Rare Disorder May Have Afflicted Lincoln

Syndrome would account for height, sons' deaths, doc says
By Caroline Zimmerman,  Newser User
Posted Nov 26, 2007 2:20 PM CST
DNA testing of Lincoln's remains may reveal the cause of his death.    (Shutterstock)
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(Newser) – Abraham Lincoln may have been the first known victim of an exceedingly rare genetic disorder, and the 16th President was probably dying of cancer when he was assassinated, an expert says. The cancer-causing syndrome would account for his height, bumpy lips, and other conditions—but corroborating the theory with DNA testing is another story, the Washington Post reports.

John Sotos is publishing his findings in a Web-based book, The Physical Lincoln, which contends the tumors characteristic of the disorder likely killed at least two of Lincoln's sons and may even account for his sad expression. But DNA testing would destroy remains of his body and relics of his assassination, making historians reluctant to go along.