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Neanderthals and Neurodiversity [Draft 10]

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Published on May 19, 2012

I may make a kickstarter to fund a real documentary project, but until then: https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr...
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The video (above) is a draft of a 2-hour video presentation that I'm still putting the finishing touches on. Here is the 10-minute overview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jk_85...

A PDF I compiled to better explain this: https://docs.google.com/open?id=0B3dP...
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Autism: The Eusocial Hominid Hypothesis

Abstract:

ASDs (autism spectrum disorders) are hypothesized as one of many adaptive human cognitive variations that have been maintained in modern populations via multiple genetic and epigenetic mechanisms. Introgression from "archaic" hominids (adapted for less demanding social environments) is conjectured as the source of initial intraspecific heterogeneity because strict inclusive fitness does not adequately model the evolution of distinct, copy-number sensitive phenotypes within a freely reproducing population.

Evidence is given of divergent encephalization and brain organization in the Neanderthal (including a ~1520 cc cranial capacity, larger than that of modern humans) to explain the origin of the autism subgroup characterized by abnormal brain growth.

Autism and immune dysfunction are frequently comorbid. This supports an admixture model in light of the recent discovery that MHC alleles (genes linked to immune function, mate selection, neuronal "pruning," etc.) found in most modern human populations come from "archaic" hominids.

Mitochondrial dysfunction, differential fetal androgen exposure, lung abnormalities, and hypomethylation/CNV due to hybridization are also presented as evidence.

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