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PSYCH 3JJ3 (18)
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3jj3 sept 26.docx

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Department
Psychology
Course
PSYCH 3JJ3
Professor
Louis A Schmidt
Semester
Fall

Description
Psych 3JJ3 – September 26, 2013 Biological Foundations - What is the empirical evidence – differential susceptibility o 1 – high vs low immune compromise  stress vs respiratory problems nd o 2 – non human primates categorized as high reactive or low reactive to novel stimuli  Year of study (low stress year vs high stress year) vs Number of injuries  Low reactive monkeys are less sensitive to environmental stress – they remained average in number of injuries  High reactive monkeys are more sensitive to environmental stress – in low environmental stress they had a low number of injuries, in high environmental stress they had a high number of injuries - Study – “An empirical example of differential susceptibility (DRD4 gene) to exogenous environmental influences (parenting) in predicting externalizing problems in children” o Parenting sensitivity vs CBCL externalizing (measure of behavioural problems – aggression, social issues, etc.) o DRD4 7- (short) and DRD4 7+ (long – “risk” allele) o Prior literature linking the DRD4 long alleles to inefficiency in the dopamine system – the shorter the allele the more efficient the receptor is in handling dopamine – associations noted between DRD4 long and a variety of approach- related behaviours o Short alleled children are less sensitive – parent sensitivity is not a large factor, they remain average in the CBCL o Children with long allele are more sensitive – great likelihood of externalizing problems with low sensitivity parents, low likelihood of externalizing problems with high sensitivity parents Are there different meaning of the environment? - Multiple meaning of environment o Exogenous (parents, peers, etc) o Endogenous (physiology, electrochemical, homeostasis, etc.) o Gene-environment interactions in the face of gene-environment correlations o There are endogenous environment conditions are orthogonal to (independent of), and interact with, some biological susceptibility factors o Consideration that the environment is OUTSIDE and INSIDE an individual – it is unique internally as well, this impacts gene expression - Similarities between exogenous and endogenous environments o Can vary from good to bad o Can be stable o can change and be dynamic o Can be conceptually as well as empirically orth
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