Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock

Brothers and fathers of men convicted of sexual offences are up to five times more likely to be convicted of sexual offences than men in the general population, a new study shows. Genetic factors were found to make a substantial contribution to this increased risk with the shared family environment having a relatively small influence.

The study, by researchers from Oxford University (UK) and the Karolinska Institute (Sweden), used statistical methods to analyse data on all 21,566 men convicted of sexual offences in Sweden between 1973 and 2009.

The researchers looked at the share of sexual offences perpetrated by fathers and brothers of convicted male sex offenders and compared this to the proportion among Swedish men from the general population with similar age and family profiles. They found that around 2.5% of brothers or fathers of convicted sex offenders are themselves convicted of sexual offences. This compares to convicted sex offenders making up about 0.5% of men in the general population.

Read more

Similar stories

Labelling proteins through the diet gives new insights into how collagen-rich tissues change as we age

A new study, published in eLife, uses advanced tissue analysis technology to show how the incorporation of new proteins changes in bone and cartilage with age.

Drug could help diabetic hearts recover after heart attack - Oxford research

Researchers at the University of Oxford have identified a drug that could ultimately help improve heart function in people with diabetes who have heart attacks.

Largest ever global study of tuberculosis identifies genetic causes of drug resistance

Using cutting-edge genomic sequencing techniques, researchers at the University of Oxford have identified almost all the genomic variation that gives people resistance to 13 of the most common tuberculosis (TB) drug treatments.

Researchers set out steps to address mental health effects of the pandemic on young people

Researchers have outlined 14 steps that schools, mental health services and policymakers can take to help children and young people whose mental health has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Anti-cancer drug derived from fungus shows promise in clinical trials

A new industry-academic partnership between the University of Oxford and biopharmaceutical company NuCana as found that chemotherapy drug NUC-7738, derived from a Himalayan fungus, has 40 times greater potency for killing cancer cells than its parent compound.

No benefit of convalescent plasma for critically ill COVID-19 patients

A large study of over 2000 COVID-19 patients has found that giving critically ill patients blood plasma from recovered COVID-19 patients did not significantly reduce deaths, or the need for intensive care support such as being put on a ventilator machine.