Rwanda Horror Found in Generations’ DNA – World – Archyde

v For 100 days beginning April 6, 1994, nearly 800,000 ethnic Tutsis were killed by Hutu extremists as they attempted to exterminate a minority in Rwanda.

Though the brutal genocide is over, its horror lives on in the DNA of Tutsi victims and their descendants. A team of scientists from the University of South Florida discovered

chemical changes in the genes linked to mental disorders in pregnant women and children they carried during the genocide.

These results suggest that, unlike gene mutations, these chemical “epigenetic” modifications may have a rapid response to trauma across generations. The study also provides further evidence for a theory known as intergenerational trauma, which states that trauma can be inherited because there are genetic changes in a person’s DNA.

However, the changes do not damage the genes, but change how they function. Professor Monica Udine said in a statement: “Epigenetics refers to stable but reversible chemical modifications to DNA that help control gene function.

This can happen in less time than it takes to make changes in the basic DNA sequence of genes. Our study found that prenatal exposure to genocide was associated with an epigenetic pattern suggestive of it

reduced gene function in the offspring’.

The genocide in Rwanda began with the shooting down of President Habyarimana’s plane over the capital, Kigali. His death has fueled simmering ethnic tensions for years, and Hutu extremists have launched a planned campaign of extermination against the Tutsi minority.

The killings only stopped when the Tutsi-controlled Rwanda Patriotic Front took control of the country and put Paul Kagame in power. By the end of the genocide, around 70% of the Tutsi ethnic group had been killed.

Udine and her colleague Derek Wildman began their research to help provide the scientific tools needed to address the mental health issues of genocide survivors. With the help of Clarice Musanabaganwa, a visiting researcher from the University of Rwanda, and her colleagues, the team examined DNA from blood samples from 59 people.

Participants included 33 mothers (20 exposed to genocide and 13 not) and 26 offspring (16 exposed to genocide and 10 not).

Persons subjected to genocide are defined as persons who have suffered associated trauma such as rape, evasion of capture, testimony of murder, sighting of dead and mutilated bodies, aggravated assault with a weapon.

“The people of Rwanda who are participating in this study and the community as a whole really want to know what happened to them because there are many cases of post-traumatic stress disorder and other mental health disorders in Rwanda and people want answers as to why they have them Having feelings and issues,” Wildman said.

The team’s work is another study aimed at providing evidence that trauma is passed down the generations, as found among Holocaust survivors and their descendants and the average person who experiences violence, poverty and other traumatic events has experienced.

However, the latest study aims to shed some light on the matter

the horror that happened in Africa 28 years ago.

Most Rwandans are ethnic Hutu, but the country was ruled by a Tutsi minority for decades until the Tutsi monarchy was overthrown in 1959.

In 1990, a Tutsi rebel group founded in Uganda called the Rwandan Patriotic Front invaded the country. After several years of guerrilla warfare, a peace agreement was signed in 1993 between President Juvenal Habyarimana and the leaders of the front.

However, the fragile peace only lasted until the night of April 6, 1994, when a plane carrying Habyarimana and Cyprian Ntaryamira, President of Burundi and Hutu, was shot down. Blaming the front for the attack, the Hutu made a “final decision” to rid the country of the Tutsis, with militias handing out lists of names.

Neighbors turned against each other, husbands killed their Tutsi wives

and there were even stories of priests and nuns killing those who took refuge in churches. The Tutsi were slaughtered by Hutu government supporters who claimed to be “removing cockroaches”. Men, women and children were beaten in their homes and on the streets with machetes, grenades and bullets.

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