Twins - Research Article from Macmillan Science Library: Genetics

This encyclopedia article consists of approximately 11 pages of information about Twins.
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Developmental Mechanisms

Twins are classified as either dizygotic or monozygotic. Dizygotic twins (also called fraternal twins) arise from two separately fertilized eggs, or zygotes. In humans, usually only one egg is released at a time from a woman's ovaries. When two are released, both may become fertilized by separate sperm and implant in the uterus. Dizygotic twins develop separate placentas and amniotic sacs. They may be of the same or different sexes. In the absence of reproductive technology interventions, dizygotic twinning occurs in approximately three of every thousand human births, a rate that increases with maternal age, varies with ethnic group, and is probably influenced by genes that control pituitary function. Various types of assisted reproductive technologies routinely create dizygotic twins, triplets, and higher numbers of offspring.

Monozygotic twins (also called identical twins) arise from a single fertilized egg. At some point after the zygote begins to divide, the...

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This section contains 3,034 words
(approx. 11 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Twins Encyclopedia Article
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Macmillan Science Library: Genetics
Twins from Macmillan Science Library: Genetics. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.
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