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Br J Psychiatry. 2016 Jan;208(1):42-8. doi: 10.1192/bjp.bp.114.162081. Epub 2015 Oct 22.

Effects of the MAOA gene and levels of exposure to violence on antisocial outcomes.

Author information

  • 1Isabelle Ouellet-Morin, PhD, School of Criminology, Université de Montréal & Research Center of the Montreal Mental Health University Institute, Montréal and Research Group on Child Psychosocial Maladjustment, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Canada; Sylvana M. Côté, PhD, Research Group on Child Psychosocial Maladjustment, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Department of Social and Preventive Medicine, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Canada and International Laboratory for Child and Adolescent Mental Health Development, INSERM U669, Paris, France; Frank Vitaro, PhD, Research Group on Child Psychosocial Maladjustment, Université de Montréal, Montréal and School of Psychoéducation, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Canada; Martine Hébert, PhD, Department of Sexology, Université du Québec à Montréal, Montréal, Québec, Canada; René Carbonneau, PhD, Research Group on Child Psychosocial Maladjustment, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Canada;Éric Lacourse, PhD, School of Criminology, Université de Montréal & Research Center of the Montreal Mental Health University Institute, Montréal, Research Group on Child Psychosocial Maladjustment, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Canada and Department of Sociology, Université de Montréal & Research Center of the Sainte-Justine University Hospital, Montréal, Canada; Gustavo Turecki, MD, PhD, The McGill Group for Suicide Studies, Douglas Hospital Research Center, Montréal, Québec, Canada; Richard E. Tremblay, PhD, Research Group on Child Psychosocial Maladjustment, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Canada, International Laboratory for Child and Adolescent Mental Health Development, INSERM U669, Paris, France, Department of Pediatrics, Psychiatry and Psychology, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Canada and School of Public Health, Physiotherapy and Population Science, University College Dublin, Ireland isabelle.ouellet-morin@umontreal.ca.
  • 2Isabelle Ouellet-Morin, PhD, School of Criminology, Université de Montréal & Research Center of the Montreal Mental Health University Institute, Montréal and Research Group on Child Psychosocial Maladjustment, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Canada; Sylvana M. Côté, PhD, Research Group on Child Psychosocial Maladjustment, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Department of Social and Preventive Medicine, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Canada and International Laboratory for Child and Adolescent Mental Health Development, INSERM U669, Paris, France; Frank Vitaro, PhD, Research Group on Child Psychosocial Maladjustment, Université de Montréal, Montréal and School of Psychoéducation, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Canada; Martine Hébert, PhD, Department of Sexology, Université du Québec à Montréal, Montréal, Québec, Canada; René Carbonneau, PhD, Research Group on Child Psychosocial Maladjustment, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Canada;Éric Lacourse, PhD, School of Criminology, Université de Montréal & Research Center of the Montreal Mental Health University Institute, Montréal, Research Group on Child Psychosocial Maladjustment, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Canada and Department of Sociology, Université de Montréal & Research Center of the Sainte-Justine University Hospital, Montréal, Canada; Gustavo Turecki, MD, PhD, The McGill Group for Suicide Studies, Douglas Hospital Research Center, Montréal, Québec, Canada; Richard E. Tremblay, PhD, Research Group on Child Psychosocial Maladjustment, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Canada, International Laboratory for Child and Adolescent Mental Health Development, INSERM U669, Paris, France, Department of Pediatrics, Psychiatry and Psychology, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Canada and School of Public Health, Physiotherapy and Population Science, University College Dublin, Ireland.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The monoamine oxidase A (MAOA) gene has been shown to moderate the impact of maltreatment on antisocial behaviour. Replication efforts have, however, yielded inconsistent results.

AIMS:

To investigate whether the interaction between the MAOA gene and violence is present across the full distribution of violence or emerges at higher levels of exposure.

METHOD:

Participants were 327 male members of the Québec Longitudinal Study of Kindergarten Children. Exposure to violence comprised retrospective reports of mother's and father's maltreatment, sexual and physical abuse. Conduct disorder and antisocial personality symptoms were assessed in semi-structured interviews and partner violence, property-violent crimes and arrest were self-reported.

RESULTS:

Non-linear interactions between the MAOA gene and violence were detected, suggesting that the genetic moderation may come about once a certain level of violence is experienced.

CONCLUSIONS:

Future studies should investigate the mechanisms translating substantial violence exposure, which could, subsequently, trigger the expression of genetically based differences in antisocial behaviour.

© The Royal College of Psychiatrists 2016.

PMID:
26494873
[PubMed - in process]
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