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Sir Paul Nurse

Here’s the interesting story of Sir Paul Nurse, a Nobel prize winner and new president of the Royal Society. It turns out the prominent geneticist found out three years ago that his sister was his mother and his parents were his grandparents.

‘Miriam married when I was two-and-a-half and moved away to live with her husband, but she would come back to us every weekend. At the time I thought that was normal, but it isn’t really, is it? I thought she was visiting our parents but now I think she was visiting me. There’s a picture of her holding my hand on her wedding day, which must have been very poignant for her as it was the day she left me.
‘She went on to have three other children and I don’t think she ever told her husband about me. It was after her death that I learned she had pictures next to her bed of all four of her babies. Three were of her legitimate children. I was the fourth. It makes me feel sad to know that I can’t talk to her about it and ask her how she coped with her secret for all those years.’

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