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serotonin levels *may* determine sexual preference


ELF1024

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(Foxnews) A male mouse's desire to mate with either a male or a female is determined by the brain chemical serotonin, scientists report in a new study. The finding demonstrates for the first time that a neurotransmitter governs sexual preference in mammals
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Very interesting!

Granted, this in relation to rats, but at one time homosexuality was classified as a mental illness in the DSM.

Now, before anyone is offended by that, I do not judge someone who has a mental illness or who has homosexual tendencies. I believe everyone has some type of mental illness. A mental illness can be defined simply by a hypo or hyper secretion of a neurotransmitter. Some people will experience symptoms in these states and some people will function completely unaffected. Some people will constantly struggle their entire lives with a mental illness and some will experience it temporarily. I make this very simplistic because as we know, there are too many variables to discuss, like how hormones, lack of sleep and stress can effect the mind and emotions - my fiance can attest to this every month! :P

Now, why would a person have a hypo or hyper secretion of a neurotransmitter?

Unfortunately, not too many physicians explore this for whatever reason, but I feel it is critical to find the cause. A list of several known possibilities could be explored, adrenals (HPA axis) diet, emotions, toxins and etc.., but in regards to homosexuality - I feel genetics play a major role since there are a lot of people out in the world with low serotonin, but are from from having homosexual tendencies.

As I mentioned in other threads, epi-genetics is a fascinating subject that possibly can explain how our environment (xeno-biotics and xeno-estrogen) effects our genes within the womb or our growth towards puberty. With an understanding of epi-genetics, those who believe we are born with our sexual preference and those who believe that the environment tailors our sexual preferences, both camps can possibly be correct. The other camp who believes God created homosexuality is completely incorrect, sorry. For when creating Adam and Eve, there wasn't a guy named "Steve" there too (sarcasm - take a deep breath). In addition, the scriptures and prophets have defined God's plan for a man and woman only; which I know is hard for others to understand, but they override anything science can offer. Regardless, God loves all his children despite sexual preferences.

Again, I hope I don't offend, but from what I have stated so far - have I offended anyway? For I am not suggesting every homosexual should go and find out a cause of their homosexuality, but there are a few who struggle with these tendencies that want and need an answer in helping them live the commandments of God.

And I completely understand and respect that most homosexuals love who they are and want to live their lifestyle their entire lives - my sister fitting in this category. This is just a good forum for me since Sunday School (which I do love most of the time when I am awake), doesn't give us these opportunities to explore interesting subjects for I guarantee if I opened my mouth in Sunday School, people would probably be offended and cry.

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That's not a gigantic surprise that a simple difference in neurochemistry would have far-reaching effects. If you look at dogs versus wolves, the difference between a dog and a wolf is really based on a single hormone. That single hormone controls the floppiness of the ears, howling versus barking, variations in snout length and fur variety.\

I've heard of a psychotropic drug that causes homosexuality in some people, which also correlates with hypersexuality. (Typical homosexuals are hypersexual).

Furthermore, the personality traits of homosexual males being so "flamboyant," divergent interests from straight males (like more cleanliness, better dress and being health nuts), and a different brand of humor from straight males is a dead giveaway that homosexual males tend to have a unique neurochemistry. They often sound different, not only in tone of voice but in what they talk about. Granted, those traits aren't universal among homosexuals, but it's more than just a label. They got that stereo-type from people's experiences with them.

That would be very interesting to see a treatment out there for homosexuals. I'm certain liberals will oppose gay people having this choice; however, because it will interfere with their political ambitions.

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That would be very interesting to see a treatment out there for homosexuals. I'm certain liberals will oppose gay people having this choice; however, because it will interfere with their political ambitions.

:P

Probably... sorta like how skin bleaching treatments (a la Michael Jackson) interfears with any political ambitions of those who agree that interracial marriage should be legally recognized.

Other people's choices about how to handle their sexual orientation (whether they're gay or straight) shouldn't threaten or negate anyone else's choice to pursue happiness according to the dictates of our own individual conscience.

Darin

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Probably... sorta like how skin bleaching treatments (a la Michael Jackson) interfears with any political ambitions of those who agree that interracial marriage should be legally recognized.

If it turns out that homosexuality is typically caused by a deficiency in Omega 3's in utero, or something like that, it's not going to be comparable to skin bleaching. I think, if a simple treatment comes out, it will become incredibly controversial, despite the common sense solution of informing people that they have a choice and letting them decide for themselves.

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If it turns out that homosexuality is typically caused by a deficiency in Omega 3's in utero, or something like that, it's not going to be comparable to skin bleaching. I think, if a simple treatment comes out, it will become incredibly controversial, despite the common sense solution of informing people that they have a choice and letting them decide for themselves.

