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The genetic link to being a poor driver

dreamstime_m_55167248.jpgSome people are simply poor drivers, and it never seems to change. Maybe you assumed that they just didn't care or were never taught how to drive.

One study says that the reason may be that their brains aren't getting enough brain-derived neurotrophic factor. That's a protein that helps the brain remember things and aids in communication between various brain cells.

Unfortunately, not everyone makes the protein at the same rate. About 30 percent of the people living in the United States have a gene variant that means they simply don't have as much BDNF as others.

Researchers already knew from prior studies that those in this category see lower amounts of brain stimulation when carrying out many tasks. They also knew that these individuals typically did not fair as well when they had suffered from strokes, not recovering as completely. They then began to wonder if it would also impact their ability to drive, so they set up a test.

The result was simple: Those with less BDNF did around 20 percent worse than those with more. They were not as good at driving, remembering what had gone wrong when they made mistakes, and then fixing those mistakes.

For what it's worth, the sample size was small. Only 29 people were in the study. However, if the results do hold up to the general population, that means that millions of drivers present a higher risk on the road.

Accidents happen for all manner of reasons, and this helps to shed some light on why the risks exist. If you're hit and injured, you must know what rights you have to financial compensation for medical costs and more.

Source: Science Daily, "Bad Driving May Have Genetic Basis, Study Finds," accessed June 27, 2017

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