Human Genetics

, Volume 118, Issue 6, pp 691–694

Extreme skewing of X chromosome inactivation in mothers of homosexual men

Authors

    • Department of Human GeneticsUniversity of California
    • Laboratory of BiochemistryNational Cancer Institute
  • Steve Horvath
    • Department of Human GeneticsUniversity of California
    • Department of BiostatisticsUniversity of California
  • Eric Vilain
    • Department of Human GeneticsUniversity of California
  • Dean H. Hamer
    • Laboratory of BiochemistryNational Cancer Institute
Original Investigation

DOI: 10.1007/s00439-005-0119-4

Cite this article as:
Bocklandt, S., Horvath, S., Vilain, E. et al. Hum Genet (2006) 118: 691. doi:10.1007/s00439-005-0119-4

Abstract

Human sexual preference is a sexually dimorphic trait with a substantial genetic component. Linkage of male sexual orientation to markers on the X chromosome has been reported in some families. Here, we measured X chromosome inactivation ratios in 97 mothers of homosexual men and 103 age-matched control women without gay sons. The number of women with extreme skewing of X-inactivation was significantly higher in mothers of gay men (13/97=13%) compared to controls (4/103=4%) and increased in mothers with two or more gay sons (10/44=23%). Our findings support a role for the X chromosome in regulating sexual orientation in a subgroup of gay men.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005