Serotonin receptor (5HTR2A) gene polymorphism has been reported to be associated with clinical phenotypes in schizophrenia. The current study attempted to investigate a relationship between 5HTR2A 102T/C polymorphism and personality traits as well as clinical symptoms in patients with ICD-10 diagnoses of schizophrenia and affective disorders. 5HTR2A genotyping, clinical and psychological assessment were administered to 375 patients, 104 first-degree healthy relatives of the patients and 157 controls. In the patients an association was observed between the 2/2 5HTR2A genotype and scores on the Hypochondriasis scale (MMPI) (ANOVA, F = 4.56; P = 0.011) and trait anxiety (F = 4.21; P = 0.002). A significant difference between 1/1 and 2/2 genotypes has been also found for Neuroticism scores (EPI) (t = 2.18; P = 0.0031). No significant differences by 5HTR2A genotype were observed in either the control or first-degree relatives group for all scales studied. Positive, negative and psychopathological symptoms emerged higher in the 2/2 genotype patients compared to other genotype carriers. Therefore, the 2/2 genotype may contribute to produce the phenotype, with specific clinical and pathological features in common, regardless of nosologic heterogeneity of psychoses.
The data on Dostoevsky's epilepsy are ambiguous and often contradictory. It prompted consideration of certain genetic aspects of the writer 's pedigree for the clarification of this issue. The phenomenon of Dostoevsky's genius was for the first time contemplated from the standpoint of the contribution of genetic factors to his creative work. It was shown that Dostoevsky's ancestry can not be a source of hereditary predisposition to epilepsy. The available data question the genuine nature of his disease. Characteristic of Dostoevsky's ancestry is the wide occurrence of "creativeness" genes. Their cumulation together with a number of other factors verified in the writer can account for the phenomenon of his genius.
Human family and twin studies have established considerable heritable components influencing individual differences in personality traits as assessed by self-report questionnaires. We have investigated a trinucleotide repeat polymorphism in the androgen receptor gene and personality traits. Healthy Swedish subjects (n = 335) were assessed with the Karolinska Scales of Personality inventory. There were tendencies (P > or = 0.006) in some scales indicating possible relationships between the androgen receptor allele length and personality traits related to dominance and aggression. However, after correction for multiple testing, no significant differences were found. We conclude that no significant association could be found between the androgen receptor polymorphism investigated and any personality trait, although the tendencies found are worthwhile subjects for replication attempts.
Personality traits have been associated with cardiometabolic diseases and mental disorders as well as with longevity. However, the underlying mechanisms are not fully understood. Accelerated cellular aging may play a role in this process. We studied whether personality traits in late adulthood, as defined in the five-factor model (FFM), were associated with a biomarker of cellular vitality, leukocyte telomere length (LTL).
At a mean age of 63.4 (SD=2.8) years, 1671 (742 men, 929 women) participants from the Helsinki Birth Cohort Study filled in the Neuroticism, Extraversion and Openness Personality Inventory (NEO-PI). LTL was measured at a mean age of 61.5 (SD=2.9) years by using a real-time quantitative PCR method.
None of the FFM personality dimensions were significantly associated with the LTL in the analyses of both sexes combined. We however found interaction between sex and agreeableness (B=0.020, 95% CI=.008, 0.032, p=.001) and in the sex-specific analyses, men who scored higher on agreeableness (B=-0.086, 95% CI=-0.155, -0.016, p=.016) and women who scored lower on agreeableness (B=0.074, 95% CI=0.014, 0.134, p=.016) had shorter LTL.
FFM dimensions of personality were not associated with LTL in a sample of elderly individuals. The counterintuitive and sporadic sex specific finding on agreeableness requires replication. Overall our findings suggest that LTL, a biomarker of cellular aging, may not offer insight into the associations between personality, longevity and health.
Previous research in the Swedish Adoption/Twin Study of Aging (SATSA) has found genetic influences on life events (R. Plomin, P. Lichtenstein, N.L. Pedersen, G.E. McClearn, & J.R. Nesselroade, 1990). The present study extends this finding by examining sex differences in genetic and environmental contributions to life events and by examining personality as a mediator of genetic influences on life events in SATSA. Analyses were based on 320 twin pairs, including identical and fraternal twins reared together and apart (mean age = 58.6 years). Controllable, desirable, and undesirable life events were revealed significant genetic variance for women. There was no significant genetic variance for either sex for uncontrollable events. Multivariate analyses of personality (as indexed by Neuroticism, Extraversion, and Openness to Experience) and life events suggest that all of the genetic variance on controllable, desirable, and undesirable life events for women is common to personality. Thus, in this sample of older adult women, genetic influences on life events appear to be entirely mediated by personality.
