The northwest-southeast cline in Europe and the brain

A friend sent me this amazing study, seems to have been previously overlooked by hereditarians. Bakken, T. E., Dale, A. M., Schork, N. J., & Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative. (2011). A geographic cline of skull and brain morphology among individuals of European Ancestry. Human heredity, 72(1), 35-44. Background Human skull and brain morphology are strongly…

Continue Reading

Of cats and dogs and men

Genetic variation between populations/races of a species is a nice single summary statistic about how large between population phenotypic differences to expect. In case of humans, this value (Fst, the fixation index) is about 15%. This finding is due to Lewontin (1972) and is now mindlessly repeated (Lewontin’s fallacy) as some kind of slam dunk…

Continue Reading

A partial test of DUF1220 for population differences in intelligence?

You might have heard the DUF1220 hypothesis, it goes something like this: DUF1220 is a copy number variant poorly tagged by arrays, and thus would not be captured well by typical GWASs for education/IQ. Comparative species data suggests strong selection for DUF1220 with increased intelligence/brain size. There’s some data showing a relationship between IQ in…

Continue Reading

FAQ for Dunkel et al 2019 Ashkenazim polygenic score for intelligence

Dunkel, C. S., Woodley of Menie, M. A., Pallesen, J., & Kirkegaard, E. O. (2019). Polygenic scores mediate the Jewish phenotypic advantage in educational attainment and cognitive ability compared with Catholics and Lutherans. Evolutionary Behavioral Sciences. So predictably, our study on Jewish IQ has elicited some rather harsh (and in some cases moralistic) criticisms from…

Continue Reading

Admixture analysis and genetic causation: some quotes from the literature

A common comment on bias in scientific peer review is that reviewers don’t usually say openly they are applying double standards. Instead, they just silently increase their standards. If their bias against some finding is strong, the evidential burden to meet goes to infinity, making sure that nothing is rigorous enough to pass review. A…

Continue Reading

The mysterious PC1 ancestry component

Mehta, C. M., Malins, J. G., Noble, K. G., & Gruen, J. R. (2017). Cortical area and subcortical volume mediate the effect of parental education and adverse experiences on cognitive performance in youth. bioRxiv, 160424. Remember “poverty shrinks the brain from birth”? From birth! Fast acting that poverty, actually before birth too. Anyway, Kimberly Noble…

Continue Reading

Tests of colorism in Pelotas (Brazil) sample for income, wealth and education outcomes

In 2016, a Brazilian PHD student with access to the Brazilian Pelotas dataset was kind enough to run a few regressions for us. We apparently forgot to make the results public, but do so now so others can see. I have also previously analyzed some of this data which was later published in an obscure…

Continue Reading

Q/A with Antonio Regalado for genomics

Antonio Regalado is providing us with a recent series of the arguably best informed (compared to Guardian, Nature news etc.) popular science articles on genomics and its relevance to modern eugenics (embryo selection or genetic engineering) as well as the group differences causation question. www.technologyreview.com/s/609204/eugenics-20-were-at-the-dawn-of-choosing-embryos-by-health-height-and-more/ www.technologyreview.com/s/610251/forecasts-of-genetic-fate-just-got-a-lot-more-accurate/ www.technologyreview.com/s/610339/dna-tests-for-iq-are-coming-but-it-might-not-be-smart-to-take-one/ As background for some of these, I had…

Continue Reading

“This manuscript addresses a politically sensitive issue that I would prefer not to include in Frontiers in Evolutionary Sociology and Biosociology.”

While I am re-writing our PING study to become a substantial target article, John is sending it to various journals in the mean time to poke about their editorial biases. Here’s a recent reply, which was thankfully quite up front about the bias: From: Frontiers <noreply@frontiersin.org> Sent: Monday, September 25, 2017 5:05 PM To: j122177@hotmail.com

Continue Reading