The 1st international meeting on research related to environmental sensitivity took place at the University of Chieti Pescara, Italy, on the 18th of May 2023. In this blog we summarise the meeting and highlight some key contributions. More details on talks and discussed topics are provided in the booklet of abstract, available as PDF at the bottom of this page.
This study investigated the association between high sensitivity and telomere length as a biomarker of biological aging. We recruited 82 adolescents. Results show that sensitivity is negatively correlated with telomere length. More specifically, students with Low Sensory Threshold, one component of sensitivity, tend to have shorter telomeres, which indicates accelerated biological aging.
Sensitive people are more affected by their experiences and sensitivity has a genetic basis. We tested whether genetic sensitivity predicts the response to a relationship education programme. We found that individuals with high genetic sensitivity improved more strongly regarding several aspects of relationship quality even two years after attending a relationship programme.
Intervention research has recently started to focus on genetic differences in order to explain why interventions work better for some than others. However, establishing the reliability of such genetic research is fundamental.
Our study investigated the heritability of sensitivity.
Results showed that 47 percent of the differences in sensitivity between individuals are genetically determined, whereas the remaining 53 percent are accounted for by environmental factors.
Environmental Sensitivity is seen in both animals and humans, suggesting that is has a strong biological foundation.