The health and wellbeing of fathers could influence the health of their children, scientists have claimed.

Scientists at Leicester University believe there is a growing body of evidence to support the claim that a father's health can be directly linked to their children, after their research into the genetic risks of heart disease.

The scientists found that men with the same genetic trait had a 50 per cent higher risk of coronary heart disease than those in other genetic groups. However, the genetic flaw was found in the Y chromosome, and was passed from father to son.

The authors of the report believe that knowing if paternal heart disease already exists in the family could give you the knowledge to do something about it. Researcher Lisa Bloomer said: "You can reduce your risk if you mitigate the effects of other dangers, such as your weight, blood pressure and cholesterol level."

The report is one in a number that have been published on the hereditary dangers held within the Y chromosome.  Scientists at the University of Washington found that the sperm of male heroin addicts had undergone changes that would affect the child's development, while scientists at New York's Mount Sinai School of medicine found a link between paternal stress and depression and effects on children.

Story posted by Robert Mair on 1/5/2012