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November 2021

Single-gene influences on brain and behavior

Journal/Book: Annu Rev Psychol. 1999; 50: 4139 El Camino Way, PO Box 10139, Palo Alto, CA 94303-0139, USA. Annual Reviews Inc. 599-624.

Abstract: As traditional behavioral genetics analysis merges with neurogenetics, the field of neurobehavioral genetics, focusing on single-gene effects, comes into being. New biotechnology has greatly accelerated gene discovery and the study of gene function in relation to brain and behavior. More than 7,000 genes in mice and 10,000 in humans have now been documented, and extensive information about the genetics of several species is readily available on the World Wide Web. Based on knowledge of the DNA sequence of a gene, a targeted mutation with the capacity to disable it can be created. These knockouts- also called null mutants- are employed in the study of a wide range of phenotypes, including learning and memory, appetite and obesity, and circadian rhythms. The era of examining single-gene effects from a reductionistic perspective is waning, and research with interacting arrays of genes in various environmental contexts is demonstrating a need for systems-oriented theory.

Note: Review Wahlsten D, Univ Alberta, Dept Psychol, Edmonton, AB T6G 2E9, CANADA

Keyword(s): human genome project; quantitative trail locus; reductionism; World Wide Web; targeted mutation; QUANTITATIVE TRAIT LOCI; HUMAN PERSONALITY-TRAIT; EXON-III POLYMORPHISM; INBRED MOUSE STRAINS; ELEVATED PLUS-MAZE; NOVELTY SEEKING; RECEPTOR GENE; TAIWANESE POPULATIONS; REPEAT POLYMORPHISM; ETHANOL SENSITIVITY


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