Ozzy Osbourne may have to thank his genes for surviving years of drug and alcohol abuse, according to a new book on how genetics shape individuals by biologist Bill Sullivan.
“Ozzy is indeed a genetic mutant,” Sullivan writes in Pleased to Meet Me: Genes, Germs and the Curious Forces that Make Us Who We Are, lending credence to earlier findings.
In 2010, a Cambridge, Massachusetts-based human genome company reached out to Ozzy Osbourne to find how he had survived through decades of heavy drug and alcohol abuse.
“They discovered a never-before-seen mutation that may explain Osbourne’s ability to consume alcohol in great quantities and several genetic variations that predisposed him to drug and alcohol dependencies,” the New York Post reports.
Sullivan’s book explores the surprising ways humans are shaped by DNA and other biological factors.
For instance, there’s a gene variant for a sweet tooth. And multiple genes affect the way we enjoy a beverage like coffee.
Genes also govern our basic emotions, sexual attraction and political tendencies. “After all these years of thinking we were free agents, we’ve come to realize that most, if not all, of our behavior is not of our own volition,” writes Sullivan, a professor at the Indiana University School of Medicine, according to the Post.
Sullivan writes that our genes program the brain chemicals, including serotonin and dopamine, causing us to feel a certain way. “However magical they may feel to you, your emotions are purely biological in origin,” he writes.
The biologist writes that addiction has more to do with our DNA than our moral fiber.
The Black Sabbath star last year told Orange County Register about how had given up substance abuse.
“I don’t drink alcohol anymore…I don’t smoke tobacco. I don’t use drugs…I’m doing good right now,” he told the publication.
Osbourne had said he was now often left wondering how “did I think going into a bar and getting smashed and doing all that cocaine was fun?”‘