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Re: Genes PLUS environment: So what is environment?? Seamus2

Posted by Randal on August 17, 2002, at 20:58:05

In reply to Re: Genes PLUS environment: So what is environment??, posted by Seamus2 on August 17, 2002, at 20:23:28

> Good trailhead for discussion, especially the qualifying terms of "nuture" vs. "nature" in scientific studies.
> I'd put the dividing line at "separated at birth".
> But this thread isn't about medications, so I suggest re-posting it at Psych-Babble Social
> Seamus

Thanks, right after I posted, it occurred to me that maybe this wouldn't be the best place since it isn't about medication.

However, I think the issue is relevant to a lot of people who are interested in the medical end of things. First of all, I'm sure MANY people have read the Time article and so I think discussion of it is appropriate. A big part of the article involves the drug treatment of bipolar or potentially bipolar kids. If there are any misconceptions in the article these should be cleared up. Second, the idea of whether children are "born" bipolar or whether their parents can keep it from happening is directly relevant to drug treatment. A 3 year old who shows clear signs of becoming bipolar: do you try to change his environment, or do you think about initiating drug treatment? If his "surroundings" are what will decide whether full-blown illness develops, it makes a huge difference.

I also think a lot of the people who are interested in the research and medical aspects of mental illness are also interested in its genesis. My guess is that the crowd we have here, which is pretty savvy, would be open to such a discussion. I think this is the appropriate audience.

If the post generates little response I'll repost it on the other board.



p.s. work on a mouse model of schizophrenia has shown that even before birth the fetuses are not equal. I remember hearing a talk that showed that influenza, I believe, led to illness in 50% of the genetically identical mice with a genetic predisposition--whether they developed the disease depended on their position in the uterus. Amazing stuff!




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