Genetic Epidemiology, Translational Neurogenomics, Psychiatric Genetics and Statistical Genetics Laboratories investigate the pattern of disease in families, particularly identical and non-identical twins, to assess the relative importance of genes and environment in a variety of important health problems.
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PMID
14965458
TITLE
Has the "Equal Environments" assumption been tested in twin studies?
ABSTRACT
A recurring criticism of the twin method for quantifying genetic and environmental components of human differences is the necessity of the so-called "equal environments assumption" (EEA) (i.e., that monozygotic and dizygotic twins experience equally correlated environments). It has been proposed to test the EEA by stratifying twin correlations by indices of the amount of shared environment. However, relevant environments may also be influenced by genetic differences. We present a model for the role of genetic factors in niche selection by twins that may account for variation in indices of the shared twin environment (e.g., contact between members of twin pairs). Simulations reveal that stratification of twin correlations by amount of contact can yield spurious evidence of large shared environmental effects in some strata and even give false indications of genotype x environment interaction. The stratification approach to testing the equal environments assumption may be misleading and the results of such tests may actually be consistent with a simpler theory of the role of genetic factors in niche selection.
DATE PUBLISHED
2003 Dec
HISTORY
PUBSTATUS PUBSTATUSDATE
pubmed 2004/02/18 05:00
medline 2004/03/25 05:00
entrez 2004/02/18 05:00
AUTHORS
NAME COLLECTIVENAME LASTNAME FORENAME INITIALS AFFILIATION AFFILIATIONINFO
Eaves L Eaves Lindon L Virginia Institute for Psychiatric and Behavioral Genetics, Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine, Richmond, Virginia 23298-0003, USA. eaves@hsc.vcu.edu
Foley D Foley Debra D
Silberg J Silberg Judy J
INVESTIGATORS
JOURNAL
VOLUME: 6
ISSUE: 6
TITLE: Twin research : the official journal of the International Society for Twin Studies
ISOABBREVIATION: Twin Res
YEAR: 2003
MONTH: Dec
DAY:
MEDLINEDATE:
SEASON:
CITEDMEDIUM: Print
ISSN: 1369-0523
ISSNTYPE: Print
MEDLINE JOURNAL
MEDLINETA: Twin Res
COUNTRY: Australia
ISSNLINKING: 1369-0523
NLMUNIQUEID: 9815819
PUBLICATION TYPE
PUBLICATIONTYPE TEXT
Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
COMMENTS AND CORRECTIONS
GRANTS
GRANTID AGENCY COUNTRY
MH55557 NIMH NIH HHS United States
MH60324 NIMH NIH HHS United States
MH62368 NIMH NIH HHS United States
MH68521 NIMH NIH HHS United States
GENERAL NOTE
KEYWORDS
MESH HEADINGS
DESCRIPTORNAME QUALIFIERNAME
Computer Simulation
Environment
Humans
Models, Biological
Twin Studies as Topic
Twins genetics
SUPPLEMENTARY MESH
GENE SYMBOLS
CHEMICALS
OTHER ID's