I agree--my skin bleaching analogy is simplistic and flawed when it comes to any comparison to a complex medical "treatment" for homosexual attraction. My point in raising it was more to illustrate that a "political agenda" isn't (or shouldn't) be threatened by anyone else's choices or biological possibilities (or non-possiblities).

Although I don't believe the hypothetical "treatment" described in this thread (which is often proposed and theorized about, among those who disagree with homosexuality--including myself, when I used to share that same moral condemnation of homosexual attractions and behaviors, once upon a time...) will ever be a reality (due to my current belief that homosexuality in higher life-forms, at least, appears to be the product of a combination of both hormonal AND genetic biological factors), I would agree that it would likely become controversial, and I agree that it would be common sense to inform people that they have a choice, and let them decide for themselves--common sense that is apparently lost on those who oppose the choice and decision of civil marriage for same-sex couples (surprisingly, a category I believe you also fall into, Mord. Why do you suppose that your "common sense" approach of informing/offering/respecting "choice" only appears to apply to options that discourage homosexuality...?)

Darin

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...Why do you suppose that your "common sense" approach of informing/offering/respecting "choice" only appears to apply to options that discourage homosexuality...?)

I'm always for choice, as long is it doesn't interfere with fundamental rights. In what case have I shown that I am against choice? I'm quite libertarian.

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If it turns out that homosexuality is typically caused by a deficiency in Omega 3's in utero, or something like that, it's not going to be comparable to skin bleaching. I think, if a simple treatment comes out, it will become incredibly controversial, despite the common sense solution of informing people that they have a choice and letting them decide for themselves.

Maybe. After all, you're talking about how people self identify. That's serious business, not so much politically as psychologically.

Just as a hypothetical, what if it were discovered that the tendency to believe in the supernatural and experience mystical events were the result of a chemical imbalance, with a simple treatment? Would people want to take the treatment to "free themselves from the yoke of superstition" after a lifetime of identifying as a believer?

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I agree--my skin bleaching analogy is simplistic and flawed when it comes to any comparison to a complex medical "treatment" for homosexual attraction.

The bleaching analogy is spot on as a comparison to faith-based 'cures,' however.

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Maybe. After all, you're talking about how people self identify. That's serious business, not so much politically as psychologically.

Just as a hypothetical, what if it were discovered that the tendency to believe in the supernatural and experience mystical events were the result of a chemical imbalance, with a simple treatment? Would people want to take the treatment to "free themselves from the yoke of superstition" after a lifetime of identifying as a believer?

Yeah, it's a bit like deaf people and cochlear implants.

The reason, however, I choose omega 3's as a possible treatment, is because many childhood behavioral problems are shown to be preventable by giving expectant mothers omega 3's. If that turns out to also prevent homosexuality, wouldn't that be interesting? People would feel compelled to prevent ADD and the like while simultaneously preventing homosexuality. I don't think the left would like that situation, nor would the gay community. I wonder how society would react.

We see something in rats that would suggest that homosexuality is a neurosis. One study showed that severely overcrowded rats not only become hypersexual, as a means to deal with stress, they also engage in homosexuality. Homosexuality in humans goes hand in hand with hypersexuality and overcrowded cities, interestingly. We also find a high rate of mental illness among homosexuals.

We do not find high rates of mental illness in Mormons, however, so I don't think omega 3's will prevent religion. ha ha

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1. These are mice.

2. Not only are these mice, they're knockout mice.

3. The measure of homosexual behavior is (expectedly) simple.

4. The social interplay, among mice no less, is incredibly difficult for human observation to decypher, let alone translate and project.

5. Even if serotonin is implicated, it is a far stretch to assume increasing serotonergic transmission (via SSRI or otherwise) would have any effect one way or the other.

Just my two cents, however. Important to keep this in perspective.

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I'm always for choice, as long is it doesn't interfere with fundamental rights. In what case have I shown that I am against choice? I'm quite libertarian.

It's really quite simple to show where you're against choice, despite designating yourself as libertarian, and the apparent double-speak you seem to be unintentionally be employing (perhaps in an effort to avoid congantive dissonance on this particular point, rather than admitting you are against choice):

You oppose allowing gay couples the choice of entering into a legal civil marriage.

Further, you oppose legal recognition of pro-gay-relationship-religion's choice to designate the marriages of both their straight and gay congregants by the same name.

Darin

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...You oppose allowing gay couples the choice of entering into a legal civil marriage.

This is what is double-speak. A marriage is "living together as husband and wife" with legal recognition and the consent of society. Gay people can do whatever they want; I've never opposed domestic partnerships. I thought it was a rational thing to do. My issue is when the gov't adopts obviously false political dogmas, like the notion that a gay union is the same as a straight union, so they must be labeled identically. If they're not the same, why would we, rationally, label them identically?

