I would like to find out how being an identical twin has shaped me, versus if I was a fraternal twin. From birth, my twin and I have remained in close contact, and best friends. We have shared a room nearly our whole lives; however, when I moved to D.C., we were apart for almost 5 months. When I returned, we remained as close as ever. We have had many different experiences that have defined us separately, and I am curious if the time apart has had much influence on our personalities. I found an article that highlights this idea. For example, “Identical twins share all their genes and their home environment. So a greater similarity between identical twins for a particular trait compared to fraternal twins provides evidence that genetic factors play a role.(Learn Genetics)” I have always felt that identical twins have inherently been more similar than fraternal twins, and although I knew genetic makeup has played a significant role in this factor, I did not know to what extent the environment impacted twins after considering genes.
I also find it interesting that because we have the same genetic build, we are much more likely to be exposed to the same diseases. In fact, if identical twins are more similar to each other with respect to an illness than fraternal twins are, then vulnerability to the disease is rooted at least in part in heredity. I learned that there is an 80% chance that twins will experience the same disease in their lifetimes. In fact, the majority of the study of diseases that twins endure come from the study of epigenetics, which takes into account different lifestyle and genetic encounters to determine why identical twins would differ with respect to health more so than fraternal twins. Therefore, there is not a definitive answer about if one twin, or both, could develop the same disease. I do find it interesting that identical twins are exact replications of each other, and are able to share a close and special bond.
link to source:http://learn.genetics.utah.edu/content/epigenetics/twins/