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Different Types Of Twins?

posted by DNA Identifiers @ 2:58 PM
Thursday, September 22, 2011

Most people don’t relies that there are many different types of twins in the world. Not only can you be identical or fraternal twins but you might be one of any number of other type.  Below are some of the most common other types of twin.

2. Twins Conceived Separately: Superfetation
Normally when an egg is fertilized, a woman’s cycle is interrupted and ovulation ceases. Rarely, however, an egg can be released while a woman is already pregnant, resulting in twins that are conceived at different times.
More: Superfation
3. Twins with Different Fathers: Heteropaternal Superfecundation
Fraternal (dizygotic) twins are the result of hyperovulation, the release of multiple eggs in a single cycle. Superfecundation describes a situation where the eggs are fertilized by sperm from separate incidences of sexual intercourse. In a case where a woman has sex with different partners, the twins could have different fathers and the apporpriate term is heteropaternal superfecundation.
More: Heteropaternal Superfecundation
4. “Half Identical” Twins: Polar Body Twins
There are two types of twins, right? Dizygotic (fraternal) twins result when two eggs are fertilied. Monozygotic (identical) twins come from a single fertilized egg that splits. But what if the egg splits and then each half meets a sperm? That’s the proposed theory for polar body or “half-identical” twins, twins who are very much alike but aren’t a 100% DNA match. Although it seems to be a reasonable theory, there is no definitive test to confirm polar body twinning.
More: Polar Body Twinning
5. Boy/Girl Identical (Monozygotic) Twins
Identical (monozygotic) twins are always same gender because they form from a single zygote that contains either male (XY) or female (XX) sex chromosome. However, there have been a few reported cases of a genetic mutation in male twins where one twin loses an Y chromosome and develops as a female. The female twin would be afflicted with Turner’s Syndrome, characterized by short stature and lack of ovarian development. Of course, another explanation for gender differences in identical twins is an identical twin who undergoes a sex change operation.
More Info
6. Mirror Image Twins
Mirror image twins are monozygotic, twint that form from a single fertilized egg. When the split occurs late – more than a week after conception – the twins can develop reverse asymmetric features. This term is not really a type of twin, just an way to describe their physical features. For exmample, they may be right- and left-handed, have birthmarks on opposite sides of their body, or have hair whorls that swirl in opposite directions. In theory, if the twins faced each other, they would appear to be exact reflections of each other. About 25% of identical twins are mirror image twins.
More: Mirror Image Twins
7. Parasitic Twins
A type of conjoined tiwns that develops asymmetrically, with a smaller, less formed twin dependent on the stronger, larger twin. Manar Maged gained notoriety after being featured onOprah. A variation of parasitic twinning is fetus in fetu, where an abnormally formed mass of cells grows inside the body of its monozygotic twin. It survives during pregnancy, and even occasionally after birth, by tapping directly into the blood supply of the host twin. This reportdescribes an Indian man whose fetus in fetu was discovered as an adult.
More: Parasitic Twinning and Fetus in Fetu
8. Semi-Identical Twins
A type of twinning identified in a pair of three-year-old twins in 2007. Described as identical on the mother’s side but sharing only half their father’s genes, the rare twins developed when two sperm fertilized a single egg, which then split. One twin is a hermaphrodite being raised as a female, with both testicular and ovarian structures, while the other is anatomically male.
9. Twins with Different Birthdays
The most common explanation is a labor and delivery that begins before midnight on one day and ends after the clock changes to the next day. If that day happens at the end of the month, or even on New Year’s Eve/Day, the two babies can have birthdays in different months and even different years! Also, sometimes a pregnancy is prolonged to provide each baby with an optimal chance for survival. If preterm labor forces the delivery of one baby, doctors can successfully control the abor and delay delivery to give the other baby more time in the womb. Twins and higher multiples have been born days and even weeks apart.
More: Twins With Different Birthdays
10. Twins of Different Races
Heteropaternal superfecundation can explain cases of fraternal (dizygotic) twins with differing racial characteristics. In one case, the differentiation was due to a lab mix-up during an in-vitro procedure. However, in 2005 in the United Kingdom, two bi-racial parents conceived fraternal (dizygotic) twin girl twins, Kian and Remee Hodgson. Described as a “one in a million” occurrence, experts explain that the girls inherited different genetic characteristics from their mixed race parents. One is fair-haired and light skinned, while the other has dark hair, eyes and skin.

