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Behav Brain Res. 2015 Oct 1;292:50-5. doi: 10.1016/j.bbr.2015.06.014. Epub 2015 Jun 11.

Dopamine D4 receptor genotype variation in free-ranging rhesus macaques and its association with juvenile behavior.

Author information

1
Institute for Mind and Biology, University of Chicago, Chicago, IL 60637, USA; Department of Comparative Human Development, University of Chicago, Chicago, IL 60637, USA. Electronic address: spcoyne@uchicago.edu.
2
Section of Comparative Behavioral Genomics, National Institutes of Health/National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA. Electronic address: lindells@mail.nih.gov.
3
Section of Comparative Behavioral Genomics, National Institutes of Health/National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA. Electronic address: jgclemente@mix.wvu.edu.
4
Section of Comparative Behavioral Genomics, National Institutes of Health/National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA. Electronic address: cbarr@mail.nih.gov.
5
Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA 94305, USA. Electronic address: kjparker@stanford.edu.
6
Institute for Mind and Biology, University of Chicago, Chicago, IL 60637, USA; Department of Comparative Human Development, University of Chicago, Chicago, IL 60637, USA. Electronic address: dario@uchicago.edu.

Abstract

A polymorphism in the dopamine receptor D4 (DRD4) gene has been associated with significant variation in behavioral impulsivity, novelty-seeking, and risk-taking in humans and other animals. Rhesus macaques are an excellent animal model for research on the genetic basis of behavior using the candidate gene approach. Little is known, however, about allelic variation in DRD4 in large free-ranging populations of rhesus macaques and how this allelic variation relates to emotion regulation and behavior. In this study, we genotyped for the DRD4 polymorphism 178 individuals of different age and sex categories in the free-ranging rhesus macaque population on the island of Cayo Santiago, PR. Moreover, we examined the possible association between DRD4 allelic variation and three measures of juvenile behavior (time spent in proximity to the mother, avoidance of other individuals, and behavioral restlessness). Five different DRD4 alleles (5R, 5.5R, 6R, 6.5R, and 7R) were identified in the subject population. The most common allele was the 5R allele (78.5%), followed by the 7R allele (16.1%). Juveniles carrying the long form of the DRD4 allele (7R) spent less time in proximity to their mothers, avoided other individuals more often, and scored higher on behavioral restlessness than juveniles carrying the shorter alleles. Behavioral restlessness was also influenced by maternal DRD4 genotype. These results highlight both similarities and differences in the relative occurrence of DRD4 alleles and their association with behavior in this rhesus macaque population, other nonhuman primate species or populations, and humans.

KEYWORDS:

DRD4; Impulsivity; Juvenile; Rhesus macaque; Social behavior

PMID:
26073765
PMCID:
PMC4558263
DOI:
10.1016/j.bbr.2015.06.014
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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