New Study Finds Not One But Several Genes Have Effect On Sexuality

A new study published in the journal Science found there’s not a single gene that determines human sexuality but several genes that contribute to whether someone is LGBT or not.

The study, the largest ever to explore the connection between genetic makeup and sexual orientation, involved over 470,000 participants from Sweden, the US, and the UK.

DNA data was accessed from the UK Biobank study and from 23andMe, a private genetics company. 26,000 participants reported at least one same-sex sexual encounter.

Researchers found a strong connection between homosexuality and five autosomal loci (areas of DNA not on sex chromosomes).

The researchers acknowledged that the presence of the genes does not in itself determine someone’s sexual orientation.

But, the scientists found that a range of 8% to 25% of the variance in sexuality could be explained by the genes.

Some of the genes were more impactful on men, some on women, and some on both.

And so, the authors wrote in the study, “Same-sex sexual behavior is influenced by not one or a few genes but many.”

Eric Vilain, director of the Center for Genetic Medicine Research at Children’s National Health System, said that the study could have been more specific had the scientists focused on only gay and bi people instead of just asking if people have ever had a same-sex sexual experience and lumping them all together.

Vilain added that the study should be replicated with more diverse participants.

Interestingly, media outlets have spun the study in several ways.

For instance, the headline in Science read, “There’s no evidence that a ‘gay gene’ exists.”

Over at Bloomberg, they wrote, “Science Hasn’t Found A ‘Gay’ Gene – So What?” That seems vague to me.

But the New York Times headlined more accurately, “Many Genes Influence Same-Sex Sexuality, Not a Single ‘Gay Gene.’”

And the Washington Post – “There’s no one ‘gay gene,’ but genetics are linked to same-sex behavior,” new study says.”

Considering how many – MANY – people read headlines and think they read ‘the news,’ you can see how a few words make a big difference.

AsapSCIENCE: “What If You Stopped Masturbating?”

The super-smart guys at AsapSCIENCE just posted their newest YouTube video exploring the question, “What if you stopped masturbating?”

The guys start with the statistic that over 50% of women and more than 70% of men masturbate on a monthly basis.

Waaaait – does that mean once a month???

According to the Asap guys, a 2003 study showed if you were to stop masturbating, within a week testosterone levels can rise up to 40%. So, that’s a good thing, right?

However, the same study showed those levels drop back down to normal on day 8. So, it’s not like you keep building up testosterone.

In any case, that study spurred the creation of the ‘no fap’ movement that encourages men to stop masturbating in order to achieve better sexual performance, higher sperm quality and feelings of better motivation, self-esteem and happiness.

But is any of that true?

Some experts say improving your diet and exercise could be big factors in increased testosterone levels whether you abstain or not.

In terms of performance, researchers for one study found those who didn’t masturbate for three weeks did not improve or change any tendency for pre-mature ejaculation when compared to those who didn’t abstain.

And it appears the more often you ejaculate, the stronger your little swimmers are.

In fact, wet dreams are your body’s way of cycling out old sperm even if you are a member of Team No-Fap.

One way that pleasuring yourself less often can help you is in regard to dopamine and serotonin release.

When you masturbate, your body releases those two chemicals which stimulates the reward pathway in the brain.

But the more often you fap, the more de-sensitized your brain can become to those chemicals, so less pleasure. Taking a break from masturbation allows your brain to stay sensitive to those neurotransmitters.

That said, no one is advocating for stopping completely. In addition to feeling good, the occasional fap improves sleep, your immune system, reduces stress and pain, and even prostate cancer risks.

Watch the quick video below and be smarter in only three minutes. For more about the subject of masturbation, you can also check out the boys’ earlier video on masturbation in general here.

My Favorite Rick Santorum Moment This Year

White House hopeful (oh my sides) Rick Santorum says the Pope should “leave the science to scientists” when it comes to discussing climate change.

Hey Rick – Pope Francis has a Master’s Degree in Chemistry, thus, making him a scientist.

What’s your basis for discussing the subject, Rick?

Lexus Has Invented A Working Hoverboard

Shades of Back To The Future! Check out this working model of an actual hoverboard developed by Lexus.

Very cool, but it’s not quite there yet.

From Bloomberg:

Even though Lexus and Evico were able to pull off the project, don’t expect to see a hoverboard fly past while you’re walking down the street next year. To use maglev technology that would make this sort of hoverboard work, you need a magnetic metal track. Normal concrete pavements won’t do. Lexus solved this issue by converting a skate park in Barcelona into a temporary hoverboard skate park. On an existing track composed of cement and wood, the Lexus and Evico teams swooped in to lay down hundreds of small magnets.

(h/t JMG)