Navigation Links
Hush little baby... Linking genes, brain and behavior in children
Date:7/13/2009

It comes as no surprise that some babies are more difficult to soothe than others but frustrated parents may be relieved to know that this is not necessarily an indication of their parenting skills. According to a new report in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, children's temperament may be due in part to a combination of a certain gene and a specific pattern of brain activity.

The pattern of brain activity in the frontal cortex of the brain has been associated with various types of temperament in children. For example, infants who have more activity in the left frontal cortex are characterized as temperamentally "easy" and are easily calmed down. Conversely, infants with greater activity in the right half of the frontal cortex are temperamentally "negative" and are easily distressed and more difficult to soothe.

In this study, Louis Schmidt from McMaster University and his colleagues investigated the interaction between brain activity and the DRD4 gene to see if it predicted children's temperament. In a number of previous studies, the longer version (or allele) of this gene had been linked to increased sensory responsiveness, risk-seeking behavior, and attention problems in children. In the present study, brain activity was measured in 9-month-old infants via electroencephalography (EEG) recordings. When the children were 48 months old, their mothers completed questionnaires regarding their behavior and DNA samples were taken from the children for analysis of the DRD4 gene.

The results reveal interesting relations among brain activity, behavior, and the DRD4 gene. Among children who exhibited more activity in the left frontal cortex at 9 months, those who had the long version of the DRD4 gene were more soothable at 48 months than those who possessed the shorter version of the gene. However, the children with the long version of the DRD4 gene who had more activity in the right frontal cortex were the least soothable and exhibited more attention problems compared to the other children.

These findings indicate that the long version of the DRD4 gene may act as a moderator of children's temperament. The authors note that the "results suggest that it is possible that the DRD4 long allele plays different roles (for better and for worse) in child temperament" depending on internal conditions (the environment inside their bodies) and conclude that the pattern of brain activity (that is, greater activation in left or right frontal cortex) may influence whether this gene is a protective factor or a risk factor for soothability and attention problems. The authors cautioned that there are likely other factors that interact with these two measures in predicting children's temperament.


'/>"/>

Contact: Barbara Isanski
bisanski@psychologicalscience.org
Association for Psychological Science
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Mothers little helpers
2. Choosing dry or wet food for cats makes little difference
3. Book on little-known species and conservation provides guidance to managers and others
4. Ancient lemurs little finger poses mystery
5. Variety is the spice of life: too many males, too little time...
6. Too much or too little weight gain poses risks to pregnant mothers, babies
7. Getting better with a little help from our micro friends
8. MSU researcher uses grant to study little-known but largely useful microbes
9. Little teeth suggest big jump in primate timeline
10. Building a stronger roof over your head: 3 little pigs project begins first tests
11. A little nitrogen can go a long way
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:1/6/2017)... -- Delta ID Inc., a leader in consumer-grade iris scanning ... CES® 2017. Delta ID has collaborated with Gentex Corporation ... of iris scanning as a secure, reliable and convenient ... car, and as a way to elevate the security ... ID and Gentex will demonstrate (booth #7326 LVCC) a ...
(Date:12/22/2016)... 2016  As part of its longstanding mission to improve ... company, recently released its latest children,s book, titled ... on the topics of inheritance and variation of traits that ... in elementary school classrooms in the US. ... Ariana Killoran , whose previous book with 23andMe, ...
(Date:12/19/2016)... BARCELONA , España y TORONTO , 19 ... fusión con Northern Biologics Inc. que permitirá el desarrollo acelerado de ... ensayos clínicos en varios tipos de tumor en 2017, con múltiples ... ... de su clase con objetivo en el factor inhibidor de leucemia ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:1/18/2017)... Jan. 18, 2017 Shareholder rights law firm ... whether the board members of CoLucid Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: ... connection with the proposed sale of the Company to ... that develops small molecules for the acute treatment of ... it had signed a definitive merger agreement with Eli ...
(Date:1/18/2017)... - SQI Diagnostics Inc. (TSX-V: SQD; OTCQX: SQIDF) ... and commercializes proprietary technologies and products for advanced ... that Cameron Prange , President of Kingsdale ... Board of Directors.  Mr. Prange,s resignation is related ... limited both his ability to act on behalf ...
(Date:1/17/2017)... , ... January 17, 2017 , ... ... Balance™ GT soybeans. The new Balance™ GT Soybean Performance System will combine industry-leading ... isoxaflutole, the active ingredient in the new Balance® Bean herbicide. The Balance™ GT ...
(Date:1/17/2017)... Roka Bioscience, Inc. (NASDAQ: ROKA ), a ... detection of foodborne pathogens today announced the appointment of Mary ... Thomas , the Company,s President and CEO since 2009, who will ... The changes are effective today. In addition, Ms. Duseau ... ...
Breaking Biology Technology: