Obesity is 60% heritable. And this means …

Peter MolemanArticles, Genes and heredityLeave a Comment

The mass media report percentages of heritability. for various conditions. For instance autism is 90% heritable, height 80%, BMI 60%, musical aptitude 50%, depression 40%, breast cancer 30%. But these percentages are of no use to you, because they only apply to the population investigated, not in general. And they vary immensely between populations. Telling someone that their trait or illness has a specific heritability percentage is wrong.

Why mirror neurons do not exist

Peter MolemanArticles, Parts and the whole, The world within your head2 Comments

Neurons are not associated one-on-one with a specific function. There is no such thing as a mirror neuron or the mirror system, just as there is no Jennifer Aniston neuron or neurons for a particular emotion or a particular movement. Just as a swallow in a flock is not a “flock swallow”, a neuron which is involved in seeing somebody else perform one of our actions is not a mirror neuron.

Your will is what you want

Peter MolemanArticles, Conscious and subconsciousLeave a Comment

You think you have a will, but that is a misconception about your ego. The will as a tangible thing does not exist. You want something at a certain moment after you choose from different wishes. And that choice can change within a short time, perhaps even to the complete opposite.

Science in the time of Corona: Part 2

Peter MolemanArticlesLeave a Comment

Translated by Rumia Bose During the first lockdown in the Netherlands I wrote a blog about Science in the time of Corona. The emphasis lay on explaining the business of science, and that the establishing of facts took time that we did not have. At such moments you have to trust scientists and policy makers who are in charge.We now … Read More

Memories of early childhood?

Peter MolemanArticles, Brain development, MemoryLeave a Comment

Herinneren van een gebeurtenis verandert je geheugen | Peter Moleman

The memory develops after birth. A baby starts by registering how it should move. From around the age of three, a child can register events which form part of its life story, to be recalled in later life. But emotional events such as traumas are possibly registered much earlier as stray facts. These can elicit reactions, although you can’t retell them.