Shared genetics, life experience no indication of injury risk: study

January 18, 2012

Elk Grove Village, IL – Genetics and upbringing may play little to no role in whether an individual may be at risk for long-term disability, according to a new Swedish study.

Conducted by the Stockholm-based Karolinska Institute, the study examined data for nearly 53,000 Swedish twins to determine if familial factors – such as their shared genetics and early life experiences – had any effect on health and illness.

Researchers found that factors contributing to a participant needing a disability pension included older age, less education, being unmarried, and living in rural or semi-rural areas. These factors remained significant after adjusting for familial factors, leading researchers to believe disability risk is related to experiences or choices as an adult and not related to factors shared by family members.

The study appeared in the January issue of the Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine, which is published by the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.