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Genes play role in bullying: study

Inherited behavioural tendencies lead to victimization

A new study suggests a child’s likelihood of being bullied in elementary school is partially dictated by genetics.

The study published in the journal Child Development found genes helped dictate behaviours that most often led to a person being ostracized or victimized by fellow students.

Those behaviours included aggression, impulsiveness and hyperactivity.

The study surveyed nearly 800 pairs of identical and fraternal twins three times between kindergarten and grade four.

Researchers found that identical twins, who have the same genetic makeup, are more likely to have similar classroom experience than fraternal twins whose DNA is not a perfect match.

The study says the research demonstrates the importance of intervening to nip problematic behaviours in the bud at an early age.

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