How much of our personality traits, temperament, talents, health conditions, mental illness, and intelligence are controlled by our genes and how much by our environment? Which trumps in parenting: Nature vs. Nurture? What relevance does this have to us as parents? Host Dawn Davenport interviewed Dr. Matt McGue, a behavioral and quantitative geneticist and director of the Minnesota Twin Study; and Dr. Kerry Jang, a Professor with the UBC Department of Psychiatry.


+ Highlights of the show (click to expand)

  • The different types of twin research designed to tease out the relative influences of genetics and environment
  • What does research say about the influence of nature vs nuture on how children turn out
  • The impact of genetics and environment on intelligence, personality and temperment
  • The heritability of different types of mental illness, including bipolar, depression, schizophrenia, aggression, and alcoholism
  • Epigenetics as it relates to donor egg, donor sperm or embryo donation (embryo adoption)


For more information from this show and a discussion of this topic, check out Dawn’s blog on the show: Genetics vs. Environment: Which Affects Us Most. Please join the discussion or leave your thoughts about the show in the comments on the blog.

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Image credit: Sander Spolspoel