DNA can predict unusually tall height - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

DNA can predict unusually tall height

Updated:
© iStockphoto.com / Ryan Pike © iStockphoto.com / Ryan Pike
  • HealthMore>>

  • The 'Hobby Lobby ruling' and what it means for U.S. health care

    The 'Hobby Lobby ruling' and what it means for U.S. health care

    The U.S. Supreme Court's ruling on contraception coverage -- as mandated under the Affordable Care Act -- could lead to a legal quagmire that might allow companies to deny insurance coverage for any medical practice that violates their religious principles.
    The U.S. Supreme Court's ruling on contraception coverage -- as mandated under the Affordable Care Act -- could lead to a legal quagmire that might allow companies to deny insurance coverage for any medical practice that violates their religious principles.
  • Diet changes can alter gut bacteria

    Diet changes can alter gut bacteria

    Dietary changes can dramatically alter the balance of bacteria in the gut on a daily basis, according to a new study.
    Dietary changes can dramatically alter the balance of bacteria in the gut on a daily basis, according to a new study.
  • Lift U.S. ban on blood donations by gay men

    Lift U.S. ban on blood donations by gay men

    The United States should repeal a 30-year policy that bans blood donations from gay and bisexual men, according to a team of medical and legal experts writing this week in the Journal of the American Medical...
    The United States should repeal a 30-year policy that bans blood donations from gay and bisexual men, according to a team of medical and legal experts writing this week in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

MONDAY, Nov. 25, 2013 (HealthDay News) -- DNA can be used to predict taller-than-average height, a new study finds.

This could prove useful in criminal investigations and in estimating if a child will be abnormally tall as an adult, the researchers said.

Their study of nearly 800 extremely tall adults and more than 9,000 normal-height people focused on 180 DNA variants previously linked to normal height differences. Forty percent of the DNA variants showed a significant effect on height in tall people.

The findings appeared Nov. 20 in the journal Human Genetics.

The study wasn't as accurate as past research that used DNA to predict eye color, hair color and age, study leader Professor Manfred Kayser said in a journal news release.

"[Still], I expect that upcoming new knowledge on height genetics will further increase the accuracy in predicting tall stature, and eventually the full range of body height, from DNA," said Kayser, a member of the department of forensic molecular biology at Erasmus University Medical Center, in the Netherlands.

That could help police when they're trying to identify suspects in crimes.

"In forensics, DNA-based prediction of appearance traits such as height, eye color, hair color and age, is useful to find unknown perpetrators whose conventional DNA profiles are not known to the investigating authorities and who thus escape current DNA identification," Kayser said.

There are also medical benefits for children with certain growth issues, said study co-author Professor Stenvert Drop, of the Erasmus University Medical Center's department of pediatrics.

"DNA-based prediction of extreme body height is relevant in pediatrics to estimate the expected body height of a child in adulthood, which can assist in considering growth-limiting treatment," Drop said in the news release.

More information

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website includes children's growth charts.

Copyright © 2013 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

*DISCLAIMER*: The information contained in or provided through this site section is intended for general consumer understanding and education only and is not intended to be and is not a substitute for professional advice. Use of this site section and any information contained on or provided through this site section is at your own risk and any information contained on or provided through this site section is provided on an "as is" basis without any representations or warranties.