous relationships get sex on demand and home cooked meals!

All my married friends tell me that.

Re:George Clooney dubs it: (2, Funny)

megaditto (982598) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848733)

You joke now, but once they come up with a DIY test kit for "multiple cunt personality" genetic, guess what type of men will get all the pussy?

Disablites Act (3, Funny)

JohnHegarty (453016) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847771)

Anyone want to start suggesting a relevant text for the update to the americans with disabilities act

Re:Disablites Act (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848085)

Or perhaps the non-discrimination act?

Re:Disablites Act (5, Funny)

Adriax (746043) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848177)

"No really babe, I've got a mutation in my monogamy gene. I HAVE to sleep around, or I'll die."

Re:Disablites Act (1)

tcolberg (998885) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848685)

"No honey, it's not what it seems! She's the physical therapist for my genetic handicap!"

Re:Disablites Act (1)

Gat0r30y (957941) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848365)

Wait, for the poor dudes who can't sleep around right?

Re:Disablites Act (1)

DriedClexler (814907) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848423)

You know, we may joke about this, but it's serious. People who are socially inept are certainly discriminated against, but the legislatures and Congress don't seem to be in the same hurry to pass laws against such discrimination. Which in turn, is due to a public that is indifferent to the suffering of such people. And no, it's not something that's easy to change: people are are socially *competent* don't realize that some things come naturally to them but not others.

(And yes, I know you can say that being socially inept can hinder the "synergy" in groups and therefore this "discrimination" is totally justified. But then, the fact that the current group is white racists doesn't suffice as a reason not to hire blacks, does it?)

Fortunately, when oxytocin is available through a prescription, problems like this can be treated.

Re:Disablites Act (4, Insightful)

The End Of Days (1243248) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848665)

The day nerds become a protected subspecies is the day I give up on humanity.

Hhhmm, (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24847811)

Shouldn't evolution sided with either monogamy or polygamy? I mean even if there is only a one percent difference between the successor rates should that have not been reflected by now?

Re:Hhhmm, (1)

fictionpuss (1136565) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847995)

Dawkins argues against this. You're talking about genetic evolution competing with social evolution via memes and reproducing at a much faster rate.

Re:Hhhmm, (4, Insightful)

EnergyScholar (801915) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848027)

Just as a guess, which strategy works better (from a 'survival of the genes' perspective) probably varies in different circumstances. This would explain why neither gene sequence has dominated.

Re:Hhhmm, (1)

Vectronic (1221470) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848067)

You gotta fuck it out of the system first, and there is a hell of a lot of people on the planet, plus it could be on the rise in one country/area, or in decline in another.

You also have to factor in things like society, which can promote monogamy one decade, and not the next, and many will listen to that rather than themselves which would eventually promote one or the other, even if only in small strains, unless there was a food/water shortage, etc.

Re:Hhhmm, (1)

moderatorrater (1095745) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848075)

No, because there are situations where both are extremely valuable. In an environment where men are getting killed quite frequently, polygamy makes the most evolutionary sense. In an environment where men and women die at roughly the same rate, then monogamy makes sense, since this allows the man to concentrate more fully on one woman and her offspring. With one wife, men can have more than 10 kids quite easily. With multiple wives, having ten kids per wife is a huge drain on resources.

Thus, in a situation where the men tend to hunt and fight with local tribes while the women do the gathering and take care of the babies, polygamy makes sense. In our current society, monogamy makes more sense.

Re:Hhhmm, (5, Funny)

bonehead (6382) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848235)

In our current society, monogamy makes more sense.

Until you see the hot little redhead that just moved in across the street from me. Then polygamy starts looking pretty damn good again.

Re:Hhhmm, (4, Insightful)

Millennium (2451) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848127)

Shouldn't evolution sided with either monogamy or polygamy? I mean even if there is only a one percent difference between the successor rates should that have not been reflected by now?

If monogamy or the lack thereof were genetic and there were an evolutionary advantage to either strategy, then you're right: that should have been reflected in the general population.

Since it doesn't seem to be, that would seem to indicate that perhaps there is no evolutionary advantage to either side. With no advantage, there is no pressure for humanity to tend in one direction or the other. That could yield a pattern closer to what we are seeing now.

