PSYCH 2AA3 Lecture 12: Lecture 12 - Behavioural Genetics

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BEHAVIOURAL GENETICS
Biological vs Environmental Contributions to Development
MECHANISMS OF HEREDITY
Biology of Heredity
o5ml of sperm containing 200-500 million sperm cells with only a few hundred reaching
the finish line
One sperm penetrates and egg blocks off all the others
oDiploid somatic cells have 46 chromosomes, while haploid gametes have 23.
oFinish later
oGenetic Disorders
Huntington’s – defective dominant allele on chromosome 4
Down syndrome – trisomy 21
Hemophilia – x-linked recessive trait
SOME IMPORTANT CONCEPTS
Behavioural Genetics is a branch of genetics that deals with inheritance of behavioural and
psychological traits
Genes and Environment work together and affect one another
oEx. Babies are born with certain temperaments but this could change as time goes
Happens through parental discipline and other environmental factors
oEpigenetics
Nothing can change one’s genes? False – environments change gene regulations
E.g. The way mother eats while pregnant could affect child’s obesity
when older
i.e. Even prenatal environmental influences could alter genes
Genotype and Phenotype
oGenotype – set of genes inherited from conception
oPhenotype – observable and measureable expression of genotype in interaction with
environment
oEg. Genotype could code 5’11 but with a different diet, one could be shorter or taller
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