I, for one, welcome our parthenogenetic hybrid masters

Chimaerism and Mosaicism

[...] The boy, who was otherwise healthy, is one of only a handful of known true human chimaeras - people carrying tissues that originated in two separate embryos. More common are mosaics, who have patches of tissue that differ genetically from the rest of their body, thanks to a mutation or chromosomal anomaly that arose early in embryological development. [...]

Chimaerism affecting a variety of tissues can also result from other events. In 1995, for instance, Bonthron described another boy who was partially parthenogenetic: cells from his blood and certain other tissues contained none of his father's chromosomes; instead, they featured a duplicated set of one half of his mother's. Although it is not unknown for an egg to start developing without being fertilized, fully parthenogenetic human embryos cannot develop to term. Bonthron believes that the partially parthenogenetic boy owed his unusual genetic constitution to an egg that spontaneously divided into two cells, one of which was fertilized. The second cell then copied its maternal chromosomes, allowing the resulting chimaera to form a viable embryo.

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7 Responses:

  1. stimps says:

    I may be strange, but the first thing I thought was, "Wow, I wish I looked like that! Coffee and crema all swirled together, so pretty!"

  2. rxrfrx says:

    both of these disorders stem from hemizygosity at a single locus. depending on whether patients have only the mother's gene or the father's gene, they will express one syndrome phenotype or the other.

    Prader-Willi Syndrome (maternal imprint only):

    Angelman Syndrome (paternal imprint only):

  3. phygelus says:

    simpler genetic mosaics are more common: the most striking examples are individuals whose eyes are different colors. Even more (many, many more) people have more than one hair type.

    Big black nemesis, parthenogenesis...

  4. suppafly says:

    if i didn't know better, i'd assume thats what the offspring of interracial couples looked like.