As a AP Biology student we are required to learn about genes, but because we are just in high school we don’t go too much in depth about each specific gene that makes us who we are. One major topic that we have been studying is sex-linked genes. Sex-linked genes are genes that are usually recessive on the X chromosome and are mostly seen in males. As you may already know males have XY and females have XX (making us more superior of course). So why am I re-teaching what we have already learned?
Well a recent study was published in the The Lancet, a medical journal, claiming that males are at greater risk for heart disease. They found that 2 out of every 3 heart disease patients are male. This is not an outstanding ratio but it definitely rose questions in the medical field. The funny thing is they are now speculating that this disease is linked to the y chromosome. A chromosome that rarely ever shows up in a woman’s DNA, but if that were true then wouldn’t heart disease be unseen in women. Dr. Tomaszewski found that there are two different types of y chromosomes and men with one type were more likely to have heart
disease.On the other hand “Dr. Daniel J. Rader, a heart disease researcher at the University of Pennsylvania, said it was also possible that simply having a Y chromosome instead of two X chromosomes, as women have, increased heart disease risk. The extra X could be protective.” While the whole New York Times Article speaks about the recent research, the article continuously claims that “A lot more work needs to be done.” I have to agree with this
statement. I think that there are too many other factors that play into heart disease. Is it possible that they are looking too far into this? Maybe it is just a normal recessive sex-linked trait on the X chromosome and because women have 2 X chromosomes they are less likely to have it. What do you think?