Restless Legs Syndrome is just an excuse really, really annoying people use to avoid having to change their ways.
"It's a medical condition, honest, look it's on WIkipedia".
Pull the other one (pun intended).
It's official: this Reg hack is 2.7 per cent Neanderthal, belongs to the J1c3b haplogroup, is at increased risk of coronary heart disease and Restless Legs Syndrome, has wet ear wax, and slightly decreased odds of suffering male pattern baldness. That's according to the enlightening results of a personal genome test by 23andMe …
Schultz» But are you a Hun?
Well, I do have a propensity to wear furry hats and have strange dreams about charging about on horseback. I also get hot and bothered by unreasonable houseowners lying in front of my bulldozers, although may not be related to the topic in question.
i'm tempted, curiosity/cat/homicide and all that. but would it be a mistake to know this stuff?
would i suddenly become paranoid to discover i have an increase chance of heart attack, and then the stress which that knowledge induces could be the cause for my eventual cardiac arrest?
Only you know the answer to that, however, let's try a little experiment...
Come over here and sit down, there's something I need to tell you...
No, I really think it would be best if you sit down first...
Now look, you know you sent off for that DNA test a while ago, well...
Ahh - but will you actually discover you have an increased risk of something? Even if your results say so, many of the studies relied on report correlation, not causation. How can you be certain it's not just statistical noise that flagged gene X for disease Y? (google "GWAS usefuleness" for more on this). Or maybe you carry a gene that cancels out the risk caused by X, but the study that identifies that has yet to be conducted.
So criticisms are not just about keeping the paranoid person with the alleged Alzheimer's risk from offing themself at 60. We still know so little about ourselves, your report could very well include misleading information.
Even if your results say so, many of the studies relied on report correlation, not causation. How can you be certain it's not just statistical noise that flagged gene X for disease Y?
Not to mention epigenetic effects, which this sort of testing completely ignores. The more we learn about gene expression, the more we realize just how hugely overstated the discourse around genetic destiny is.
And then there's the possibility that the lab made an error in testing or reporting.
Didn't Orlowski write an article some time back bashing this sort of genetic testing as modern snake oil? A bit overstated (as usual), perhaps, but not so very far off. Certainly before I'd take any significant action on any information obtained this way, I'd want 1) a second test from a second lab, and 2) substantial consultations with a geneticist who's up on current research (including epigenetics and environmental factors) and a specialist in the relevant area.
Of course, people routinely make life-changing (and -ending) decisions based on all sorts of misinformation, superstition, and outright stupidity, so the genetic-testing route is hardly the worst one they could take.
Well If I'd known I was at a higher risk of getting heart disease, perhaps I could have had statin drugs given to me years ago to prevent fat build ups along with regular BP monitering and a touch more exercise and a bit less beer.
Instead its find out the not quite so bad way (during a dye test) that I've got a 95% blockage on the left artery as opposed to the really bad way(waking up in hospital with a zapper attatched to you) or the horrid way (waking up inside a wooden box thats getting hotter and hotter)
Take your pick.....
I was born with a heart defect, but I was successfully operated at the age of three, and have been proclaimed healthy by my cardiologist. Still, 35 years after the operation, the occasional pain/cramp in my chest like everybody else has once in a while, makes me wonder.... So knowing isn't always a good thing in my book.
And with the current medical diagnostic possibilities, they can find something minutely wrong in anybody. But that doesn't say anything about a cure for what they found.
I received a couple of kits for my wife and I a few days ago. I originally was looking at Geno 2.0 from NatGeo, but ended up going with 23andMe because they seemed to provide more results than just ancestry and for half the cost. My wife was adopted, so she has always wondered about her lineage and possible family related illness like breast cancer. I bought her a test kit as a birthday gift so she could find out a bit more about herself since she can't ask her parents. I also ordered one for myself so we could find out what we may have passed on to our children. I'm eagerly awaiting the results, it seems they provide quite a bit of info.
IIRC there over twenty DNA variants that produce the symptoms collectively called Cystic Fibrosis. As the author says - inheriting any combination from both parents produces the full blown CF condition.
It would be interesting to know if the author's test identifies all these variants - summarised with the one tick box.
The CF affected body produces a thick mucous that messes up respiratory, digestive, and reproductive systems. Even some "carriers" who only inherited one copy can have fertility problems. On the positive side it conveys some immunity to typhoid - which probably accounts for its survival in the gene pool. Any truly "bad" gene variant soon gets filtered out of the pool. In the same way - Sickle Cell Anaemia carriers have some immunity to malaria.
The underlying CF malfunction is in sodium ion transport through cells. The mechanism problem can be entry to the cell; getting it across the cell; or exiting from the cell.
It gets complicated - in the case of exiting the cell it may be that the "gate" doesn't "open" - or that the "gate" is in the wrong place on the cell surface.
The different variants have been used to track historical population movements. One variant, G551D, is known as the "Celtic" variant - because the mutation first occurred in someone in Scotland. Its worldwide distribution maps the Scottish diaspora and only accounts for 5% of the CF sufferers. However - it is the first variant for which a "miracle" treatment has just gone into general distribution. Apparently people on the critical lung transplant list have taken the twice a day tablet of Kalydeco - and within three weeks started running and swimming.
This not a treatment of the symptoms - but an innovative fix at the cell level that makes the exit "gate" work correctly. This new line of research gives hope for cell level mechanism fixes for many other conditions - like Type 2 Diabetes.
We have 97% of our DNA in common with chimps, but have 0% that originated in that species because we have never inbred with chimpanzees. We have 1-4% of the actual DNA that originated in the Neanderthals because our ancestors interbred with them.
That's not to say a few of our more deviant ancestors didn't try to interbreed with chimps, but if they did, they didn't produce any viable offspring...no matter how often your Uncle Harold scratches his ass.
we also share about 50% of our genetic code with the humble banana
And slightly more with the rarer conceited banana.
Of course the real question is which 50%. I've never obtained definitive proof, but I know a few people who bear more than a passing resemblance to the vestigial reproductive organs of giant rhizomatic herbs.
If you take the high count, we actually share something like 99% of our DNA with our expired cousins, which follows from their proper name: Homo Sapiens Neanderthalensis. ( the fact that there is genetic evidence of successful interbreeding makes the case for Neanderthals being a subspecies instead of a separate species.)
Part of the 1% difference still lives on in our genome in certain genetic lines to the point of 1-4% of those specific traits still surviving, although there's precious little to be found on those genes actually being expressed at one stage or another, and what those genes actually do.
Have you seen how much they add on-line to post their spit-kit out of the USA? (even just over the border to Canada)? That's silly, because to get plentiful comparative results from Eeur-op, where most USians' ancestors came from, they'd really have to tempt us. Meanwhile, 'FTDNA' still looks the pro alternative.
"I wonder if these US based DNA labs get any subsidy or other recompense from the NSA or similar branches of the US government."
Nope, not from the NSA. The NSA does crypto and code breaking, not medical stuff like DNA. That would be the NIH.
And probably DHS...
There is that risk, there is also the risk of undetected chimerism.
A woman was arrested, charged, tried and convicted for kidnapping a baby.
Much later, another DNA test was performed and her maternity was confirmed and she was released. After several years in prison.
Turns out she absorbed part of a twin and the cervical cells that the state used for the DNA test were from the absorbed twin.
Africans (negroid racial group) do not have any Neanderthal DNA as their ancestors never got to meet any Neanderthals.
You might consider rewording the "All modern humans contain between one and four per cent Neanderthal DNA,..." sentence a bit before the thought police come knocking on your door.
Not necessarily. The original Africans did not go to meet the Neanderthals (nor vice versa), but do you think no one else has come back to Africa bringing those genes? Do you think all Africans have been sealed off genetically from the rest of humanity since some of them went to Europe? They sure haven't, and it's not due to modern transportation...
Well J3 I didn't want to provide a pedantic lecture but before recent times (<15,000 years ago) there would have been very little cross racial mixing with Africans. Obviously since the movement of caucasians into northern Africa there has been some, same as with any historical boundary between the main racial-geographic areas (Slavic looks, Tuaregs, etc... for example). Since the European period of colonization it has of course spread globally. Like wise the Denisovian DNA from the Far East.
As you are no doubt aware there is more genetic diversity among black Africans than there is amongst the rest of the human race in its entirety. Reason, of the 13-14 progenitor families/tribes which gave rise to modern humans only one made it out of Africa and survived, the rest remained African.
Some white people don't have any Neanderthal DNA at all, Michael Jackson for example.