Did you know about these 10 most incredible powers from rare genetic mutations?
If you thought the X -Men was just a fantasy on celluloid, then think again. We have real life X-Men living amongst us. Yes! Genetic mutations do exist in humans and the uncanny fact about it is that they too have some incredible powers. Through real life examples, science has proven that genetic variations in humans can lead to the development of remarkable qualities. Here is a list of the ten most amazing powers of genetic mutations found in gifted humans.
1 Immunity to Malaria
There are people who actually possess a natural immunity to Malaria. However this comes at a price. Such people are either carriers or patients of the deadly disease, sickle cell anemia.
Malaria is a widespread killer disease killing approximately 600,000 people a year worldwide. Transported through mosquitoes, it attacks red blood cells for reproduction. While common malaria causes a course of flu like symptoms, the advanced stage of the disease can be fatal.
Sickle cell anemia results from abnormal red blood cells without the natural capacity to transport oxygen. However, it is this very genetic mutation which confuses a malarial parasite’s ability for penetration. Carriers of sickle cell anemia inherit just one gene from their parents in which case the disease is not fatal. At least 40% of people are sickle cell carriers and hence resistant to malaria.
2 Immunity to Bad Cholesterol or LDL
There are a happy few who possess a genetic mutation which reduces the gene called PCKS9 in their bodies. The significance of such a mutation is that PCKS9 increases bad cholesterol or LDL.
LDL contains plaque which clogs arteries and obstructs blood flow to the heart. The advantages of such a mutation means such people can eat all the burgers and fries they want without worrying about cholesterol.
3 HIV Resistance
HIV as everyone knows is a killer virus causing AIDS and rendering its victim’s immune system helpless. The Risk of HIV is increased due to a protein called CCR5 located in white blood cells. This acts as a receptor to HIV cells
A number of people possess a genetic mutation where CCR5 isn’t present in their system. This makes them highly resistant to HIV. However some have succumbed to AIDS due to the power of HIV to penetrate body cells through different means.
4 Rh-Null the Golden Blood
Type O blood isn’t the only rarity you think it is. Apart from the 8 usual blood types, there is one which is considered extremely rare and that’s ‘Rh-null”. Those born with the genetic mutation of RH-null possess none of the nomenclature or antigens of the various Rh types.
Rh-null is so rare that only 40 persons on the planet possess it amongst which only 9 are donors.
5 High Altitude Optimization
Without the help of the Sherpas of Nepal, most climbers would never reach even half way up Mount Everest.
Sherpas live and work in high altitude conditions with the abilities of natural acclimatization. Their mutation is characterized by wider chests and stronger lungs for improved breathing.
The main scientific reason for such natural mutation is the possible increase of a DNA strand called EPAS1 which controls the increase of RBC production after detecting oxygen. The opposite procedure is prevalent in low altitude population whose RBC goes on overdrive in order to replenish oxygen levels at high altitudes.
6 High Density Hard Bones
Much like superman, those with the genetic mutation of super dense bones don’t attract the risk of breaking them.
Prevalent among the Afrikaans population of South Africa, such people live through life experiencing an increase in bone mass making bones denser and less susceptible to breakage. Caused by the mutation of the SOST gene which controls bone growth, one can only enjoy the benefits of stronger bones if they inherit one gene from ones parents.
Inheriting two could lead to the fatal condition of sclerostiosis
7 Brain Disease Immunity
In the mid-20th century the Fore tribes of Papua New Guinea were continuously falling prey to a fatal brain disease called Kuru.
Acquiring epidemic proportions, Kuru became a killer disease with victims succumbing to it within a year of contraction. After extensive study, it was discovered that the Fore’s ritualistic traditions of consuming their dead was the main factor causing the disease.
Although the practice was banned, it was found that there were quite a few immune to the disease despite of practicing in the cannibalistic feast – the reason being the mutated gene G127, which fortified its hosts with immunity to brain infections. The gene gradually spread among the Fore population and with it their powerful immunity to brain disease.
8 Underwater Super Vision
While some mammals are born with natural traits of underwater vision some can only see in air. Water causes low refraction in our eyes hence blurry vision underwater. However, the Moken tribe, inhabitating areas of Burma and Thailand have exceptional vision even up to 22 meters underwater.
Basically sea nomads, the Moken usually live in boat houses. The children are regularly made to collect sea cucumbers and clams from the sea. By constant adoption of their lifestyle on water, the tribes have developed clear underwater vision.
9 The Ability for Less Sleep
Although health guidelines recommend a minimum of 7 to 8 hours of sleep a day, there are those who can do without it and still maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Possessing a rarity in the genetic mutation of a gene called DEC2; such people sleep less than the average human being. The main factor governing such a condition isn’t the ability to sleep less but to derive a more fruitful state of sleep. Apparently those with the genetic mutation have a stronger and rejuvenated state of sleep with high-intensity REMs.
The mutation was found to be rare and present in just 1% of short term sleepers.
10 Tolerance to Cold Temperatures
The Innuits of Canada, Eskimos and Siberians who are regional inhabitants of exceedingly cold environments survive and adapt to cold temperatures as a normal way of life.
Cold region inhabitants develop higher basal temperatures or increased metabolism. This means by virtue of a higher metabolism they also possess the increased ability to generate heat within their bodies. Another feature of their adaptability was a lower amount of sweat glands which helped their bodies reduce the change of skin temperatures in extreme cold.