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  • Chimeras

    From a newspaper article 5 March 2006

    "There is growing evidence that many people carry more than one type of DNA in their bodies. The incidence of such cases - known as 'chimeras' - could be as high as one in seven of the UK population.

    Until now human chimeras were thought to be extremely rare, with only 40 known cases worldwide. They occur when two embryos in the womb fuse, at the state when they are just balls of cells. The mixed cells continue to develop into a healthy baby.

    Dr. Charles, Boklage, professor of genetics and paediatrics at East Carolina University in America, believes that ten to 15% of apparently normal people carry more than one set of genes."

  • #2
    This makes me wonder if I'm a chimera.

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    • #3
      The important question here is whether the bucal cells of the inner cheek come from the same cell line as the germ cells. Have these ever been tested in chimeras to determine if they are identical?

      In the case of mtDNA, this shouldn't matter since the 2 eggs would carry identical mtDNA.

      In the case of y-DNA, this could have a major impact, especially if the mother was promiscuous. Each cell line could have a different father.

      Timothy Peterman

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      • #4
        One of the cases discussed was the case of the mother of two children, one boy and a girl neither of whom had the same DNA as their mother, the authorities thought she had lied about being the mother and intended to take them into care but the women was pregnant at the time and when she gave birth there were official witnesses at the birth and DNA was taken from the baby immediately after birth and the DNA did not match the mother's. The DNA the children have inherited comes from her ovaries.

        A similar case occurred when a women needed a kidney transplant and her sons were tested. Two of the boys DNA didn't match hers but the third child's does. The different DNA was found in her thyroid.

        Elistariel you or your mother could be a chimera.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by MAB
          One of the cases discussed was the case of the mother of two children, one boy and a girl neither of whom had the same DNA as their mother, the authorities thought she had lied about being the mother and intended to take them into care but the women was pregnant at the time and when she gave birth there were official witnesses at the birth and DNA was taken from the baby immediately after birth and the DNA did not match the mother's. The DNA the children have inherited comes from her ovaries.

          A similar case occurred when a women needed a kidney transplant and her sons were tested. Two of the boys DNA didn't match hers but the third child's does. The different DNA was found in her thyroid.

          Elistariel you or your mother could be a chimera.

          maybe the hospital crew swapped the kids did the dad match?
          maybe the mom stole them like in desperate housewives

          what did they do a biopsy on all organs egad thats a stretch
          i think

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Jim Denning
            maybe the hospital crew swapped the kids did the dad match?
            maybe the mom stole them like in desperate housewives

            what did they do a biopsy on all organs egad thats a stretch
            i think

            mistaken,stolen,swapped kids were such a problem they did footprints of each kid born so it happened alot. thatis another explaination for non matches in families

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            • #7
              Originally posted by MAB
              Elistariel you or your mother could be a chimera.
              Interesting. I'm not curious enough to get tested though.
              I look too much like both of my parents not to be related to them.
              I'm still awaiting my Genographic results.

              I wonder if any of the Genographic participants have gotten different DNA results. It wouldn't work with me, I only have mtDNA. Could you imagine, if a man swabbed one cheek, then the other side and they each had different yDNA.
              I know, unlikely, but wouldn't it be fascinating.
              ... but not half as fascinating as the mother's explanation. Heh..

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              • #8
                These children genetically matched other members of the family, like the children's grandmother or the brother of the woman involved. They were definitely the offspring of these women and genetically they matched their fathers.

                Chimeras occur when two embryos in the womb fuse, at the stage when they are just balls of cells. The mixed cells continue to devlope into a healthy baby. If one ball is male and one female, the result is a hermaphrodite, with physical features of both sexes. But if both are male or female, the baby appears completely normal and may never realise they are different. It is believed with fertility treatment like IVF the incidence of chimeras will become more common.

                There are further implications for paternity testing and also DNA being used in criminal cases.

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                • #9
                  Article

                  Hello,

                  Could someone please tell me where the Chimera article(from 5th March) came from as I'm having some trouble finding it anywhere!
                  Thanks

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                  • #10
                    It was in an English newspaper, The Daily Mail and the programme was shown on English television this week.

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