Nature Triumphs over “Nurture” Again: Musical Ability Genes Identified

Modern DNA research has once again disproved the leftist lie of “nurture over nature” with the identification of genes which give certain individuals musical ability.

 Left: Johan Strauss I, and right, Johan Strauss II, just two of many famous family musicians.

The discovery of the gene GATA2 by scientists at the University of Finland comes in the wake of earlier findings that race-specific medicines have been developed and that the genes which control brain size and intelligence have been identified.

All of this conclusively proves the reality that individuals are not “blank slates” at birth, as the Franz Boas-originated sociology myth has claimed for the last 100 years, but that their abilities, limitations, and strengths are pre-determined by their genes at the moment of conception.

The Finnish university team has published their findings in an article titled “A genome-wide linkage and association study of musical aptitude identifies loci containing genes related to inner ear development and neurocognitive functions,” published in the journal Molecular Psychiatry.

The researchers identified multiple genes linked to musical aptitude, providing further evidence that musical ability is heritable.
The team analyzed the genomes of 767 people, representing 76 families. Fifteen of the families were selected for having several professional musicians, while the rest were simply recruited from advertisements.

Subjects older than seven were assessed for musical aptitude. In three separate tests, subjects were asked to discern small differences in tone pitch and duration, and to detect minute differences in sound patterns from various musical sequences.

Armed with this abundance of genomes and test results, the researchers then associated specific genes with musical aptitude.

The most notable link was found on the third chromosome, near the gene GATA2. GATA2 produces a transcription factor key to the development of the inner ear.

Another gene, PCDH7, was also strongly linked to musical aptitude. PCDH7 is known to be expressed in the cochlea, the auditory portion of the inner ear, and the amygdaloid complex in the brain.

“In neuroscientific studies, [the] amygdala has been linked to emotional interpretation of musical sounds,” the researchers explained.

“As studies like the current one become more commonplace, bolstering our knowledge of innate musical ability, it may become possible to sequence a baby’s genome and determine if he or she is predisposed to musical stardom.”

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  1. I am 51 years old and have always wanted to play a musical instrument, yet no amount of work has ever seemed to bring any results. I sort of concluded that musical aptitude is like that elusive sixth sense and any expectation that sufficient amount of practice can turn anyone into a music performer is as ludicrous as an expectation that a blind person can say run swiftly accross a forest provided that he/she memorises correctly the position of all the trees in it. Let's face it, most of us are seriously handicapped compared with those who enjoy the natural musical aptitude. I wonder if it has ever happened in recorded history that someone lost their musical aptitude or conversly that someone suddenly received the gift. Any such person by decribing their experience would be a wonderful witness to the existence of that sixth sense.

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