Why We are More Like Our Mothers Than Our Fathers

What do you say when you see that baby...she looks like the mommy, or he looks like the daddy...but genetically speaking are we half and half, or are we not half and half? Turns out there are ways to inherit, biologically speaking, that have nothing to do with the 46 chromosomes we are all so familiar with. Each of our cells contains hundreds of energy producing mini-cells called mitochondria. And each of those have their own set of genetic material called the genome, and can reproduce on their own. A human egg, or oocyte, has about 100,000 of these, and they all get passed directly to us. The sperm has about 100, and none survive the fertilization process. So maybe Michael Phelps should think his mother for more than just the birthing and the cheerleading, in a real way our athletic ability is very directly related to our moms! There are also, unfortunately, genetic diseases that are passed on by these mother-inherited mitochondria. So we are more like our mothers. For instance one of these diseases Leigh Syndrome is one such disease. This is one of the diseases in the several  pre-pregnancy planning genetic tests we now offer at Women's Health Practice.  At your next pregnancy planning visit find out if you would benefit from genetic testing.


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