Methods which allow for the analysis of the joint transmission of two phenotypes within a nuclear family are discussed and applied to the transmission of cholesterol and triglyceride. The analysis of data from 160 Caucasian nuclear families suggests a moderate degree of both genetic and residual environmental association between the two liquids. Although either the genetic correlation (ρG) or the residual environmental correlation (ρR) could be set equal to 0 without significantly increasing the residual χ2, simultaneously setting both correlations equal to zero did significantly increase the χ2 statistic. Consequently, the association between cholesterol and triglyceride could not be accounted for by common transmissible environmental effects alone.
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