In this article from the Huffington Post it is mentioned that a certain gene can predict what time one will die (of natural causes). Not the date, but the time of the day.

"This particular genotype affects the sleep-wake pattern of virtually everyone walking around," Dr. Clifford Saper, chief of neurology at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, wrote in the statement. "And it is a fairly profound effect so that the people who have the A-A genotype wake up about an hour earlier than the people who have the G-G genotype, and the A-Gs wake up almost exactly in the middle."

Moreover, investigators realized as some of the 1,200 older subjects in the project died that these nucleotide sequences were accurate predictors of their time of death, within a range of only a few hours. Patients with the A-A and A-G genotypes typically died just before 11 a.m., while subjects with the G-G combination tended to die near 6 p.m.

"So there is really a gene that predicts the time of day that you’ll die. Not the date, fortunately, but the time of day," said Saper.

So, I would like to ask if it is possible for a gene to predict what time of the day one will die?

  • the how is better for biology.SE, the dispute of the claim itself is a good fit here Commented Nov 22, 2012 at 9:06
  • 1
    reading the article I can see that it is about natural deaths Commented Nov 22, 2012 at 9:58

1 Answer 1


According to this research it is possible.

A common polymorphism near PER1 is associated with the timing of human behavioral rhythms, and shows evidence of association with time of death. This may be mediated by differential PER1 expression. These results may facilitate individualized scheduling of shift work, medical treatments, or monitoring of vulnerable patient populations. ANN NEUROL 2012;72:324–334.

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