Why are we who we are?

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Primary structure of a protein

Primary structure of a protein (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Why did we evolve as humans? Why do we have DNA and epigenetics? Why do we get sick? We are made of Amino Acids (which are the building blocks of plant & animal proteins). Amino Acids can be thought of as beads and proteins as necklaces. You can make different necklaces by using different beads. These acids have been found on many meteors from space. They are probably prevalent throughout the Universe. Life probably started very simply as Amino Acids forming simple proteins which led to RNA (half a DNA strand). RNA led to viruses and evolved into DNA which led to single cells and then onto all live on Earth. I believe these simple proteins along with Methyl Groups allowed life to adapt and form based on conditions and chemicals here on Earth. It adapted to the environment and built life from it. Life evolved into plant and animal and up to us. We are NOT the end or even the ultimate evolution. It will continue beyond us. It is anyone’s guess as to what that life form will be.

DNA without methyl groups (epigenetics) is like a piano without a player or a computer without software. It is useless! Epigenetics is very much like computer software in that it “plays” the hardware (DNA) in particular ways that do useful things. Computers have a little over 100 unique instructions in their processors. Playing these instructions in different orders is what creates Windows, Movie editing programs, databases, spreadsheets and word processors. They all use the same instructions but in different sequences that causes useful things to happen. Our epigenetics “Plays” our DNA  in different ways to cause useful things to happen in our bodies. It creates different types of cells (heart, muscle, lung, skin, etc.), messages to other cells (e.g. hormones), it adapts to changing environment (diet, exercise, thinking, belief and stress) and performs all the functions needed by each life form.

When the environment changes our epigenetics, it is trying to react to the environmental changes. Sometimes these changes are “Bad” and will hurt the life form (cancer) and sometimes they are “good” and will help it (health and resistance to disease). We can not easily change our hardware (DNA) but we can affect our software (epigenetics).


Science or Science Fiction?

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Illustration of the central dogma of biology: ...

Illustration of the central dogma of biology: information transfer between DNA, RNA, and protein (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Bruce Lipton talks about the power of mind management. He conflicts with the Central Dogma of biology that states information flows from the DNA down. This controls biology today as well as medicine. Dr. Lipton shows this is false. He says our physical parts are not as important as the energy fields that we are in. What use to be science fiction is now science.

We are not Islands but Creatures influenced by our Environment


Illustration of the central dogma of biology: ...

Illustration of the central dogma of biology: information transfer between DNA, RNA, and protein (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Dr Mercola says that believing in the central dogma of biology that information flows in only one direction from DNA to RNA to Protein building, leads to a belief that we are predetermined to diseases. This of course is now known to be false. Epigenetics shows us our genes are changing how they are expressed from influences outside the cell and even outside the body. We are creatures very much influenced by our environment. As our environment changes, so do we.

We are NOT DNA Predetermined but Environmentally Predetermined


An animal cell

An animal cell (Photo credit: Cindy Trussell)

Dr Lipton [See his videos on thios topic: Video #1 Video #2] says our environment feeds signals to our senses which feeds signals to our brains which filter these systems via our beliefs. The brain then sends signals to all cells which react to them causing certain genes to be activated. This activation creates RNA which encodes for a particular protein. The protein then can start the process over by signaling other cells. Dr Lipton can take a cell in a Petri Dish and remove its DNA. The cell continues to live and function. This proves our DNA is not what predetermines our cells actions but our environment does.

Do Our Genes Know the End is Near?


DNA damage resulting in multiple broken chromo...

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Scientists define DNA Damage response (DDR) as messages sent by chromosomes with critically short telomeres. These messages then signal widespread changes in gene expressions. These changes may be signaling a failure coming and make the organism age rapidly and die. These signals may be a last minute attempt to change the organism to survive but the damage may be so severe that it is not possible.

Are We Just Computers?


Comparison of a single-stranded RNA and a doub...

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When studying epigenetics, one can’t help see the similarity between life and computers. Computers are binary machines but could be any base system. They rely on switches to remember states and activate circuits that do things. As the complexity of computers grew, humans invented higher level programming languages to program them without dealing with all the complexity. Life is based on a memory system of DNA (or RNA in earlier life forms). As the DNA grew in complexity, epigenetics programmed it to do different things at different times. Think of all the different types of cells in a human. We have heart cells, liver cells, skin cells, muscle cells etc. As we look at each of these they are the same! Each cell has a nucleus with an identical copy of our DNA. Different types of cells have turned on some DNA that is not turned on in other types of cells. Epigenetics also turns off other pieces of DNA (genes) that may be on in different types of cells. This programming of what is turned on (activated) and what is turned off is what distinguishes each type of cell. On top of that epigenetics switches other pieces of DNA ON/OFF based on what we eat, the level of stress we are having, how we think and of course toxins in our environment. This complex programming makes identical twins (with exact copies of DNA) different from each other. It causes illness and death in some and longevity in others. We are nature’s laboratories. Each of us has different conditions that cause us to be unique individuals. Nature is trying to find the best path through our environment that will yield the highest probability that our DNA will be successfully passed on to new generations. It is all about survival in an unknown and changing environment not about the individual! We are programmed.