You don’t say

Inbreeding Was Major Cause Of Fall Of Spanish Habsburg Dynasty

Gonzalo Alvarez and colleagues at the University of Santiago de Compostela, Spain have provided genetic evidence to support the historical evidence that the high frequency of inbreeding (mating between closely related individuals) within the dynasty was a major cause for the extinction of its male line.

The work is actually pretty neat in showing the just how serious the inbreeding was — Charles apparently had as many homozygous genes as if he had been born to a brother/sister couple.

But the Hapsburg dynasty in its attenuated form survives, showing how wealth and power can triumph over genetics…


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