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The Validity of Weinberg's Rule in the East Flanders Prospective Twin Survey (EFPTS)

  • R. Vlietinck (a1), C. Derom (a1), R. Derom (a2), H. Van den Berghe (a1) and M. Thiery (a2)...

Abstract

Most population studies of twins estimate the number of monozygotic (MZ) and dizygotic (DZ) pairs by Weinberg's differential rule. This rule assumes that within the DZ twins the numbers of unlike-sexed (U) and like-sexed (L) twins are equal. The literature on the validity of Weinberg's rule is still controversial. In this prospective population-based study (EFPTS) of 2,589 twin pairs, of whom 2,577 were of known zygosity and placentation, the estimates of Weinberg's rule agree well with the results of direct zygosity determination.

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Copyright

Corresponding author

Department of Human Biology, Catholic University, Herestraat 49, B-3000 Leuven, Belgium

References

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1.Allen, G (1981): Error of Weinberg's difference method. In: Twin Research 3: Twin Biology and Multiple Pregnancy. New York: Alan R Liss, pp 7174.
2.Bulmer, MG (1976): Is Weinberg's method valid? Acta Genet Med Gemellol 25:2528.
3.Derom, C, Bakker, E, Vlietinck, R, Derom, R, Van den Berghe, H, Thiery, M, Peareon, P (1985): Zygosity determination in newborn twins using DNA variants. J Med Genet 22:279282.
4.Derom, C, Vlietinck, R, Derom, R, Van den Berghe, H, Thiery, M: Ovulation induction can cause monozygotic twinning (to be published).
5.James, WH (1971): Excess of like-sexed pairs of dizygotic twins. Nature 232:277278.
6.James, WH (1979): Is Weinberg's differential rule valid? Acta Genet Med Gemellol 28:6971.
7.Lamont, JA (1982): Twin pregnancies following induction of ovulation: A literature review. Acta Genet Med Gemellol 34:177192.
8.Vlietinck, R, Meulepas, E, Derom, C, Derom, R, Van den Berghe, H. The use of LOD-scores in the determination of zygosity. (to be published)
9.Weinberg, W (1902): Beitrage zur Physiologie und Pathologie der Merhlungsgeburten beim Menschen. Plügers Arch Ges Physiol 88:346430.

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