This seems somewhat tautological. It sounds like it's saying "Some genetic traits make people more suitable to social relationships, and those people are more likely to be in social relationships". Well, yeah.
The post title is cut and paste from the first paragraph of the linked academic press release here :
> Did humans domesticate themselves?
> Human ‘self-domestication’ is a hypothesis that states that among the driving forces of human evolution, humans selected their companions depending on who had a more pro-social behavior. Researchers from a team of the UB led by Cedric Boeckx, ICREA professor at the Department of Catalan Philology and General Linguistics and member of the Institute of Complex Systems of the University of Barcelona (UBICS), found out new genetic evidence for this evolutionary process.
Constantina Theofanopoulou, Simone Gastaldon, Thomas O’Rourke, Bridget D. Samuels, Angela Messner, Pedro Tiago Martins, Francesco Delogu, Saleh Alamri, Cedric Boeckx.
Self-domestication in Homo sapiens: Insights from comparative genomics.
PLOS ONE, 2017; 12 (10): e0185306
> This study identifies and analyzes statistically significant overlaps between selective sweep screens in anatomically modern humans and several domesticated species. The results obtained suggest that (paleo-)genomic data can be exploited to complement the fossil record and support the idea of self-domestication in Homo sapiens, a process that likely intensified as our species populated its niche. Our analysis lends support to attempts to capture the “domestication syndrome” in terms of alterations to certain signaling pathways and cell lineages, such as the neural crest.
This is super interesting. Can someone who knows more about this explain further?
I'd be interested to know what research has been done into the converse of this. It seems straightforward that individuals who are more social are more likely to pass on their genes and therefore over time any species will become more social. However, there are plenty of instances where this doesn't happen, so there must be some evolutionary pressure that penalises more social individuals. Maybe those in groups are more vulnerable to predators and so sometimes it's only possible for apex species to develop this trait?
I’m interested in the modern version of this, specifically about addiction. Addiction is genetic and two people who have exacerbated the condition by “falling into the honey pot” who procreate have a much higher chance of passing the gene on. It’s not advantageous to do this obviously as addicts more often than not are at a disadvantage but it’s very common during active addiction and even in sobriety amongst groups of like minded sober people there’s reproduction. Are addicts growing in numbers? How fast is the growth rate and how can it be stopped?
Our social structure tends to isolate and/or remove organisms that exhibit behaviors that are not "social." this would seem the natural eventual end point for any social animal that excludes those with antisocial traits.
Obviously removing the genes altogether or limiting the opportunity to reproduce is going to diminish its presence within the population.