Can Your Genes Indicate if You’re Homosexual?


lane

Actors Gary and Larry Lane

Some researchers in the US have indicated that there may be a “predictive model” for determining if someone is gay just by looking at their genes. They studied 47 sets of male twins – some were both homosexual, but most had one straight brother, and watched their epigenetic changes. Their research “suggested that patterns of methylation in nine regions were associated with sexual orientation with 67 percent of the time.”

Read the full story here on NBC News.

Do you know any homosexual twins?

10 comments on “Can Your Genes Indicate if You’re Homosexual?

  1. Hi Ophelia, what interests me is the argument that if gayness was an inherited trait then evolution should have removed it as there wouldn’t have been children to pass on the coding – I don’t know how this fits in with the new research….

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    • I think your argument would only hold true if the gene was passed down by gay people and all the gays died because they couldn’t reproduce. I think it is a little more complex than that, similar to why are some people are color blind or have red hair. If it is in fact genetic (which I believe) then it will be a recessive gene in both parents that becomes a dominate gene like color blindness. Recessive genes can be passed to children without the child “catching” it but later generations may have it. We see the same thing in color blindness, the son of a color blind parent is generally NOT color blind but one of his children could be.

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      • Hi Larry, I take your point: also I think that the idea of “no” gay people reproducing is purely theoretical: in practice I think that up to the relatively recent acceptance of homosexual relationships as normal in a number of societies/countries probably the majority of people who privately knew they were gay still had families with offspring.

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      • True many people struggle with admitting that they are gay and some marry to try to convince themselves that they are straight. Most gay people will probably tell you that they would never make the choice to be gay as it is so difficult to live around straights. A gay couple we know love to go out with us as it gives them the opportunity to sit together as two guys sitting together doesn’t raise an eyebrow if there is another couple across from them but they couldn’t do that by themselves. Until you see the struggles gays go through daily makes you wonder why they do it but until the far right cuts them some slack, the attacks will continue.

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  2. I have been wondering about this for a long time! It only makes sense to me that there’s something going on at a genetic level. On the one hand, it shouldn’t matter–we should accept people’s orientation whether they are “born with it” or they developed it over time. On the other hand, it would validate homosexuality in an almost irrefutable way.

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  3. I have several LGBT friends and they all tell me that they knew from an early age that they were “different” and I believe that we are either born gay or have a tendency to be gay. There is no way to “pray the gay away” either!

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    • I certainly knew from an early age that I was heterosexual. 🙂 Kids who are gay shouldn’t be made to feel “different” just because they’re in the minority. This isn’t just about sex — it’s about who you choose to love. It’s about loving yourself enough so you have the ability to love others. In other words, this is about love and relationships, not gender identity (or religion). We should look past race, sexual identity, and all those things that divide us, to the fact that we’re all just people.

      Sorry, I know I’m singing to the choir, I just felt like chiming in. 🙂

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      • Unfortunately there are a lot of homophobic people who have visceral reactions to anyone who doesn’t look like them. We only have to look at the people and laws passed to prevent gay marriage to see that. I find it amusing when a person such as Dick Chaney who was very against gays then finds out that his daughter is queer! Depending on what you read and their hasn’t really been any in-depth surveys due to straights reactions but probably 5-8% of the population is LBGT, so there is a good possibility that at least one person in your immediate family is gay.

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