Born to win

Published: Saturday 15 August 1998

Elite mountaineers and trainee soldiers are stronger if they have inherited a particular variant of a gene that helps regulate blood pressure. This claim has been made by Hugh Montgomery of University College, London, UK, and his team. The researchers monitored the effects of two common variants of the gene that makes angio-tensin-converting enzyme. This enzyme helps regulate blood pressure and the efficient use of oxygen in body parts. The claim implies that sporting champions are born, not made. The study also found that people who inherit the gene from both the parents are the best performers (New Scientist, Vol 158, No 2135).

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