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Scientists discover genetic marker that predicts suicide risk

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posted on Jul, 31 2014 @ 02:54 PM

Scientists have discovered a genetic mutation linked to the human stress response that may be able to determine a person’s likelihood of committing suicide. They say they hope their discovery could lead to a simple blood test that would predict a person’s suicide risk.

A group of researchers from Johns Hopkins compared the brain tissue of people who had committed suicide to that of people without mental health problems, and found a key difference in a gene called SKA2.

The scientists then examined blood samples from three different groups of people who had been asked about whether they had thought about or attempted suicide, including one group of more than 300 people. They found the same genetic marker —

Scientists discover genetic marker that predicts suicide risk

in the story they go on to say suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the US, with more than 30,000 people killing themselves each year... and another 713,000 people going to the ER who tried and failed to---

That number is a lot bigger than I would have guessed at!

Well--- like they've only tested this on 300 subjects so far and so far they claim an 80% accuracy rate in whether a person had thought about committing suicide or not.

80% s a pretty good average, but I worry about what TPTB would do with such a test..

I mean lets say I tested positive for this SKA2 marker... would that not be grounds to deny me ownership of a firearm, a car, certain chemicals and drugs?

couldn't big brother just lock me up for no other reason then I have this genetic marker and could pose a danger to myself and possibly other's?

Surely there must be million of folks who thought of doing themselves in, but didn't-- and lead perfectly normal happy healthy lives... but what would the government do with a test like this???--- this is getting closer and closer to the thought police if you ask me.

Yup this one worries me, a lot!

posted on Jul, 31 2014 @ 03:12 PM

originally posted by: HardCorps
Yup this one worries me, a lot!

Your not thinking about ending it all are you?

I agree, this all a bit nasty!
How long before they start testing babies at birth and declaring - "Suicide risk, we must administer this MIND ALTERING cure."

posted on Jul, 31 2014 @ 03:19 PM
a reply to: VoidHawk

If I ever do decide to end it all...
I'm going to have to remember to do so before I make that next mortgage payment...

You made a good point... I hadn't considered the possibility of forced/coerced medication...

"Your honor the defendant HardCorps clearly has the SKA2 marker and is therefore incapable of making rational decisions for himself... we move that the court locks his sorry butt up and makes him take lots and lots of good doctor drug!"

edit on 31-7-2014 by HardCorps because: (no reason given)

posted on Jul, 31 2014 @ 03:26 PM
This part of the article seems important to note:

He stressed that a great deal more of research needs to be done to figure out what causes this particular expression of the SKA2 gene — he and his group don’t know whether people who committed suicide started out with that marker, or whether the SKA2 gene changed in response to something, such as elevated cortisol levels. “We really have a chicken or the egg problem” that needs to be examined further, he said.

Kind of like finding water in the lungs of 100% of people who drowned (at this point)

posted on Jul, 31 2014 @ 03:41 PM
I tend to take these kinds of discovery with a grain of salt.

Frankly, there is no end of "exceptions" to the correlation they often find with traits. People forget that a genetic predisposition to anything, from addictive behavior, to compulsive behavior, and yes, even to depression and suicidal "tendencies" are a matter of statistics.... but in the final analysis, there is no hard and fast rule to any form of behavior. There are countless people whose genes are supposed to make them more likely to do one or the other, and yet they never do, and some are just the opposite of what medical science says they ought to be,

I think that is what it means to be human... defying the odds, overcoming our own demons, and even enabling others to overcome theirs.

These kinds of studies are great for insurance companies and pharmaceutical concerns... but we have been living with these "markers" since the dawn of time....

posted on Jul, 31 2014 @ 04:18 PM
This raises a much larger question: how much of our behavior do we actually control. So someone who has this genetic marker chooses not to commit suicide, but what have they actually chosen? How much of that decision is governed by a conscious will and how much is governed by unseen reactions within the brain and rest of the body? I have concluded that many things truly are out of the control of the person. I understand this cannot be used as an excuse for certain actions, but I think it would explain a whole lot.

I think a variety of things, including homosexuality, are determined solely by brain chemistry. Gender identity disorder is the same thing. Even when people make a conscious decision, they are not making the decision at all. The various inputs are processed within the brain, and even HOW you make a decision is governed by things out of one's control. So if this is true, then with further study even more factors and genes could be analyzed, and you truly might one day be able to predict who will attempt suicide and who will not. I do not believe that everyone with this genetic deficiency will commit suicide, but I think they are on the right track. It is a whole can of worms regarding the restricting rights based on brain chemistry and genetics, but I am not totally opposed to this, but not convinced of its efficacy at this point either. But that relates to how I view the process of decision making, and my belief that much is not really consciously controlled.

posted on Jul, 31 2014 @ 04:32 PM

originally posted by: HardCorpsThat number is a lot bigger than I would have guessed at!

That number is much, much less than the true 2014 number.

Wiki reported 32,533 in 2005 and 38,364 in 2010 but neither come close to the actual totals in a religious society where suicide is not only a crime but a sin.

You can triple these totals if you want to correct for the covering up of a cultural taboo.

The supposed "suicide gene" would probably be present in smokers, over-eaters, fast drivers and philanderers too.

posted on Jul, 31 2014 @ 10:18 PM
That is extremely interesting...I'd be curious to see if I have it...I mean, I really don't think I would ever kill myself. But I used to think about it somewhat seriously, even though even then I don't think I ever would have actually done it. And it's just a thought that pops into my head occasionally, though I haven't thought about it seriously at all for quite a long time, just words that appear in my head from time to time. And I know how I would do it if I ever did. Anywho, it would just be interesting to see.

Also, another problem with things like that is that sometimes they notice a correlation with things and assume absolute causation, when that may not be the case...I don't think we even understand the complexities of genetics yet at point is, the correlation with genes and behavior may be more complex than 'this causes that.' But yea, definitely interesting.
edit on 31-7-2014 by TheJourney because: (no reason given)

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