Genetics, Behavioral

Publication Title: 
Nature Methods

A critical requirement for research using model organisms is a well-defined and consistent diet. There is currently no complete chemically defined (holidic) diet available for Drosophila melanogaster. We describe a holidic medium that is equal in performance to an oligidic diet optimized for adult fecundity and lifespan. This holidic diet supports development over multiple generations but at a reduced rate. Over 7 years of experiments, the holidic diet yielded more consistent experimental outcomes than did oligidic food for egg laying by females.

Author(s): 
Piper, Matthew D. W.
Blanc, Eric
Leit„o-GonÁalves, Ricardo
Yang, Mingyao
He, Xiaoli
Linford, Nancy J.
Hoddinott, Matthew P.
Hopfen, Corinna
Soultoukis, George A.
Niemeyer, Christine
Kerr, Fiona
Pletcher, Scott D.
Ribeiro, Carlos
Partridge, Linda
Publication Title: 
Medical Hypotheses

Cultural inheritance, a genetic-based inheritance system transmitted by the brain, has previously been proposed to underlie normal behaviour and mental disorders. In cultural inheritance epigenetic mechanisms are involved in gene expression. This paper proposes that since there are marked epigenetic mechanisms involved in the expression of genes underlying primary (idiopathic) mental disorders, epimutations, rather than genetic mutations, underlie these disorders.

Author(s): 
Peedicayil, J.
Publication Title: 
Trends in Neurosciences

Our understanding of human disorders that affect higher cognitive functions has greatly advanced in recent decades, and over 20 genes associated with non-syndromic mental retardation have been identified during the past 15 years. However, proteins encoded by "cognition genes" have such diverse neurodevelopmental functions that delineating specific pathogenetic pathways still poses a tremendous challenge.

Author(s): 
Persico, Antonio M.
Bourgeron, Thomas
Publication Title: 
American Journal of Medical Genetics. Part B, Neuropsychiatric Genetics: The Official Publication of the International Society of Psychiatric Genetics

The serotonin reuptake transporter (5HTT) is thought to be the principal regulator of serotonergic activity and epigenetic effects at this locus are thought to be important moderators of vulnerability to neuropsychiatric illness. In attempt to understand the basis of this regulation, several gene polymorphisms that affect 5HTT mRNA levels have been described. But to date, no clear mechanism linking these polymorphisms to vulnerability to epigenetic effects have been described.

Author(s): 
Philibert, Robert
Madan, Anup
Andersen, Allan
Cadoret, Remi
Packer, Hans
Sandhu, Harinder
Publication Title: 
American Journal of Medical Genetics. Part B, Neuropsychiatric Genetics: The Official Publication of the International Society of Psychiatric Genetics

The World Congress of Psychiatric Genetics (WCPG) has become an annual event since the early 1990's sponsored by the International Society of Psychiatric Genetics (ISPG). Each year the latest published and unpublished findings are aired for discussion by representatives of the majority of research programs on this topic world-wide. The 2007 congress was held in New York City and attracted over 1000 researchers.

Author(s): 
Alkelai, Anna
Baum, Amber
Carless, Melanie
Crowley, James
Dasbanerjee, Tania
Dempster, Emma
Docherty, Sophia
Hare, Elizabeth
Galsworthy, Michael J.
Grover, Deepak
Glubb, Dylan
Karlsson, Robert
Mill, Jonathan
Sen, Srijan
Quinones, Marlon P.
Vallender, Eric J.
Verma, Ranjana
Vijayan, Neetha N.
Villafuerte, Sandra
Voineskos, Aristotle N.
Volk, Heather
Yu, Lan
Zimmermann, Petra
DeLisi, Lynn E.
Publication Title: 
Duodecim; Laaketieteellinen Aikakauskirja

Epigenetic mechanisms mediate the interaction between environment and genome. On molecular level, these mechanisms are active in plastic processes of the brain and influence brain function and the person's ability to adapt to the environment. Genomic variations provide individual options for this adaptation, and a spectrum of behavioral patterns necessary for species preservation.

Author(s): 
Paunio, Tiina
Publication Title: 
The Behavioral and Brain Sciences

Several recent research findings have implicated brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) as a mediator of neuronal plasticity. The BDNF gene is under extensive epigenetic regulation, which modulates how much or how little environmental experiences become encoded within neurons and neural circuits. Future scientific progress within the postgenomic paradigm requires elucidation of the functional trajectory in neogenetic and environment interactions.

Author(s): 
Schanker, Benjamin D.
Publication Title: 
The Behavioral and Brain Sciences

Critically significant parental effects in behavioral genetics may be partly understood as a consequence of maternal brain structure and function of caregiving systems recently studied in humans as well as rodents. Key parental brain areas regulate emotions, motivation/reward, and decision making, as well as more complex social-cognitive circuits. Additional key environmental factors must include socioeconomic status and paternal brain physiology. These have implications for developmental and evolutionary biology as well as public policy.

Author(s): 
Swain, James E.
Perkins, Suzanne C.
Dayton, Carolyn J.
Finegood, Eric D.
Ho, S. Shaun
Publication Title: 
Advances in Child Development and Behavior

Several large-scale searches for genes that influence complex human traits, such as intelligence and personality, in the normal range of variation have failed to identify even one gene that makes a significant difference. All previously published claims for genetic influences of this kind now appear to have been false positives. For more serious psychiatric and medical disorders such as schizophrenia and autism, several genes have been found where a rare mutation contributes to abnormal behavior, but in many instances they are de novo mutations not obtained from a parent.

Author(s): 
Wahlsten, Douglas
Publication Title: 
Development and Psychopathology

The disciplines of developmental psychopathology and behavior genetics are concerned with many of the same questions about the etiology and course of normal and abnormal behavior and about the factors that promote typical development despite the presence of risk. The goal of this paper is to summarize how research in behavior genetics has shed light on questions that are central to developmental psychopathology.

Author(s): 
Jaffee, Sara R.
Price, Thomas S.
Reyes, Teresa M.

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