Format

Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Int J Obes (Lond). 2010 Jan;34(1):29-40. doi: 10.1038/ijo.2009.177. Epub 2009 Sep 15.

The genetic and environmental influences on childhood obesity: a systematic review of twin and adoption studies.

Author information

  • 1Department of Sociology, Population Research Unit, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland. karri.silventoinen@helsinki.fi

Abstract

In this systematic review, we aimed to collect together all previous twin and adoption studies on childhood and adolescent obesity up to the age of 18 years. Using several sources, we identified nine twin and five adoption studies; all of these studies had used relative weight as an indicator of obesity. Except the two twin studies from the Korean population, all studies represented Caucasian populations. In a meta-analysis of these twin studies, we found that genetic factors had a strong effect on the variation of body mass index (BMI) at all ages. The common environmental factors showed a substantial effect in mid-childhood, but this effect disappeared at adolescence. Adoption studies supported the role of family environment in childhood obesity as correlations were found between adoptees and adoptive parents; however, correlations were substantially stronger between parents and their biological offspring, further supporting the importance of genetic factors. In the future, more studies implementing genetic and environmental measures into twin models are needed as they allow estimation of the proportion of total genetic variation explained by candidate genes and analyses of gene-environment interactions. More studies of genetic architecture in non-Caucasian populations, of gene-environment interactions, and of body composition and body fat distribution are needed.

PMID:
19752881
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Nature Publishing Group
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk