Author(s): Salces I, Rebato E, Susanne C, Hauspie RC, Saha R,
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Abstract The aim of the present study was to examine the heritability of 11 traits in a mixed-longitudinal sample of Indian siblings, and to determine whether heritability estimates vary during the growth period and whether they are influenced by sex. The sample consisted of 245 brothers and 213 sisters from 138 nuclear families living in a semi-urban area in Kolkata, India. The age ranged between 5 and 19 years. The traits were standardised for age and sex using standard deviation scores (SDS) produced by the LMS method (Cole, T.J., 1988. Fitting smoothed centile curves to reference data. J. R. Stat. Soc. A 151, 385-418). The standard deviation scores were analysed by PCA. The two factors with eigenvalues above 1 explained 77.3\% of the variance; they showed a high level of pleiotropism present among the studied traits and represented body lengths (PC1) and body weight and breadths (PC2). The heritability between all types of siblings (irrespective of sex) for the PC1 and PC2 was estimated. The heritability between various pairs of siblings showed variations along the whole ontogenetic period studied. During the childhood and pre-pubertal period, heritability between brothers, brother-sister pairs and any sibling pairs was mostly constant, with small and non-significant variations. All the pairs showed the lowest degree of heritability during puberty for PC1 but not for PC2, with significant changes of heritability estimates between adolescence and adulthood, in most of the analysed sibling pairs and in both PC factors. The highest heritability was generally observed at the end of the examined growth period in all pairs. A significant effect of sex on heritability was only detected for PC2 at 11 years of age.
This article was published in Homo
and referenced in Journal of Obesity & Weight Loss Therapy