Family Sees 4 Consecutive Generations of Twins

They've applied to Guinness Book of World Records
By Shelley Hazen,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 13, 2014 1:16 PM CDT
Family Sees 4 Consecutive Generations of Twins

There may be something in the water in Clevedon, England. Melanie Gwynne is a twin. Her father and his mother, Gwynne's grandmother, are also twins. And last fall, Gwynne became mom to the family's fourth generation of twins—two girls, whose birth was featured on the British TV documentary One Born Every Minute Wednesday. "My dad always said it's more fun having two. I'm still getting my head around all the kids at the moment,” the new mom tells the Bristol Post. Her father has already contacted the Guinness Book of World Records—but he should know that a Kansas family can also declare the same feat as of December. According to their doctor, the chances of having four consecutive sets of twins in your family may be as low as one in four billion. Nonetheless, Gwynne hopes one of her twins has twins herself.

But experts say that probably won't happen. A New York gynecologist tells ABC News the multi-generational twin phenomenon is “pretty damn rare.” One possible explanation for an abundance of twins? A tribe in Africa boasts the highest rate of twins in the world, and there is a theory that the women’s yam-rich diet makes them ovulate extra eggs. “Non-identical twins are influenced by cultures and other factors,” says the expert. “Maybe it’s something in the area that they live in or genetically or it causes them to ovulate twice.” As for Gwynne, she feels “quite special. Me and my sister always knew one of us would have twins, we just had a feeling. Now it's me I think she is relieved it's not going to be her.” (Meanwhile, in Boston, a set of twins was born ... 24 days apart.)

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