A specific gene could be responsible for marriage satisfaction, study finds

A specific gene could be responsible for marriage satisfaction, study finds

A new study has found that variations in a specific gene could possibly determine how successful your marriage is in the first few years of your union.

Data by researchers at the University of Arkansas published in the journal Nature Scientific Report indicates that a variation called ‘CC’ in the gene CD38 is linked with increased levels of gratitude. The University’s Anastasia Makhanova, along with her colleagues studied a group of genotyped newlyweds to explore whether this gene variation had a relationship with levels of trust, forgiveness and marriage satisfaction.

“We were interested in seeing if some of the reasons that people might have a harder time maintaining relationship satisfaction in the newlywed period is due to some potential underlying genetic predispositions,” explained Makhanova.

The research team analysed 71 couples which amount to 142 newlyweds. They collected data over the course of the first three months of their marriages and had them complete a survey every four months for three years.

Analysts then compared the survey results between those with and without the CD38 variation and found that those with the variation reported higher levels of positive perceptions around their relationship, especially when it came to trust.

“CC individuals felt more grateful for their partner, reported higher trust in their partner, were more forgiving of their partner, and were more satisfied with their marriages than were AC/AA individuals,” the study read.

They thus conclude that there may be a possible genetic link to marriage satisfaction. However, it is important to note that this does not mean that those without the variation are doomed to a loveless marriage.

Makhanova explains: “So it’s not that people who don’t have the CC genotype are doomed to have problems. It’s just that they’re more likely to have issues in some of these domains, and so those people might have to work a little bit more in those domains.”

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