Re:Hhhmm, (4, Informative)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848185)

No. It shouldn't have, because either strategy can lend itself to evolutionary success for men.

If you're a powerful man, polygamy is an excellent strategy. You want to be impregnating every woman you can get your hands on, and you can by force and/or intimidation (among other motivators). Genghis Khan is an exemplar of this (at least according to one study that something like 6% of the world's men are his descendants). With that many kids, you don't need to invest very much in making sure each kid survives long enough to reproduce.

If you're a powerless man, then your best strategy is monogamy: you aim to have one woman who you reproduce with, and devote lots of time and energy into making sure that those kids survive. This leads to the nerds who will love a woman forever and stick with her through sickness and health.

If you're somewhere in between on the power scale, then the strategy seems to be pretending monogamy while having at least one mistress on the side. The theory here is that you get the greater number of kids and genetic variation from having more partners, but a fallback position of the kids from your "monogamous" relationship. Hence middle-management types cheating on their wives.

Re:Hhhmm, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848701)

according to one study that something like 6% of the world's men are his descendants

And none of his descendants are women?

Re:Hhhmm, (1)

Beorytis (1014777) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848773)

Well, none of his female descendents have his Y-chromosome to prove it.

Re:Hhhmm, (1)

conspirator57 (1123519) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848753)

"If you're somewhere in between on the power scale, then the strategy seems to be pretending monogamy while having at least one mistress on the side. The theory here is that you get the greater number of kids and genetic variation from having more partners, but a fallback position of the kids from your "monogamous" relationship. Hence middle-management types cheating on their wives."

Rationalizing your behavior? :p

Re:Hhhmm, (3, Insightful)

Hatta (162192) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848779)

And the women, they're looking for a powerful man to knock them up, and a nice dedicated man to stick with her and raise a family.

Re:Hhhmm, (4, Interesting)

geekgirlandrea (1148779) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848285)

Because which strategy works better would depend on what strategy everyone else in the local population is following. You end up with an stable equilibrium proportion where both strategies work equally well, all things being equal, but if you perturb it slightly the one becomes slightly more advantageous than the other and reproduces faster until the equilibrium is restored.

Re:Hhhmm, (3, Informative)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848421)

Interesting question. The answer, though, is more interesting still: various flavors of "not necessarily".

The adaptive value of a trait can and does vary depending on its environment and the environment is different depending on how common the trait is. For traits having to do with deception, you tend to see some sort of equilibrium. Typically, a naive and honest population does better than a dishonest and suspicious one, because they don't waste resources on deception and deception detection. If, however, a lone cheater shows up in a naive and honest population, the cheater will do extraordinarily well. This will cause cheating to increase in frequency, and will create a selective pressure in favor of being able to detect cheaters. Sometimes, the cheaters tip the balance, and a naive and honest population becomes a suspicious and deceptive one, sometimes cheater detection is good enough to wipe out the cheaters, and often the two traits find an equilibrium point. The suspicion required to eliminate all cheaters will be too costly to be adaptive; but cheating will only work sometimes, and on a limited scale.

With the possible exception of simple deleterious mutations, traits are not absolutely better or worse, their value depends on their environment, and their environment depends in part on them. Just looking at the values of the traits at the beginning isn't good enough, you need to use a game theory approach, and look at the value of the traits across repeated rounds.

Re:Hhhmm, (1)

joelwyland (984685) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848655)

No, it wouldn't. Neither has shown itself to be the clear winner. I'd assume that women are more likely to choose a dependable monogamist as their mate. However (and please forgive the potentially bad imagery), the "shotgun" approach to mating with women will make up in volume what is lost in a lower individual success rate.

A whole new round of testing (5, Funny)

TXISDude (1171607) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847813)

I see a whole brave new world of testing before pre-nuptials . . . But, if I have a defective gene, will that qualify me as handicapped under something like ADA? Will there be a high risk pool that I will be forced to "date" out of? So many questions . . .

Re:A whole new round of testing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848325)

God I hope so. It would rock to be able to weed out the women that are insanely monogmous. I just wish they found a test to find the ones that are the nymphos or find a way to do gene therapy to create nymphos. too many women are incredibly uptight about sex and should be into it far more than they are.

