Wednesday, 3 October 2018

Abused children carry the trauma in their cells

Children subjected to abuse may carry the physical hallmark of that trauma in their cells, scientists said Tuesday (Oct 2), in research that could help criminal investigations probing historic mistreatment.

A team of researchers at the University of British Columbia examined the sperm cells of 34 adult men, some of whom had been victims of child abuse years earlier.

They found that the effects of the trauma were indelibly printed in 12 regions of the DNA of those men who had experienced varying levels of emotional, physical or sexual abuse.

Scientists believe these alterations, known as methylation, could one day be used by investigators or courts to weigh allegations of child abuse.

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