This is not good.
If you're over the age of 40, you should seriously take a moment to decide whether fathering a child at that point is the right thing to do.
A new study is saying that kids from older dads are more likely to develop illnesses such as schizophrenia and autism than those of younger fathers — three times as likely, that is.
Older men pass on more new DNA mutations, which puts their children at a higher risk for developmental issues.
The scientists examined the DNA of 78 Icelandic families and found that a 20-year-old father passes on an average of 25 new mutations while a 40-year-old dad passes on 65.
This seems to be bucking the age-old notion that women are the ones that cause child issues the older they get, but Mothers were found to transmit approximately 15 new mutations no matter what their age.
They're suggesting that if you want to have kids, but might not want them until after you're forty, to collect your sperm at a younger age and store it for later use.
This could also explain the rise in autism:
"It's very likely that the rise in the mean age of fathers has made some contribution to the apparent epidemic of autism in our society."
Of course, all of this needs to be replicated and confirmed before we start taking it as gospel!
[Image via AP Images.]
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