Nicholas Forbes, of Cashmere Primary School, asks :-

Graham Butcher, of Tawa, asked:-

Why dont identical twins have the same fingerprints?

Joanne Dixon, a medical geneticist at the Cytogenetics Laboratory of Wellington Hospital, responded.

Fingerprints are not entirely genetic in determination.

That is to say although there are genes determining the dermatographics of an individual, there is a small influence due to the environment which would more than adequately explain why identical twins may not necessarily have identical fingerprints. I should add of course that at the genetic level, identical twins are not entirely identical in every sense, as there may well be some very minor variations in their genetic structure.