Single Gene May Drive Men’s Aggressive Stress Response

Single Gene May Drive Men’s Aggressive Stress Response

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When men get stressed, their bodies get more revved up than women’s. Now, two Australian researchers have a theory as to why — and it all boils down to a single gene.

The classic “fight-or-fight” response to stress is controlled by the sympathetic nervous system — the part of our nervous system that deals with automatic functions such as breathing. Under stress, this system goes wild, increasing heart rate and blood pressure, hastening breathing, and otherwise readying you to face down your enemy or to run.

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