Are you delaying fatherhood? Well, then you should reconsider your family plan, for a new study has found that kids with older dads perform badly in intelligence tests.
The research, led by John McGrath, of the Queensland Brain Institute at the University of Queensland in Australia, found children with older fathers tended to obtain significantly lower scores in a variety of cognitive tests than those born to younger fathers.
"The offspring of older fathers show subtle impairments on tests of neurocognitive ability during infancy and childhood," The Times quoted John, as saying.
"In light of the trends to delay fatherhood, the clinical implications and the mechanisms underlying these findings warrant closer scrutiny," he added.
To reach the conclusion, McGrath analysed data on 33,437 Americans born between 1959 and 1965. All were tested at eight months, four years and seven. The data set, despite its age, remains one of the best resources.
The underlying biological mechanisms are the key questions, according to McGrath. One idea is that as men age the cells that produce sperm suffer increasing numbers of mutations, which are passed on to an offspring.