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Genomic Imprinting and Reproductive Conflict

Important! No writing project due next tuesday. I want you to hear the lecture before working on the writing project, so it will be due the following tuesday, November 9th.

Next weeks topic is Genomic Imprinting and Conflict, which relies heavily on insights of David Haig, an evolutionary theorist from Harvard.

The reading for next week is just this one: It is mandatory to read this carefully before class!
Haig D. Genetic Conflicts in Pregnancy. Quarterly Review of biology. Volume 68(4). Dec 1993, 495-532.

Genetic conflicts in human pregnancy

The Handout for Tuesday’s lecture is here:



Some have suggested that the age of weaning of infants from the breast is subject to  parent offspring conflict. Since breastfeeding tends to suppress ovulation and delay pregnancy, do you think infants and mothers might have different optimum timing of weaning from breastfeeding?  Give an evolutionary hypothesis for your answer. Do you think infants might exhibit behaviors that makes it hard for mothers to wean to solid food?  What behaviors might these be? The infant has 1/2 maternal derived genes and 1/2 paternal derived genes; which of these would these be expected to prolong breastfeeding?

Categories: Uncategorized

Joe Alcock

Emergency Physician, Educator, Researcher, interested in the microbiome, evolution, and medicine

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