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Eur J Hum Genet. 2008 May;16(5):626-34. doi: 10.1038/sj.ejhg.5201999. Epub 2008 Jan 23.

The VNTR 2 repeat in MAOA and delinquent behavior in adolescence and young adulthood: associations and MAOA promoter activity.

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  • 1Department of Sociology, Carolina Center for Genome Sciences, Carolina Population Center, University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3210, USA. guang_guo@unc.edu

Abstract

Genetic studies of delinquent and criminal behavior are rare in spite of the wide recognition that individuals may differ in their propensity for delinquency and criminality. Using 2524 participants in Add Health in the United States, the present study demonstrates a link between the rare 2 repeat of the 30-bp VNTR in the MAOA gene and much higher levels of self-reported serious and violent delinquency. The evidence is based on a statistical association analysis and a functional analysis of MAOA promoter activity using two human brain-derived cell lines: neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y and human glioblastoma 1242-MG. The association analysis shows that men with a 2R report a level of serious delinquency and violent delinquency in adolescence and young adulthood that were about twice (CI: (0.21, 3.24), P=0.025; and CI: (0.37, 2.5), P=0.008 for serious and violent delinquency, respectively) as high as those for participants with the other variants. The results for women are similar, but weaker. In the functional analysis, the 2 repeat exhibits much lower levels of promoter activity than the 3 or 4 repeat.

PMID:
18212819
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2922855
Free PMC Article
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