SCIENTISTS in the US have discovered what they believe could be
part of the genetic roots of being gay. Researchers from
North-western University, in Illinois, studied the DNA of 400
pairsof identical twins and foundthat two chromosomes were
in-volved whether the men were gayor not.
A region of X chromosome - inherited from the mother - called
"Xq28" had an impact on sexual orientation, as did DNA from
chromosome 8. The exact way in which these genes affect sexual
orientation remains unclear.
Professor Michael Bailey, who led the study, said last week:
"Sexual orientation has nothing to do with choice. We found
evidence for two sets [of genes] that affect whether a man is gay
or straight. But it is not completely determinative - there are
certainly other environmental factors involved."
Professor Bailey's colleague, Dr Alan Sanders, insisted that
their research could not be used to formulate a pre-natal test to
identify sexual orientation.
"When people say there's a gay gene, it's an
oversimplification," Dr Sanders said. "There's more than one gene,
and genetics is not the whole story."