Happiness Gene Only in Women
Many women appear to be blessed with a gene that predisposes them to feeling happy. Sorry, guys, but researchers say that the gene is gender specific. A team of investigators led by Henian Chen of the University of South Florida published their findings the journal Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry.
"Psychologists, quality of life and well-being researchers have grown increasingly interested in understanding the factors that are associated with human happiness," they wrote. "Although twin studies estimate that genetic factors account for 35–50% of the variance in human happiness, knowledge of specific genes is limited. However, recent advances in molecular genetics can now provide a window into neurobiological markers of human happiness."
They went on to say their investigation examined an association between happiness and monoamine oxidase A (MAOA) genotype. "In women, low expression of MAOA (MAOA-L) was related significantly to greater happiness. In contrast, no such association was found in men. This new finding may help explain the gender difference on happiness and provide a link between MAOA and human happiness."
A drawback however, as reported in MailOnline, is that "the happy version of the gene can be linked to excessive drinking and anti-social behavior." The MailOnline article quotes Chen as saying, "You may be more likely to get into trouble but still be happier than the next person.’