Genetics Can Determine Whether You Get Shot, Assaulted Or Raped

new york crime scene

“…exposure to assaultive trauma, such as being the victim of a mugging, or sexual assault, had a heritability of 20 per cent… Genes that contribute to risk-taking, seeking out new experiences, and even antisocial traits may increase the chance that you’ll find yourself in situations where trouble happens.”

Via The Other Side of Normal: How Biology Is Providing the Clues to Unlock the Secrets of Normal and Abnormal behaviour:

For some of us, our genes may contribute to anxiety problems by actually increasing the chance that we’ll be exposed to dangerous situations. One twin study of Vietnam veterans found a heritability of 35 to 47 per cent for exposure to combat-related trauma— that is, the likelihood that a soldier would find himself in harm’s way was itself influenced by genes. 

Another study of civilians found that exposure to assaultive trauma, such as being the victim of a mugging, or sexual assault, had a heritability of 20 per cent. How could a person’s genes affect whether she would be in the wrong place at the wrong time? The most likely answer is again related to temperament and personality. Genes that contribute to risk-taking, seeking out new experiences, and even antisocial traits may increase the chance that you’ll find yourself in situations where trouble happens.

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