The pretty barbie that dont put out is a crime against nature. but then I love the average girl that is extra freaky and cant get enough... Those kick the shit out of a extra pretty girl any day. I'll take a flat ass that puts out over a perfect ass you cant touch every time.

Re:A whole new round of testing (4, Funny)

joelwyland (984685) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848715)

After reading your post, it's clear to me why you are having trouble finding a woman who is willing to let you touch it.

And the Slashdot Gene (5, Funny)

MyLongNickName (822545) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847815)

which renders someone unable to get any at all.

Re:And the Slashdot Gene (4, Funny)

smitty_one_each (243267) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847885)

And with this post, the discourse, if not the intercourse, was won.

Re:And the Slashdot Gene (4, Funny)

pilgrim23 (716938) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847903)

Honestly; would ANYONE want to cuddle a meadow vole?
Too much time, large research grant on their hands...

Re:And the Slashdot Gene (4, Insightful)

lena_10326 (1100441) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848257)

And like winning the lottery twice, the slashdot men that do marry are quite unlikely to find another. A predisposition for involuntary celibacy is a predictor for monogomy.

Re:And the Slashdot Gene (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848395)

Yeah. Oxycontin? Vasopresin? Fuck that shit. I find smack and the occasional gram or two of shitty south-London coke make a far more effective cure for the misery of every-day life as a fucked up computer nerd with no life outside work. (Disclaimer: heroin is bad for you. If you become addicted to it, you will undoubtedly wish you had never tried it in the first place -- unless you get a golden hit first time, and never get through that saggy-lidded, vacant smile coton wool floaty bit to the shivers, cramps, insomnia and depression waiting for you on the other side, well "good luck to you" say I. I just bought a book on global warming that's really convinced me that the best thing we can do is to remove ourselves from the planet as painlessly as possible.) Anyway, for more tips on "how to hold down a well-paid corporate job whilst battering your brain with Class A drugs once a month, reply to this post. Junkie Hacker is waiting for your call!

Great!!! [whatever] Control pills (5, Funny)

starglider29a (719559) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847839)

In the early 60's we got birth control pills, which (some say) facilitated women being promiscuous. Now, we have 'husband control pills'

What happens if we miss a day? Do we take two then next and use alternate husband control methods. -- Sarcasm transmits across TCP/IP as well as it does other media

Re:Great!!! [whatever] Control pills (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848261)

Wrong way around. The gene controls whether men get the receptors necessary or not. That means it may be possible to create a pill for men to ignore the compulsion. Which, I guess, is pretty good news for us, even if it's absolutely terrible for women.

But seeing as vasopressin is also used to control water content of our bodies, taking such a drug would likely risk kidney failure, strokes, and other really nasty side effects.

Re:Great!!! [whatever] Control pills (3, Funny)

thermian (1267986) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848333)

In the early 60's we got birth control pills, which (some say) facilitated women being promiscuous. Now, we have 'husband control pills'

What happens if we miss a day? Do we take two then next and use alternate husband control methods.

Well to be safe you'd need to avoid monogamy for at least a month after missing a pill...

Re:Great!!! [whatever] Control pills (1)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848405)

It may be cheaper then a divorce.
However like most genes they give a tendency not the actual action. Men can be monogamous for life, even without that gene, because of free will, cultural norms, religious beliefs, finding an other woman is much to hard, etc... Also the inverse can be true men with the gene could be a lying cheating guy, while the gene may make him connect to one it doesn't stop him to try for others.

Dangers I can see is taking a genetic test say before marriage and men without the genes will just be dumped on the spot.

Danger? What danger!? (1)

starglider29a (719559) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848521)

Dangers I can see is taking a genetic test say before marriage and men without the genes will just be dumped on the spot.

Heck, I could see men DEMANDING such a test, for the very same reason.

More like ocycotin (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24847841)

This was going to be a:
        Sad news ... Don LaFontaine, dead at 68
But, it turns out that's true.

