Reduction of developmental biology to self-referential cell-cell communication offers a portal for understanding fundamental mechanisms of physiology as derived from physics through quantum mechanics. It is argued that self-referential organization is implicit to the Big Bang and its further expression is a recoil reaction to that Singularity. When such a frame is considered, in combination with experimental evidence for the importance of epigenetic inheritance, the unicellular state can be reappraised as the primary object of selection. This framework provides a significant shift in understanding the relationship between physics and biology, providing novel insights to the nature and origin of consciousness.
“Evolutionary research has confirmed that all complex organisms emanate from cellular roots. Further, too, all reiterate through a single cell stage for reproduction. Despite outward appearances, every complex organism remains perpetually attached to an inherent cellular narrative as an intimate co-alignment of mixed cellular ecological units. We are cellular beings, and ever remain thus. Our range of unique human behaviors are therefore derivative, whether manifested as impulsive risk taking or artistic expression. All such human endeavors are our means of exploring a catalogue of necessary information within an obligatory circumstance in which the information upon which we must rely is always equivocal.
Yet, within this complexity, there is hidden unity. Our illusion of singularity depends on the transitory but inseparable conjoining cohesion of all our linked cellular ecologies. And from this emanates the largest Truth: we and the environment are entwined self-similarities. The environment that matters most is not without, it is embedded within our own natural being. And our only sure Truth is our own impermanent and ambiguous transit through this intimate and reciprocating dimension.
Why then is life full of deceptions? At all points in time and for every organism within the informational system that biology represents, the predominating driver is not just access to information, but an active assessment of its inherently equivocal context and quality. Biology’s continuous drama is the struggle to settle a range of unknowns into forms of information that are discretely recognizable as secure. Those actions that sustain us must always travel along that path. It is our simple plight that nothing need be as it seems and, in consequence, our survival is an unceasing battle to overcome inherent untruth.”
Zach Bush, MD is a triple board certified physician specializing in Internal Medicine, Endocrinology and Metabolism, as well as in Hospice and Palliative care. The director of M Clinic in Virginia, Dr. Bush has published peer-reviewed articles and book chapters in the areas of infectious disease, endocrinology, and cancer.
This is a mind-blowing conversation that explores new insights into the mechanisms behind human health and longevity. It’s about the massive and misunderstood impact of industrial farming, chemical pesticides, the pharmaceutical industry and even errant Western medical practices have on both human and planetary health.
It’s a conversation about the difference between the science of disease and the science of health. It’s about the microbiome as a critical predictor of and protector against illness. And it’s an exploration of autism, epigenetics and the mechanics of intercellular communication..
This new edition of the iconic IUBMB-Nicholson Metabolic Pathways Chart brings increased functionality to a canonical tool. Now, all metabolites, enzymes, and selected pathways are searchable and interactive. The “backbone” of the map is the Glycolytic Pathway followed by the TCA (Krebs) Cycle and the Respiratory Chain which together lead to the synthesis of ATP by ATP Synthase. ATP is the source of most of the energy required for all life. Many biosynthetic and breakdown pathways of metabolism such as carbohydrates, amino acids, lipids are associated with this backbone and are differentiated by the use of color. Human metabolism is distiguished where possible by the use of black arrows. Some 550 reactions are identified by their IUBMB Enzyme Commission (EC) numbers which are then indexed.
Parent–offspring conflict can be defined as a state in which parents and children stand in opposition to one another. The source of conflict between parents and children can vary significantly from relatively trivial issues such as clothing choice or bedtime routine to very serious issues relating to the safety and well-being of the child. One of the principal goals of parenting is the socialization of the child – the process by which parents instill in their child the values and behaviors appropriate to a member of society. That this socialization process frequently leads to conflict if the child resists parental attempts to modify their behavior highlights several truths about parent–child conflict. To begin with, parent–child conflict is inevitable. Parents cannot engage in the socialization process without having to occasionally confront their reluctant child, and children cannot test the boundaries of their developing autonomy without occasionally frustrating their parents.
A second, and perhaps surprising, truth about parent–offspring conflict is that it is not necessarily a negative occurrence. Although we often think about conflict as something to be avoided, there is growing evidence that it may serve as a critical catalyst for children’s social cognitive development. Conflict often forces children to take another person’s perspective (in order to understand precisely what is upsetting them about the situation), to practice burgeoning negotiation skills, to understand moral and social values, and to effectively regulate their emotions in order to avoid escalating the conflict further.
