• In genetics, characteristics that people are born with are called inherited traits. Depending on the trait, it may have been passed down by the mother's or father's side of the family.


    Every human has exactly 23 pairs of chromosomes. The father contributes half of these chromosomes, and the mother contributes the other half.


    Certain individuals are born with indentations on their cheeks, called dimples. Dimples are actually an inherited trait, since you will not develop them if you are not born with them.

    Hitchhiker's Thumb

    Some people are born with a thumb that bends backward when it is extended. This is called a hitchhiker's thumb and is an inherited trait.

    Tongue Curling

    Many people are born with the ability to roll their tongues as a result of an inherited trait.


    With some people, the lowest point of the earlobe connects to their face. With others, the lowest point of the earlobe hangs free. The first condition is referred to as an attached earlobe, while the second condition is known as an unattached earlobe. Both are inherited traits.

    How it works

    Varying combinations of chromosome pairs create different inherited traits. A trait may skip a generation or even two, but for a child to inherit a trait, the trait must have been present in an ancestor. On the contrary, acquired traits can be developed at any time and may encompass scars, hairstyle, piercings, and tattoos.


    Biology Online

    Medical Dictionary

    Inheritied Traits

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