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Genes About a Quarter of the Secret To Staying Smart

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the luck-of-the-draw dept.

Stats 77

ananyo writes "A Scottish intelligence study that began 80 years ago has borne new fruit. Researchers have tracked down the study's surviving participants — who joined the study when they were 11 years old — to estimate the role that our genes have in maintaining intelligence through to old age. After conducting fresh intelligence tests on the surviving participants, the researchers tested the DNA samples they had collected for the presence of more than half a million common genetic variants, each affecting only a single letter in the DNA sequence of the genome. The team then calculated whether these variants were associated with cognitive stability — how well intelligence had been maintained over time. The sample size of 2,000 people was too small to grant the statistical power needed to track down individual genetic signatures associated with cognitive stability. But it was enough to estimate how much genetics contributes to cognitive aging. The team found that these variants accounted for nearly one-quarter of the differences in cognitive stability."

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First (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38752688)

shit.

So in other words (4, Insightful)

White Flame (1074973) | more than 2 years ago | (#38752694)

It's not genetics but other factors, presumably mental exercise, diet, etc that contributes 75% to keeping your intelligence intact as you enter old age?

Re:So in other words (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38752752)

Maybe. Or maybe the genetic factors killed off the faster-declining people prior to old age. Based on the summary, I would say that "Among people who survived to old age, genetic factors account for approximately 25% of mental decline."

Re:So in other words (3, Insightful)

cayenne8 (626475) | more than 2 years ago | (#38753470)

My theory was that the other 3/4 was associate with not wasting time and grey matter watching inane, worthless, stupid reality shows on TV 24/7....and actually doing something with their minds into their old age.

Of course..diet and exercise certainly had to have a lot to do with it too, I'd guess...

Re:So in other words (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38757536)

Reading Slashdot comments contributed negatively.

Re:So in other words (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 2 years ago | (#38763076)

My grandmother must have been an anomaly, then. Once she left the farm at age 55 about the only exercise she got was doing housework. I never saw her doing any mental puzzles, and she watched a lot of TV. The only time I ever saw any mental decline in her was in her seventies, and it turned out to be due to the prescription drugs her doctor was feeding her.

Diet? She was born in 1903, had eggs and bacon and buttered toast for breakfast, cooked with lard most of her life, etc. Her doctor said if she didn't get her cholesterol dow she was going to die. Well, the doctor died. Her new doctor took her off the drugs, and her mind became sharp again. He, too, said if she didn't get her cholesterol down she'd die. He died, too. So did her next three doctors.

Their predictions finally came through -- she finally did die, when she fell down in the nursing home and broke her hip at age 99. Of course, a sample of one is pretty much meaningless, but her brothers and sisters were all similar. For example, my great uncle smoked cigarettes from age 12 to age 82, and got scared and quit when he got a small skin cancer on his lip. He, too, was in his nineties when he passed.

Personally, I think diet and excersize are greatly overrated. Besides, like grandma told me when she was 95, "I don't know why folks want to live to be a hundred. It ain't no fun bein' old!" You have to die from something, might as well be eating what you want and doing or not doing what you want.

Re:So in other words (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38752792)

Useful for confirmation, but not new or unexpected. The /. history has articles about taxi driver training leading to neural restructuring in favor of mapping and geographical awareness. There are some mentally destructive conditions that we don't know how to prevent yet, but in general, you get good at what you do a lot. If you spend your time hauling heavy boxes, you will get stronger (until you hit a physical limit). If you spend your time solving puzzles, studying new scientific research, and practicing your 24 dimensional calculus, you will get better at those. If you spend all your time watching gossip shows on TV and sitting on the couch, you very well may become one with the couch, mentally and physically.

You talkin' to me? YOU TALKIN' TO ME?! (1)

Dogtanian (588974) | more than 2 years ago | (#38754328)

The /. history has articles about taxi driver training leading to neural restructuring in favor of mapping and geographical awareness.

Apparently, Taxi Driver training also has some *negative* side effects on one's mental state though! [youtube.com]

Re:So in other words (3, Interesting)

hitmark (640295) | more than 2 years ago | (#38758594)

Makes me wonder if one can pull of something similar to that using direct brain stimulation, and so train someone in a similar way to uploading a program.

