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The Influence of Genetic Variation on Social Disposition, Romantic Relationships and Social Networks: a Replication Study

Pearce, E; Wlodarski, R; Machin, A; Dunbar, RIM; (2018) The Influence of Genetic Variation on Social Disposition, Romantic Relationships and Social Networks: a Replication Study. Adaptive Human Behavior and Physiology , 4 (4) pp. 400-422. 10.1007/s40750-018-0101-8. Green open access

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Abstract

Objectives Sociality is underpinned by a variety of neurochemicals. We previously showed, in a large healthy Caucasian sample, that genes for different neurochemicals are typically associated with differing social domains (disposition, romantic relationships and networks). Here we seek to confirm the validity of these findings by asking whether they replicate in other population samples. Methods We test for associations between the same 24 Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs) and measures of sociality as previously, in two smaller independent samples: Caucasian individuals with histories of mental illness (subclinical sample) (N = 140), and non-Caucasian individuals (N = 66). We also combined the relevant SNPs and social measures into 18 distinct neurochemical/social domain categories to examine the distribution of significant associations across these. Results In the subclinical Caucasian sample, we confirm previous associations between (i) specific oxytocin and dopamine receptor gene SNPs and sexual attitudes and behavior, and (ii) two SNPs associated with dopamine receptor 2 and feelings of inclusion in the local community. In the non-Caucasian sample, we replicate the previous association between an oxytocin receptor SNP and anxious attachment. More generally, chi-squared tests indicated that the distribution of significant associations for each neurochemical across the three social domains did not differ significantly between the original sample and either of the new samples, except for oxytocin in the non-Caucasian sample. Conclusions These results corroborate both the SNP-specific and broader neurochemical associations with particular facets of sociality in two new populations, thereby confirming the validity of the previous findings.

Type: Article
Title: The Influence of Genetic Variation on Social Disposition, Romantic Relationships and Social Networks: a Replication Study
Location: Switzerland
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1007/s40750-018-0101-8
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1007/s40750-018-0101-8
Language: English
Additional information: This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.
Keywords: Oxytocin .Beta-endorphin .Dopamine . Serotonin .Testosterone .Vasopressin
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Division of Psychiatry
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10069425
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