A description is given of the Danish Twin Register which is based on the total twin population born in Denmark in the years 1870-1910 with a more recent addition of all same-sexed pairs from the period 1911-1920. Twins belonging to pairs where one or both partners are found to have died before attaining the age of six years are disregarded in the more intensive studies whereas the remaining part of the twin population is being followed by periodical inquiries.
The methods used in the collection of the material, in the establishment of the zygosity diagnosis and in specific investigations of selected diseases and abnormalities are described and discussed.
A survey is given of the more important results of the research based on the Register. In the group of somatic diseases, greatest attention has so far been paid to malignant growths, diabetes mellitus and peptic ulcer. A number of psychiatric disorders and deviations are at present being studied with schizophrenia and criminality as the first subjects for intensive research. Some of the main results obtained are given as illustrations of the potentialities and scope of this approach to the application of twin studies in a broad variety of research areas.