Posted by: Ticktock | March 10, 2009

Grumpy Old Dads – Low IQ Kids

It seems like science won’t leave elderly dads alone.  Procreating grandpas might not be the best idea; their babies turn out to have a higher risk of bipolar disorder and early death.  The latest news is equally unpromising for senior citizen dads – their kids have a higher risk of lower intelligence.  Doh!

Many researchers have used the information from a decades-old longitudinal study (The National Collaborative Perinatal Project) to mine data for various agendas and purposes.  This long term study has been going since the 50s and 60s, so it has been a valuable resource to researchers.  Scientists from Australia filtered the data of thousands of children to see if there was a relationship between the age of the parents and the intelligence of their children.  It turns out that older mothers did not have an effect on the intelligence of their offspring, but older fathers did have an effect.

It should be said that the effect old dads had on the intelligence of their children diminished when the study was controlled for socioeconomic factors.  I’m not sure whether that should change the conclusions of the study, but it’s certainly worth noting.

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