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Many Science-Fiction worlds, whether or not by design, have their aliens arise by what seems to be a form of Lamarckism. While this is all well and good, these same worlds also make use of a lot of genetics and DNA

This presents a contradiction. To explain, Lamarckism is, to be brief, the hypothesis that evolution is caused by the motion of fluids in the body, which would form new vessels and organs (the complexifying force) and increase existing organs with use (the adaptive force). This whole-body evolution seems to be incompatible with the concept of genes, where there are complete instructions for the whole thing stored in each cell. It also seems implausible to restrict the fluid flows to individual cells

Is there any way to harmonize this Lamarckism with the systems of Genetics?

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Epigenetics is about as close as you’re going to get. Changes to the genome that are acquired during an organisms life can in fact be inherited

Now the fluid dynamic idea present in Lamarckism is plainly not how genetic inheritance, but perhaps you could handwave that as merely being a poetic way of describing the crossing of chromosomes and DNA methylation

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    $\begingroup$ The immediate closure prevents me from posting at length (I guess that's the point), but pol theta does reverse transcription ( ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8195485 ), and methylation alters the mutation rate. These could convert epigenetic changes to genetic mutations (whether they do at a meaningful level is another question). If acquired inheritance is not a closed issue even on Earth, then certainly such mechanisms can be expanded in a sci-fi context! $\endgroup$ Jan 15 at 18:00

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