Geneteic engineering?

Since about 50% people who stammer have been shown to have genetic markers for stuttering, can genetic engineering offer some hope in near future? Those who do not have any family history (remaining 50%), what do you think could be happening in their cases: some new mutation? or have they just picked it up as a habit? One last question: is it possible to predict stuttering in progeny, where both mother and father stutter? Thank you in advance!

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Geneteic engineering? — 2 Comments

  1. That’s a lot of questions. Right now, the “suspect” genes are those which regulate very basic functions; in other cases where the individual carries a different type of mutation, the conditions may be fatal. So I don’t think that Drayna’s work is going to translate quickly into “genetic engineering”. In cases where there is no readily obvious family history, yes, there could be a mutation or pre- or post-natal developmental events that cause disfunction. Because the mode of transmission for stuttering does not yet appear to follow common inheritance patterns, I do not believe you can predict stuttering in offspring with any accuracy. As in most conditions, you talk about increased risk, but not certainties.

    Nan Bernstein Ratner

  2. Thanks Nan! Trying to understand stammering is like looking for life in outer space, it seems! It will keep us busy for quite sometime, I guess. Thanks again…