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    2nd Siberian Indian Summer School on Human Ethology, 2003

Henry Harpending

Henry Harpending is a Professor of the University of Utah. His is a world-known researcher in the field of anthropogenetics, the author of many publications on genetics aspects of human kinship, population subdivision, geographic, ethnic and race differences. Professor Henry Harpending was a lector of the 2nd Summer School on Human Ethology (Puschino). He gave lectures on Evolution at the Human Dopamine D4 Receptor Locus and Human Race Differences: An Alternate Perspective.
Here are the topics and brief descriptions of his lectures on the upcoming school:

1. Natural selection on personality and temperament traits.
I will review theory and data about selection on quantitative traits. The theory is simple and is a good approximation even for traits determined by a few mendelian loci.  Given plausible values of heritability and selection intensity the time scale of significant population change should be on the order of centuries.  A familiar argument in anthropology in favor of purely social determination of temperament is to contrast the fierce Vikings of a millenium ago with the gentle Scandinavians of today.  If there has indeed been such a change, it is as likely to reflect genetic change.

2. The natural history of Ashkenazi IQ.
The Ashkenazi Jewish population has an average IQ of as high as 115 with a unique pattern of subtest scores: high verbal and computational ability but, in contrast to northeast Asians, little elevation of spatial ability.  I will propose a model in which this pattern is a consequence of the social niche of Ashkenazi ancestors during the middle ages.  The spectrum of Ashkenazi genetic disorders may be consequences of very strong selection for IQ.

3. Some genetic loci likely to cause population differences in
temperament and personality.

New molecular and population genetic methods allow inference about natural selection on genetic markers.  For example the 7R variant of the D4 dopamine receptor has been subject to strong positive selection in some but not all populations of humans, and clinical evidence suggests that this gene has consequences for behavior.  I will discuss several genes that are variable in frequency among populations and that may be related to temperament and personality, including the dopamine receptors, the androgen receptor, the serotonin transporter, and monoamine oxidase A.