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Journal ArticleDOI

The genetics of human personality.

TL;DR: Findings from genetic studies of personality have furthered the understanding about the genetic etiology of personality, which, like neuropsychiatric diseases themselves, is highly polygenic.
Abstract: Personality traits are the relatively enduring patterns of thoughts, feelings and behaviors that reflect the tendency to respond in certain ways under certain circumstances. Twin and family studies have showed that personality traits are moderately heritable, and can predict various lifetime outcomes, including psychopathology. The Research Domain Criteria characterizes psychiatric diseases as extremes of normal tendencies, including specific personality traits. This implies that heritable variation in personality traits, such as neuroticism, would share a common genetic basis with psychiatric diseases, such as major depressive disorder. Despite considerable efforts over the past several decades, the genetic variants that influence personality are only beginning to be identified. We review these recent and increasingly rapid developments, which focus on the assessment of personality via several commonly used personality questionnaires in healthy human subjects. Study designs covered include twin, linkage, candidate gene association studies, genome-wide association studies and polygenic analyses. Findings from genetic studies of personality have furthered our understanding about the genetic etiology of personality, which, like neuropsychiatric diseases themselves, is highly polygenic. Polygenic analyses have showed genetic correlations between personality and psychopathology, confirming that genetic studies of personality can help to elucidate the etiology of several neuropsychiatric diseases.
Citations
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23 Sep 2014
TL;DR: This work identifies several common genetic variants associated with cognitive performance using a two-stage approach: a genome-wide association study of educational attainment to generate a set of candidates, and then the association of these variants with Cognitive performance is estimated.
Abstract: We identify common genetic variants associated with cognitive performance using a two-stage approach, which we call the proxyphenotype method. First, we conduct a genome-wide association study of educational attainment in a large sample (n = 106,736), which produces a set of 69 education-associated SNPs. Second, using independent samples (n = 24,189), we measure the association of these education-associated SNPs with cognitive performance. Three SNPs (rs1487441, rs7923609, and rs2721173) are significantly associated with cognitive performance after correction for multiple hypothesis testing. In an independent sample of older Americans (n = 8,652), we also show that a polygenic score derived from the education-associated SNPs is associated with memory and absence of dementia. Convergent evidence from a set of bioinformatics analyses implicates four specific genes (KNCMA1, NRXN1, POU2F3, and SCRT). All of these genes are associated with a particular neurotransmitter pathway involved in synaptic plasticity, the main cellular mechanism for learning and memory.

237 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: Fletcher and Kenny argue the merits of opposing positions on the concept of food addiction, which suggests that food and drug addiction share similar features that may reflect common underlying neural mechanisms.

