Salimetrics SalivaLab Relaunches Highly Accurate, Easy, and Affordable SNP Genotyping Services for OXTR from Saliva Samples

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Salimetrics’ relaunched DNA genotyping service benefits from a > 99% accurate protocol with an easy to do collection method that enables analysis of SNPs within the Oxytocin Receptor Gene (OXTR). Salivary DNA testing can be performed on any Salimetrics validated SNP (single nucleotide polymorphism) or VNTR (variable number tandem repeat).

Oxytocin Receptor (OXTR)

In the relaunch, Salimetrics optimized its DNA extraction protocol to yield high-quality salivary DNA, equivalent to what previously could only be obtained from expensive, specialized collection devices. That means investigators can still use the same inexpensive saliva collection methods that researchers have relied on for years to do their salivary bioscience research. This enables researchers to reinforce conclusions by including specific SNP’s for genomic DNA testing without the need for specialized collection devices, preservatives or additional collection volume.

Specific genotypes of the high profile oxytocin receptor (OXTR), have been associated with differences in individual behaviors. Rodrigues et al studied the OXTR SNP rs53576 as it related to common social processes, empathy and stress reactivity. Individuals homozygous for the G allele (G;G) showed higher levels of behavioral and dispositional empathy as well as lower stress reactivity, when compared to individuals with at least one copy of the A allele (A;G or A;A) expressed on this OXTR SNP (7).

Researchers have continued to reinforce associations of various SNPs in the OXTR gene with differences in personality including stress response, empathy, trust and resiliency, and social biology such as autism, schizophrenia, mood and anxiety disorders (2,3,4). Kim et al, used saliva samples, to demonstrate that distressed American participants with the A;G or G;G genotype for the rs53576 SNP, reported seeking a higher level of emotional social support when compared to distressed participants with the A;A genotype, while Korean participants under similar conditions did not show this correlation, indicating that the OXTR SNP rs53576 is sensitive to external input, specifically as it relates to emotional social support seeking.

With the enhanced protocol, Salimetrics’ high quality, salivary genetic DNA isolation yields enough genetic material to enable genotyping on multiple, individual SNP tests. The SalivaLab’s DNA isolation protocol yields high purity, low salt DNA with A260/A280 ratios (indicating protein content) consistently at or above 1.8 and the A260/A230 ratios (indicative of salt and carbohydrate content) at or above 1.5. High quality results with low sample retest rates allow confidence in the SNP data generated and an exceedingly low number of non-reportable findings (0.05%). The Salimetrics’ technique represents a standardized, cost-effective platform for DNA genotyping that brings ease, affordability, and accuracy to researchers.

The SalivaLab can analyze DNA samples for any SNP along the OXTR genome and will be more than happy to discuss any validated SNP of interest. Contact Salimetrics for further information about OXTR DNA analysis or to be connected to a DNA project specialist for further consultation. Visit the Salimetrics Website to connect to a Salimetrics representative and get accurate results.


1.    Daniel, P.K. Ng et al., (2004). Effect of storage conditions on the extraction of PCR-quality DNA from saliva. Clinica Chimica Acta. 343(2004), 191-194.

2.    Behnia, F. et al., (2015). Fetal DNA methylation of autism spectrum disorders candidate genes: association with spontaneous preterm birth. American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology. 212(4), 533.e1–533.e9.

3.    Myers, A. et al., (2014). Variation in the oxytocin receptor gene is associated with increased risk for anxiety, stress, and depression in individuals with a history of exposure to early life stress. Journal of Psychiatric Research. 59(2014), 93-100.

4.    Davis, MC. et al., (2014). Associations between oxytocin receptor genotypes and social cognitive performance in individuals with schizophrenia. Official Journal of the Schizophrenia Institutional Research Society. 159(2-3), 353-357.

5.    Kim, H. et al., (2010). Culture, distress, and oxytocin receptor polymorphism (OXTR) interact to influence emotional support seeking. PNAS. 107(36), 15717-15721.

6.    Sheikh, H.I. et al., (2013). Corticotropin-releasing hormone system polymorphisms are associated with children’s cortisol reactivity. Neuroscience. 229(2013), 1-11.

7.    Rodrigues, S. et al., (2009). Oxytocin receptor genetic variation relates to empathy and stress reactivity in humans. PNAS. 106(50), 21437-21441.

About Salimetrics:
Salimetrics’ assay kits and CLIA-certified testing services are used to measure salivary analytes related to stress, behavior and development, inflammation, sleep, reproduction, health and immune function. Founded in 1998 by Douglas A. Granger, Ph.D., Salimetrics, LLC support CROs, pharmaceuticals, academic researchers and the immunodiagnostic industry around the world with innovative immunoassay products, non-invasive saliva collection methods, and laboratory testing services.

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Chris Schwartz
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