Science has delivered what may be a blow to some of you dads out there.
Results of a recent genetic study have revealed that we likely inherit our log of intelligence from the female X chromosome.
The X chromosome contains a thousand genes, many of which have a significant impact on perception. Until now, most doctors believed that parents contributed equally to their child’s intelligence – but new findings indicate this isn’t entirely true.
Before we dive in, it’s important to understand a couple basic facts about chromosomes.
A chromosome is a thread-like formation composed of nucleic acids and protein. They store and transfer genetic information. Every person has one pair of chromosomes in each cell of their body. The females have two X chromosomes, the males have one X and one Y chromosome.
As a rule, the genetic characteristic of gender-specific genes, like humans have, are either activated or deactivated depending upon the specific selection and, later on, the genetic properties being affected.The activated genes will have an impact on the genetic development, while deactivated genes will not.
That said, if a single characteristic is affected via the mother, the fatherly genes are deactivated. At the opposite side, if a single feature is affected via the father, the maternal genes are later deactivated. The structure of these gender-specific genes forms the foundation of intelligence research.
One reason that scientists believe intellect is inherited from the mother’s side is because women’s genetics have a greater impact on cognitive abilities, as women possess two X chromosomes, while men carry just one.
To test this theory, scientists administered mainly maternal genetic chromosomes to a group of mice. They found that embryonic test subjects developed an improperly larger skull and brain while developing a much smaller body.
Subjects treated with larger amounts of paternal genetic material developed a larger body, but a smaller skull and brain. In addition, researchers made other significant observations, like identifying six areas of the brain that contain exclusively either maternal or paternal genes.
The theory that mothers have an asymmetrically large influence on a child’s intelligence was first suggested in a 1984 study at the University of Cambridge. Researchers studied both brain development and genomic conditioning and concluded that maternal genetics provide more material to brain centers.
In a more recent study, researchers from a government agency in Scotland followed a group of 12,686 people aged 14 to 22. Each year, researchers interviewed the subjects and monitored how their intelligence developed, taking into account their educational and ethnic backgrounds. They categorically concluded that a mother’s IQ the best indicator of high intelligence.
While there is much debate as to absolute truth to this theory, there’s no doubt that mothers have a significant influence on their children’s cognitive capacity.
Just one more thing to thank mom for!
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