[Paleopsych] BH: Where to Look for Gay Genes
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Fri Jan 28 16:06:10 UTC 2005
Where to Look for Gay Genes
Genome analysis reveals chromosome regions influencing male sexual
1/27/2005 3:26 PM
The locations of genes influencing male sexual orientation have been
identified in a genome analysis of men in families with multiple gay
The research confirms biological origins of homosexuality while
underscoring that there is no single "gay gene."
"Sexual orientation is a complex trait, so it's not surprising that we
found several DNA regions involved in its expression," says researcher
Brian Mustanski of the University of Illinois at Chicago.
Runs in the family
Working with colleagues at the National Institutes of Health,
Mustanski analyzed the genome of 456 men from 146 families with two or
more gay brothers.
Unlike earlier studies focusing just on the X chromosome, this
study looked at the X as well as all 22 pairs of non-sex chromosomes.
(The Y chromosome was ignored because it's not thought to contain many
The researchers found identical strings of DNA on chromosomes 7, 8 and
10 that were shared by 60% of gay brothers in the study. The region on
chromosome 10, however, was only linked with sexual orientation if it
was inherited from the mother.
"Our study helps to establish that genes play an important role in
determining whether a man is gay or heterosexual," says Mustanski.
"The next steps will be to see if these findings can be confirmed and
to identify the particular genes within these newly discovered
chromosomal sequences that are linked to sexual orientation."
The research is reported in the journal Human Genetics (read
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