Attachment Security and Oxytocin Receptor Gene Polymorphism Interact to Influence Affectionate Communication

Kory Floyd, Amanda Denes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


The present study investigated the interaction of attachment security and genotype in the oxytocin receptor gene on affectionate communication. Specifically, we predicted that individuals’ genotype for the single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) rs53576 on the oxytocin receptor gene would show a stronger influence in individuals with weak attachment security compared to individuals with strong attachment security. One hundred sixty-four participants completed questionnaire measures about their attachment security and affectionate communication and provided saliva samples for genetic analysis. In support of a predicted gene-environment interaction (G x E) interaction, the GG genotype showed a stronger influence on affectionate communication for people low in attachment security than for people high in attachment security. These results support the (G x E) approach to understanding the relationship between genetics and environmental triggers, as the influence of genotype for rs53576 on affectionate communication was moderated by attachment security.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)272-285
Number of pages14
JournalCommunication Quarterly
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 27 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Affection
  • Genetics
  • Oxytocin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication


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