No single “gay gene” according to reports in BBC News and Science (AAAS) News 29 August 2019, and Science 30 Aug 2019, DOI: 10.1126/science.aat7693
An international group of scientists has carried out a study of genomes of 477,522 people from UK and USA using data obtained from UK Biobank and the USA gene sequencing company 23andMe. As part of the questionnaire that goes with the gene testing services participants asked if they had ever had sex with a same-sex partner. The research team also consulted with behavioural scientists and “lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) advocacy groups”.
The research team found five genetic variants that had a statistical correlation with reported same sex behaviour. One variant was near to genes associated with male pattern baldness, and another was in a region containing many smell genes. The other three are not specified in the main paper. Some other variants (besides these five) had weaker statistical correlations with reported same sex behaviour.
The researchers concluded: “In aggregate, all tested genetic variants accounted for 8 to 25% of variation in same-sex sexual behaviour, only partially overlapped between males and females, and do not allow meaningful prediction of an individual’s sexual behaviour.”
Ben Neale, one of the researchers, explained: “There is no single gay gene, and a genetic test for if you’re going to have a same-sex relationship is not going to work. It’s effectively impossible to predict an individual’s sexual behaviour from their genome.”
David Curtis of University College London Genetics Institute, who was not in the research team, commented: “This study clearly shows that there is no such thing as a ‘gay gene’. There is no genetic variant in the population which has any substantial effect on sexual orientation. Rather, what we see is that there are very large numbers of variants which have extremely modest associations.”
Editorial Comment: To prove a genetic basis for homosexuality scientists must identify genes found in homosexual people which are not found in non-homosexual people, then find out the gene function, and explain how that function forces people to indulge in same sex behaviour. This study goes nowhere near doing that. Overall: this is an example in gay advocacy groups grasping at the flimsiest of straws to prop up their belief that they are born that way.
This is not the first attempt to find a genetic basis for homosexuality, and it did not show any correlation with a gene region claimed by previous studies to be associated with homosexuality. However, that should not surprise anyone, as both studies were just number crunching exercises, not an actual gene function studies. For more information on previous studies see our report Homosexual Gene Not Found here. Also see the question: Have scientists now discovered a gene for homosexuality? Answer here.
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Evidence News vol. 19, No. 16
9 October 2019
Creation Research Australia