Individual resiliency factors from a genetic perspective: results from a twin study

Fam Process. 2008 Dec;47(4):537-51. doi: 10.1111/j.1545-5300.2008.00270.x.


This article is part of the Twin Mother's Study, a study that examines influences on maternal adjustment. A number of studies have investigated the importance of genetic factors for mental health, but few of these examine how genes and the environment influence resiliency/salutogenic factors. This article investigates the relative importance of genetic and environmental influences on resiliency/salutogenic factors. This study includes 326 twin pairs (150 monozygotic and 176 dizygotic) who are mothers, who are living with their spouse, and who are part of the Swedish twin register. Using self-report structured questionnaires, we assessed salutogenic factors, depression, and quality of life; however, we analyzed the questionnaires completed by the mothers. Statistical analyses were conducted using structural equation modeling. We conclude that nonshared environmental components were of principal importance in individual resiliency/salutogenic factors in a genetically informative design, but we also noted that genetic influences were important. The shared environment had mainly no effect.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Twin Study

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological*
  • Genetics, Behavioral
  • Humans
  • Mothers / psychology*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Sweden