Extensive research has been forced to overestimate the influence of genetics on life expectancy

Thanks Ancestry.com scientists obtained a sample of 400 million people, the analysis of such volume of information held for the first time.

Масштабное исследование заставило переоценить влияние генетики на продолжительность жизни

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Genetics from two American companies — Calico Life Sciences and Ancestry.com — conducted a study of genetic and phenotypic information of 400 million people born in the XIX and XX century. Assessment of hereditary and vital factors forced them to reconsider the significance of genes in a lifetime. The paper was published in the journal Genetics.

Ancestry.com — the world’s largest commercial genealogy company. She provides services for making a family tree. According to representatives of the organization, by February 2018 for genetic testing addressed more than seven million people. Company data were used to estimate the phenotypic correlation and genetic factors.

In the study, experts found an unusual detail: the duration of life of the spouses coincide more often than the life expectancy of the brothers or sisters of the opposite sex that carry common genetic material. Moreover, they found that the relatives of the spouse, such as brother-in-law with whom the person is not leading the overall economy and does not share a genetic relationship, also have a similar life expectancy. Based on these data, the authors concluded that external circumstances affect the style of life, determine the length of time more than previously thought. In previous studies, the influence of the DNA was estimated to be 15-30 percent, now scientists have reduced it to seven percent.

In addition, the authors assumed the existence of a third factor that indirectly affects the lifespan assortative marriages. In this case, in their opinion, there is a tendency to choose a partner with similar phenotypic traits. For example, if a man is rich, he chooses a spouse with the same level of welfare. However, this assumption relates to the external manifestations of genetic information, such as height.

Previously, scientists from Vanderbilt University, Tennessee (USA) found: how long people live and other warm-blooded animals and when they reach sexual maturity depends more on their brain than on the development of the body.