Homosexuality is not genetic. Instead, it occurs in the womb due to epigenetics, according to a new study by an international group of scientists in the hunt for the “gay gene.”
The scientists, according to i09.com, suggest that homosexuality is not a result of genetics but of the external environmental factors on the genes during fetal development.
The researchers studied epi-marks, temporary switches that control how our genes are expressed. While most epi-marks are not passed onto the subsequent generation, researchers discovered sex-specific epi-marks do get passed from either father to daughter or mother to son.
Rice and Frilberg believe that this explains why homosexuality appears to run in families, though it has no underlying cause genetically.
It was once thought that epi-marks were produced fresh for each generation, but now it appears that some, such as those that give a possible propensity for homosexuality, could carry over from parent to child.
Medical Daily notes that the epi-marks that appear to carry over are sex-specific. They can dictate how the genes are expressed. They are created during early fetal development and are designed to help protect the fetus from any environmental influence.
These markers, for example, can help protect a female fetus from turning excessively masculine should there be a rush of testosterone through the mother later in the pregnancy. These markers can help genes express genitals, sexual identity, and even a sexual partner preference.
While the scientists were not able to find a so-called gay gene, the theory of epi-marks causing homosexuality is a new avenue for scientists to explore further.
Do you agree with the researchers that homosexuality is not genetic but occurs in the womb due to epigenetics?