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Facial scans could reveal genetic disorders

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posted on Sep, 11 2007 @ 02:26 PM
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The only time I had heard of Phrenology before this was on The Roots last album. However it looks like this science is making a resurgence. By scanning and analyzing the facial structure of a child, doctors and scientists can can diagnose genetic disorders with a relatively high probability of successful diagnosis.

I wonder how much further science can take this one.


In Victorian times, the science of phrenology - in which the bumps on the head were 'read' to predict personalities - was taken seriously.

The technique was discredited in the 20th century, but now a computer system has been developed which will allow doctors to diagnose genetic disorders by looking at a child's face.

It analyses the shape of the eyes, nose, mouth and ears to pinpoint the genetic condition a child might be suffering from.

Its creator, Professor Peter Hammond, of Great Ormond Street Hospital, believes it could eventually lead to quicker diagnosis of hundreds of genetic disorders.

When the computer is fed a picture of a patient with an unknown condition, it filters through its database looking for similar images and presents the doctor with a handful of possible conditions.




posted on Sep, 11 2007 @ 06:16 PM
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It's not quite phrenology, but I can see how it would work and that it'd be useful. Certain genetic conditions DO change the face structure slightly and if you had a child that was obviously having problems and suspected a DNA issue, then being able to search face matching software for someone with similar facial proportions would be very useful.

Do you have a link to the report?



posted on Sep, 11 2007 @ 06:30 PM
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Correct me if I am mistaken, but Phrenology is the study of the Cranium, whereas Physiognomy is the study of the maxillofacial structures. Both are considered pseudosciences, but much of the past Higher Archy has used this as a premise for racial profiling.



posted on Sep, 11 2007 @ 07:08 PM
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I think the idea behind this research is that certain genetic disorders (Down's syndrome for one, if I recall correctly) produce noticeable facial differences that can be recognized by someone trained. It isn't phrenology, which was a pseudoscience akin to astrology from the 19th century, and I've never heard of physiognomy, so I have no comment on a comparison to that.



posted on Sep, 11 2007 @ 07:35 PM
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Originally posted by antar
Correct me if I am mistaken, but Phrenology is the study of the Cranium, whereas Physiognomy is the study of the maxillofacial structures. Both are considered pseudosciences, but much of the past Higher Archy has used this as a premise for racial profiling.


That matched my memory, but I didn't want to google for it at the moment. It was used in racial profiling, I think... it has been used to try and prove one race better than the other.



posted on Sep, 14 2007 @ 06:47 PM
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Fibonacci's phi(The Golden Ratio) as a use for measuring features comes closer to figuring out the health of an individual. People with more symmetry(Golden Ratio) are more youthful and disease free than people with asymetrycal features. Asymetry is caused by genetic abnormalities, poor nutrition,etc. Humans(animals too) don't want to breed with a being of many flaws, in fear of their offspring being unhealthy. It's not just a beauty ratio, it's a ratio of life.


"The Golden Ratio is a universal law] in which is contained the ground-principle of all formative striving for beauty and completeness in the realms of both nature and art, and which permeates, as a paramount spiritual ideal, all structures, forms and proportions, whether cosmic or individual, organic or inorganic, acoustic or optical; which finds its fullest realization, however, in the human form."wiki

Phrenology research is probably related to phi numbers.



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