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Professor: ‘There is going to be an evolutionary consequence’ because of Trump

A University of Washington professor said “the amount of stress that Americans are going through” because of President Donald Trump will have long-lasting evolutionary effects.

Peter Ward, a biology professor, made his remarks recently in an online forum, suggesting the human genome could be altered as a result of Trump’s tenure in the Oval Office, Heat Street reports.

From the article:

He asserted that the process by which human genetics could change is analogous to post-traumatic stress disorder in soldiers or the the victims of domestic abuse.

The unconventional view came in a discussion of human capacity to mutate with the science blog (and Gawker offshott) Gizmodo.

Ward was one of seven academics asked to bring their expertise to bear on the question of whether and how X-Men-style “superhuman mutants” could develop.

Heat Street reports that Ward’s comments came as he discussed “that permanent genetic changes can occur as a result of ‘horrendous episodes’ people go through.”

His remarks included the following:

We’re finding more and more that, for instance, people who have gone through combat, or women who have been abused—when you have these horrendous episodes in life, it causes permanent change, which is then passed on to your kids. These are actual genetic shifts that are taking place within people. It’s called epigenetics, and that too can cause huge evolutionary change.

On a larger scale, the amount of stress that Americans are going through now, because of Trump—there is going to be an evolutionary consequence.

Read the full story.

MORE: Princeton prof denounces Fox News for showing her anti-Trump commencement speech

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