Re:So in other words (1)

arose (644256) | more than 2 years ago | (#38767612)

Whoa!

*At least* a quarter... (4, Interesting)

OGmofo (189475) | more than 2 years ago | (#38752838)

The study only sampled a subset of the genome (certain SNPs), there could be other variations in the genome that contribute even more. We simply can't tell from the study. All we can say is that this study suggests at least a quarter of the variation is explained by the subset of the genotype they have sampled.

Re:*At least* a quarter... (2)

Samantha Wright (1324923) | more than 2 years ago | (#38753664)

One of the nice things they teach you when you learn about how human SNP linkage analyses (for those of you following along at home: a different test performed on the same data, when it's available for a whole family) are done is that the SNPs are often linked with a whole-gene allele. It's true that there might be more out there, but it's not going to be some surprisingly huge number like 50%. A significant portion of SNPs can be inferred from each other with extremely high reliability, suggesting they're inherited as sets. No, they don't know the exact nucleotide sequences responsible, but they can get a decent idea, especially with this many markers. Hopefully in the near future we'll see SNP surveys completely displaced by whole-exome sequencing.

Please mod parent up! (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 2 years ago | (#38765422)

This is what I come to slashdot for; a biologist (or other field in other threads) giving clear explanations or clarifications for something interesting. Thank you, Ms. Wright!

Re:*At least* a quarter... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38754540)

Genotype or unidentified, uncontrolled things that correlate with genotype.

Re:So in other words (4, Interesting)

CarsonChittom (2025388) | more than 2 years ago | (#38752868)

Not necessarily. If I'm reading this right, all this study showed that there was a correlation between certain DNA sequences and cognitive stability in 25% of the people in the study. That's it. "Mental exercise, diet, etc," could account for the other 75%, sure, but it could also be that the other 75% is purely genetic, but the researchers were looking at the wrong thing. Or that the correlation is pure coincidence. Or that there was a freak storm of cosmic rays that changed the DNA of 25% of the study participants[1]. Or that their methodology was flawed. Or that their methodology was correct but the sample size was just too small. Et cetera, ad infinitum.

In short, the study—any study—says what it says. What it doesn't say, it doesn't imply.

[1] And granted them superpowers, of course.

Re:So in other words (2)

jd (1658) | more than 2 years ago | (#38755270)

If there are N genes required for intelligence out of a set of M, unless N==M you cannot identify all of N by looking at what is common to everyone. That's a common but problematic flaw in genetic studies. It's also why markers that indicate a propensity for disease can't tell you if you will get that disease. If the studies so far don't map which sets of genetic markers are significant (and what epigenetic states are required to make them significant), this positive indication approach has limited value - at least on its own.

The "ideal" solution (which would be horribly difficult and expensive, most ideal solutions are) would be to get a very large number of people (smart and otherwise), do a complete decode on the X chromosome (we know that's linked to the brain) and to any regions outside of the X that this and other studies have indicated may be significant. What you want to do is find permutations that exclusively appear in those who are smart (not all smart people would have those permutations but absolutely no person who isn't smart will have them at all - ever). The sheer number of nucleotides you'd need to map would be vast and in order to be able to guarantee that the sets of SNPs and STRs identified were useful, you'd need to study an incredible number of people. Let's say you've a paltry 1,000 SNPs that could be of significance - to get a decent random sample to show up the clusters of SNPs that are important, you'd need 1,000,000 people from as large a genetic sample as possible. You also have to have a totally cross-cultural method of measuring smarts, which is no small task in itself.

Superior Genepool? (2, Interesting)

DontLickJesus (1141027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38752782)

Nazi Science

Re:Superior Genepool? (2)

geekoid (135745) | more than 2 years ago | (#38752882)

If I could create a pill that change what your DNA expresses so it makes you smarter, and thus improves the Genepool*, is a good thing.

Doing so by 'weeding out' a class of people is 'Nazi Science' not this.

*assuming the trait can be passed on.

Re:Superior Genepool? (1)

DontLickJesus (1141027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38753098)

I make fun, but with all honesty I think I'm a really good example of the traits looked for in this study. I was raised by adopted parents, a restaurant manager and a hair stylist. My natural parents are both computer programmers. I knew neither of them growing up, and yet I was writing software while I was still in elementary school. I know it isn't their exact study, but something regarding intelligence is definitely passed down very strongly.

Re:Superior Genepool? (4, Funny)

Beardo the Bearded (321478) | more than 2 years ago | (#38754988)

Lamarkable.

Re:Superior Genepool? (1)

mister_dave (1613441) | more than 2 years ago | (#38761570)

I don't understand why there is any controversy about that. We accept that you can breed animals for particular traits, why should people be any different?

Re:Superior Genepool? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38753226)

You're missing the underlying problem of Nazi Science, instead highlighting the horrific effect.

The underlying problem of Nazi Science was that it tried to set an objective standard for what is a good quality and what is a bad quality, just as you appear to be implying that there is a measure of smartness such that it is always desirable to increase your score on that measure.

We're already far too far down the path where test-taking and homogeneity have substituted for imagination and determination. It is the latter qualities which advance humankind and the latter qualities are often strengthened by what we might regard as a deficiency. Think of ten people you regard highly and spend a few minutes identifying qualities in each which you would regard as shortcomings. Ask yourself if they would have got where they are had they not had those qualities.

(And that's before we begin considering how disabilities are often extreme manifestations of a specific ability which we would not want to weed out - autism, or "extreme male mind", is the one geeks often like to highlight.)

Re:Superior Genepool? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38753288)

"Nazi Science"

Reality has nothing to do with politics or ideology.

If you were not stupid yourself you would know that.

Re:Superior Genepool? (1)

Fned (43219) | more than 2 years ago | (#38754740)

Reality has nothing to do with politics or ideology.

I have no doubt that your political ideology is completely divorced from reality. We agree on something!

Jewish folks BREED FOR INTELLIGENCE (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38755430)

See subject: I have had 2 really good pals who are of the jewish faith, & one of them told me, POINT-BLANK, what's in my subject-line... I believe it too, because it does make SENSE that "you're the cloth you're cut from" etc./et al & face it - Jews DO tend to be better than avg. intelligence, & yes, mostly, they're educated as well (& you do NOT get there usually by being stupid).

Anyhow/anyways:

He wanted to marry a woman he knew from the Russias back circa 1998-1999 (he came down to live in Atlanta with his Pop (god rest his soul, GREAT man, dual PhD in math & comp. sci. no less) when I told them "get down here - jobs are BOOMING in Comp. Sci. field here!")

His Mother raised HECK about it.. I was like "Man, you're a grown man now, well past 21 - if you feel that you love this woman, you do as your heart AND MIND, tell you then (heck with Ma)"...

He said "In our culture, we BREED FOR INTELLIGENCE" !

(Yes, he said that, verbatim)

However, his mother didn't feel the woman he had in mind (he dated her for years prior to this) was intelligent enough to bear his offspring - & apparently, his Mom ran that house, & I've noted many jewish women do... his dad took UNREAL amounts of shit from her (we listened to them fight one night, & I was like "but, your Pop's RIGHT" & he said "Yea, he usually is, but he loves her & gives in almost every time!").

My pal's one SMART sucker too (smart enough to be a many time millionaire in fact), & one of the smartest guys I've ever met (or he puts up a hell of a good fake-job, lol, because he's one of VERY FEW PEOPLE that have ever "gotten the best of me" in a debate...

See - on that note?

Well.. I generally WON'T comment strongly on topics I am unsure about (which is WHY I whip most trolls asses here on tech topics in computing), & however, with him?

Even WHEN I WAS SURE??

Heh - This guy made me see diff. ways of looking @ the topic, or proving me wrong, outright!)). He's intelligent, & it shows...

Good guy too, one of my friends I really TRULY, respect. Leon, wherever you are? Hey man... don't let your head get TOO big now with this IF you read it one day, lol!

* Anyhow... there you go! It's not just nazi science, apparently, jewish folks do it too (& it shows, along with their educations, which generally, most jews I know have at least an associates degree, if not going PhD/all the way stuff).

