The triple benefit

It has been known for some time that there’s a high genetic correlation between good looks, high intelligence and good health.  It has been assumed that rhere are overlaps between genes.  Some that are responsible for intelligence are also functioning for other purposes  — immune responses, for example.

But this has only been a statistical correlation.  However, a research team under Prof Ian Deary, director of a cognitive faculty at Edinburgh University, have now identified some of the specific genetic overlaps after analysing data from more than 100,000 people aged 44 to 70.  More to the point perhaps — since high intelligence is probably due more to the absence of bad mutations than to the presence of especially good ones — there are overllap between subpar genes.  For example, they have found evidence that individuals with more genes linked to cardiovascular disease tended to have lower reasoning ability.

All this has implications for the way jobs appear to be increasingly bifurcated in the present post-industrial society between high-skills and low skills

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