Health and Human Development - Environmental and inherited factors
affecting development and health
Other significant impacts of sex
Hormones control the timing and degree of change in the body. They are
one of your inherited characteristics.
There is now evidence to show that some of the genes that you inherit
may carry your predisposition to certain diseases.
Sex also has a significant impact on your share of resources in developing
and industrialised countries and this in turn can affect development. This
is discussed in more detail under environmental influences.
Ethnicity  may cause variations in body size and body shape and this
may influence timing of maturation. For example: smaller and finer body
sizes generally experience late maturation.
Research is showing that for some cancers there is a genetic link in many
reported cases. Cancer of the colon and rectum, or colorectal cancer is one
type of cancer where mass genetic screening may be useful in reducing the
incidence of the disease.
Family history is also seen as a risk factor for breast cancer.
Research into Alzheimer's disease has also shown that heredity plays an
important role into the incidence of this disease.
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