Your arachnophobia, the fear of spiders, or other phobias may not be due to traumatic childhood experiences after all.
Scientists say they have found, through a new study, fear can be passed down from one generation to the next.
Tests were done with mice where they trained mice to fear a smell similar to a cherry blossom.
The offspring of those mice were then found to fear the smell, even having never encountered it.
Even the third generation of those mice fears the cherry blossom smell.
The information from this study offers further proof of a process called epigenetics, in which conditions experienced by previous generations cause subtle changes to the way genes work.