APK

P.S.=> Do ALL jewish folks do this? I don't know, & I strongly doubt it, but... they DO tend to be educated + intelligent (which is why I enjoy their company - you can grow by just hanging around they @ times)... This is a compliment to jews, & in a way, sad as the above is (my pal couldn't marry the chick w/out being 'cut out' of his Dad's will & thus, losing DAMN NEAR a million dollar inheritance)... it would take MORE STRENGTH than I have, will-wise, to bear up sleeping with someone I really didn't find attactive's all, but, apparently? Jews live for "the species/race/tribe" (whatever you want to call it), first... themselves, after!

... apk

What it takes to make it to 90? (4, Interesting)

RossR (94714) | more than 2 years ago | (#38752786)

Comparing the intelligence and genes of those who did and did not survive to 90 would also be interesting.

Re:What it takes to make it to 90? (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 2 years ago | (#38766376)

Indeed. My paternal grandmother, born in 1903 and who cooked with lard and was told by five doctors, one after the other (who all died) said she'd die soon from her high cholesterol, lived a hundred years. Her brother started amoking at age 12 and quit at age 82, ten years before he died. Her other siblings are likewise long lived (Grandpa died in an accident at age 60, fell four stories carrying two 100 lb sacks of feed... Purina was guilty of negligent manslaughter). My other grandparents lived until their late 80s, most of my mother's siblings are alive and in their 90s (she's the baby at age 84).

Almost everyone in the family, both sides, are gifted in many ways -- intelligence, creativity, eye-hand coordination, musical ability, etc. I wonder if there's any correlation betwen these traits and longevity? I'll turn 60 this year, but I don't look or feel like I'm 60. Most people would peg me at 50, even younger if I died my hair (which is all still there). There is most likely a genetic reason that different people age at different rates; I know people 20 years younger than me you'd swear were my age or older; they look as much older than they are as I look younger than I am.

And it started early; I was 30 before I could grow a full beard. I could barely grow a goatee when I was 25. I didn't feel like an adult until I was well into my third decade. And I certainly don't feel like the geezer I am; in fact, a couple of years ago my friend Amy (her late father was a year younger than me) was telling me that I was younger than her boyfriend, who was her age, because all he did was sit around complaining and watching TV but I'd take her to bars and laugh and joke and have a good time.

It would be interesting to know why.

"Scottish intelligence study"? (4, Funny)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 2 years ago | (#38752802)

Have they found any yet?

Re:"Scottish intelligence study"? (3, Interesting)

kae_verens (523642) | more than 2 years ago | (#38752938)

A lot of the modern world was invented by Scots. Maxwell's equations, animal cloning, telephones, trains, televisions, penicillin.

I guess when you're surrounded by fields and sheep, all you can do is drink or think.

Re:"Scottish intelligence study"? (2)

Laxori666 (748529) | more than 2 years ago | (#38753112)

A lot of the modern world was invented by Scots. Maxwell's equations, animal cloning, telephones, trains, televisions, penicillin.

I guess when you're surrounded by fields and sheep, all you can do is drink or think.

I can think of something else involving the sheep.

Re:"Scottish intelligence study"? (1)

frank_adrian314159 (469671) | more than 2 years ago | (#38753496)

I can think of something else involving the sheep.

Then you really are a Scotchman!

Re:"Scottish intelligence study"? (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 2 years ago | (#38766944)

Pneumatic tyres (which we in the US misspell). And hey, what about Montgomery Scott? ;)

Re:"Scottish intelligence study"? (1)

foobsr (693224) | more than 2 years ago | (#38752962)

At least, they beamed 20 people into another authorship.

CC.

Re:"Scottish intelligence study"? (2)

DMUTPeregrine (612791) | more than 2 years ago | (#38753058)

They invented Whisky! Sure, that prevented much further advancement, but what other advancement is truly needed?

Re:"Scottish intelligence study"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38753104)

They invented Whisky! Sure, that prevented much further advancement, but what other advancement is truly needed?

Dry ginger.

Re:"Scottish intelligence study"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38757032)

They invented Whisky! Sure, that prevented much further advancement, but what other advancement is truly needed?

