Andersonville Prison Research Paper

11825 Issued in December 2005 NBER Program(s): Development of the American Economy Twenty-seven percent of the Union Army prisoners captured July 1863 or later died in captivity.

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The professor told Fox News that she started the study expecting to write a paper about socio-economics.

Instead, the results offer fresh insight into epigenetics, which is the study of inherited “biological triggers” that can affect genes and how the body’s cells react to genetic data, with altering underlying DNA sequence.

The site was commanded by Captain Henry Wirz, who was tried and executed after the war for war crimes.

It was overcrowded to four times its capacity, with an inadequate water supply, inadequate food rations, and unsanitary conditions.

The study examined data on male and females born after 1866 who lived to at least 45 years of age.

The records were compared to data on the children of Union soldiers who survived the war but were never prisoners of war.Many men who came in as healthy prisoners died from these illnesses before they could be exchanged or released.Some Confederate prisons were little more than open pens, where the problems of disease were aggravated by exposure and starvation.“Because ex-POW stress was so extreme and because there were such big seasonal differences in maternal nutrition, it is easier to detect effects in the past,” Costa told Fox News.“The lesson for today is that effects are possible and they can be reversed.” The study, funded by the National Institutes of Health, was published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.A key factor in the research was when the POWs were held by the Confederacy.During the early stages of the conflict, prisoner exchanges occurred frequently, although this was less common from 1864 to 1865 when the terms of exchange became contentious.Fathers’ POW status had no impact on their daughters’ health, it added.The fact that sons’ lifespans were impacted and daughters’ were not indicates an “epigenetic effect transmitted along the Y chromosome,” Costa said. While the study’s findings are alarming, researchers note that the impact of trauma was likely mitigated by nutrients taken by mothers during pregnancy.Data on 15,145 children of 4,920 veterans who had not been POWs were also studied.Costa discovered that sons of POWs in the worst camp environments were 1.11 times more likely to die at any given age after 45 years of age than the sons of non-POWs and 1.09 times more likely to die at any given age than the sons of POWs who had been imprisoned in camps when conditions were better.

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