131 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
Karri Silventoinen1, Karri Silventoinen2, Aline Jelenkovic3, Aline Jelenkovic1, Reijo Sund1, Reijo Sund4, Antti Latvala1, Chika Honda2, Fujio Inui2, Fujio Inui5, Rie Tomizawa2, Mikio Watanabe2, Norio Sakai2, Esther Rebato3, Andreas Busjahn, Jessica Tyler6, John L. Hopper6, John L. Hopper7, Juan R. Ordoñana8, Juan F. Sánchez-Romera8, Lucía Colodro-Conde8, Lucía Colodro-Conde9, Lucas Calais-Ferreira6, Vinícius Cunha Oliveira, Paulo H. Ferreira10, Emanuela Medda11, Lorenza Nisticò11, Virgilia Toccaceli11, Catherine Derom12, Catherine Derom13, Robert F. Vlietinck13, Ruth J. F. Loos14, Sisira Siribaddana15, Matthew Hotopf16, Matthew Hotopf17, Athula Sumathipala18, Fruhling Rijsdijk16, Glen E. Duncan19, Dedra Buchwald19, Per Tynelius20, Finn Rasmussen20, Qihua Tan21, Dongfeng Zhang22, Zengchang Pang23, Patrik K. E. Magnusson20, Nancy L. Pedersen20, Anna K. Dahl Aslan24, Anna K. Dahl Aslan20, Amie E. Hwang25, Thomas M. Mack25, Robert F. Krueger26, Matt McGue26, Shandell Pahlen27, Ingunn Brandt28, Thomas Sevenius Nilsen28, Jennifer R. Harris28, Nicholas G. Martin9, Sarah E. Medland9, Grant W. Montgomery29, Gonneke Willemsen30, Meike Bartels30, Catharina E. M. van Beijsterveldt30, Carol E. Franz31, William S. Kremen32, William S. Kremen31, Michael J. Lyons33, Judy L. Silberg34, Hermine H. Maes34, Christian Kandler35, Tracy L. Nelson36, Keith E. Whitfield37, Robin P. Corley38, Brooke M. Huibregtse38, Margaret Gatz20, Margaret Gatz25, David A. Butler39, Adam Domonkos Tarnoki40, David Laszlo Tarnoki40, Hang A Park41, Hang A Park7, Jooyeon Lee7, Soo Ji Lee7, Joohon Sung7, Yoshie Yokoyama42, Thorkild I. A. Sørensen43, Dorret I. Boomsma30, Jaakko Kaprio1 
TL;DR: Both genetic and environmental factors shared by co-twins have an important influence on individual differences in educational attainment, and the effect of genetic factors on educational attainment has decreased from the cohorts born before to those born after the 1950s.
Abstract: We investigated the heritability of educational attainment and how it differed between birth cohorts and cultural-geographic regions. A classical twin design was applied to pooled data from 28 cohorts representing 16 countries and including 193,518 twins with information on educational attainment at 25 years of age or older. Genetic factors explained the major part of individual differences in educational attainment (heritability: a2 = 0.43; 0.41-0.44), but also environmental variation shared by co-twins was substantial (c2 = 0.31; 0.30-0.33). The proportions of educational variation explained by genetic and shared environmental factors did not differ between Europe, North America and Australia, and East Asia. When restricted to twins 30 years or older to confirm finalized education, the heritability was higher in the older cohorts born in 1900-1949 (a2 = 0.44; 0.41-0.46) than in the later cohorts born in 1950-1989 (a2 = 0.38; 0.36-0.40), with a corresponding lower influence of common environmental factors (c2 = 0.31; 0.29-0.33 and c2 = 0.34; 0.32-0.36, respectively). In conclusion, both genetic and environmental factors shared by co-twins have an important influence on individual differences in educational attainment. The effect of genetic factors on educational attainment has decreased from the cohorts born before to those born after the 1950s.

