In an attempt to pinpoint a motive in Adam Lanza's Sandy Hook shooting rampage, geneticists have been asked to study his DNA to find abnormalities or mutations.
These mutations or abnormalities, if found in Lanza's DNA, might be a direct link to an increase of aggressive or violent behavior.
Arthur Beaudet, a professor at Baylor College of Medicine, said the University of Connecticut geneticists are most likely trying to "detect clear abnormalities of what we would call a mutation in a gene…or gene abnormalities and there are some abnormalities that are related to aggressive behavior. "They might look for mutations that might be associated with mental illnesses and ones that might also increase the risk for violence," he said.
But identifying these abnormalities don't guarantee that authorities can pinpoint Lanza's motive.
"I don't think any one of these mutations would explain all of (the mass shooters), but some of them would have mutations that might be causing both schizophrenia and related schizophrenia violent behavior," Beaudet said. "I think we could learn more about it and we should learn more about it."
The first study of its kind, some geneticists are concerned that there could be a stigma attached to people with these genetic characteristics if they are able to narrow them down. Additionally, some are skeptical about what Lanza's DNA may be able to tell them about mass murderers.
"One sample, what's that going to tell you," Dr. Heidi Tissenbaum, a geneticist at the University of Massachusetts medical school said, referring to Lanza's DNA. "You never do an experiment with one, you can't conclude anything… The question is what are they comparing his DNA against? Are they going to control to random people? Matching for age or society? We just don't have enough (of a sample)."
Maybe physical clues didn't give authorities too much insight. We hope this works.
SOURCE: ABC NEWS