Alright gentlemen, here is a rather controversial study that you might find interesting. A study I came across, conducted by a group of European researchers, found that sperm can pass trauma symptoms through generations. Scientists have long wondered why children of trauma survivors are more inclined towards mental illness than the average person. Many believed that genetics would have the answer, though that has come up empty in the past.
The findings published in Nature Neurosciencesuggested that the offspring of traumatized mice can exhibit the same traumatic behavior as their parents. This is because early life traumatic events can alter the mechanisms that dictate gene expression in the sperm of adult mice and be passed along to their children.
So obviously a few mice had to suffer a little for the sake of this experiment. Researches had to induce trauma in non-traumatized baby mice by unpredictably separating them from mama mouse for long periods of time. Once the baby mice were truly messed up they wanted to see what would happen when the male mice started breeding.
And here’s the interesting part, the next generation of non-traumatized mice would exhibit the same trauma symptoms as their fathers. When these mice produced babies, the symptoms would still exist. What was happening was that their microRNAs – which control the expression of genes – decreased the production of key proteins because it became over-expressed. While over each generation microRNA levels were closer to normal, the same trauma symptoms still existed.
Researches still don’t understand how microRNA changes move from the brain to the sperm. Suffice to say that this really changes how we look at trauma. In fact the phrase, “Traumatized for life” is more like “Traumatized for generations.” It really takes ‘choosing sperm’ to a new level because now ladies will be like, “So, do you have a good job? Savings? Have you or your father (or father’s father) ever been traumatized?”