Dry ginger.

Heathen sassenach! Dry ginger ale is for hidin' the vile taste of foreign whiskey. Proper Whisky is best enjoyed with nae but a wee drop o' water - and even then only by them as canna tilt their kilt (if ye ken m'drift).

Re:"Scottish intelligence study"? (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 2 years ago | (#38767396)

The Scots didn't invent whiskey. From wikipedia:

The art of distillation began with the Babylonians in Mesopotamia (in what is now Iraq) from at least the 2nd millennium BC,[3] with perfumes and aromatics being distilled long before potable spirits. Distillation was brought from Africa to Europe by the Moors,[4][5] and its use spread through the monasteries,[6] largely for medicinal purposes, such as the treatment of colic, palsy, and smallpox.[7]

Between 1100 and 1300, distillation spread in Ireland and Scotland,[8] with monastic distilleries existing in Ireland in the 12th century. Because the islands had few grapes to make wine with, barley beer was used instead, resulting in the development of whisky.[7] In the Irish Annals of Clonmacnoise in 1405, the first written record of whisky appears describing the death of a chieftain at Christmas from "taking a surfeit of aqua vitae".[2] In Scotland, the first evidence of whisky production comes from an entry in the Exchequer Rolls for 1494 where malt is sent "To Friar John Cor, by order of the king, to make aquavitae", enough to make about 500 bottles.[9]

I've heard it said that God invented whiskey to keep the Irish from conquering the world. They had whiskey a hundred years before the Scotts, according to known records.

Re:"Scottish intelligence study"? (1)

DMUTPeregrine (612791) | more than 2 years ago | (#38771774)

The Irish invented whiskey, not whisky. Whisky is scottish. The smoky flavor added by drying the malt on a peat fire is delicious.

Re:"Scottish intelligence study"? (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 2 years ago | (#38792781)

After a few shots, who cares how it's spelled?

Re:"Scottish intelligence study"? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38755028)

The Scottish don't think of themselves as being stupid (that's the stereotype of the Irish, which I'm not saying is true at all). Scots joke: "A Scotsman moves to England. The average IQ of both countries increases"
"

Not PC, please suppress (1, Insightful)

DriedClexler (814907) | more than 2 years ago | (#38752836)

I'm sorry, it is not acceptable to attribute any intelligence to genetics, no matter what your evidence.

In fact, the very idea of identifying a measure of "intelligence" and correlating it with outcomes is racist.

This research must be purged. [/current state of intelligence debate]

Re:Not PC, please suppress (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 2 years ago | (#38752900)

Current state of alarmist media debate, not the actual debate.

Re:Not PC, please suppress (2)

Attack DAWWG (997171) | more than 2 years ago | (#38752944)

It is, however, allowable to (inversely) correlate intelligence with someone's inclination towards setting up straw men.

Re:Not PC, please suppress (1)

Hatta (162192) | more than 2 years ago | (#38753078)

Who are you trying to caricature here? Has anyone actually made that argument, or are you just knocking down straw men?

Re:Not PC, please suppress (1)

toadlife (301863) | more than 2 years ago | (#38753504)

The GP is mocking people who dispute books like The Bell Curve [amazon.com] , a book which is frequently cited by scientific racists as evidence than dark skinned people are less intelligent than light skinned people.

Re:Not PC, please suppress (1)

pseudofrog (570061) | more than 2 years ago | (#38753692)

And, for what it's worth, the crap the authors try to pose as science is simply absurd. Check out some of the (many) rebuttals.

Some people just love authors' whole "we're just presenting the data, even though it's unpopular" schtick and fail to examine whether or not the actual science is sound.

Re:Not PC, please suppress (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38768290)

Check out some of the (many) rebuttals.

Specify?

Re:Not PC, please suppress (1)

Hatta (162192) | more than 2 years ago | (#38754782)

Are you claiming that disputing The Bell Curve is equivalent to claiming that intelligence has no genetic basis?

