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  • 1. de Frias, Cindy M
    et al.
    Annerbrink, Kristina
    Westberg, Lars
    Eriksson, Elias
    Adolfsson, Rolf
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Clinical Sciences, Psychiatry.
    Nilsson, Lars-Göran
    COMT gene polymorphism is associated with declarative memory in adulthood and old age2004In: Behavior Genetics, ISSN 0001-8244, E-ISSN 1573-3297, Vol. 34, no 5, p. 533-539Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Variation in memory performance is to a large extent explained by genes. In the prefrontal cortex, the catechol O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene is essential in the metabolic degradation of dopamine, a neurotransmitter implicated in cognitive functions. The present study examined the effect of a polymorphism in the COMT gene on individual differences and changes in memory in adulthood and old age. Tests assessing episodic and semantic memory were administered to 286 men (initially aged 35-85 years) from a random sample of the population (i.e., the Betula prospective cohort study) at two occasions followed over a 5-year period. Carriers of the Met/Met genotype (with low enzyme activity) performed better on episodic and semantic memory, as compared to carriers of the Val allele (with higher enzyme activity). Division of episodic memory into its recall and recognition components showed that the difference was specific to episodic recall, not recognition tasks; an effect that was observed across three age groups (middle-age, young-old, and old-old adults) and over a 5-year period. The COMT gene is a plausible candidate gene for memory functioning in adulthood and old age.

  • 2.
    Friberg, Urban
    Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Ecology and Environmental Sciences.
    Genetic variation in male and female reproductive characters associated with sexual conflict in Drosophila melanogaster2005In: Behavior Genetics, ISSN 0001-8244, E-ISSN 1573-3297, Vol. 35, no 4, p. 455-462Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Recent studies have shown that elevated mating, courtship and seminal substances affect female fitness negatively in Drosophila melanogaster. It has also been shown that males vary with respect to these characters and that male harm to females correlates positively with components of male fitness. These results suggest that there is sexual conflict over the effect of such male characters. An important component of this scenario is that females have evolved counteradaptations to male harm, but so far there is limited evidence for this. Here I define female resistance as the ability to withstand an increased exposure to males. Across 10 genetically differentiated lines of D. melanogaster, I found genetic variation among females in the reduction of lifespan that followed from exposure to males of different durations. There was also genetic variation among males with regards to the degree to which they decrease the lifespan of their mates. These results suggest that genetic variation for female ability to endure male sexually antagonistic adaptations exists and may play an important role in male–female coevolution.

  • 3. Mosing, Miriam
    et al.
    Johannesson, Magnus
    Madison, Guy
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
    Magnusson, Patrik
    Cesarini, David
    Nakamura, Jeanne
    Pedersen, Nancy
    Ullen, Fredrik
    Genetic influences on flow proneness and its relationship to behavioral inhibition and locus of control2012In: Behavior Genetics, ISSN 0001-8244, E-ISSN 1573-3297, Vol. 42, no 6, p. 956-956Article in journal (Other academic)
  • 4. Mosing, Miriam
    et al.
    Madison, Guy
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
    Pedersen, Nancy
    Ullén, Fredrik
    Genetic and environmental influences on the relationship between different measures of music ability and IQ2013In: Behavior Genetics, ISSN 0001-8244, E-ISSN 1573-3297, Vol. 43, no 6, p. 533-533Article in journal (Other academic)
  • 5.
    Olofsson, Jonas
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
    Michael, Rönnlund
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
    Nordin, Steven
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
    Nyberg, Lars
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Radiation Sciences, Diagnostic Radiology. Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Integrative Medical Biology (IMB).
    Nilsson, Lars-Göran
    Department of Psychology, Stockholm University, 10691 Stockholm, Sweden.
    Larsson, Maria
    Department of Psychology, Stockholm University, 10691 Stockholm, Sweden.
    Odor identification deficit as a predictor of five-year global cognitive change: Interactive effects with age and ApoE-ε42009In: Behavior Genetics, ISSN 0001-8244, E-ISSN 1573-3297, Vol. 39, no 5, p. 496-503Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Olfactory impairments are present in common neurodegenerative disorders and predict conversion to dementia in non-demented individuals with cognitive impairment. In cognitively intact elderly, evidence is sparse regarding the role of olfactory deficits in predicting cognitive impairment. The present study investigated predictors of 5-year prospective decline in the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) in a large (n = 501), population-based sample of elderly (65-90 years) individuals. All participants were genotyped for the ApoE gene, assessed for health factors, and were non-demented at the baseline assessment. After partialling out the influences of demographic and health-factors at baseline and dementia at follow-up, poor odor identification ability in combination with older age and the ApoE-epsilon4 allele predicted larger prospective global cognitive decline. This effect could not be produced by a vocabulary test. In sum, the findings suggest that an olfactory deficit can dissociate between benign and malign global cognitive development in non-demented, very old epsilon4-carriers, who are at high risk of developing dementia.

  • 6. Verweij, Karin
    et al.
    Mosing, Miriam
    Ullen, Fredrik
    Madison, Guy
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
    Individual differences in personality masculinity-femininity: examining the effects of genes, environment, and prenatal hormone transfer2015In: Behavior Genetics, ISSN 0001-8244, E-ISSN 1573-3297, Vol. 45, no 6, p. 691-692Article in journal (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Males and females score differently on some personality traits, but the underlying etiology of these differences is not well understood. This study examined genetic, environmental, and prenatal hormonal influences on within-sex individual differences in personality masculinity-femininity. We used Big-Five personality inventory data of 9520 Swedish twins (aged 27 to 54) to create a bipolar masculinity-femininity (M-F) personality scale. Using biometrical twin modelling we estimated the influence of genetic and environmental factors on individual differences in M-F personality score. Furthermore, we tested whether prenatal hormone transfer may influence individuals' M-F scores by comparing the scores of twins with a same-sex versus those with an opposite-sex co-twin. On average, males scored 1.09 standard deviations higher than females on the created M-F scale. Around a third of the variation in M-F personality score was attributable to genetic factors, while family environmental factors had no influence. Males and females from opposite-sex pairs scored significantly more masculine (both approximately 0.1 SD) than those from same-sex pairs. This indicates that hormone transfer from the male to the female twin during pregnancy may increase the level of masculinisation in females, but further well-powered studies are needed to clarify the association and determine the underlying mechanisms in both sexes. By including non-twin siblings these studies should aim to differentiate between prenatal influences and postnatal socialisation influences.

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