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Title: Lactase Persistence in the British Isles
Post by: rms2 on March 13, 2010, 09:45:41 PM
The T-13910 allele is believed to impart to adults the ability to digest lactose. Those who possess it are able to drink milk and consume other dairy products without gastro-intestinal discomfort or the other problems associated with lactose intolerance.

I think this study (http://www.nature.com/ejhg/journal/v17/n3/abs/ejhg2008156a.html), Lactase persistence-related genetic variant: population substructure and health outcomes, might have been mentioned here before. Its authors concluded, for one thing, that lactase persistence (the ability to digest lactose because one is still producing the enzyme lactase) increases as one moves SE to NW in the British Isles. That struck me because I think it apparent that L21 also increases in frequency as one moves SE to NW in the British Isles.

Could there be a connection?

There is probably no way to prove that there is, but it is interesting to consider the possibility.

Here's the pertinent quote from the study's abstract:

Quote
We found an overall frequency of 0.253 for the C (lactase
non-persistence) allele, but with considerable gradients of decreasing
frequency from the south to the north and from the east to the west of
Britain for this allele.

Notice that the authors make the statement concerning the negative, that is, lactase non-persistence, rather than about lactase persistence. But if lactase non-persistence DECREASES as one one moves SE to NW in the British Isles, then it follows that lactase persistence INCREASES in the same direction.


Title: Re: Lactase Persistence in the British Isles
Post by: NealtheRed on March 16, 2010, 10:59:07 PM
That is really interesting. I think this has to do with the climate in the British Isles, and the folks that lived there.

My dad always told me we were not made to consume bread, but can digest milk better than most people due to our ancestry. Sure enough, if I eat pasta or bread I gain weight like crazy and am tired. But a lot of lean protein and milk keeps me going.

I wonder if this has to deal with my ancestors being pastoralists.


Title: Re: Lactase Persistence in the British Isles
Post by: Maliclavelli on March 17, 2010, 01:35:56 AM
But haven't you take anything from your mother  (or from your ancestresses)?


Title: Re: Lactase Persistence in the British Isles
Post by: NealtheRed on March 17, 2010, 11:37:01 AM
Actually, my great-grandmother on my mom's side was lactose intolerant. Her family was from Naples, Italy.


Title: Re: Lactase Persistence in the British Isles
Post by: bart otoole on March 17, 2010, 12:06:42 PM
That is really interesting. I think this has to do with the climate in the British Isles, and the folks that lived there.

My dad always told me we were not made to consume bread, but can digest milk better than most people due to our ancestry. Sure enough, if I eat pasta or bread I gain weight like crazy and am tired. But a lot of lean protein and milk keeps me going.

I wonder if this has to deal with my ancestors being pastoralists.

That is interesting - and I agree with the comment on starches.  Bread, pasta, and especially potatoes pack inches on my waistline.  Milk and yogurt are staples in my life.


Title: Re: Lactase Persistence in the British Isles
Post by: rms2 on March 17, 2010, 02:46:18 PM
That is really interesting. I think this has to do with the climate in the British Isles, and the folks that lived there.

My dad always told me we were not made to consume bread, but can digest milk better than most people due to our ancestry. Sure enough, if I eat pasta or bread I gain weight like crazy and am tired. But a lot of lean protein and milk keeps me going.

I wonder if this has to deal with my ancestors being pastoralists.

That is interesting - and I agree with the comment on starches.  Bread, pasta, and especially potatoes pack inches on my waistline.  Milk and yogurt are staples in my life.

My dad is the most avid milk drinker I've ever known. He likes to drink milk on the rocks.

My maternal grandfather owned dairy cows, so my mom's family used fresh, whole milk and made its own butter, etc.


Title: Re: Lactase Persistence in the British Isles
Post by: IALEM on March 18, 2010, 04:32:39 AM
My family has been growing cattle at least for the last seven centuries, so it is no surprise I enjoy milk so much.