The Emerging Field of Human Social Genomics.

TitleThe Emerging Field of Human Social Genomics.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsSlavich GM, Cole SW
JournalClin Psychol Sci
Date Published2013 Jul

Although we generally experience our bodies as being biologically stable across time and situations, an emerging field of research is demonstrating that external social conditions, especially our subjective perceptions of those conditions, can influence our most basic internal biological processes-namely, the expression of our genes. This research on human social genomics has begun to identify the types of genes that are subject to social-environmental regulation, the neural and molecular mechanisms that mediate the effects of social processes on gene expression, and the genetic polymorphisms that moderate individual differences in genomic sensitivity to social context. The molecular models resulting from this research provide new opportunities for understanding how social and genetic factors interact to shape complex behavioral phenotypes and susceptibility to disease. This research also sheds new light on the evolution of the human genome and challenges the fundamental belief that our molecular makeup is relatively stable and impermeable to social-environmental influence.

Alternate JournalClin Psychol Sci
PubMed ID23853742
PubMed Central IDPMC3707393
Grant ListP30 AG017265 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States
P30 AG028748 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States
R01 CA116778 / CA / NCI NIH HHS / United States
R37 AG033590 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States