What's worse, having the gov't change the language as a means to manipulate speech is anti-choice. Free speech is integral to free will, because we can't be free without being informed. It's more difficult to be informed with a smaller vocabulary that is artificially reduced by government soft tyranny.

You can't get much more pro-choice than being pro-free-speech. Being against the gov't distorting the language is a pro-free-speech stance.

Further, you oppose legal recognition of pro-gay-relationship-religion's choice to designate the marriages of both their straight and gay congregants by the same name.

The gov't already recognizes those religions. They just don't always distort the language to label something different, as if it is the same. Again, this is a free speech issue. If you allow the language to be distorted in irrational ways by the gov't, you're oppressing genuine freedom.

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We see something in rats that would suggest that homosexuality is a neurosis. One study showed that severely overcrowded rats not only become hypersexual, as a means to deal with stress, they also engage in homosexuality. Homosexuality in humans goes hand in hand with hypersexuality and overcrowded cities, interestingly. We also find a high rate of mental illness among homosexuals.

True dat, Mordecai. Those studies and those views were de rigeuer long prior to about 1975. The data haven't changed since. So don't get nervous that certain posters question your libertarianism because they would rather impose a socio-political sameness upon everybody, and your views cannot be tolerated by them. Re-education is the answer to all questions.

TRVTH is TRVTH, after all.

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True dat, Mordecai. Those studies and those views were de rigeuer long prior to about 1975. The data haven't changed since. So don't get nervous that certain posters question your libertarianism because they would rather impose a socio-political sameness upon everybody, and your views cannot be tolerated by them.

No, we question the libertarian chops of social conservatives, because their libertarian principals give way to their desire to impose their personal moral outlook on the rest of society.

Re-education is the answer to all questions.

TRVTH is TRVTH, after all.

How about we just begin with education is the answer.

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The question:

Just as a hypothetical, what if it were discovered that the tendency to believe in the supernatural and experience mystical events were the result of a chemical imbalance, with a simple treatment? Would people want to take the treatment to "free themselves from the yoke of superstition" after a lifetime of identifying as a believer?

We do not find high rates of mental illness in Mormons, however, so I don't think omega 3's will prevent religion. ha ha

Ha. Ha. I see you prefer not to answer the question.

My answer to the question, in your words is: "if a simple treatment comes out, it will become incredibly controversial, despite the common sense solution of informing people that they have a choice and letting them decide for themselves."

In fact, I think it would be far more than controversial. Religious zealots often kill and are willing to die in the name of God.

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How about we just begin with education is the answer.

"Education" from the likes of JB is "Re-Education" in any civilized society not steeped in lies and obfuscations. Take moral teaching away from parents and churches and put it in the hands of state-run and homophiliac-dominated schools. Then we'll all have peaches and cream in a brave new world where four feet are good and Mormons are ever bad and to be tortured until they relent and confess JSJr a charlatan and the Master just another son of a whore.

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"Education" from the likes of JB is "Re-Education" in any civilized society not steeped in lies and obfuscations. Take moral teaching away from parents and churches and put it in the hands of state-run and homophiliac-dominated schools. Then we'll all have peaches and cream in a brave new world where four feet are good and Mormons are ever bad and to be tortured until they relent and confess JSJr a charlatan and the Master just another son of a whore.

That is quite a rant. Need I remind you that, in most cases, the curriculum for public schools are set at the local level, and starts with a locally elected school board. I am guessing that you live in mormon dominated community, with a school board that shares your view of homosexuals.

Which, if true, means that, in reality, you are griping about the education that other people's children are getting because the "homophiliac" dominated school board, happens to be what the community voted for.

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That is quite a rant. Need I remind you that, in most cases, the curriculum for public schools are set at the local level, and starts with a locally elected school board. I am guessing that you live in mormon dominated community, with a school board that shares your view of homosexuals.

Which, if true, means that, in reality, you are griping about the education that other people's children are getting because the "homophiliac" dominated school board, happens to be what the community voted for.

Torture and re-education are no less themselves because they come at the order of or under the hand of somebody that's a Juvenile Court Judge or that has an MSW after her name.

USU "JB's ignoring of the thunderous pronouncements from within the Geltway don't change a thing" 78

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Torture and re-education are no less themselves because they come at the order of or under the hand of somebody that's a Juvenile Court Judge or that has an MSW after her name.

USU "JB's ignoring of the thunderous pronouncements from within the Geltway don't change a thing" 78

Again local school board. Local elections. your child is safely cocooned from the world in a public shool with mormon dominated school board.

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On the topic of the original post:

It isn't very surprising to me. All studies of homosexuality in animals (that I'm aware of) point to only a few causes: (1) environmental pressures (lack of mates, social indoctrination, etc...), (2) chemical pressures (pollution, chemical interference by humans, etc...), or (3) genetic aberrations. To address the implied criticism "these are only rats, and not close to us": In studies on the other primates, again as far as I'm aware, there is no other species where it is claimed there is a small but measurable minority of the population that is solely and naturally homosexual (and not for one of the three reasons above).

