Could your genes help bring you wedded bliss? - 21 News Now, More Local News for Youngstown, Ohio -

Could your genes help bring you wedded bliss?

Updated:
© iStockphoto.com / Justin Horrocks © iStockphoto.com / Justin Horrocks
  • More NewsMore>>

  • Catholic school teacher layoffs hinge on enrollment

    Catholic school teacher layoffs hinge on enrollment

    Teachers in the Lumen Christi school system are waiting to learn if they will return to their classrooms in the fall.This is the first year six valley schools are united under the Lumen Christi Catholic School System, which began as plan to streamline resources and grow the schools. It consists of St. Patrick, St. Nicholas, St. Joseph and Immaculate Heart of Mary, St. Christine, St. Charles and St. Luke. Both Holy Family and St. Christine also offer early childhood programs t...More >>
    Teachers in the Lumen Christi school system are waiting to learn if they will return to their classrooms in the fall.This is the first year six valley schools are united under the Lumen Christi Catholic School System, which began as plan to streamline resources and grow the schools. It consists of St. Patrick, St. Nicholas, St. Joseph and Immaculate Heart of Mary, St. Christine, St. Charles and St. Luke. Both Holy Family and St. Christine also offer early childhood programs t...More >>
  • Former Trumbull County special deputy jailed in Youngstown

    Former Trumbull County special deputy jailed in Youngstown

    Tuesday, April 22 2014 11:21 PM EDT2014-04-23 03:21:39 GMT
    Gregory OakesGregory Oakes
    A former Trumbull County special deputyhas been booked into the Mahoning County jail for allegedly running a private security business without a valid license.Eight misdemeanor counts were filed in Youngstown Municipal Court on on Tuesday against 51-year-old Gregory Oakes of Warren.Oakes pleaded not guilty to three similar charges filed in Warren Municipal Court on Tuesday.Earlier this month, Oakes pleaded not guilty to multiple charges of forgery and tampering with records following his indi...More >>
    A former Trumbull County special deputyhas been booked into the Mahoning County jail for allegedly running a private security business without a valid license.Eight misdemeanor counts were filed in Youngstown Municipal Court on on Tuesday against 51-year-old Gregory Oakes of Warren.Oakes pleaded not guilty to three similar charges filed in Warren Municipal Court on Tuesday.Earlier this month, Oakes pleaded not guilty to multiple charges of forgery and tampering with records following his indi...More >>
  • Tressel one of three finalists for Akron University president

    Tressel one of three finalists for Akron University president

    The University of Akron has narrowed the field of candidates for president to three names, including former Ohio State and Youngstown State football coach Jim Tressel, who is also one of 38 people who have applied for the vacancy of YSU president.U of A Trustees issued a statement on Tuesday naming the three finalists, who up until now were on a list of fifteen candidates for the Akron job.The finalists are:Ronald A. Nykiel, Ph.D. Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs at the Universi...More >>
    The University of Akron has narrowed the field of candidates for president to three names, including former Ohio State and Youngstown State football coach Jim Tressel, who is also one of 38 people who have applied for the vacancy of YSU president.U of A Trustees issued a statement on Tuesday naming the three finalists, who up until now were on a list of fifteen candidates for the Akron job.The finalists are:Ronald A. Nykiel, Ph.D. Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs at the Universi...More >>

By Randy Dotinga
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, Oct. 14 (HealthDay News) -- One of the keys to a successful marriage may lurk not in the stars but in your genes. A new study links variation in a single gene to the ability to tolerate the good times and bad times of married life.

The research isn't conclusive. It's possible that the gene plays no role at all in marriage or that scientists don't fully understand the connection they think they see. Since marriage is one of the most complex of human relationships, it's likely that a host of factors beyond genetics affects its success, experts said.

Still, the findings may "take the mystery of our social world and clarify a little piece of it," said study co-author Robert Levenson, a psychology professor at the University of California, Berkeley.

The research is rooted in the fact that emotions affect marriage in obvious and subtle ways, Levenson said.

"Relations tend to be quite successful, and people are happy, when there are a lot of positive emotions like affection. When there's a lot of negative emotion like disgust and contempt, it can be particularly poisonous for relationships," he said. But, he added, "everybody also knows married couples who bicker all the time, but their marriages seem to work just fine. Other couples have one argument and they're in divorce court."

So why can some couples tolerate swings in emotion better than others? The researchers targeted a gene that affects serotonin, a brain chemical that's considered crucial to mood and well-being. Their goal: to figure out if it's connected to the inner workings of a marriage.

For the study, published online Oct. 7 in the journal Emotion, the researchers examined DNA samples from 125 long-term spouses in the San Francisco area who were tracked over 20 years for research into marital satisfaction. The participants, mostly white, were all middle-aged or older at that time.

At issue is a genetic variant called 5-HTTLPR. Everyone receives a copy of this variant from each parent. About 20 percent of those in the study had two short 5-HTTLPR "alleles" (types), one of three possible configurations. Those people were more likely than those with one or two long alleles to be affected by the emotional level of a marriage --- unhappier when there was a lot of negative emotion, such as fighting, and happier when there was a lot of positive emotion, Levenson said.

The effects of this genetic trait are "like amplifiers, like the knob on your hi-fi where you turn up the music," Levenson said. "If the music is really bad, it will be more unpleasant. And if it's really good, it'll be more pleasant. They turn up your sensitivity to the emotional quality of the music in your relationship."

The researchers also found that these genetic influences strengthened with age.

