Ozzy Osbourne Is a Genetic Mutant

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They found a functioning change in his TTN gene, which is associated with a number of things in the nervous system, including deafness and Parkinson's.

"Here's a guy who's rocking heavy metal for decades and he can still hear," Conde said. "It would be interesting to know if this gene may impact that. His Parkinsonian tremor -- it's hard to know if that is from his genes or from years of hard living."

And of course, there's the fact that Osbourne had Neanderthal genes in him.

"People thought that [Neanderthals] had no descendents today, but they do," Pearson said at the conference. "In east Asia and Europe, a lot of us have a little Neanderthal ancestry. We found a sliver of the genes in Ozzy. We also looked at [Knome's] founder, George Chruch, and he has about three times as much as Ozzy does."

To which Sharon Osbourne replied: "I'd like to meet him."

Learning From Our Favorite Neanderthal Rocker

While genomics have come a long way since the first full human genome was sequenced in 2003, interpreting what gene variants mean still involves a lot of guesswork.

"We can read the code, but it takes additional research to decipher what is means," Conde said.

In other words, geneticists know which traits are associated with certain genes, but not how a mutation on that gene will affect someone. By sequencing those who seem to show unique traits, such as Osbourne's ability to remain relatively healthy despite heavy drug and alcohol abuse, geneticists hope to learn more about how deviations in certain genes create specific traits, susceptibility to disease and reactions to substances.

"What interests me are people who have done something extraordinary with no clear reason as to why," Conde said.

For his next celebrity genome, he would like to pick somebody on the far extreme of intelligence such as Stephen Hawking. Or he might stick with rock-lifestyle resilience and get Keith Richards, as Sharon Osbourne suggested.

TEDMED is a yearly conference dedicated to increasing innovation in the medical realm "from personal health to public health, devices to design and Hollywood to the hospital," the website said.

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