Genetic and environmental influences on sexual orientation and its correlates in an Australian Twin sample

Michael Bailey*, Michael P. Dunne, Nicholas G. Martin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

330 Scopus citations

Abstract

We recruited twins systematically from the Australian Twin Registry and assessed their sexual orientation and 2 related traits: childhood gender nonconformity and continuous gender identity. Men and women differed in their distributions of sexual orientation, with women more likely to have slight-to-moderate degrees of homosexual attraction, and men more likely to have high degrees of homosexual attraction. Twin concordances for nonheterosexual orientation were lower than in prior studies. Univariate analyses showed that familial factors were important for all traits, but were less successful in distinguishing genetic from shared environmental influences. Only childhood gender nonconformity was significantly heritable for both men and women. Multivariate analyses suggested that the causal architecture differed between men and women, and, for women, provided significant evidence for the importance of genetic factors to the traits' covariation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)524-536
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Personality and Social Psychology
Volume78
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science

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