So this fly goes into a bar…

Read this article and finish the sentence. I wonder if fruitflies talk about humans the way we talk about them. … [Read more...]

Year in review: Top Ten Stories from 2007

Since it was so much fun last year, I decided to compile a top ten list of stories of the year on the blog. Since I am the only voter, the list is subjective and regular readers might arrange them differently or think I should have included another story over one of these. The stories are arranged in the order of the interest they seemed to create here on the blog and elsewhere.1. APA Task Force on sexual orientation - I first reported here that the APA had convened a task force to review … [Read more...]

Same-sex marriage conversation: What do we know? Part 2

As Part 2 of my series on same-sex parenting research, I am posting the transcript of a presentation delivered at the Catholic University just over a year ago. A section on same-sex marriage was provided after Michael Bailey and prior to my speech at the same comference.(Quotes removed at the request of Brad Wilcox)Here is a more socially conservative scholar who comes to an assessment similar to Meezan and Rauch: we don't know much and not really enough.Some distinctions are arising … [Read more...]

An antiboy antibody? Problems for the "maternal immune hypothesis"

In June 2006, Anthony Bogaert released a study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science which created a world wide buzz about a possible biological basis for the same-sex attraction of some men.A recent Journal of Biosocial Science article by Neil Whitehead takes on this hypothesis and finds several problems. I don't have time for a detailed analysis at this time (I am behind on as it is on these - notably on the Witelson brain study), but I do want to get this on the radar. … [Read more...]

Call it Biagra – A drug to switch orientation?

The new fruit fly research has observers wondering about a drug to alter sexual orientation. This article by John Tierney raises some of the inevitable questions which will arise if indeed such a bridge can be made between flies and humans.He quotes an email from researcher David Featherstone on the controversy:I asked Dr. Featherstone if it might be possible one day to quickly alter humans’ sexual orientation. Here’s his answer:Although I am not sure my research is a big step in this d … [Read more...]

Gay gene and bad parents out, neoteny in?

Desmond Morris, author of the Naked Ape, has a new book out called the Naked Man. Not a protocol for your next New Warriors Training Adventure, rather, it is an attempt to apply zoology to human behavior. In this article, Richard Brooks reviews reaction to Morris' new theory where...he concludes that men are “made gay” because they retain infantile or juvenile characteristics into adulthood – a phenomenon known as neoteny.According to this theory, gay men also tend to be more inventive an … [Read more...]

Duke lab maps silenced genes

Understanding genetics is difficult enough, but now comes new information about gene copies that get switched off leading to vulnerabilities and unanticipated pathways in development.This AP article describes a paper regarding "silenced" genes and raises many questions about how the environment might turn on and off copies of genes. Here is the introduction:Duke scientists map 'silenced genes'By LAURAN NEERGAARD, AP Medical Writer Fri Nov 30, 6:49 AM ETWASHINGTON - Remember biology … [Read more...]

Psychoanalytic theory and the etiology of homosexuality: What does research say?

Does research support psychoanalytic explanations for homosexuality? In one recent exchange at the blog, Ex-Gay Watch, NARTH Scientific Advisory Board member, Jim Phelan advanced psychoanalytic theory with reference to a book entitled, Freud Scientifically Reappraised: Testing the theories and therapy, by Seymour Fisher and Roger Greenberg (1996). The 1996 edition is an update of their initial report in 1977. Specifically Dr. Phelan said that Fisher and Greenberg concluded that empirical resear … [Read more...]