Lamarck lives!

And the Neo-Darwinian wall continues to crumble:

LANDMARK Adelaide research showing that sperm and eggs appear to carry genetic memories of events well before conception, may force a rethink of the evolutionary theories of Charles Darwin, scientists say.

It also suggests the bad habits developed through a parent’s lifetime could be passed on genetically to their children.The University of Adelaide research, published internationally today, shows that babies may be prone to their parents’ youthful behaviour, from gorging as obese teenagers to a preference for fruit or even dislike of smells.

The work by the university’s Robinson Research Institute appears on Friday in the international journal Science after being put through scrupulous peer review.

It paves the way for a review of the work of French biologist Jean-Baptiste Lamarck, whose theory that an organism can pass to its offspring characteristics acquired during its lifetime was largely ignored after Darwin’s publication of On The Origin of Species in the mid-1800s, that work defining evolution as a process of incidental, random mutation between generations.

I’m just curious how much more the theory has to be shown to have gotten wrong before its advocates decide that it is time to start viewing it as just another scientific hypothesis rather than unquestionable dogma. The conceptual epicycles are stacking up at an ever-increasing rate.

It should be readily apparent that genetic memory would be a considerably more powerful mechanism than waiting for random mutations, then gradually selecting for those genes across an entire population, one favored mating survivor at a time.