Parents To Learn What Sport Gene Their Child Has

What happened to letting fate decide? It seems that the more technology grows the less we leave things up to chance. With the right amount of money people can now choose what sex their baby will be and now they are able to decide what sport they would best perform in when they are older. How? Through a genetic test.

Donna Campiglia is just one of hundreds of parents who were lining up to test their children. She wanted to test her 2 ½ year old son Noah to see what he would be best at. “I could see how some people might think the test would pigeonhole your child into doing fewer sports or being exposed to fewer things, but I still think it’s good to match them with the right activity,” Ms. Campiglia from Boulder, Colorado said. “I think it would prevent a lot of parental frustration,” she said.

Boulder, Colorado is full of parents who are not only sports oriented – but also health conscious. It is no wonder that many of them are paying $149 to predict what sport their child can win at. The test is very simple and painless. All it requires is a simple swab inside the mouth of the child in order to collect DNA. The DNA will then be sent to a lab for analysis of the ACTN3 gene.

The test will show if the child is better at power, speed, or endurance sports. In 2003 a study was performed that showed a link between ACTN3 and the different athletic abilities. Atlas executives (that are performing these tests) did warn parents to the fact that there are still certain limitations – but they believe it could be a step in the right direction to help their child receive scholarships.

The companies’ goal is to test children from when they are infants till they are 8 years old. There are some experts who believe that testing an infant is completely useless. Dr. Theodore Friedmann, the director of the University of California-San Diego Medical Center’s interdepartmental gene therapy program, called it “an opportunity to sell new versions of snake oil.” “This may or may not be quite that venal, but I would like to see a lot more research done before it is offered to the general public,” he said. “I don’t deny that these genes have a role in athletic success, but it’s not that black and white.”

November 30th, 2008 • tonks • News and Opinion, Procedures and Tests Comments Off


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