Association between Y chromosome haplotype variation and alcohol dependence and related personality traits was investigated in a large sample of psychiatrically diagnosed Finnish males. Haplotypes were constructed for 359 individuals using alleles at eight loci (seven microsatellite loci and a nucleotide substitution in the DYZ3 alphoid satellite locus). A cladogram linking the 102 observed haplotype configurations was constructed by using parsimony with a single-step mutation model. Then, a series of contingency tables nested according to the cladogram hierarchy were used to test for association between Y haplotype and alcohol dependence. Finally, using only alcohol-dependent subjects, we tested for association between Y haplotype and personality variables postulated to define subtypes of alcoholism-antisocial personality disorder, novelty seeking, harm avoidance, and reward dependence. Significant association with alcohol dependence was observed at three Y haplotype clades, with significance levels of P = 0.002, P = 0.020, and P = 0.010. Within alcohol-dependent subjects, no relationship was revealed between Y haplotype and antisocial personality disorder, novelty seeking, harm avoidance, or reward dependence. These results demonstrate, by using a fully objective association design, that differences among Y chromosomes contribute to variation in vulnerability to alcohol dependence. However, they do not demonstrate an association between Y haplotype and the personality variables thought to underlie the subtypes of alcoholism.
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The UBC Twin Project is an on-going study of personality and personality disorder that has collected personality data on approximately 1000 adult volunteer twin pairs. The primary purpose of the study is to develop and validate measures of the major forms of personality disorder as a quantitative alternative to the classificatory system first proposed by the DSM-III using the standard methods of personality and behavioural genetics research. To date, the study has explored the univariate and multivariate relationships between the major personality and personality disorder inventories, and their relationships to other psychopathologies including the mood and anxiety disorders and key psychological variables, such as cognitive ability, attachment and attitudes. The results have several implications for personality and personality disorders, most notably a rationalized diagnostic/nosological system to enhanced measurement instruments that index and reflect the influence of specific genetic and environmental influences.
In several twin studies the relative contribution of genetic factors for personality traits has amounted to figures between 40 and 60%. In the present study we investigated to which degree polymorphisms in the 5-HTT and AP-2beta genes are implicated in the neural processes involved in the formation of Temperament and Character traits, as estimated by Cloninger's TCI. Considering the background of previous reports, associations with the character Self-Transcendence and its sub-scale Spiritual Acceptance in particular, were of interest. A stratified random sample of 200 individuals (total population=5173), matched for age, gender and risk behaviors, from volunteering 16- and 19-year-old adolescents students in Sweden was investigated. Cloninger's TCI inventory was used for investigation of temperament and character traits. Blood samples were used for analyses of a promoter serotonin transporter polymorphism (5-HTTLPR) and an intron 2 polymorphism in the transcription factor AP-2beta gene. Among boys individuals with presence of the short 5-HTTLPR genotype showed lower scores, whereas individuals with presence of the short AP-2beta genotype showed higher scores of personality character Self-Transcendence and its sub-scale Spiritual Acceptance. Among girls no effect of either genotype was found. Both among boys and girls, significant interactive effects were found between 5-HTTLPR and AP-2beta genotypes, with regard to Self-Transcendence and Spiritual acceptance. Boys and girls with the combination of presence of the short 5-HTTLPR, and homozygosity for the long AP-2beta genotype scored significantly lower on Self-Transcendence and Spiritual Acceptance.
Previous research has indicated that extraversion and neuroticism are substantially affected both by genotype and environment. This study assesses genetic and environmental influences on the other three components of the five-factor model of personality: Openness to Experience, Agreeableness, and Conscientiousness. An abbreviated version of the NEO Personality Inventory (NEO-PI) was administered to 82 pairs of identical twins and 171 pairs of fraternal twins reared apart and 132 pairs of identical twins and 167 pairs of fraternal twins reared together. Estimates of genetic and environmental effects for Openness and Conscientiousness were similar to those found in other studies of personality: Genetic influence was substantial and there was little evidence of shared rearing environment. Results for Agreeableness were different: Genetic influence accounted for only 12% of the variance and shared rearing environment accounted for 21% of the variance. Few significant gender or age differences for genetic and environmental parameters were found in model-fitting analyses.