Friday, 08 Feb, 2008 Science
23
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Related Couples Have More Children

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A new study found that mating with your relative may give you a chance to have more children.

In many societies, inbreeding is unacceptable, while scientists claim that it may increase the chances of a child acquiring two copies of disease-causing recessive genes and lead to genetic disorders and higher infant mortality. Previously, in a study conducted in India and Pakistan, it was concluded that married cousins are more likely to have larger families.

Kari Stefansson, a geneticist and colleagues at deCODE Genetics, Iceland used a genealogical database for all of Iceland couples born between 1800 and 1965 to find the number of children and grandchildren in their families.

Scientists discovered that related couples had more children and grandchildren than unrelated couples. In case, the husband and a wife were third cousins, they had on average 4.0 children and 9.2 grandchildren. The number of children declined if woman married her eight cousin, resulting in 3,3 children and 7,3 grandchildren on average.

Alan Bittles, a community geneticist of Murdoch University in Perth, Australia says that despite the findings, it should be warned that social and economic factors may also play their role. Bittles says that larger number of children can be explained by the fact that in case of inbreeding, mother and fetus have more chances of compatible blood type increasing the chances of live births.

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Comments:

19 votes

//4 Jul 14, 2010 05:37 AM | posted by: Brenny
Is this for real? Of what I've heard that if we married our own siblings and have kids, the kids would turn out to be "disabilities". This is not a theory but the fact.
25 votes

//3 May 09, 2008 03:45 PM | posted by: CRYSTAL
HI MY NAME IS CRYSTAL HOW ARE YOU DO YOU NEED ANY HELP
18 votes

//2 Apr 13, 2008 04:08 PM | posted by: snsuresh [InfoMANIAC]
Did they studied the genetic disorders or heriditary transmitting diseases?
20 votes

//1 Feb 29, 2008 02:55 AM | posted by: chsorioles2008 [InfoKID]
that's just gross...

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