Brain Science Podcast discussion

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2006-2010 > BSP 51

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message 1: by Georgem (new)

Georgem | 9 comments I listened to this episode on the way to work and back three times today. This is one of my favorites in that the information was presented so well. One of the repeating principles in all of these podcasts is conservation, and again that principle was demonstrated in the yeast organism's proteins. What is really interesting to me is that those basic proteins are used by higher organisms for the purpose of behavior and learning, just as in the yeast.
I guess 'if it ain't broke, don't fix it' applies here.
I'm still trying to catch up on all the past episodes, so I don't know if Dr. Grant has had a follow-up interview.


message 2: by Ginger (new)

Ginger Campbell (gingercampbell) | 321 comments Mod
Georgem wrote: "I listened to this episode on the way to work and back three times today. This is one of my favorites in that the information was presented so well. One of the repeating principles in all of these ..."

I agree that this is one of the best episodes of the Brain Science Podcast, so I have to thank Diane Jacobs for making me aware of Dr. Grant's work. I haven't had him back on the show yet, but I certainly look forward to doing so.

It really is amazing that organisms as primitive as yeast have features that we usually associate with more complex nervous systems. The origins of what became the synapse seems to go back very early in life's evolution.


message 3: by Diane (new)

Diane | 9 comments It supports the idea of evolution from single cell organisms who have no nervous system, exaptation of synapses from membrane pores for chemosensing in order to move along chemical gradients. I found the idea riveting. Still do. (Thanks for the shout Ginger. :))

@Georgem, I agree - he was one of the most lucid interviewees I ever had the pleasure of listening to/transcribing (before Ginger hired a professional!)


message 4: by Georgem (new)

Georgem | 9 comments One of my favorite audio books is "A Short History of Nearly Everything", written by Bill Bryson. One of the scientists he quotes says something to the effect of "No one has counted the failed attempts". This is in regard to the apparent "miracle" of our universe's existence.
I extend that scientist's statement to include the apparent "miracle" of evolution. No one can know how many evolutionary dead ends there were on the way to what we see in the present.
Just thinking out loud, since it seems not many people in my meat space circle share my interest in this stuff.


message 5: by Ginger (new)

Ginger Campbell (gingercampbell) | 321 comments Mod
Georgem wrote: "One of my favorite audio books is "A Short History of Nearly Everything", written by Bill Bryson. One of the scientists he quotes says something to the effect of "No one has counted the failed atte..."

A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson is one of my favorites too. The thing that stuck out for me was the perserverance of some of the scientists in the book. Speaking of not counting failures, we rarely hear about the countless hours and even years that went into some of the discoveries we now take for granted.


message 6: by Tim (new)

Tim Titolo (goodreadscomtimtitolo) | 7 comments I too liked the book. Its been a while.


message 7: by Georgem (new)

Georgem | 9 comments Not to take away from their accomplishments, but since this is a neuroscience forum, do you suppose there was some sort of dysfunction that kept these scientists so engrossed?


message 8: by Ginger (new)

Ginger Campbell (gingercampbell) | 321 comments Mod
Georgem wrote: "Not to take away from their accomplishments, but since this is a neuroscience forum, do you suppose there was some sort of dysfunction that kept these scientists so engrossed?"

Hmm? Well, perseverence is usually considered a good quality, but I suppose there is a point where it crosses over to obsession. Where would humankind be without obsession? That would make an interesting debate!


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