A meta-analysis of the association between DRD4 polymorphism and novelty seeking.

School of Business Administration, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Mt Scopus, Jerusalem, Israel.
Molecular Psychiatry (Impact Factor: 15.15). 02/2002; 7(7):712-7. DOI: 10.1038/
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT A meta-analytical review of 20 studies (n = 3907) of the association between DRD4 polymorphism and novelty seeking suggests the following conclusions: (a) on average, there is no association between DRD4 polymorphism and novelty seeking (average d = 0.06 with 95% CI of +/- 0.09), where 13 reports suggest that the presence of longer alleles is associated with higher novelty seeking scores and seven reports suggest the opposite; (b) there is a true heterogeneity among the studies (ie, unknown moderators do exist) but the strength of the association between DRD4 polymorphism and novelty seeking in the presence of any (unknown) moderator is likely to be weak; (c) search for moderators has not yielded any reliable explanation for the variability among studies. We propose that to find such moderators, theory-driven research for potential interaction, coupled with larger sample sizes should be employed. The growing availability of powerful statistical techniques, high-throughput genotyping and large numbers of polymorphic markers such as single nucleotide polymorphisms makes such proposed studies increasingly feasible.

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    ABSTRACT: Human personality traits are moderately heritable but only recently have specific poly-morphisms been associated with particular personality dimensions especially anxiety-related and novelty-seeking traits. The first genome-wide scan for personality traits was recently carried out by Cloninger et al. [1998: Am J Med Genet 81:313–317] and his colleagues and they reported that a region on 8p21 showed linkage to TPQ Harm Avoidance, an anxiety-related personality trait. Towards replicating and extending these results, we examined both 8p21 and two additional chro-mosomal regions (1q21–24 and 22q12–13) for linkage to TPQ personality traits by genotyp-ing at least three microsatellite markers in each region in a group of 384 sibling pairs. We found evidence for linkage to TPQ HA at 8p21– 23 (Lod score ¼ 2.907) confirming in an independent sample the initial findings by Clonin-ger and his colleagues.
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    ABSTRACT: Recent studies indicate that polymorphisms of the DRD4 gene may be related to behavioural variation in mammals and birds. The purpose of this study was to ascertain a connection between DRD4 genotypes and behavioural patterns in a wild passerine bird during breeding time. We evaluated changes in birds’ parental provisioning behaviour in the presence of a novel object. As a behavioural trait, we measured the duration of feeding interruption from the first time that each bird noticed the novel object until they entered the nest box. We found a gender-specific association between DRD4 gene polymorphism and parental behaviour. Males with a CC genotype delayed feeding for a longer period than those with CT and TT genotypes. No significant effect of genotype on provisioning behaviour was observed among females. We conclude that (i) DRD4 gene polymorphism in wild birds can be associated with behaviour related to fearfulness, and (ii) this effect is supposedly gender-specific during the breeding time, potentially explained by sex differences in parental care or hormonal levels.
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