After reading this article on Genetic damage and a Father's Age It was not surprising to me that scientific research is finding out that as men age there is a higher rate of mutation in their sperm. Since men produce large amounts of sperm and women produce minimal amounts of eggs as compared it was also not surprising that men have a higher mutation rate then women. And when we think about the fact that as women age they are more likely to pass on mutations to their children as they age, (for example: Downs syndrome), then it should not seem unreasonable that men also have an increase in mutations that they can pass on to their children as they age. However I do not know that there is that much of a difference in older mens' offspring that would be noticeable, because the article states that only 10% of the mutations are damaging. So will it really make that much of a difference?
In our society today the average age of people having children is increasing; according to the article the average age of fathers at conception is now 33 whereas in 1980 it used to be 28. I do not believe that the information portrayed in this article is likely to stop men from having children when they are older, if they want them.
The article also mentions women having their eggs frozen for later viability use; then mentions the future possibility if men having their sperm frozen for use to have children later in life. I do not think that this is something we will be seeing in the future. What do you think?
Tonya Sulham (3)