108 citations

Stéphanie Martine van den Berg, Marleen H.M. de Moor, Matt McGue, Erik Pettersson, Antonio Terracciano, Karin J. H. Verweij, Najaf Amin, Jaime Derringer, Tõnu Esko, Gerard van Grootheest, Narelle K. Hansell, Jennifer E. Huffman, Bettina Konte, Jari Lahti, Michelle Luciano, Lindsay K. Matteson, Alexander Viktorin, Jasper Wouda, Arpana Agrawal, Jueri Allik, Laura J. Bierut, Ulla Broms, Harry Campbell, George Davey Smith, Johan G. Eriksson, Luigi Ferrucci, Barbera Franke, Jean-Paul Fox, Eco J. C. de Geus, Ina Giegling, Alan J. Gow, Richard A. Grucza, Annette M. Hartmann, Andrew C. Heath, Kauko Heikkilae, William G. Iacono, Joost G. E. Janzing, Markus Jokela, Lambertus A. Kiemeney, Terho Lehtimäki, Pamela A. F. Madden, Patrik K. E. Magnusson, Kate Northstone, Teresa Nutile, Klaasjan G. Ouwens, Aarno Palotie, Alison Pattie, Anu-Katriina Pesonen, Ozren Polasek, Lea Pulkkinen, Laura Pulkki-Råback, Olli T. Raitakari, Anu Realo, Richard J. Rose, Daniela Ruggiero, Ilkka Seppälä, Wendy S. Slutske, David C. Smyth, Rossella Sorice, John M. Starr, Angelina R. Sutin, Toshiko Tanaka, Josine Verhagen, Sita H. Vermeulen, Eero Vuoksimaa, Elisabeth Widen, Gonneke Willemsen, Margaret J. Wright, Lina Zgaga, Dan Rujescu, Andres Metspalu, James F. Wilson, Marina Ciullo, Caroline Hayward, Igor Rudan, Ian J. Deary, Katri Räikkönen, Alejandro Arias Vasquez, Paul T. Costa, Liisa Keltikangas-Järvinen, Cornelia M. van Duijn, Brenda W.J.H. Penninx, Robert F. Krueger, David M. Evans, Jaakko Kaprio, Nancy L. Pedersen, Nicholas G. Martin, Dorret I. Boomsma 
28 Aug 2014
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors apply Item-Response Theory (IRT) to map item data from different inventories to the same underlying constructs, which can be applied to any mega- or meta-analytic study in which item-based behavioral measures need to be harmonized.
Abstract: Mega- or meta-analytic studies (e.g. genome-wide association studies) are increasingly used in behavior genetics. An issue in such studies is that phenotypes are often measured by different instruments across study cohorts, requiring harmonization of measures so that more powerful fixed effect meta-analyses can be employed. Within the Genetics of Personality Consortium, we demonstrate for two clinically relevant personality traits, Neuroticism and Extraversion, how Item-Response Theory (IRT) can be applied to map item data from different inventories to the same underlying constructs. Personality item data were analyzed in >160,000 individuals from 23 cohorts across Europe, USA and Australia in which Neuroticism and Extraversion were assessed by nine different personality inventories. Results showed that harmonization was very successful for most personality inventories and moderately successful for some. Neuroticism and Extraversion inventories were largely measurement invariant across cohorts, in particular when comparing cohorts from countries where the same language is spoken. The IRT-based scores for Neuroticism and Extraversion were heritable (48 and 49 %, respectively, based on a meta-analysis of six twin cohorts, total N = 29,496 and 29,501 twin pairs, respectively) with a significant part of the heritability due to non-additive genetic factors. For Extraversion, these genetic factors qualitatively differ across sexes. We showed that our IRT method can lead to a large increase in sample size and therefore statistical power. The IRT approach may be applied to any mega- or meta-analytic study in which item-based behavioral measures need to be harmonized.

99 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: Methods for measuring the efficiency of the attention networks in older children and adults and their development from infancy are developed, allowing us to associate molecular mechanisms to fundamental behavioural outcomes.
Abstract: The attention networks of the human brain are important control systems that develop from infancy into adulthood. While they are common to everyone, they differ in efficiency, forming the basis of individual differences in attention. We have developed methods for measuring the efficiency of these networks in older children and adults and have also examined their development from infancy. During infancy the alerting and orienting networks are dominant in control of the infant's actions, but later an executive network dominates. Each network has been associated with its main neuromodulator and these have led to associations with genes related to that network neuromodulator. The links between parent reports of their child's effortful control and the executive attention network allow us to associate molecular mechanisms to fundamental behavioural outcomes.This article is part of the theme issue 'Diverse perspectives on diversity: multi-disciplinary approaches to taxonomies of individual differences'.

71 citations

References
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Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The GCTA software is a versatile tool to estimate and partition complex trait variation with large GWAS data sets and focuses on the function of estimating the variance explained by all the SNPs on the X chromosome and testing the hypotheses of dosage compensation.
Abstract: For most human complex diseases and traits, SNPs identified by genome-wide association studies (GWAS) explain only a small fraction of the heritability. Here we report a user-friendly software tool called genome-wide complex trait analysis (GCTA), which was developed based on a method we recently developed to address the “missing heritability” problem. GCTA estimates the variance explained by all the SNPs on a chromosome or on the whole genome for a complex trait rather than testing the association of any particular SNP to the trait. We introduce GCTA's five main functions: data management, estimation of the genetic relationships from SNPs, mixed linear model analysis of variance explained by the SNPs, estimation of the linkage disequilibrium structure, and GWAS simulation. We focus on the function of estimating the variance explained by all the SNPs on the X chromosome and testing the hypotheses of dosage compensation. The GCTA software is a versatile tool to estimate and partition complex trait variation with large GWAS data sets.

5,867 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
13 Sep 1996-Science
TL;DR: The identification of the genetic basis of complex human diseases such as schizophrenia and diabetes has proven difficult as mentioned in this paper, and Risch and Merikangas proposed that they can best accomplish this goal by combining the power of the human genome project with association studies.
Abstract: The identification of the genetic basis of complex human diseases such as schizophrenia and diabetes has proven difficult. In their Perspective, Risch and Merikangas propose that we can best accomplish this goal by combining the power of the human genome project with association studies, a method for determining the basis of a genetic disease.

5,143 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
29 Nov 1996-Science
TL;DR: The short variant of the polymorphism reduces the transcriptional efficiency of the 5-HTT gene promoter, resulting in decreased 5HTT expression and 5HT uptake in lymphoblasts as discussed by the authors, which is the site of action of widely used uptake-inhibiting antidepressant and antianxiety drugs.
Abstract: Transporter-facilitated uptake of serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine or 5-HT) has been implicated in anxiety in humans and animal models and is the site of action of widely used uptake-inhibiting antidepressant and antianxiety drugs. Human 5-HT transporter (5-HTT) gene transcription is modulated by a common polymorphism in its upstream regulatory region. The short variant of the polymorphism reduces the transcriptional efficiency of the 5-HTT gene promoter, resulting in decreased 5-HTT expression and 5-HT uptake in lymphoblasts. Association studies in two independent samples totaling 505 individuals revealed that the 5-HTT polymorphism accounts for 3 to 4 percent of total variation and 7 to 9 percent of inherited variance in anxiety-related personality traits in individuals as well as sibships.

5,072 citations


"The genetics of human personality." refers background in this paper

  • ...Similarly, early publications reported that variation in the serotonin transporter gene 5HTT (SERT or SLC6A4), which is responsible for reuptake of 5-HT from synapses, was associated with neuroticism(46,47) and harm avoidance (Tridimensional Personality Questionnaire, TPQ), which is related to neuroticism.(55) However, meta-analyses of over 40 studies involving 5-HTTLPR variants show that this genotype is not consistently associated with neuroticism (Eysenck Personality Questionnaire, EPQ) or harm avoidance (TPQ)....

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Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: A psychobiological model of the structure and development of personality that accounts for dimensions of both temperament and character is described, for the first time, for three dimensions of character that mature in adulthood and influence personal and social effectiveness by insight learning about self-concepts.
Abstract: In this study, we describe a psychobiological model of the structure and development of personality that accounts for dimensions of both temperament and character. Previous research has confirmed four dimensions of temperament: novelty seeking, harm avoidance, reward dependence, and persistence, which are independently heritable, manifest early in life, and involve preconceptual biases in perceptual memory and habit formation. For the first time, we describe three dimensions of character that mature in adulthood and influence personal and social effectiveness by insight learning about self-concepts. Self-concepts vary according to the extent to which a person identifies the self as (1) an autonomous individual, (2) an integral part of humanity, and (3) an integral part of the universe as a whole. Each aspect of self-concept corresponds to one of three character dimensions called self-directedness, cooperativeness, and selftranscendence, respectively. We also describe the conceptual background and development of a self-report measure of these dimensions, the Temperament and Character Inventory. Data on 300 individuals from the general population support the reliability and structure of these seven personality dimensions. We discuss the implications for studies of information processing, inheritance, development, diagnosis, and treatment. (Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1993;50:975-990)

4,964 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: It is found that polygenicity accounts for the majority of the inflation in test statistics in many GWAS of large sample size, and the LD Score regression intercept can be used to estimate a more powerful and accurate correction factor than genomic control.
Abstract: Both polygenicity (many small genetic effects) and confounding biases, such as cryptic relatedness and population stratification, can yield an inflated distribution of test statistics in genome-wide association studies (GWAS). However, current methods cannot distinguish between inflation from a true polygenic signal and bias. We have developed an approach, LD Score regression, that quantifies the contribution of each by examining the relationship between test statistics and linkage disequilibrium (LD). The LD Score regression intercept can be used to estimate a more powerful and accurate correction factor than genomic control. We find strong evidence that polygenicity accounts for the majority of the inflation in test statistics in many GWAS of large sample size.

3,708 citations

Trending Questions (2)
What is personality traits?

Personality traits are enduring patterns of thoughts, feelings, and behaviors that reflect how individuals tend to respond in certain situations.

Do genetics influence personality?

Yes, genetics do influence personality traits, as shown by twin and family studies that have demonstrated moderate heritability estimates for various personality traits.