Paul Zak, chairman of the Center for Neuroeconomics Studies at Claremont Graduate University in California, praised the research but cautioned that many other genes are likely to contribute to marital satisfaction, including those that affect emotional bonding, aggression and promiscuity. He also said the overall effect of the genetic variation on marriage seems to be small.

In other words, knowing your fiance's 5-HTTLPR genotype probably won't help your predict the success of your impending marriage.

And Zak said people can find ways to counteract their genetic propensities regarding emotion by taking psychiatric drugs or adjusting the way they deal with spouses. "If your spouse is more emotional, anxious, or very sensitive to negative emotions, the other spouse can turn this around by being positive more of the time," he said.

More information

For more about mental health, see the U.S. National Library of Medicine.

Copyright © 2013 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

*DISCLAIMER*: The information contained in or provided through this site section is intended for general consumer understanding and education only and is not intended to be and is not a substitute for professional advice. Use of this site section and any information contained on or provided through this site section is at your own risk and any information contained on or provided through this site section is provided on an "as is" basis without any representations or warranties.
  • More From wfmj.comMore>>

  • Jet stowaway undetected for hours before departure

    Jet stowaway undetected for hours before departure

    Tuesday, April 22 2014 11:44 PM EDT2014-04-23 03:44:25 GMT
    Surveillance cameras at San Jose International Airport successfully captured the teenager on the tarmac, climbing up the landing gear of a jet. But in the end, the cameras failed because no one noticed the security...More >>
    A 15-year-old stowaway who survived a flight over the Pacific in a jet's wheel well spent seven hours undetected in what is supposed to be a highly secure area of San Jose International Airport before the flight...More >>
  • Ohio teen on trial for alleged rape at school

    Ohio teen on trial for alleged rape at school

    Tuesday, April 22 2014 12:59 PM EDT2014-04-22 16:59:11 GMT
    (AP) - A high school student is standing trial in northeast Ohio for allegedly raping a classmate in the locker room. Prosecutors argued during the first day of the trial in Cuyahoga (KY-uh-HOH'-guh) County Monday that the boy, then 16, carried the girl into the locker room at Shaker Heights High School and raped her. An attorney for the now 17-year-old boy - who is charged with rape and kidnapping - argued that the two had consensual sex. The Northeast Ohio Media Group reports tha...More >>
    (AP) - A high school student is standing trial in northeast Ohio for allegedly raping a classmate in the locker room. Prosecutors argued during the first day of the trial in Cuyahoga (KY-uh-HOH'-guh) County Monday that the boy, then 16, carried the girl into the locker room at Shaker Heights High School and raped her. An attorney for the now 17-year-old boy - who is charged with rape and kidnapping - argued that the two had consensual sex. The Northeast Ohio Media Group reports tha...More >>
  • Ohio symposium focuses on homeless youth

    Ohio symposium focuses on homeless youth

    Tuesday, April 22 2014 12:43 PM EDT2014-04-22 16:43:14 GMT

    COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - A meeting of minds is focusing on youth homelessness in Ohio.

    More >>

    COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - A meeting of minds is focusing on youth homelessness in Ohio.

    More >>
  • Hot ClicksHot ClicksMore>>

  • Can an app save the planet?

    Can an app save the planet?

    This startup's Earth Day launch has a massive goal: Cut carbon emissions globally. It has its work cut out for it.
    More >>
    This startup's Earth Day launch has a massive goal: Cut carbon emissions globally. It has its work cut out for it.
    More >>
  • 'Captain America' holds onto top box office spot

    'Captain America' holds onto top box office spot

    Monday, April 21 2014 10:47 PM EDT2014-04-22 02:47:39 GMT
    LOS ANGELES (AP) - Captain America really is unbeatable - at least at the box office"Captain America: The Winter Soldier" has been the top draw at theaters for three consecutive weeks, vanquishing would-be foes including the new thriller starring Johnny Depp.According to Monday's final box office figures, the Marvel sequel added $25.6 million in ticket sales over the weekend. "The Winter Soldier" has made more than $200 million domestically since logging the best April opening in history."Hea...More >>
    LOS ANGELES (AP) - Captain America really is unbeatable - at least at the box office"Captain America: The Winter Soldier" has been the top draw at theaters for three consecutive weeks, vanquishing would-be foes including the new thriller starring Johnny Depp.According to Monday's final box office figures, the Marvel sequel added $25.6 million in ticket sales over the weekend. "The Winter Soldier" has made more than $200 million domestically since logging the best April opening in history."Hea...More >>
  • Netflix poised to raise prices after strong 1Q

    Netflix poised to raise prices after strong 1Q

    Monday, April 21 2014 10:37 PM EDT2014-04-22 02:37:26 GMT
    SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Netflix is preparing a sequel unlikely to be a hit with its subscribers. The Internet video service is about to raise its prices for the first time in three years to help pay for more Internet video programming such as its popular political drama "House of Cards."The increase, to take place sometime before July, will hike prices by $1 or $2 per month for new customers. The company's nearly 36 million current subscribers will continue to pay $8 per month for at least the n...More >>
    SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Netflix is preparing a sequel unlikely to be a hit with its subscribers. The Internet video service is about to raise its prices for the first time in three years to help pay for more Internet video programming such as its popular political drama "House of Cards."The increase, to take place sometime before July, will hike prices by $1 or $2 per month for new customers. The company's nearly 36 million current subscribers will continue to pay $8 per month for at least the n...More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Worldnow and WFMJ. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms