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Earth Education Science News

Our Hidden Neanderthal DNA May Increase Risk of Allergies, Depression (sciencemag.org) 134

sciencehabit writes: Depressed? Your inner Neanderthal may be to blame. Modern humans met and mated with these archaic people in Europe or Asia about 50,000 years ago, and researchers have long suspected that genes picked up in these trysts might be shaping health and well-being today. Now, a study in the current issue of Science details their impact. It uses a powerful new method for scanning the electronic health records of 28,000 Americans to show that some Neanderthal gene variants today can raise the risk of depression, skin lesions, blood clots, and other disorders.
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Our Hidden Neanderthal DNA May Increase Risk of Allergies, Depression

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    Can anyone tell me if there's also a greater risk of suffering from micropenis? I urgently need to know!

  • Uuhg! (Score:5, Funny)

    by Mr D from 63 ( 3395377 ) on Thursday February 11, 2016 @05:09PM (#51490443)
    Me Sad
    • by Tablizer ( 95088 )

      Me Sad

      Don't worry, you'll feel better after bashing a mammoth in the head with a large club. That always cheers me up.

    • by nytes ( 231372 )

      Me help you.

      *shoots Mr D in head with woolly mammoth bone*

  • "Hey, cover your mouth when you sneeze, you Neandertal!"
  • No "h" please.

    Look, I realize it might be too late to fix this mistake. But please, let's try.

  • by Gravis Zero ( 934156 ) on Thursday February 11, 2016 @05:25PM (#51490615)

    it increases your chance of unibrow! [nocookie.net]

  • How dare they ascribe all the bad stuff to x race and barely mention the good stuff.

    {end joke}

    • So which candidate is the Neanderthal Caucus going to endorse . . . Bernie or Hillary . . . ?

      Trump, Busch, Cruz, Kasich, Rubio . . . ?

      • by gtall ( 79522 )

        Cruz, just listen to his campaigngasms...he's going to smote this, carpet bomb that, etc....he's a perfect fit. And Trump bores them.

    • by gtall ( 79522 )

      Well...there are the Neanderthal babes...furry little sex kittens that they are.

  • one look at me, and there's no doubt. just ask my wife.
  • Do not repeat the old mistakes, bots!
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Are the issues due to neandertal genes or due to two human races mixing together? If we look at cattle, a lot of selective breeding has been done and a lot of races have been created. It turns out that some races have race specific issues. However mixing two races can create new problems not present in any of the parent races. For some reason genes aren't always 50% abilities from each parent, but rather effects of combos.

    Somehow I don't think the neandertals living during the ice age were prone to blood cl

    • by KGIII ( 973947 )

      From what little I know, which is not much, Neanderthal is not what I'd call "fragile." All of my "expertise" comes from documentaries. PBS had a great one, NOVA, called something like, "Where did we Come From." It was a five part series and traced the various people back and tried to find out the paths they took and how we got to be where we are today - it was pretty good.

      At any rate, the Neanderthal didn't really go extinct. I mean, yeah, there are none left but there's probably some genetic material left

  • There may be some upsides to their DNA that we don't yet know about. Diseases and extreme problems are better understood because that's what medical experts are expected to focus on. But there could also be some nice traits we picked up from them such that they counter the negative traits enough to survive in our genome.

    And the down-sides of them may only show up in some people. That is, they depend on combinations of other genes to manifest themselves.

  • genes picked up in these trysts

    I've recently read a couple of more popular articles on Neanderthals (including on Wikipedia [wikipedia.org]). All seem to allude that there was some happy-go-lucky "free love" get-togethers, or intermarriage, with the "other" neighbors way back when.

    The Wikipedia article however also states [wikipedia.org]: "While modern humans share some nuclear DNA with the extinct Neanderthals, the two species do not share any mitochondrial DNA,[54] which in primates is always maternally transmitted."

    Or, translated to more modern hominid: The geneti

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