Monday, October 16, 2006

Growing Evidence Shows That The Offspring Of Older Fathers Have An Increased Risk of birth defects, some cancers and schizophrenia and autism

My modest intentions at the end of October 2006 were to gather in one place all the articles that link genetic disorders of all kinds with older fathers at the time of conception. I certainly do not have all the studies that have linked aging fathers 33 and over with an increasing risk of genetic disorder in their offspring, but I do present quite a few so far.

In 1912 , a German obstetriction named Wilhelm Weinberg realized that achondroplasia, an inherited form of dwarfism, was more common in the youngest children of large families than their older siblings. In 1955 British geneticist Lionel Penrose pinned the condition to aging fathers and, specifically to gene mutations within their sperm. At least 35 rare genetic disorders have been linked to older fathers.
In an article called, Genetic disease in the offspring of older fathers, by geneticist JM Friedman, published in 1981 it is noted that risk of disease due to new mutations among the offspring of fathers who are40 or older is similiar in magnitude to the risk of Down syndrome among the offspring of 35-40 year-old mothers. "Thus it is good public health policy to recommend that both men and women complete their family before age 40, if possible.

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