Mon, 2011-01-10 17:04 Karl Tupper for www.panna.org.
Today it seems obvious that a woman's health directly impacts the well-being of her future child. Women thinking about becoming pregnant — or those who already are — are often careful not to smoke, drink or take certain drugs. Meanwhile, conventional wisdom says that a father's health can't have any direct impact on that of his child. But as described in the cover story of the January/February issue of Miller-McCune, conventional wisdom is wrong: Fathers do matter.
The article surveys the science on the developmental consequences of paternal exposure to chemicals, focusing on pharmaceuticals like morphine and certain chemotherapies. Surprisingly, it turns out that if you dose a male rat with these substances, and then later — after the drug has had ample time to leave the animal's system — you have that rat mate, its progeny lag behind those of unexposed males in development. And, as you can probably guess since I'm writing about here in GroundTruth, these types of male-line trans-generational effects have been seen for pesticides too.
Click here to read complete article.