Woman Discovers She Has Rare Condition Where She’s Her Own Twin
A TikToker with the ultimate ‘there can be only one’ condition has explained how she’s her own twin.
Rachelle (@radrachelle) has two different coloured eyes. This itself isn’t particularly shocking, given there’s a number of other conditions it could be credited to.
However, she also has a line down the centre of her torso, with her skin pigmentation on her left side being a different colour to her right side. Rachelle is a human chimera, meaning she has two sets of DNA in her body after ‘absorbing’ her twin.
@radrachelleI am a Chimera, I absorbed my fraternal twin sister. ##chimerism ##lifestyle ##Science101 ##whenwomanwin ##Chimera ##viral
Initially, experts believed it was heterochromia – a condition that causes the different coloured eyes. However, Rachelle fell ill at the age of 14 and was diagnosed with a genetic condition that caused colon cancer.
In her TikTok, which has amassed more than 9.6 million views, she explains: ‘Finally I came across a doctor who explained I’m a chimera. Chimerism is where two fraternal twin eggs fuse together in the womb. I absorbed my twin sister, so I carry her DNA within cells in my body.’
Some users asked whether Rachelle was the result of IVF, but she confirmed: ‘Nope, just a plain old accident!’
Only one in 76 million people have chimerism, which means there hasn’t been extensive testing on how it can affect the body and be linked to other health conditions, such as Rachelle’s colon cancer and other genetic mutations.
@radrachelleReply to @pideka3872 Answering another question. ##ThanksToHer ##RAD ##HumanChimera
Among other questions, one user wrote: ‘Do you know that in the future you may have a kid that may have DNA that shows you’re his aunt?’
She said while this is true for some chimeras, she’s had two children and doctors have confirmed they’re both hers and come from her own DNA, rather than her sister’s. ‘In the uterus there were some cells of my fraternal twin, but the majority was my own,’ she said.
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