The simple answer is yes. In fact, scientists have even been able to isolate the specific genetic factor that makes a person more susceptible to gum disease: interleukin-1. “Research has indicated that some people may be genetically susceptible to gum disease,” the American Academy of Periodontology finds (1). What is the mechanism that makes interleukin-1 work? If your cells produce cytokine or interleukin-1, you will be more prone to have not only gum disease but also serious gum disease.