Genetic and environmental influences on individual differences in attidues toward homosexuality: An Australian twin study

Verweji, Karin J. H., Shekar, Sri N., Zietsch, Brendan P., Eaves, Lindon J., Bailey, J. Michael, Boomsma, Dorret I. and Martin, Nicholas G. (2008) Genetic and environmental influences on individual differences in attidues toward homosexuality: An Australian twin study. Behavior Genetics, 38 3: 257-265. doi:10.1007/s10519-008-9200-9

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Author Verweji, Karin J. H.
Shekar, Sri N.
Zietsch, Brendan P.
Eaves, Lindon J.
Bailey, J. Michael
Boomsma, Dorret I.
Martin, Nicholas G.
Title Genetic and environmental influences on individual differences in attidues toward homosexuality: An Australian twin study
Journal name Behavior Genetics   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0001-8244
1573-3297
Publication date 2008-05-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1007/s10519-008-9200-9
Volume 38
Issue 3
Start page 257
End page 265
Total pages 9
Editor J. K. Hewitt
Hermine Maes
Place of publication Westport, CO, U.S.A.
Publisher Kluwer
Language eng
Subject C1
920401 Behaviour and Health
110311 Medical Genetics (excl. Cancer Genetics)
Formatted abstract
Previous research has shown that many heterosexuals hold negative attitudes toward homosexuals and homosexuality (homophobia). Although a great deal of research has focused on the profile of homophobic individuals, this research provides little theoretical insight into the aetiology of homophobia. To examine genetic and environmental influences on variation in attitudes toward homophobia, we analysed data from 4,688 twins who completed a questionnaire concerning sexual behaviour and attitudes, including attitudes toward homosexuality. Results show that, in accordance with literature, males have significantly more negative attitudes toward homosexuality than females and non-heterosexuals are less homophobic than heterosexuals. In contrast with some earlier findings, age had no significant effect on the homophobia scores in this study. Genetic modelling showed that variation in homophobia scores could be explained by additive genetic (36%), shared environmental (18%) and unique environmental factors (46%). However, corrections based on previous findings show that the shared environmental estimate may be almost entirely accounted for as extra additive genetic variance arising from assortative mating for homophobic attitudes. The results suggest that variation in attitudes toward homosexuality is substantially inherited, and that social environmental influences are relatively minor.
Keyword Attitudes
Genetics
Heritability
Homophobia
Twin study
Homosexuality
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: 2009 Higher Education Research Data Collection
ERA 2012 Admin Only
School of Medicine Publications
School of Psychology Publications
 
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 10 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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Created: Thu, 16 Apr 2009, 23:14:27 EST by Amanda Jones on behalf of Royal Brisbane Clinical School