A gene mutation identified in more than 100 Dutch families from northern parts of the country is thought to be linked to heart muscle problems, Nos television reports on Friday.
The gene traces back to Friesland and may now be carried by one in 1,400 people in Noord-Holland, Friesland and Groningen, researchers in Groningen told the broadcaster.
Genetic scientist Paul van der Zwaag of Groningen’s teaching hospital UMCG said it is extremely unusual that a genetic mutation can be traced back to one ancestor.
The ancestor is thought to have lived six to eight centuries ago in eastern Friesland. More than one in 10 heart patients in the Netherlands are thought to carry the gene.