DNA Testing

How do we use DNA testing to influence traits?

Personality is a complex trait and is influenced by many different genetic and environmental factors.

  • Personality traits are a polygenic which means multiple genes are involved in determining a trait

  • The goal of behavioral genetics is to discover how genes affect our behavior

  • Family studies determines whether or not a trait runs your family

  • Twin studies involves analysis of any differences between identical twins and fraternal twins

  • Adoption studies involve an analysis of similarities between biological relations vs. adoptive relations

Genes and environmental influences all work together to determine how you end up.

  • The simplest thing DNA can tell you is whether someone is male or female

    • All you need to know is if the have X or Y chromosomes

  • Many redheads have a different version of a gene that prevents pigment-producing cells called melanocytes responding to a hormone that instructs them to make a dark pigment

  • At least four genes work together to determine eye color

  • ADHD is caused by a genetic stutter in the gene DAT1

  • Particular versions of the Klotho gene are associated with longevity in humans

DNA testing can be used to determine traits like tongue rolling, cleft chin, blood type, ear lobes, finger length, and blond hair.

  • We have two copies of our genes (from dad and mom)

    • Copies come in different forms called alleles

  • Our genes are affected by the environment

  • Tongue rolling is dominant trait

    • People who share the same DNA don’t always have ability to roll tongue

  • Someone with cleft chin can have right gene but not right trait

    • That’s why you don’t have cleft chin as a kid but you do as an adult

  • Environment can affect traits

    • Injury in the womb can keep a child's eye blue

      • Eye was initially brown

  • Blood type is all a matter of the parents genes

    • There are certain blood groups in certain countries

      • An AB child with an O parent

      • An A or B child with O parents

      • An Rh+ child with Rh- parents

  • Hair color is due to many genes in the body

    • A parent with dark hair can have a child with dark hair

      • Different from red-head gene

  • Finger length is influenced by testosterone in the womb

    • Women tend to have and index finger and ring finger the same size

    • Men have a longer ring finger

Genes play a role in forming character traits like self control, decision making, and sociability.

  • Identical twins are twice as likely to share traits than non-identical twins

  • The stronger the genetic link, the more likely character traits are passed through a family

  • The strongest genetic influence is self-control

    • Affects how they will get on with people

    • Affects the ability to continue learning and developing

  • The environment often dominated psychological well-being

  • Happiness is also affected by your genes

Work Cited

Roundy, Lisa. "Is Personality Genetic? DNA's Influence on Tempermant."Study.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 4 Jan. 2016.

Randerson, James. "What Can DNA Tell Us?" Theguardian.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 4 Jan. 2016.

"Understanding Genetics." Understanding Genetics. N.p., n.d. Web. 15 Dec. 2015.

ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, n.d. Web. 17 Dec. 2015.

"Do You Have Attached or Detached Earlobes?" IGN Boards. N.p., n.d. Web. 15 Jan. 2016.

"What Is a Cleft Chin?" WiseGEEK. N.p., n.d. Web. 15 Jan. 2016.

"Latest Finger Length Study Measures the “Politeness” of Men." The Skeptics Guide to the Universe. N.p., n.d. Web. 15 Jan. 2016.