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First of all, Nah nah, I want to say thank you for having this discussion with me. It takes someone with class to have a level headed conversation that freely allows for the bouncing of ideas. This trait is harder to find in the academic world than you might think!
But anyway...back to the discussion.
There is a very specific reason why I didn't get into specific genes and that's because of the heaviness of the topic. I will now, but first I want to say that, yes, people do get their genes analyzed. Actually, it happens all the time and is the basis for my job! I hope they continue, seeing as how many lives have already been saved or improved by mapping a person's genotype. Oh, and before I forget, here is an article that is really cool though a little old: http://www.jappl.org/content/91/3/1289.short. The full text might be free at this point, but the summary should be fine anyway. It's really neat and talks about the genetic link between high voluntary running in mice. There are some really great findings about how the mice that did want to run on the wheel without a stimulus have naturally different bodies despite growing up the EXACT SAME WAY (i.e. lower body weights, fad pad distribution, even the efficiency of insulin-stimulated glucose uptake!).
Here is another very interesting article on humans and the role of genes in vascular wall response and blood pressure to exercise: http://hyper.ahajournals.org/content/47/5/928.short. This research team actually found that differences in the ET-A and ET-B genes actually influence the body's response to vascular wall strength in regard to exercise.
So, since you wanted specific genes there you go. I could give you more examples if you want, but I don't want to waste more time if you're not interested.
To counter your training the same idea, I would say that we are boiling down to the old nature vs. nurture argument, right? I have always taken a seat on both sides of the fence with this idea. I've always followed the analogy that we are like empty glasses when we are born. The shape of the glass/container is determined by our genes. How we fill it is based upon our life experiences. In other words, you can fill that glass that you were born with, but you can never put as much in as someone with a bigger glass. For example, I once trained with a guy that was a state champion. He worked less than half as hard as I did, running less than 15 miles/week. Myself...well, I was running about 50 m/w at the time and could never even touch him in a race...not even close. And it's not that I lived a lazy sedentary life up until I ran with him. The opposite is true actually. I played endurance sports all my life and he virtually did nothing. I'm thinking genes had something to do with the disparity! What do you think? Our genes had absolutely no effect there?
In your last bit there, no...there is a very clear limit on cellular change. In fact, in any laboratory experiment any changes that are referred to are not 100% complete adaptations. In every article that I have read, the percentages are altered based upon small changes in the cellular metabolic pathway and not truly on the fibers themselves changing. I would dare say that this idea of muscle fiber changing is a misnomer. Simply put, one fiber can ACT like another type without truly becoming that type. Otherwise (as many conclusions show), the fiber would then stay the same after the stimulus was dropped. That doesn't happen.
Oh, and I'm not sure if I read the article you are talking about or one that's very similar. The one that I read showed that some cells can switch the chemical signals, but only within an abbreviated range and not as great as if the tested cells were genetically coded to produce the altered chemical as in the control group. I mean, again, sure we can alter ourselves a little by training but never so much as someone who was naturally 'born' with the desired traits.
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