This finding is so insane, that it upends an entire field. This paper reads like science fiction. The authors fear condition a mouse to neutral scent by pairing the scent with electrical shocks. They find that the mouse’s offspring (both for male and female mice) exhibit freezing to the scent GENERATIONS LATER! ~ the learning finds some way to transfer to offspring outside the germ line. This is f#$%ing crazy that I don’t actually believe what I am reading.
This is the kind of things that people need to replicate immediately. stop what you are doing and replicate this experiment.
Mechanism: what makes it less believable is that there is no known mechanism that could adequately account for this (including epigenetics) because odorant receptors are heterogeneously reactive to several different molecules and scents are encoded in signature patterns from the olfactory receptor neurons… since epigenetics relies on acetylation of promoter pathways… how does that permit a heterogeneous pattern of activity to get encoded?