“Behavior genetics is a scientific field of study that uses genetic methods to identify the sources and patterns of behavioral variation among individuals.”
What is Behavioural Genetics?
Behavioral genetics is the genetic and environmental study of animal or human behavior. The inheritance of behavioral traits has been studied by geneticists.
The influence of genetics and environment on human behavior has been investigated using quantitative genetic approaches. Genes responsible for a particular gene function are targeted by molecular genetic methods.
Studies have been done on both humans and animals but animal studies have produced conclusive results. This is because both environment and genetics can be controlled in the laboratory.
The following experiments were designed to investigate the genetic and environmental effects of human and animal behavior.
Behavioural Genetics In Humans
It is used to study genes that influence differences in behavior. In humans, nature and heredity cannot be controlled or manipulated. Monozygotic twins, or identical twins, are genetically identical because they come from the same fertilized egg.
They are clones of each other. Dizygotic twins that are genetically identical are half of eggs fertilized in different ways, such as others fertilized at different times.
In the event that behavior is influenced by environmental factors, dizygotic twins should be exactly alike because they are raised in the same environment by the same parents at the same time.
For example, the risk of one twin developing schizophrenia if the other already has the condition is 45% in monozygotic twins and 15% in non-adjusted twins.
Also, intelligence tested with intelligence tests is 0.85 in twins with monozygosity and 0.60 in premature newborns. This bilateral approach, however, was strongly defended.
Criticisms of Behavioural Genetics
Behavioral genetics research has been controversial at times. Research can challenge beliefs about the nature and capabilities of human behavior. Genetic studies of issues such as racial differences, intelligence, and violence are central controversies in behavioral genetics.
There are very few findings on how genetic differences can lead to differences in intelligence, mood, etc. Environment affects gene expression It has also been argued that many mathematical methods used in behavioral genetics cannot be applied to data from humans.