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Sleepwalking linked to family genes

Jonathan Warren

10.02.2011

News

Jonathan Warren
57564283Research conducted by Dr. Christina Gurnett and colleagues at the Washington University School of Medicine has confirmed that sleep walking is a genetic trait. Between one and 17 per cent of children and one in 50 adults leave their beds while they sleep to embark on unusual adventures. The team examined four generations of a family, selected after a 12-year-old girl with suspected epilepsy came to see Gurnett. Hannah was a sleepwalker as were nine of her 22 family members. Saliva samples were taken which showed that they had a genetic code in common housed somewhere in chromosome 20. Dr. Richard Horner, the Canada Research Chair in Sleep and Respiratory Neurobiology at the University of Toronto, commented: “If a parent is a sleepwalker a child has six times the risk of becoming a sleepwalker.”

About the author

Jonathan Warren

Jonathan Warren

Time4Sleep owner