Re:Not PC, please suppress (1)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | more than 2 years ago | (#38757538)

The argument has been suppressed. That's why you don't hear about it. Sample quote: [glpiggy.net]

Coates - who readily admitted that he barely knows what "standard deviation" is, which implies that his critique of Sullivan is anything but scientifically-based - questioned Sullivan's desire to explore the debate by suggesting that since the science behind racial IQ differences was once embraced by racists, slaveholders, and eugenicists that he can't help but project similar characteristics on anyone, today, who broaches the topic.

Need any more citations? They're out there. Here's another from alternet [alternet.org] :

"Why are our minds and their capabilities among the most taboo topics in 21st-century academia? "I believe there are a number of factors involved," says Dennis Garlick, a postdoctoral researcher in psychology at UCLA and the author of Intelligence and the Brain: Solving the Mystery of Why People Differ in IQ and How a Child Can Be a Genius (Aesop, 2010). "Certainly a major factor is the race issue. Arguing that the races differ in IQ has tainted the whole field, and many researchers and commentators would prefer to just avoid the area for fear of being labeled racists."

It's like how people who read the New York Times are woefully uninformed on the Gunwalker scandal. It's been suppressed as it's an inconvenient truth. If you have no idea what the Gunwalker scandal is...well, you just proved the point, didn't you?

Re:Not PC, please suppress (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 2 years ago | (#38759728)

Who are you trying to caricature here?

Stephen Jay Gould

Has anyone actually made that argument

Are you deaf? Stephen Jay Gould, along with numerous slashdorks.

Chimpanzee IQ Human IQ (1)

G3ckoG33k (647276) | more than 2 years ago | (#38753500)

Chimpanzee IQ Human IQ

Evolution proves why you are wrong, even if it was meant to be a joke.

Re:Chimpanzee IQ Human IQ (1)

oodaloop (1229816) | more than 2 years ago | (#38754582)

Bingo. I also realize that was a joke, but I've argued with people who think that intelligence is not heritable, but support evolution. I point out that man's ancestors were less intelligent, so clearly in order for man to become more intelligent over time, intelligence must be heritable to some degree.

intelligence must be heritable to some degree (1)

G3ckoG33k (647276) | more than 2 years ago | (#38760912)

Exactly!

"but I've argued with people who think that intelligence is not heritable, but support evolution"

Have we met the same people?! :D

Re:Not PC, please suppress (2)

Guppy (12314) | more than 2 years ago | (#38755542)

This research must be purged. [/current state of intelligence debate]

A guy named Dr. Thomas Bouchard [wikipedia.org] did something similar studying fraternal vs. identical twins, and found a genetic contribution of about 75% (for intelligence, not age-related decline in intelligence).

His work is considered one of the landmark studies on the heritability of intelligence. And yes, various groups attempted to suppress his research and get him fired.

Re:Not PC, please suppress (1)

Lando (9348) | more than 2 years ago | (#38757026)

Who said having a higher intelligence was a good thing? Don't most of the business majors make more than engineers. If we go by that standard, intelligence is probably a liability. With intelligence and understanding come options and having more options isn't necessary the best thing in the world.

Re:Not PC, please suppress (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 2 years ago | (#38767810)

I know you're being sarcastic, but I know many very intelligent people of all races, and many really stupid people of all races, and the intilligent members of all the races surely have a genetic component to their giftedness.

There are other reasons for stupidity than genetics; fetal alcohol syndrome, or simple things like the baby's umbilical cord being wrapped around its neck, head trauma in the infant, etc. But high intelligence surely has a genetic component, no matter what the genuis' race. It is in no way racist to suggest that intelligence has a genetic component unless you're suggesting that all members of some race are stupid.

Please, rephrase that headline (1)

G3ckoG33k (647276) | more than 2 years ago | (#38752842)

Please, rephrase that headline "Genes About a Quarter of the Secret To Staying Smart" to represent the more meaningful summary's text "quarter of the differences" so that they mean the same thing.

The headline is grossly misleading.

Moreover, while I haven't read the article I actually suspect is says a quarter of the variation somewhere...

What about RACE... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38753116)

Did they do any genetic tests of Race and Intelligence?

I thought not...

Wonder why...

