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Biology/How many humans needed to populate a planet without inbreeding?


Greetings! I was wondering how many humans would be need to populate a habitable exoplanet without any chance of inbreeding occuring and having those humans as healthy as we Earthlings are. Like if we'd send a starship to some other planet and the volunteers would be 100% cut off from the rest of the humanity and they'd had to be completely independent, so how many humans do you believe would be needed to populate a planet without any hazards due to a too poor gene pool?

This is an interesting question Mika and one that I can only speculate about because we have no facts or statistics to back up any ideas. Mitochondrial DNA studies seem to indicate that we all descended from a very small population. I would guess that the number of people required so there would be no chance of inbreeding  would be so large as to make travel to another planet impractical.
Keep in mind that Inbreeding does not necesisarily  result in a poor gene pool. Natural selection weeds out weaknesses. It can also bring out positive traits. The ban of inbreeding between relatives is a moral directive. It occurs  naturally in the animal Kingdom and plays a part in the evolutionary process.


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Walter Hintz


Science teacher for over 50 years. MSc. in biology. I can answer questions in general biology, zoology, botany, anatomy and physiology and biochemistry.


I have a MSc in biology and have been a science teacher for over 50 years. At present I am a faculty member at a college and a science consultant at seven catholic schools.

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