Can intelligence be inherited 2

It is from this parent that children apparently inherit their intelligence

There are many reasons to say "thank you" to your mother. For intelligent people, there is apparently another one: a psychologist explains that children owe their intelligence to their mother.

According to studies, intelligence is mainly inherited through mothers - and not through both parents, as has long been assumed. Psychologist Jennifer Delgado writes on the blog "Psychology Spot" that the so-called "conditioned genes" play a role. These behave differently, depending on from whom they were inherited: Some of them are only active if they come from the mother - like the genes for intelligence, apparently. The same genes inherited from the father are deactivated in this case. Conversely, there are also genes that are only active if they come from the father.

Genes for intelligence are said to be anchored in the X chromosome

In addition, according to Delgado, the genes for intelligence are anchored in the X chromosome. It refers, among other things, to the psychologist Robert Lehrke, who already showed in the 1990s that the majority of a child's intelligence is based on X chromosomes. Since these are created twice in women, the probability is twice as high that women inherit the characteristics that are related to intelligence.

The Social and Public Health Sciences Unit of the Medical Research Council in Glasgow also showed in a long-term analysis the dependence of a child's intelligence on that of its mother. The intelligence quotient of the 14 to 22-year-olds examined differed on average by 15 points from that of the respective mother.

Development of intelligence: emotional contact is important

But mothers are not only genetically involved in child development of intellect. Physical and emotional contact are also important, according to Jennifer Delgado. Scientists from the University of Minnesota were able to show that two-year-olds with a strong bond with their mother were more proficient in complex symbolic games and showed less frustration and perseverance when solving problems. The researchers explain this by saying that the strong connection gives the children security and confidence to explore the world and to believe in themselves.

  • Test yourself: How intelligent are you?


Criticism of the theory

Of course, that doesn't mean that the bond with the father isn't important. In our society, however, it is still predominantly the mothers who spend most of the time with their offspring. So you also shape the environment of the offspring and thus affect their brain development.

Delgado's theory countered by critics that not a single gene variant is responsible for a person's intelligence, but a large number of genes - and these are not all located on the X chromosome. In addition, given the large number, it is unlikely that all genes originating from the father, which in some way determine intelligence, are deactivated as "conditioned genes".

Regardless of whether Delgado's theory is correct or not, intelligent people can always be grateful.

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