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Monday, March 7, 2011

'Henry VIII’s blood type led to madness, wives’ miscarriages’

English King Henry VIII
English King Henry VIII, who married six times, suffered from a rare blood disorder which was responsible for the miscarriages of wives and also made him "unstable" , a new research has claimed.
Henry, who was king of England from 1509 until his death in 1547, was desperate for a male heir to continue the Tudor line. He did, in fact, produce three children, one from his first three wives, but many others were stillborn or lost through miscarriages.
Now, researchers claim to have found compelling evidence that he was "Kell positive" , a rare blood type which can cause serious health and fertility problems. Those with the blood group can pass it down to future generations. The condition could also be behind King Henry's transformation from a witty and athletic youth to an obese and unstable tyrant by the time he was in his 40s, according to the researchers.
If a man with the disorder conceives a child with a Kell negative partner, each child has a 50-50 chance of inheriting the condition. When a baby is conceived with same rare blood group as its father, then the mother would have difficulties with further pregnancies . The antibodies she produces during that first pregnancy will attack future Kell positive babies she carries -–triggering miscarriages. The team believe s that Henry's first two wives Catherine of Aragon and Anne Boleyn suffered this fate.

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