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  1. #1
    unpakwon is offline Senior Member
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    Default turning them on and off

    What does the following in red mean? And does "them" refer to "genes"?

    Certain positive words---like "peace" or "love"---may actually have the power to alter the expression of genes throughout the brain and body, turning them on and off in ways that lowers the amount of physical and emotional stress we normally experience throughout the day.

    Thank you.

  2. #2
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    5jj is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: turning them on and off

    'Turn on/off' = 'switch on/off', as you do with things that run on electricity. Yes, 'them' refers to the genes.

  3. #3
    unpakwon is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: turning them on and off

    Thanks for the answer, but I'm still confused about what switching genes on and off is saying.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: turning them on and off

    When they receive a stimulus, the genes start do do their job. When the job is complete, they go back to sleep, or whatever is is that genes do when they are not active.

  5. #5
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: turning them on and off

    The expression of a gene is, I believe, the process where the gene's information is turned into a protein, so these words either start or stop the creation of the protein (or RNA).

    (Not a scientist)

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