Wednesday, July 7, 2010

X-Celling Over Men !

Women seem to like generalizing about their menfolk....but a startling study shows that science is backing them up. Research published in the NATURE Magazine reveals that women are genetically more complex than scientists ever imagined, while men remain the simple creatures they appear to be.

"Alas," said one of the authors of the study, the Duke University genome expert Huntington Willard, "genetically speaking, if you've met one man, you've met them all. We are, I hate to say it, predictable. You can't say that about women. Men and women are further apart than we ever knew. It's not Mars or Venus. It's Mars and Venus, Jupiter, Neptune and who knows what other planets. Women are not only more different from men than we knew....women are more different from each other than we knew; creatures of 'infinite variety' as Shakespeare wrote."

Dr Willard stated that the poor male of the species has only 45 chromosomes to do their work with because the 46th is the pathetic Y that has only a few genes (29) which operates below the waist and above the knees. He observed, "In contrast, we now know that women have a full 46 chromosomes that they're getting to work from and the 46th is a second X that is working at levels greater than we knew."

Dr Willard and his co-author, Laura Carrel, a molecular biologist, think that their discovery may help explain why the behavior and traits of men and women are so different. They learned that a whopping 50% (200-300) of the genes on the second X chromosome in women, thought to be submissive and inert are active, giving women a significant increase in gene expression over men. They explained that women are mosaics, one could even say chimeras (that fabled creature made up of various parts of animals) in the sense that they are made up of two different kinds of cell. Whereas men are pure and uncomplicated, being made of just a single kind of cell throughout.

"Women's chromosomes have more complexity, which men view a unpredictability," says David Page, a molecular biologist and expert on sex evolution at the Whitehead Institute in Cambridge. His studies showed that the Y chromosome has been shedding genes willy-nilly for millions of years and is now a fraction of the size of its partner, the X chromosome. Size matters, as some experts have suggested that in 1 million years or even much sooner (100,000 years) men could disappear taking Playboy magazine, the second childhood and pizza and beer with them.

The Way I See It....this means men's generalizations about women are correct too. Women are an inscrutable, changeable, crafty, idiosyncratic species. Their superior gene expression may answer the age-old question about why men have trouble expressing themselves: because their genes do.

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