What did this study find?


We wanted to know whether there are any connections between our genetics Same-sex sexual behavior and other human traits like personality Our study looked at data that’s already been collected and has been widely available for research It involved information that’s been submitted over many years by about half a million volunteers Mostly in the US and the UK and like almost everything else in genetics, we discovered that it’s very complicated. Same-sex sexual behavior is similar to other traits like height in that there are many many different factors that play important roles Genetics absolutely plays an important role many genes are involved, and all together they capture perhaps a quarter of same-sex sexual behavior. That means genetics isn’t even half the story. The rest is likely environmental, but even there it’s not simple at all both genes and environment are really important. There’s clearly no so-called gay gene But there are lots of genes that do lots of things and each has a tiny effect. Five genes reach statistical significance But they capture only a tiny fraction of the variation. At the same time it’s also clear from the study that sexuality is not a choice. It’s both biology and environment working together in incredibly complicated ways Another thing we found is that it’s not going to be possible to predict an individual’s same-sex sexual behavior through genetics. We also see a trend suggesting that any overlap between same-sex sexual behavior and conditions like depression may be weakening over time. This suggests that as society becomes more accepting of same-sex sexuality some of these more negative dynamics begin to diminish. We think that’s really really encouraging You

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