New research suggests groups of friends may have common genetic patterns. Social scientist Professor James Fowler of the University of California, San Diego, came to this conclusion after looking at data from two long-running studies in the US, the Framingham Heart Study and the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, which contain genetic data and information on friends, according to PhysOrg.com.
"People's friends may not only have similar traits, but actually resemble each other on a genotypic level," said the study led by James Fowler, a geneticist at the University of California at San Diego.
The findings were published Friday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, CBC.ca reports.
Ting Wu, a professor of genetics at Harvard University, said she finds the study exciting because genetics has been taught in a "very strict fashion" for many decades.
"We've been trained to think about genes in a particular way," Wu said. "Now we have the time and luxury to look for phenomena we haven't studied."
"It makes sense that what makes us the way we are can influence how we choose our friends," she added. "We know our friends influence us," BusinessWeek informs.