James Watson: reduce parental age

DNA pioneer James Watson's genetic prescription: Have kids early

"If you add together all the mental diseases ... your chance of having a child with something bad is about 5 percent," Watson explained [. . .] So here's Watson's prescription: "You could reduce the frequency of this 5 percent — maybe down to one and a half percent, or 1 percent — if everyone had their children or if the DNA came from them when they were 15," he said.

Related: Paternal age and fitness in pre-industrial Finland (SMBE 2013)


TGGP said...

Any opinion on this?

n/a said...


I think I'm in agreement with the author: in a single generation, I would expect probably only a minor hit on IQ; but for rarer mental health conditions that are strongly selected against, you'd expect the mutational load contributed by the father in any given generation to be proportionally more important (and empirically that does seem to be the case).

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