Researchers in a Dublin hospital have discovered a distinctive Celtic gene that has been something like 50 generations in the making. Apparently it has also left us prone to a nasty liver disorder called haemochromatosis (hat tip to James). It’s characteristic symptoms, include:
In the overwhelming majority of cases, it is treatable. The condition means having too much iron in the blood. It is estimated that one in five Irish people carry this gene and one in 86 will go on to develop haemochromatosis. It is associated with both men and women aged more than 40. Its symptoms include excessive tiredness, male impotence, liver enlargement, arthritis in the hand and tanning easily.