A pair of identical twins who can't be told apart by their DNA have appeared in court charged over the rape of a woman.

They were arrested after DNA evidence taken from the scene linked the alleged crime with one - or both - of them.
To find out who the alleged culprit is, prosecutors have charged both of the two lookalike siblings.

The Crown Prosecution Service and Police officers will determine whether they should continue to pursue the case against both men.

Although identical twins share the same DNA – essentially carbon copies of each other – scientists discovered new evidence that tiny genetic changes can occur on a cellular level early in development, allowing for differences as twins grow older.

The genetic alterations can occur early in foetal development, researchers said, and are essentially copy errors, known as somatic mutations.

The findings from researchers may offer a glimpse into why one identical twin will develop a disease like cancer, while the other will stay healthy.

Previous studies have explored genetic differences between twins caused by chemical modifications, also known as epigenetic effects.

Written by John McChrystal — February 28, 2012

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