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Height depends on month of birth


Using a large human male population of 507,125, we find clear evidence for a dependence of body height at age 18 on birth month. Over 10 years there is a sinusoidal variation with a period of 1.0 year with maxima in spring and minima in autumn differing by 0.6 cm. Although global environmental factors1 are small and can be studied only with the help of sophisticated methods on very large sample sizes, they might offer insights into still undiscovered mechanisms of human development. This may provide empirical facts for clinical research on the pineal gland and melatonin2.

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Figure 1: Relationship between body height and birth month.


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Weber, G., Prossinger, H. & Seidler, H. Height depends on month of birth. Nature 391, 754–755 (1998).

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