Country: United States
Date: February 2006
When you are missing a chromosome what will happen
to your learning abilities?
Depending on which chromosome is missing, learning ability may be the least
of your worries! Humans don't tolerate changes in chromosome number well.
One too many chromosomes cause diseases such as Down syndrome and Edward
syndrome. Females can tolerate one less X chromosome; this causes Turner
syndrome. It doesn't necessarily affect mental abilities. Usually though,
one less crhomosome isn't compatible with life and the embryo is usually
miscarried before the mother knows she is pregnant.
Since there are no known examples of a persom missing an autosome (non-sex
chromosome), this condition is presumably lethal. The only example of a
person missing a chromosome is girls with only one X-chromosome. This
condition is known as Turner's Syndrome and results in many abnormalities
including mental retardation.
Ron Baker, Ph.D
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Update: June 2012