In a world where people are controlled by a fascist government ... Becky Staylacey
and Bob Gonaway run for their lives. Having chips implanted in them after the
Korean War II: Total Nuclear Achievement, they struggle to find one to bring them
peace. At the newly constructed Freedom tower in NewNYC, they find one called
only ver. 13.0.0.0.0 who knows the secrets of the chips. Turns out megacorp
YahM00$ and GoogZilla (formally Boobworks) implemented different derivations on
a standard on supposedly redundant identity chips. Having one chip meet the
other results in a complete meltdown. Ooops. Spoiler alert.

Gene also known to recede (5, Funny)

dedazo (737510) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847855)

When confronted by large quantities of beer protein.

Not always a gene... (5, Funny)

Leomania (137289) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847879)

In my case, it's a "Martha" that has the greatest influence over my monogamous inclinations.

Re:Not always a gene... (1)

MyLongNickName (822545) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848079)

Does she take your balls out of her purse every once in a while to let you know what they look like? ;)

Re:Not always a gene... (1)

jbeaupre (752124) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848403)

Knowing our cat missed his (always looking for them), we put a pair of 1/4" galvanized nuts on his collar. Didn't have brass ones to give him. But he seemed just as happy.

Gave us a laugh every time we'd hear him jingling down the hall. And luckily my wife never suggested we do the same to me.

Interesting story... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24847891)

I know a guy from Africa who is married, but he told me that if it were legal in my country, he would have NO LESS THAN FOUR AND UP TO TEN (10) WIVES. I don't know if his wife knows about this...and he flirts with other women a lot. I couldn't understand why anyone could possibly want so many wives (he says "Yes it is more stress but also more benefits"), but now it's pretty obvious his monogamy genes are totally missing.

I think (1)

ArhcAngel (247594) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847899)

I think my monogamy gene is recessive.

Jumping the gun (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24847999)

Wait until after you've had sex to make that call.

how about... (0, Flamebait)

elvesrus (71218) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847953)

letting women be 'people' too?

Further finding not mentioned in the summary (2, Funny)

thermian (1267986) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847955)

They also found that geeks tended to possess just half of this gene, which researchers postulate may explain their lack of ability to get a girlfriend.

i don't believe it (3, Interesting)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847957)

monogamy in general seems to be a mirage

there are of course places in the world where polygamy is openly accepted, but in places where monogamy dominates publicly, everyone is polygamous in secret

and i am talking about men AND women. male polygamy gets more attention only because male polygamy is more public, male sexuality full of more bravado. women are just better at keeping secrets

and it makes perfect sense for men and women. men for for the obvious ability to spread more genes, and women for access to more resources, or simply to get better genes in secret than the genes of the publicly acknowledged mate (it has been speculated something like 10% of children before the era of genetic testing were raised by fathers who weren't really their genetic fathers)

i think that any gene that regulates vasopressin simply regulates how discrete or not discrete a male is going about being secretly or openly polygamous

there is just too much incentive, genetically, to spread your seed as wide as possible, no matter what

Re:i don't believe it (2, Insightful)

DoofusOfDeath (636671) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848049)

monogamy in general seems to be a mirage

Are you saying that it doesn't exist, or that it's just rarer than we pretend?

Consider that if ~ 50% of married people are adulterous, then there's a huge fraction (~ 50%) who are monogamous.

Re:i don't believe it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848073)

Just because your girlfriend cheated on you doesn't mean all of humanity is unfaithful to their significant others.

Re:i don't believe it (2, Insightful)

Altus (1034) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848219)

Just because someone has the desire to be non-monogamous does not mean that they cheat on their significant others.

Re:i don't believe it (1)

Amouth (879122) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848343)

no.. but it doesn't mean that alot of humanity wants to be unfaithful.. or would be if they could get away with it.

we do it all the time with other gene's.. for example i have several genetic diseases that if it wasn't for the advances in medicine would render me dead before i was 1 year old.

Re:i don't believe it (1)

Millennium (2451) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848163)

there is just too much incentive, genetically, to spread your seed as wide as possible, no matter what

Unless, perhaps, there is not. You make many assumptions based on this core idea that polygamy is some kind of natural tendency, and you have some interesting hypotheses to back it up, but the data doesn't seem to back you.

