Determining if same-sex twins are identical or non-identical (from one egg or two; monozygotic or dizygotic) is not always straight forward, say the researchers. They looked at data from the Gemini study, a birth cohort of 2402 families with twins born in England and Wales in 2007.
Parents of same sex twins (1586) were asked if they knew whether their twins were identical or not and how they discovered that information.
The majority of parents (1302/82%) reported that they had been given the information by health professionals based on the formation of the placenta as seen on the prenatal scan. Of this group, as part of the Gemini data collection, all parents completed a validated zygosity questionnaire[i] when their twins were on average 8.2 months old. This questionnaire asks about the children's height, eye colour, hair colour and overall confusability and has been found in a previous study to correctly assign zygosity in 95% of cases.
The researchers found that out of the 1302 parents, 191 (14.7%) were misinformed about their same sex twins' zygosity (identical or non-identical).
In addition, 38% of parents said they were told after an antenatal scan that their twins shared a placenta and were therefore identical while 62% of parents were told their twins were non identical as they had two placentas.
However 25-30% of identical twins can have two placentas say the researchers. If the zygote splits within two days of fertilisation, separate placentas develop.
Jane Wardle, Health Behaviour Research Centre, Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, University College London and co-author of the commentary paper said:
"Finding out if your twins are identical or not is important to parents. However our data suggests that there may be a lack of knowledge among some health professionals about both identical and non identical twins having two placentas.
"Parents have the right to the relevant information if it is available. However most parents will understand that it is not always possible to give a specific answer."
John Thorp, BJOG Deputy-Editor-in-Chief added:
"This paper highlights the uncertainty that can exist in finding out whether same sex twins are identical or not. Additional training may be required for health professionals to avoid giving out the wrong information to parents."
1] Price TS, Freeman B, Craig I, Petrill SA, Ebersole L, Plomin R. Infant zygosity can be assigned by parental report questionnaire data. Twin Res 2000;3:129-133.
New study shows nanoscale pendulum coupling
05.07.2019 | University of Barcelona
New unprinting method can help recycle paper and curb environmental costs
26.06.2019 | Rutgers University
Augsburg chemists and physicists report how they have succeeded in the extremely difficult separation of hydrogen and deuterium in a gas mixture.
Thanks to the Surface Acoustic Wave (SAW) technology developed here and already widely used, the University of Augsburg is internationally recognized as the...
Adjusting the thermal conductivity of materials is one of the challenges nanoscience is currently facing. Together with colleagues from the Netherlands and Spain, researchers from the University of Basel have shown that the atomic vibrations that determine heat generation in nanowires can be controlled through the arrangement of atoms alone. The scientists will publish the results shortly in the journal Nano Letters.
In the electronics and computer industry, components are becoming ever smaller and more powerful. However, there are problems with the heat generation. It is...
Scientists have visualised the electronic structure in a microelectronic device for the first time, opening up opportunities for finely-tuned high performance electronic devices.
Physicists from the University of Warwick and the University of Washington have developed a technique to measure the energy and momentum of electrons in...
Scientists at the University Würzburg and University Hospital of Würzburg found that megakaryocytes act as “bouncers” and thus modulate bone marrow niche properties and cell migration dynamics. The study was published in July in the Journal “Haematologica”.
Hematopoiesis is the process of forming blood cells, which occurs predominantly in the bone marrow. The bone marrow produces all types of blood cells: red...
For some phenomena in quantum many-body physics several competing theories exist. But which of them describes a quantum phenomenon best? A team of researchers from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) and Harvard University in the United States has now successfully deployed artificial neural networks for image analysis of quantum systems.
Is that a dog or a cat? Such a classification is a prime example of machine learning: artificial neural networks can be trained to analyze images by looking...
24.06.2019 | Event News
29.04.2019 | Event News
17.04.2019 | Event News
22.07.2019 | Information Technology
22.07.2019 | Health and Medicine
22.07.2019 | Power and Electrical Engineering