A final point is that parent–offspring conflict is not a singular phenomenon. The nature and frequency of conflict changes as children develop, as do the strategies for handling conflict. A parent trying to manage their toddler’s nap schedule is going to face different challenges than a parent trying to manage their adolescent’s curfew. As children develop, they become both more receptive to recognizing and complying with their parents’ perspective on issues and more capable of negotiating and resisting their parents’ instructions. Likewise, parents’ expectations for their children’s behavior during conflict situations, as well as their perspective on their own role as a socializing agent, will change as their child develops. With that said, there also appears to be great continuity in how dyads manage conflict. When a pattern of mutually responsive, effective conflict management in which both partners are free to express their differing viewpoints and work together to resolve the issue is established early in life, it is likely to persist across childhood despite the changing nature of parent–child conflict.
Parent–child conflict is a topic that has received considerable theoretical attention. Therefore, this article begins with a brief comment on theoretical perspectives on parent–offspring conflict. In the following sections, research on the antecedents and outcomes of parent–child conflict is reviewed. We adopt a developmental perspective that focuses on the bidirectional influence of both parent and child behavior during conflict interactions. We conclude this article with a discussion of parent–child conflict that exceeds what can be considered developmentally normative – either because it occurs with greater (or less) frequency than is typically seen, or because it escalates into coercive patterns of interaction or child maltreatment. This focus on nonnormative parent–offspring conflict has particularly practical implications, as the development of successful interventions for families overwhelmed by conflict is of great importance.
Elinor Ostrom’s 8 polycentric, subsidiarity, hierarchical, coherently-inclusive rule-making and governance-principles can be life-grounded and connected to planetary and population health via life-value guided-principles and strategies as illustrated here.
The 2008 financial crisis spread from Wall Street to the world almost overnight, threatening the lives and livelihoods of millions, even though its causes had nothing to do with the production and distribution of any of the basic necessities of life. Instead, the crisis erupted because the financial system had become unhinged from its real function: supplying credit to productive enterprises. Finance capital increasingly made its money from complex “derivatives,” which are not claims on a company’s proﬁt (as shares are) but on debts packaged and sold as investments. Immense profits were made, which provided the incentive to create more derivatives, causing debts to be piled on debts, all sold with guaranteed returns. Many of these derivatives involved American mortgages. Since these were backed by a physical asset (the house), they were advertised to institutional investors as highly secure, but the models assumed that housing prices would continue to rise. As it turned out, the housing market was a bad-mortgage fuelled bubble. When it burst, the “mortgage backed securities” became worthless, and banks from Athens to Iceland collapsed. Instead of having to foot the bill for their recklessness and greed, major banks were bailed out with hundreds of billions of dollars of public money. Workers lost their jobs, housings, and savings; Wall Street bankers paid themselves bonuses for the greatest failure of the financial system since 1929.
Most of human history and prehistory was lived in economic poverty but with social and ecological wealth, both of which are diminishing as commodification takes over most everything. Human moral wealth has also deteriorated. Because humans are biosocially, dynamically, and epigenetically shaped, early experience is key for developing one’s moral capital. When early experience is species-atypical, meaning that it falls outside the evolved developmental niche (EDN), which is often the case in modern societies, biopsychosocial moral development is undermined, shifting one’s nature and worldview to self-protectionism. Individuals develop into self-regarding shadows of their potential selves, exhibiting threat-reactive moral mindsets that promote unjust treatment of other humans and nonhumans. Humanity’s moral wealth can be re-cultivated by taking up what indigenous people all over the world know: that a good life, a virtuous life, is a one that is led by a well-cultivated heart, embodied in action that includes partnership with nonhumans. Moral educators can help students to revamp their capacities with self-calming skills, the development of social pleasure and communal ecological imagination.
Why does the sun shine? A random result of coalescing gases igniting nuclear fusion? Or is it in order to give its light and warmth to Life? Why does the rain fall? Is it the senseless product of blind chemical processes of evaporation and condensation? Or is it to water life? Why do you seek to pour forth your song? Is it to show off your genetic fitness to attract a mate, or is it to contribute to a more beautiful world? We may fear those first answers but it is the second that carries the ring of truth. Read More
This essay was delivered as a commencement address at the University of California–Berkeley School of Public Health on May 17, 2015. Reflecting on events spanning from 1990 to 1999 to 2015, when I gave my first, second, and third commencement talks at the school, I discuss four notable features of our present era and offer five insights for ensuring that health equity be the guiding star to orient us all. The four notable features are: (1) growing recognition of the planetary emergency of global climate change; (2) almost daily headlines about armed conflicts and atrocities; (3) growing public awareness of and debate about epic levels of income and wealth inequalities; and (4) growing activism about police killings and, more broadly, “Black Lives Matter.” The five insights are: (1) public health is a public good, not a commodity; (2) the “tragedy of the commons” is a canard; the lack of a common good is what ails us; (3) good science is not enough, and bad science is harmful; (4) good evidence—however vital—is not enough to change the world; and (5) history is vital, because we live our history, embodied. Our goal: a just and sustainable world in which we and every being on this planet may truly thrive.