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On the topic of the original post:

It isn't very surprising to me. All studies of homosexuality in animals (that I'm aware of) point to only a few causes: (1) environmental pressures (lack of mates, social indoctrination, etc...), (2) chemical pressures (pollution, chemical interference by humans, etc...), or (3) genetic aberrations. To address the implied criticism "these are only rats, and not close to us": In studies on the other primates, again as far as I'm aware, there is no other species where it is claimed there is a small but measurable minority of the population that is solely and naturally homosexual (and not for one of the three reasons above).

Maybe you could refere to the studies you are sighting. One of the largest studies done on this issue reported observing homosexuality in animals in over 1500 species. This was not in a zoo or artificial settings, the scientists observed this behavior in the wild. I am not sure that this really matters much, but homosexuality in animals has nothing to do with as you put it "social indoctrination" or chemicals.

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reported observing homosexual [behavior] in animals in over 1500 species.

Fixed.

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Maybe you could refere to the studies you are sighting. One of the largest studies done on this issue reported observing homosexuality in animals in over 1500 species. This was not in a zoo or artificial settings, the scientists observed this behavior in the wild. I am not sure that this really matters much, but homosexuality in animals has nothing to do with as you put it "social indoctrination" or chemicals.

California Boy,

I thought I made it clear in my post that I wasn't citing any specific study, but rather I was referencing all reputable studies that I have ever been made aware of. I am aware of the study you reference. First, (if we are speaking of the same study, as cited http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homosexual_behavior_in_animals) it does not make your claim that homosexual behavior in animals has nothing to do with social indoctrination or chemicals. Second, your claim is patently false. Social behaviors, including homosexuality, *can* be taught. There are many studies confirming this, and I can give you a few if you so desire. Chemicals *can* trigger homosexual behavior. From that same wikipedia page: "Research has shown that the environmental pollutant methylmercury can increase the prevalence of homosexual behavior in male American White Ibis." etc... etc...

But there is a simple way that you can educate me if you think I am wrong on my other claim. Point out to me a reputable study of a non-human great apes species which (1) observes that a small but sizable portion of the population is strictly and singly homosexual and (2) that this is almost certainly not the result of population, chemical, or social pressures.

I agree with the statement that homosexual behavior is a natural phenomenon, which occurs across many species. I just haven't been shown any studies which demonstrate that its occurrence in the animal kingdom corresponds to the talking points of how it supposedly occurs in the human realm. There are studies which show (a) it can be taught socially, (b) it can be caused by chemicals, © it can be caused by population dynamics, etc...

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California Boy,

I thought I made it clear in my post that I wasn't citing any specific study, but rather I was referencing all reputable studies that I have ever been made aware of. I am aware of the study you reference. First, (if we are speaking of the same study, as cited http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homosexual_behavior_in_animals) it does not make your claim that homosexual behavior in animals has nothing to do with social indoctrination or chemicals. Second, your claim is patently false. Social behaviors, including homosexuality, *can* be taught. There are many studies confirming this, and I can give you a few if you so desire. Chemicals *can* trigger homosexual behavior. From that same wikipedia page: "Research has shown that the environmental pollutant methylmercury can increase the prevalence of homosexual behavior in male American White Ibis." etc... etc...

But there is a simple way that you can educate me if you think I am wrong on my other claim. Point out to me a reputable study of a non-human great apes species which (1) observes that a small but sizable portion of the population is strictly and singly homosexual and (2) that this is almost certainly not the result of population, chemical, or social pressures.

I agree with the statement that homosexual behavior is a natural phenomenon, which occurs across many species. I just haven't been shown any studies which demonstrate that its occurrence in the animal kingdom corresponds to the talking points of how it supposedly occurs in the human realm. There are studies which show (a) it can be taught socially, (b) it can be caused by chemicals, © it can be caused by population dynamics, etc...

It sounds like from your post that you felt my questions to you were an attack on what you said. I was just interested in where you got your information. I have never heard of a study where animals are taught to be homosexual. While I guess it may be possible in some species, I would be interested in how a scientist would teach say penquines to be homosexual. Sounds very interesteing. I could not fine any reference to it in the study that you cited.

There was only a single reference to chemicals possibly having an effect on homosexuality with animals. That was with black swans. Did you have a broader study on this? Do you think chemicals is a major cause of homosexuality in the animal kingdom?

Sorry if I am asking too many questions, but what did you mean by "supposedly occures in the human realm"?

Please don't take this post as an attack on your views. I am just interested in what has drawn you to these conclusions. I am not even saying they are right or wrong. It is just news to me, and I would like to study more on what you are asserting. You seem to feel pretty strongly about this.

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