Children Inherit 30 Gene Mutations from Each Parent

Mar 11, 2010
Children receive far less genetic mutations from their parents that it was previously believed, a new study suggests.

Scientists at the Seattle-based Institute for Systems Biology, the University of Utah and the University of Washington studied the entire family genome and found that each parent passes around 30 gene mutations to their children. Previously, scientists thought that children receive as much as 75 gene mutations from each parent, while the actual mutations rate is less than a half.

Scientists say that in most cases, genetic mutations do not affect child's health. The real number of gene mutations will also vary depending on the age of the parents. Father's age at conception plays a significant role in how many gene mutations will be passed. The risk of genetic disorders increases as father's age rises.

The study was published in the March 11 issue of Science Express.