Married couples appearing similar is definitely not a coincidence. Rather it is linked to marrying someone from the same ancestry. This has an important effect on the genes of various population groups, reveals a study. The study was reported by Ronnie Sebro of the University of Pennsylvania, and senior authors Josee Dupuis from the Boston University School of Public Health and Neil Risch from the University of California, San Francisco. Until recently, most people picked a spouse from within their local community, and that person often had the same ancestry. Over many generations, this affinity for similar mates has created a genetic structure in the population which has the potential to bias the results of genetic studies. ‘Harmony of selecting a mate created a genetic structure in the population over the generations.’ In the first investigation into mating patterns across multiple generations within a U.S. population, researchers explored genetic similarity between spouses from three generations of white people in the Framingham Heart Study, an ongoing examination of heart health in the residents of Framingham, Massachusetts, which began in 1948. Using genomic data, they characterized the ancestry of 879 participant spouse pairs and observed that individuals of Northern European, Southern European and Ashkenazi ancestry preferentially chose spouses of the same background. In each successive generation, however, individuals were less likely to choose a spouse with the same ancestry. They also showed that the mating patterns caused spouses to be more genetically similar to each other than might otherwise be expected, and that the genetic structure created by these mating patterns in the population has decreased over time. The findings from this study reflect demographic patterns and how they have changed during the past 60 years in Framingham, Massachusetts. Genetic similarity within a population can be important to consider in genomic studies because it can lead to false positives when identifying gene regions that are associated with a disease, and affect estimates of the degree to which a disease is passed on through one's genes. The study is published in PLOS Genetics. Source: ANI << Exploring the Use of Abiraterone Acetate Drug to Treat Prost... Mother’s Voice Improves Development of Preterm Infants >> Recommended Reading Marriage Boosts Cancer Survival By Improving Outcomes Of Sufferers Marriage benefited both men and women with cancer, the size of the effect varied between the sexes and with race and ethnicity. READ MORE Married Men At Lower Risk of Metabolic Syndrome Married men were less likely to suffer metabolic syndrome -- a combination of diabetes, high blood pressure and obesity which damages the blood vessels. READ MORE Half of Indian Women Get Married Before 18 Years: United Nations Population Fund A third of the world's child brides are in India with about half of Indian women having married before they turned 18, said United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA). READ MORE Most People Prefer To Get Engaged Or Married On Valentine’s Day A majority of people shared their desire to pamper their loved one on Valentine's Day as 40 percent of the respondents plan to outspend their partner this year on February 14. READ MORE Is Life Better Staying Single or Getting Married? The stigma linked to staying single is gradually disappearing. More people opt to stay single and many even claim to be happier. But there are both advantages and disadvantages to staying single. READ MORE Weaver Syndrome Weaver syndrome is a genetic disorder in which children show accelerated bone growth, advanced bone age and a characteristic appearance of the face. READ MORE Most Popular on Medindia Find a Hospital Hearing Loss Calculator Selfie Addiction Calculator More News on: Weaver SyndromeIs Life Better Staying Single or Getting Married?