1. Conjoined Twins are monozygotic multiples that do not fully separate from each other due to the incomplete division of the fertilized ovum. The individuals will be connected at certain points of the body, and may share tissue, organs or limbs.

2. Twins Conceived Separately or Superfetation Twins occurs when an egg is released while a woman is already pregnant, resulting in twins that are conceived at different times.

3. Twins with Different Fathers or Heteropaternal Superfecundation occurs when fraternal (dizygotic) twins which are the product of multiple eggs being released in a single cycle are fertilized by sperm from separate incidences of sexual intercourse. In a case where a woman has sex with different partners, the twins could have different fathers and the appropriate term is heteropaternal superfecundation.

4. “Half Identical” Twins or Polar Body Twins is a theory at this time.  There are two types of twins, right? Dizygotic (fraternal) twins result when two eggs are fertilized. Monozygotic (identical) twins come from a single fertilized egg that splits. But what if the egg splits and then each half meets a sperm? That’s the proposed theory for polar body or “half-identical” twins, twins who are very much alike but aren’t a 100% DNA match. Although it seems to be a reasonable theory, there is no definitive test to confirm polar body twinning.

5. Boy/Girl Identical (Monozygotic) Twins occurs when there is a genetic mutation in male twins where one twin loses an Y chromosome and develops as a female. The female twin would be afflicted with Turner’s Syndrome, characterized by short stature and lack of ovarian development. Of course, another explanation for gender differences in identical twins is an identical twin who undergoes a sex change operation.

6. Mirror Image Twins are monozygotic, twins that form from a single fertilized egg. When the split occurs late – more than a week after conception – the twins can develop reverse asymmetric features. This term is not really a type of twin, just an way to describe their physical features. For example, they may be right- and left-handed, have birthmarks on opposite sides of their body, or have hair whorls that swirl in opposite directions. In theory, if the twins faced each other, they would appear to be exact reflections of each other. About 25% of identical twins are mirror image twins.

7. Parasitic Twins is a type of conjoined twins that develops asymmetrically, with a smaller, less formed twin dependent on the stronger, larger twin. A variation of parasitic twinning is fetus in fetu, where an abnormally formed mass of cells grows inside the body of its monozygotic twin. It survives during pregnancy, and even occasionally after birth, by tapping directly into the blood supply of the host twin.

8. Semi-Identical Twins is a type of twinning identified as identical on the mother’s side but sharing only half their father’s genes, the rare twins developed when two sperm fertilized a single egg, which then split.

9. Twins with Different Birthdays the most  common explanation is a labor and delivery that begins before midnight and ends on the following day. If that day happens at the end of the month, or even the end of a year, the two babies can have birthdays in different months and even different years. Sometimes a pregnancy is prolonged to provide each baby with an optimal chance for survival. If preterm labor forces the delivery of one baby, doctors can successfully control the labor and delay delivery to give the other baby more time in the womb. Twins and higher multiples have been born days and even weeks apart.

10. Twins of Different Races can be caused by heteropaternal superfecundation. There are cases of fraternal (dizygotic) twins with differing racial characteristics. In one case, the differentiation was due to a lab mix-up during an in-vitro procedure. However, there is a case where two bi-racial parents conceived fraternal (dizygotic) twin girl twins, experts explain that the girls inherited different genetic characteristics from their mixed race parents. One is fair-haired and light skinned, while the other has dark hair, eyes and skin.

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