Developmental Genetics of Man

  • Charles Susanne
Part of the NATO Advanced Study Institutes Series book series (NSSA, volume 30)


This paper deals with an analysis of present knowledge about the genetic influences on growth and development in normal human beings. Human genetics includes study of the continuum from molecules to populations. Some single genes can be clearly detected, such as the dominant gene for achondroplasia. But more often, particularly in normal individuals, single genes that determine morphological characteristics cannot be detected. These characteristics are determined not only by factors of genetic origin but also by factors of environmental origin. The regulation of continuously distributed characters cannot be understood without an analysis of environmental and genetic factors. What is the relative importance of genetic and environmental factors on human development? It must be stressed that these two kinds of factors are very rarely separable and they almost invariably interact. In particular, the environment common to individuals of the same family has to be taken into account, adding to the ambiguity of the evidence. Also environmental influences may be more important in some individuals than in others.


Assortative Mating Dizygotic Twin Developmental Genetic Positive Assortative Mating Intrapair Difference 
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© Plenum Press, New York 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • Charles Susanne
    • 1
  1. 1.Free University BrusselsBrusselsBelgium

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