Re:i don't believe it (1)

FireStormZ (1315639) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848195)

"there is just too much incentive, genetically, to spread your seed as wide as possible, no matter what"

There is the matter of quality over quantity. If you spread your genes so far and wide that they are doomed to die or be at a disadvantage because they are lacking in support is that better than fewer more cared for who will almost certainly themselves go on to breed.

Re:i don't believe it (1)

MozeeToby (1163751) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848551)

While I disagree with the GP post, I can't really agree with you either.

If you spread your genes so far and wide that they are doomed to die or be at a disadvantage because they are lacking in support is that better than fewer more cared for who will almost certainly themselves go on to breed.

The answer, is yes if you can have both. If a man can have many anonomous affairs with little to no cost as well as raise a traditional and stable family, then they are genetically better off to do so. Of course, you can argue that there are risks involved in adultery, such as your wife leaving you and so on.

Re:i don't believe it (1)

owlnation (858981) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848227)

I completely agree. Concepts of love have varied greatly from culture to culture and historically throughout the same culture.

The Hollywood/Hallmark monogamous view of love is a relatively modern invention. Historically people have tended to marry for practical reasons, and dowry was a big factor in the west (and still is in many cultures). Marriage has historically been a business transaction, not an emotional one.

This "study" is just yet another example of correlation-does-not-equal-causation -- an ever more frequent trend in so-called "science" research.

I don't believe a word of it either.

Damn that love thing ..... (3, Insightful)

tinkerghost (944862) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848585)

One researcher found that the overwhelming contribution to the increased rate of divorce is the modern concept of marriage for love instead of position/wealth. The current divorce trend is simply the end result of a curve started in the years following the civil war.

So if these conservatives want to go back to an idyllic time with low divorce & happy families - I say bring back arranged marriages.

Re:i don't believe it (1)

Das Modell (969371) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848241)

I've never had the slightest interest in anything except strict monogamy.

Re:i don't believe it (4, Funny)

Gat0r30y (957941) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848451)

I've never had the slightest interest in anything except strict monogamy.

You sir, lack imagination.

Re:i don't believe it (1)

courteaudotbiz (1191083) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848335)

I go exactly in your line of thinking. Basically, humans are animals that can think (sometimes it's good, sometimes not...). So for a specie to survive, it has to reproduce as much as it can, and this is WHY sex is fun and gives great pleasure. You imagine where humanity would be if sex was not fun?

The only reason why monogamy appeared is because of jaleous, unconfident males who could not accept that their mate go elsewhere and find more satisfaction in a relationship. So monogamy is no more than a social behavior, not genetic in our case. On the other hand, it COULD be possible that some genetics link two "animals" together, since according to some studies [wikipedia.org] , 90 percent of birds are monogamous, while 7 percent of mammals are. (By the way, aren't we mammals?) It is still not proven that genetics has something to do with monogamy, since it is still considered a social evolution rather than something inherited.

Easy to spot the folks without the gene... (2, Funny)

scott792283 (800957) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847965)

just watch Jeremy Kyle.

That is good, but this one would be more helpful (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24847981)

help to determine whether men are serial commitment-phobes or devoted husbands.

Now if they could find the gene that will help determine whether a woman will still put out after you get married...

I guess this means.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24847997)

The LDS is a church for mutants.... :D

gene therapy and evolution (1)

sckeener (137243) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848003)

I heard about this a few years ago...I wonder how long it'll be before spouses are asking science to do gene therapy to fix their loved one.

grrr...as much as I believe cheating is bad for everyone involved, there has got to be evolutionary reasons why their are differences and fixing everyone to one type sounds like a dumb idea as a species.

Re:gene therapy and evolution (1)

plasmacutter (901737) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848145)

overspecialization leads inevitably to destruction of a species.

One of the reasons we've been so successful across the globe is we ourselves are generalists, and we specialize only in our tools.

if we start to breed out the "jocks", "nerds", "heretics", or "conformists", we will start to have problems.

Diversity is important, even if it leads to disagreement.

Oxytocin? (5, Funny)

ThanatosMinor (1046978) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848011)

That's not the cuddle chemical we used when I was in college

bold? (0, Flamebait)

InvisblePinkUnicorn (1126837) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848591)

That's not the style we used when I learned about emphasis in English.

Re:Oxytocin? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848633)

Yeah.. I think it was "Oxycontin"

Junk Science (0, Flamebait)

ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848021)

These studies are usually more dubious, and of less value than an average humanities paper. Should we really be calling them science?

Junk Science is a problem. A big problem. The media loves these trite little findings, but dubious correlations based on statistical quackery, and experimental fecklessness will ultimately drag the standing of science further and further into the gutter. Maybe that's not the case for this particular study.... But I doubt it!

There are far worthier projects that professionals could be spending their time and money on. Maybe they won't get your study featured next to the horoscopes and crosswords in every daily rag across the globe, but they will be of benefit to the progress of humanity. If this means that you as a scientist will actually have to do some real work investigating genomes of pathogens or plants instead of interviewing people about their feelings and feeding their swab data into a matlab script, then my heart bleeds for you.

Re:Junk Science (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848577)

Does something about this particular paper raise your suspicion, or is it just a chance to take a swipe at a general phenomenon that annoys you?

While this paper looks rather preliminary, it looks like a sound test of expectations developed through prior research in animal behavior and genetics. A good deal of "hard" work poking at the gene and its effects in animals already exists, isn't it perfectly logical to attempt to apply the existing data to humans?

Oh great.. one more test to take! (3, Funny)

Pontiac (135778) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848037)

Now your GF/Wife will want you to take the "Cheating bastard" DNA test too.

Re:Oh great.. one more test to take! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848531)

Now your GF/Wife will want you to take the "Cheating bastard" DNA test too.

Why? To weed out nice guys with greater accuracy?

so is cheatin' genetic, too? (2, Informative)

jollyreaper (513215) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848121)

Definitions

Polygamy: one too many wives

Monogamy: see "Polygamy"

Ooooh oxyTOCin (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848175)

I somehow misread that as 'oxycontin' and thought "Aw, Rush Limbaugh just needs a hug!"

No Monogamy Gene (3, Interesting)

eebra82 (907996) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848225)

I seriously doubt that humans were holding on to each other for lifetimes before the dawn of religions. After all, the whole idea of staying together forever and ever is all taken from a few books that people wrote hundreds of years ago.

Let's say that we go 10,000 years back. Why would a man not screw around as much as possible? And if love existed, who's to say that it lasted for long periods? I remember reading an article that stated that "love" is a chemical reaction that lasts roughly six months, given or take a couple of months. I guess it's enough time to bond and mate.

Maybe this "monogamy gene" relates to something totally different, but has altered effects because of traditions that have grown with religions?

Re:No Monogamy Gene (2, Insightful)

t0rkm3 (666910) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848441)

Hrmmmm...

As far as I can tell, from literature in polygamist cultures, the jealousy gene is 100% present in females and males of the species. Therefore, it would seem that a barter system would evolve. The higher your wealth is above the mean of the society that you live in, the more likely that you will be able to entice potential partners into a 'mutually beneficial' relationship. The wealth assuages the greater portion of the jealousy, while other services alleviate the remainder.

Re:No Monogamy Gene (4, Insightful)

blueg3 (192743) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848693)

Why would a man not screw around as much as possible?

In short, because our young are vulnerable after birth, require a fairly large energy investment, and are few in number.

Monogamy actually appears in a number of different animal species.

Re:No Monogamy Gene (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848747)

Let's say that we go 10,000 years back. Why would a man not screw around as much as possible?

Because, if he did, he would soon find himself dying a slow painful death.

They didn't have antibiotics 10,000 years ago. They didn't even have condoms (at least not the kind that could reliably prevent the transmission of STD's).

Once a cheater, always a cheater? (1)

Manip (656104) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848279)

So does this research suggest that the old saying "Once a cheater, always a cheater" is actually true?

More excuses (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848303)

Great. That's all we need is to lend scientific creedence to all the assholes of the world who will say "I can't help myself, I was born this way!" :p

Exciting news. (5, Funny)

JPMallory (1318445) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848309)

Does this mean we may be able to finally develop a cure for monogamy?

