Answer to Question #84592 in Genetics for sarah

Question #84592
Can we possess memories passed down from our ancestors? To put it in other words : Is it possible that we possess memory molecules, formerly owned by our ancestors, stored in our brain?
Expert's answer

Memories cannot be passed down to the offspring from the ancestors through genetic switches including DNA. Humans cannot remember horrors experienced by a grandfather during wars or hunting. No memory molecules produced and stored in the brain that can be inherited are known. However, a specific type of “memories” that can be inherited comprise knowledge helping us to survive. This “knowledge” is referred to an instinct that is formed during the development of the nervous system. However, instincts do not reflect memories produced in adult individual.

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