Asymmetry of a–b ridge count, a dermatoglyphic trait in the second interdigital (ID II) palmar area was studied in 314 identical (MZ) twin-pairs of known placental type. Statistically significant differences were observed for the variability of a-b ridge count with respect to placentation. Monochorionic MZ pairs displayed more within-pair variability than dichorionic MZ twins. Within dichorionic pairs, greater variability was observed in MZ twins when pairs with fused placentas were compared with those with separate placentas. A similar pattern of greater variability in dichorionic fused versus dichorionic separate placentas was also found in 121 same sex dizygotic twin-pairs. The pattern of within-pair differences was consistent with a placental proximity effect like that known for the variability in birth weight in twins.

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