Sorry baby, I'm a cheater, `cause it's in the DNA. (2, Funny)

houbou (1097327) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848327)

Will he/she buy that? Maybe there should be a cheater test kit. :)

Re:Sorry baby, I'm a cheater, `cause it's in the D (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848569)

Already have that, it's called "hot sister".

gene is AVPR1A , not "rs3 334" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848437)

The gene is here : http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/entrez?Db=gene&TermToSearch=552

From the absract :

Pair-bonding has been suggested to be a critical factor in the
evolutionary development of the social brain. The brain neuropeptide
arginine vasopressin (AVP) exerts an important influence on
pair-bonding behavior in voles. There is a strong association
between a polymorphic repeat sequence in the 5 flanking region
of the gene (avpr1a) encoding one of the AVP receptor subtypes
(V1aR), and proneness for monogamous behavior in males of this
species. It is not yet known whether similar mechanisms are
important also for human pair-bonding. Here, we report an association
between one of the human AVPR1A repeat polymorphisms
(RS3) and traits reflecting pair-bonding behavior in men, including
partner bonding, perceived marital problems, and marital status,
and show that the RS3 genotype of the males also affects marital
quality as perceived by their spouses. These results suggest an
association between a single gene and pair-bonding behavior in
humans, and indicate that the well characterized influence of AVP
on pair-bonding in voles may be of relevance also for humans.

Regardless, the chances of finding one polymorphism that correlates highly with monogamy and another form correlates highly with promiscuity is pretty good. That is ... if you are searching through hundreds of thousands of mutations.

Correlation is not causation.

Need a bigger samples size, folks (bonferonni? beefaroni? )

Can you say, enforced family values in the US? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848485)

Anyone wanna bet that in the US that eventually someone will propose neutering anyone without this gene and some politician will suck up to it and possibly get this passed?

Materialism gone amuck (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848505)

This is the whole problem with having a materialistic view of the world. "Morals just come from our genes so they HAD to fool around...."

Baloney.

Well, I Don't Have It (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848527)

. . . seeing as how I've cheated on two wives, the latest incident being with my second wife's best friend last Saturday night.

If there's a Hell, I'm going to it.

interesting... (5, Funny)

Coraon (1080675) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848553)

Being polygamous I wonder if I have this gene...hehe I know my wife her girlfriend, and my two other partners don't. ;)

Bah. (1)

i love pineapples (742841) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848625)

Call me when they find the gene marker for "couldn't get a date if her life depended on it." That's the one I (and ostensibly a big chunk of the Slashdot population) need gene therapy for.

I Have A Gene For Every Dysfunction (1)

tunapez (1161697) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848631)

Rather than practice self-control and personal responsibility I will digress to carnal desires and blame the Human Gene. Ain't sentience grand?!?!

knock-outs (1)

Lust (14189) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848645)

And in other news...a population of MONOG gene knock-out mice has just moved to Utah.

Well that (1)

antifoidulus (807088) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848721)

and fear of herpes :P

Confucius say (0, Troll)

Profane MuthaFucka (574406) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848725)

Confucius say "Smart businessman sell disease to man and cure to woman."

Stereotype much? (1)

Ioldanach (88584) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848767)

"commitment-phobes or devoted husbands"

Nothing like adding a little judgmental stereotyping in there, eh? I'm a polyamorous, male, and live with my wife of 8 years, my other primary, and have a secondary in another location, all well aware of each other and all also poly. (Plus my kid, and my o.p.'s 3 kids, & some of wife & o.p.'s other relationships) My longest running relationship of spans 15 years.

Of course this might confuse the average slashdotter (who, the stereotype says, has no women in his life), but still, monogamy and commitment are orthogonal issues.

If we were monogamous (1, Insightful)

AP31R0N (723649) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848797)

If humans were meant to be monogamous, we wouldn't be having this conversation. It would be a given and a non-issue. Non-monogamy would be something lesser beasts do and would strike us as odd and curious behavior.

Asking humans to be monogamous is like asking a cat to NOT chase a mouse. "Did you SEE her tits? Of COURSE I hit that. I'd be gay if it didn't!"

Marriage is a system invented by men with power to make alliances and to manage inheritance of power. The whole love thing is very 20th century.

I got your "monogamy gene" (2)

192939495969798999 (58312) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848799)

yo, I got your "monogamy gene" right over here! ... right over here with the paternity tests Maury uses.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>