genetic variability of brain structure paired with brain plasticity as key
factors of Homo sapiens species evolutionary success
project is open for collaborative development.
postulates that genetically determined variability of brain structure within
the human population determines the observed variability of linguistic,
logical, social and artistic abilities within individual human beings. The
postulate is thus embedded in the theory of multiple intelligences proposed by
Howard Gardner (Gardner, Howard, 1993, Frames of mind: The theory of multiple
intelligences. New York:
assumes that brain plasticity, i.e. a feature of the young human brain to
organize its structure by interaction with the multiple sensory inputs during
infancy in order to develop the neuronal basis for most higher cognitive
abilities, modifies brain structure and function to a certain extend
enabling different human brain structures to perform most intellectual tasks
The hypotheses further
assumes that the evolutionary advantage of a human population with a high
degree of genetic variability of brain structure and subsequent variability of cognitive
abilities might result from preadaptation as well as from the division of labor
in human societies.
Preconditions for the evolutionary advantage of a high degree of genetic variability of brain structure are language and altruism. Language enables propagation of scientific and cultural innovations invented by intellectually more specialized and able individuals towards less specialized individuals within a social group enhancing the overall evolutionary fitness of the social group. Altruism within a social group allows survival of intellectually more specialized but possibly less viable individuals and thus preserves genetic heterogeneity.