Cousin marriages cause genetic disabilities

| 23/08/2010

(Telegraph): More than 700 children in the UK are born with genetic diseases every year as a result of cousin marriages, an investigation has found. The problem is worst among children born in Britain’s Pakistani community, where more than half of marriages are between first cousins, and children are 10 times more likely than the general population to suffer genetic disorders. As adults, the children born from first cousin marriages are at increased risk of miscarriage or infertility. A third of children affected die before their fifth birthday. The medical risks of first cousin marriages include higher rates of infant mortality, birth defects, learning difficulties, blindness, hearing problems and metabolic disorders.

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