adBlockCheck

Science & Technology

How Clinical Trials Work

Prescription medications undergo rigorous rounds of testing and approval before hitting the consumer market. The Onion breaks down the steps involved in this process

Scientists Develop New Extra-Sloppy Peach

DAVIS, CA—Explaining that the latest strain of the fruit was far softer and runnier than previous varieties, agricultural scientists at the University of California, Davis announced Thursday the successful development of a new extra-sloppy peach.

SpaceX’s Plan To Colonize Mars

SpaceX founder Elon Musk continues to lay the groundwork to attempt the human colonization of Mars. Here’s a step-by-step guide to his plan:

The Pros And Cons Of Self-Driving Cars

With Uber’s robot cars debuting this week in Pittsburgh, many wonder whether driverless technology will improve or endanger our lives. The Onion weighs the pros and cons of self-driving cars

How Animals Go Extinct

With an estimated 40 percent of species on earth now considered endangered, many wonder how it’s possible for these animals to be wiped out. The Onion provides a step-by-step breakdown of how species go extinct

Horrible Facebook Algorithm Accident Results In Exposure To New Ideas

MENLO PARK, CA—Assuring users that the company’s entire team of engineers was working hard to make sure a glitch like this never happens again, Facebook executives confirmed during a press conference Tuesday that a horrible accident last night involving the website’s algorithm had resulted in thousands of users being exposed to new concepts.

Team Of Vatican Geneticists Successfully Clone God

VATICAN CITY—Describing the groundbreaking work as a major step forward for theological research, a team of Vatican geneticists held a press conference Tuesday at the Apostolic Palace to announce they had successfully cloned God.

Dad Shares Photo Album Through Never-Before-Seen Website

SECAUCUS, NJ—Wondering aloud how the father of three even managed to find the online image-hosting service, family members of local dad Phil Yates told reporters Monday the 57-year-old had shared a photo album with them through a never-before-seen website.

NASA Discovers Distant Planet Located Outside Funding Capabilities

WASHINGTON—Noting that the celestial body lies within the habitable zone of its parent star and could potentially harbor liquid water, NASA officials announced at a press conference Thursday they have discovered an Earth-like planet located outside their funding capabilities.

‘DSM-5’ Updated To Accommodate Man Who Is Legitimately Being Ordered To Kill By The Moon

ARLINGTON, VA—Saying they were committed to ensuring the influential reference text accurately represented all known psychological conditions, leading members of the American Psychiatric Association announced Monday they would update the Diagnostic And Statistical Manual Of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition to accommodate a man who is legitimately being ordered by the moon to kill those around him.

NASA Launches First Cordless Satellite

CAPE CANAVERAL, FL—In what experts are calling a breakthrough achievement that is poised to revolutionize American space exploration and telecommunications, NASA announced Friday it has successfully launched its first cordless satellite into orbit.

What Is Pokémon Go?

Since its debut last Thursday, the augmented-reality smartphone app Pokémon Go has been downloaded millions of times and has grown publisher Nintendo’s stock by 25 percent. The Onion answers some common questions about the game and its unprecedented success.

Factory Robot Working On Some Of Its Own Designs After Hours

NORTH CHARLESTON, SC—Saying it had been mulling over the “fun little side project” for a while, an Electroimpact Quadbot reportedly put in some extra work after hours at the Boeing assembly plant Wednesday to try out a few of its own original designs.

Books Vs. E-Readers

Though e-readers have increasingly supplanted books in the digital age, many bibliophiles defend the importance of physical texts. Here is a side-by-side comparison of physical books and e-books
End Of Section
  • More News

Study Finds Those With Deceased Family Members At High Risk Of Dying Themselves

Researchers say death is essentially unavoidable for anyone who is related to a person who has died.
Researchers say death is essentially unavoidable for anyone who is related to a person who has died.

BOSTON—Pinpointing the phenomenon as the single greatest predictor of human mortality, a paper published Wednesday in The New England Journal Of Medicine has found that people with deceased family members run an extremely high risk of dying themselves.

The groundbreaking study, which tracked the health and well-being of 85,000 subjects over a period of 40 years, discovered that people who have one or more relatives who have passed away are very likely, one day, to die as well.

“It appears that individuals with a family history of death have a strong genetic predisposition toward dying,” said the paper’s lead author, Dr. Samantha Booth, who explained that the finding held true regardless of a subject’s race, nationality, gender, or socioeconomic status. “Based on anecdotal evidence, we’ve long suspected an inherited trait could play a major role in determining whether a person dies, but we were surprised to see just how strong the correlation truly is.”

“Unfortunately, for members of this cohort, death appears to be all but inevitable,” she continued.

According to the study’s authors, the likelihood of future mortality remains high regardless of whether one’s immediate family members have died, or whether only more distant relations have passed on. Based on their findings, researchers hypothesize that death is handed down through individual lineages, becoming a devastating family curse that is passed from parent to child and which tends not to skip a generation.

In addition, a separate study of some 8,000 individuals who died in the Hartford, CT area found that every one of the deceased had ancestors who had died before them, further suggesting a family link.

While people from afflicted lineages can reportedly prolong their lives by developing healthy habits such as a nutritious diet and regular exercise, researchers stated that, in the end, no matter how many precautions they take, their genetic susceptibility to dying will win out.

“We recommend alerting your doctor if there’s a history of death in your family, and if you aren’t certain, you should ask your parents if they know of any fatalities among your relatives,” Booth said. “This is also important information to know before deciding to have children yourself. Even if your own family is alive and well, it’s possible there is death somewhere in your partner’s ancestry.”

“If you have a grandparent or even a great-grandparent who has died, then sadly, the odds of your kids eventually dying are quite high,” she added.

When reached for comment, several of the study’s participants acknowledged they had at least one deceased family member, and expressed their fear and concern to reporters.

“I feel perfectly healthy now, but knowing that my father died definitely makes me worry that the same thing could happen to me one day,” said Randy Lewis, a 49-year-old who took part in the study. “But my mom is still alive, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed that I take after her side of the family.”

Added Lewis, “Unfortunately, I can only wait and see.”

WATCH VIDEO FROM THE ONION

Sign up For The Onion's Newsletter

Give your spam filter something to do.

X Close