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How Identical Are Identical Twins?

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Posted by Alexander on October 3, 2001 19:34:08 UTC

First, their DNA has about 10^10 bases - it is highly unlikely that it is EXACTLY identical. Second, each body has about 10^12 cells (each with 10^10 bases of DNA) and again it is practically impossible to have EXACTLY IDENTICAL DNAs in all of them. In fact, mutation rate only during replication of DNA (=error of copying) is about 10^-6 - 10^-7, meaning that about 1000-10000 bases in a copy are DIFFERENT than in original. Small, but visible change with each replication.

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