Nederhof E, Bouma EMC, Riese H, Laceulle OM, Ormel J, Oldehinkel AJ › Trails

TRAILS

Evidence for plasticity genotypes in a gene-gene-environment interaction: The TRAILS study

Authors: Nederhof E, Bouma EMC, Riese H, Laceulle OM, Ormel J, Oldehinkel AJ

The purpose was to study how functional polymorphisms in the brain derived neurotrophic factor gene (BDNF val66met) and the serotonin transporter gene linked promotor region (5-HTTLPR) interact with childhood adversities in predicting Effortful Control. Effortful Control refers to the ability to regulate behaviour in a goal directed manner and is an interesting endophenotype for psychopathology because of its heritability and the association of low Effortful Control with both internalizing and externalizing problems. In a longitudinal population-based study Effortful Control was assessed with the parent version of the Early Adolescent Temperament Questionnaire at age 11. Pregnancy and delivery adversities and childhood events were assessed in a parent interview at age 11. Long term difficulties until age 11 were assessed with a parent questionnaire at age 13.5. Blood or buccal cells were collected at age 16 for genotyping the rs6265 and rs25531 SNPs and the 5-HTTLPR length polymorphism. The study included 1032 complete data sets. Effortful Control was significantly predicted by the interaction between BDNF val66met, 5-HTTLPR and childhood events. The BDNF val66met val/val - 5-HTTLPR l’/l’ genotype was unaffected by childhood events, while having either at least one BDNF val66met met or 5-HTTLPR s’ allele (l’/l’-met-carrier; l’/s’-val/val; s’/s’-val/val) made children sensitive to childhood events. Predictions of Effortful Control by pregnancy and delivery adversities and long term difficulties were largely independent of genotype. We concluded that the l’/l’-met-carrier, l’/s’-val/val and the s’/s’-val/val genotypes showed greatest plasticity while the l’/l’-val/val genotype was unaffected by childhood events.

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