Habits - can they be passed on?

Habits - can they be passed on?

My daughter, while lying down, crosses her legs in the exact same way I do.

Did she genetically inherit the trait? Did she simply observe me doing so and copy me? Can she genetically inherit traits and characteristics? 

So, for example, can a person go from having terrible habits to cleaning up their habits and then have a child that inherits only good habits?

Is there any kind of barrier to such an inheritance?

August Weismann was an evolutionary biologist who proposed a theory to address this issue.

People regarded Weismann as the greatest theorist in evolutionary biology after Darwin.He put forth the idea that acquired characteristics are actually not transferable.

The theory came to be known as the Weismann barrier. 

The Weismann barrier, then, was the dividing line between things that you could pass on to your children and those that you could not.

Physical attributes, such as eye colour, hair colour, and even immunity, were passed on genetically. Habits and characteristics—not so much. 

Similar to Darwin's proposed evolution theory, the concept became a fundamental tenet of biology.

There was a separation between somatic and germinal cells. Somatic cells are the cells that make up your body today, while germinal cells are the gene cells that transmit information. Somatic cells could not transmit their characteristics to your genetic code. 

Over the past few decades, though, research has made us rethink this theory.

One of the key concepts involves the use of an RNA enzyme known as reverse transcriptase. RNA, or ribonucleic acid, is an enzyme that is similar to your DNA.

As its name suggests, Revese transcriptase is capable of encoding information back into your gene. To keep the conversation simple, it is a process by which your cells can send a signal to your genes, altering them forever.

In theory, the process by which my daughter inherited my habit of crossing my legs. 

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