UT Study: Homosexuality may be inherited - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

UT Study: Homosexuality may be inherited

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MEMPHIS, TN -

(WMC-TV) - Can homosexuality be inherited? A study done at the University of Tennessee says ‘yes'.

The study says women pass on homosexual triggers to their sons and men pass on triggers to their daughters.

This University of Tennessee Knoxville study stays homosexuality may be inherited from parents.

"We came up with one particular idea or hypothesis that seems very plausible and very much compatible with existing data," said Professor Sergey Gavrilets, UT National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Syntheses.

National Institute of Mathematical and Biological Synthesis Professor Sergey Gavrilets says his study found chemicals in the body, like certain proteins, act as switches turning sensitivities to testosterone and estrogen off and on.

"Those things can control how genes are expressed, which genes are turned off and which genes are turned on," said Gavrilets.

Will Batts, who is the executive director of the Memphis Gay and Lesbian Community Center, says the findings could be the key to many answers.

"I think if we're just looking at the science, it might be something that we embrace. It sort of explains how we get the way we are," said Batts.

The study says a son receives sensitivities to estrogen from his mother making him gay and a daughter receives sensitivities to testosterone from her father making her a lesbian.

"I thought it was very interesting somebody might have found something that might explain that," said Batts.

Batts hopes the findings remain neutral.

"When we assign morality to something that's based on genetics, we get into a lot of trouble. In the Middle Ages, people who were left-handed were thought to be evil. We know that's not true. We don't believe that anymore, but that was a belief," explained Batts.

If you would like to read more about the study done from the University of Tennessee, click here.

Copyright 2012 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.

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