Re:What about RACE... (2)

P-niiice (1703362) | more than 2 years ago | (#38753180)

Past studies have found as much variations within "races" as between "races" so it was probably deemed not useful enough. How unfortunate for you.

Re:What about RACE... (1)

oodaloop (1229816) | more than 2 years ago | (#38754742)

Comparing variation between and across races has no bearing on whether one race is, on average, smarter than another. Try reading The Bell Curve. It's unfortunate, disheartening, politically incorrect, etc but true that some races are smarter than others, on average.

Re:What about RACE... (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 2 years ago | (#38755594)

I have a friend who is six inches taller than me. His wife is six inches taller than mine.

Who is taller, the men, the women, neither, or both?

Re:What about RACE... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38753508)

In this particular study? No. That's not what they were looking at.

Other studies have been done which tend to show a difference on IQ tests. But the reason for the difference is hotly disputed. There is simply insufficient data to show that the gaps are because of or in spite of genetics.

It's complicated stuff. One thing we *do* know is that there are factors besides genetics which influence IQ, Look up the Flynn Effect for an example of the complications that arise when trying to attribute racial intelligence gaps to genetics.

Re:What about RACE... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38753846)

Regardless of the outcome of such tests, I'm pretty sure you would be dragging down the results for whichever unfortunate race(s) you are a member of.

Re:What about RACE... (1)

P-niiice (1703362) | more than 2 years ago | (#38766776)

What is race? Are you attempting to link intelligence to skin color? Head shape? Fast-twitch muscle fibers in the legs?

Scientists don't know what race is for this purpose because simply going "hyuck, we all know black people have dark skin and big ol lips hyuck hyuck" isn't anything to base research on due to a huge number of genetic differences - as different within dark-skinned peoples as between dark- and light-skinned peoples. In short, there is no "black" or "white" for any purpose except social ones.

MEGAUPLOAD (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38753136)

Looks at recent sees 20 megaupload is down and this shit gets selected...

I'm pretty sure I have those genes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38753222)

But I'm wondering what is the other 50% of the secret.

Re:I'm pretty sure I have those genes (1)

Anne Thwacks (531696) | more than 2 years ago | (#38754828)

Avoiding deep fried Mars Bars is probably 50% of it (We are talking about Scotland).

Don't keep me in suspense! (2)

DarthVain (724186) | more than 2 years ago | (#38753374)

What are the other two fifths?

I'm curious about the test they used (1)

Hentes (2461350) | more than 2 years ago | (#38753802)

Because the IQ tests I have seen are all very bad measurements of intelligence.

Re:I'm curious about the test they used (1)

ChrisMaple (607946) | more than 2 years ago | (#38755122)

IQ tests I have seen are all very bad measurements of intelligence

Compared to what other method of quantifying intelligence?

Re:I'm curious about the test they used (1)

Hentes (2461350) | more than 2 years ago | (#38755334)

Which is exactly my point, I don't think there is a reliable test measuring intelligence.

Re:I'm curious about the test they used (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 2 years ago | (#38755624)

Compared to how well he thought he should score.

the real secret? (1)

Fujisawa Sensei (207127) | more than 2 years ago | (#38754064)

Just use your fucking brain to keep learning stuff and doing stuff that takes brain power.

Don't sit around reading Harlequin Romances, watching football, internet memes or the like. That shit really rots your brain.

Re:the real secret? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38755748)

I used to use my brain. Then I took an arrow to the knee.

The other 75% is ... (1)

PPH (736903) | more than 2 years ago | (#38757014)

... being short.

You don't whack your head on stuff nearly as often.

Meaningless number (1)

thsths (31372) | more than 2 years ago | (#38758974)

I said it before and I will say it again: you cannot give a number like x% of your intelligence is determined by genes unless you define the variation of your genes (difficult, but doable in theory) and the variation of your environment (nearly impossible) first. That is because logically, in very similar environments (such as some egalitarian countries) genes will dominate, and in a homogeneous gene pool the environment will dominate.

Ability To Confused Slashdot Headline... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38759148)

...Formulation Deciphering The Remaining Three Fourth To Secret Of Staying Smart Despite Braindead Title Capitalization Schemes

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