A DNA study on King Tut's mummy--"the first DNA study ever conducted with ancient Egyptian royal mummies," according to National Geographic News--showed that Tut was a malarial inbred with a club foot who probably had to walk with a cane.
"'He was not a very strong pharoah. He was not riding the chariots,' said study team member Carsten Pusch, a geneticist at Germany's University of Tubingen. Tuts' parents were brother and sister as well, i.e., his mother and father were also his aunt and uncle. "Inbreeding is not an advantage for biological or genetic fitness," according to Pusch. "Normally the health and immune system are reduced and malformations increase." Tut was a victim of the policy of inbreeding designed to preserve the royal line.
The tests apparently traced Tut's ancestors back for five generations. Tut's father was the "heretic king" Akenhaten, who tried to abolish the traditional Egyptian gods or at least minimize their importance and replace them with the worship of one god--the sun. Two stillborn fetuses buried in Tut's tomb were his daughters by queen Ankhensenamun, "whose mummy may also have finally been identified."
This unprecedented DNA study has been going on for about two years in a Cairo lab paid for by the Discovery Channel, which will broadcast a two-part special called King Tut Unwrapped on Feb. 21-22. One interesting thing to note is that these early announcements avoid any mention whatsoever of the contentious issue of King Tut's race. No doubt this information will be buried in the journals somewhere.