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Monozygotic twins: genes are not the destiny?



Aniruddha Chatterjee1, 2 *, Ian M Morison1, 2



1Department of Pathology, Dunedin School of Medicine, University of Otago, 270 Great King Street, Dunedin 9054, New Zealand; 2National Research Centre for Growth and Development, New Zealand


Email; *Corresponding author


Article Type

Views & Challange



Received December1, 2011; Accepted December 5, 2011; Published December 10, 2011



Monozygotic twins are considered to be genetically identical, yet can show high discordance in their phenotypes and disease susceptibility. Several studies have emphasized the influence of external factors and the role of epigenetic polymorphism in conferring this variability. However, some recent high-resolution studies on DNA methylation show contradicting evidence, which poses questions on the extent of epigenetic variability between twins. The advent of next-generation sequencing technologies now allow us to interrogate multiple epigenomes on a massive scale and understand the role of epigenetic modification, especially DNA methylation, in regulating complex traits. This article briefly discusses the recent key findings, unsolved questions in the area, and speculates on the future directions in the field.



monozygotic twins, epigenetics, DNA methylation, next-generation sequencing



Chatterjee & Morison. Bioinformation 7(7): 369-370 (2011)

Edited by

P Kangueane






Biomedical Informatics



This is an Open Access article which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly credited. This is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License.