Parental Radiation and Down's Syndrome, with Particular Attention to Ionizing Radiation and Radar.
JOHNS HOPKINS UNIV BALTIMORE MD SCHOOL OF HYGIENE AND PUBLIC HEALTH
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To confirm or reject a possible association of Downs syndrome with maternal medical radiation and paternal radar exposure observed in a previous investigation, a replication study was conducted on parents of 300 Current Series cases and controls born 1962-1968 and 1945. Validation of military service and radar exposure was undertaken for all Original and Current Series fathers involving 791 cases, controls and new matches and chromosomes studied on 159 radar exposed and unexposed fathers. Current Series findings confirm the association with advancing maternal age and lack of a similar paternal age relationship, but show no case-control differences in parental maternal or paternal medical radiation or paternal radar exposure. Combining the series still yielded no significant case-control differences in fathers radar exposure or military service, although slightly more NSD Army service was observed in case fathers of each series. A suggestion of more chromosome aberrancy in radar exposed fathers of the Combined Series must be interpreted with caution. Whether the apparent association indicates greater chromosome fragility with microwave exposure or is otherwise biologically meaningful, or is just spurious, requires more definitive, longitudinal studies. Author