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Science: Health: Genetics
Sibling Compatibility Testing   (0)  [vote for, against]
The game the whole family can play

Genetic councelling is currently available for particular recessive alleles, and for members of certain communities with low genetic diversity, including Amish and Samaritans.

It is expected that advancing sequencing technology and genomics will soon allow any pair of prospective parents to be quickly and cheaply tested for genetic compatibility, and advised on the likelihood of genetic disease in their potential offspring.

The stated goal is usually firstly to detect unknown consanguinity (for example, two people may have the same father, and be unaware of it, since essentially humans are twisted psychopathic cheating mutant apes), and secondly to detect specific harmful recessive alleles that both people carry by chance.

I propose the use of such testing for close relatives, such as a brother and sister, who wish to have children. Again, the stated reason for avoiding incestuous reproduction is to reduce the likelihood of double recessive genetic disorders. Why not make reproductive decisions based on love and compatibility, in the clear light of scientific reason, rather than bowing to outmoded superstitions?
-- spidermother, Jun 08 2011

[marked-for-deletion] oh come on: you've just described "genetic testing".

And those "inbred" groups you mention are the most likely to keep fastidious records of who done who, anyways.


-- FlyingToaster, Jun 08 2011

So you're planning to eliminate all those mouth-breathing inbred rednecked retards with eyebrow ridges, prognathic jaws and room-temperature IQ's.

Sure will change the look of many a US state legislature…
-- 8th of 7, Jun 08 2011

//[marked-for-deletion] oh come on: you've just described "genetic testing".// I agree that there's very little idea here. The core of the idea was meant to be "genetic testing to allow consanguinity", which no-one seems to discuss. "Genetic testing to prevent consanguinity" and "genetic testing to prevent disease" are discussed, and baked.

If anti-incest laws are about reducing the risk of genetic defects, then perhaps they will need to be rethunk as genomics advances.

To me, the idea is about the intent - kind of like the distinction between voluntary euthanasia and suicide.

I watched a long and involved talk today about the human genome project, advances in sequencing technology and in the understanding of genetic components of disease, and the implications to society and individuals, and no poles of any length were brought to bear upon this touchy subject. So here it is.
-- spidermother, Jun 08 2011

//they will need to be rethunk as genomics advances.// Yes, but it'll have to advance quite a lot. You'll need a catalog of all recessive mutations, which will be harder than a catalog of all genes.

Anyway, if contraception didn't obviate the taboo on incestuous sex, then genetics isn't likely to wipe out the taboo on incestuous reproduction.
-- mouseposture, Jun 09 2011

How do you know it didn't?
-- 8th of 7, Jun 09 2011

[mouse], [8th], you both make good points. Also, I think it was Richard Dawkins who observed that if incest were as (genetically) problematic as it's made out to be, then you wouldn't need to have taboos.
-- spidermother, Jun 09 2011

Although Dawkins misses the point that while incest may not be a problem for those actually doing the incest, it might be a problem for their children and grandchildren.
-- hippo, Jun 09 2011

And indeed their nephews and nieces, although those would be the same people …
-- 8th of 7, Jun 09 2011

The nephews are unlikely to be the same people as the neices, although I concede that this could happen...
-- hippo, Jun 09 2011

random, halfbakery