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Anxiety is the most prevalent psychological disorder among youth, and even following treatment, it confers risk for anxiety relapse and the development of depression. Anxiety disorders are associated with heightened response to negative affective stimuli in the brain networks that underlie emotion processing. One factor that can attenuate the symptoms of anxiety and depression in high-risk youth is parental warmth. The current study investigates whether parental warmth helps to protect against future anxiety and depressive symptoms in adolescents with histories of anxiety and whether neural functioning in the brain regions that are implicated in emotion processing and regulation can account for this link. Following treatment for anxiety disorder (Time 1), 30 adolescents (M age = 11.58, SD = 1.26) reported on maternal warmth, and 2 years later (Time 2) they participated in a functional neuroimaging task where they listened to prerecorded criticism and neutral statements from a parent. Higher maternal warmth predicted lower neural activation during criticism, compared with the response during neutral statements, in the left amygdala, bilateral insula, subgenual anterior cingulate (sgACC), right ventrolateral prefrontal cortex, and anterior cingulate cortex. Maternal warmth was associated with adolescents’ anxiety and depressive symptoms due to the indirect effects of sgACC activation, suggesting that parenting may attenuate risk for internalizing through its effects on brain function.
Excessive abdominal fat might be associated with more severe metabolic disorders in Holstein cows. Our hypothesis was that there are genetic differences between cows with low and high abdominal fat deposition and a normal cover of subcutaneous adipose tissue. The objective of this study was to assess the genetic basis for variation in visceral adiposity in US Holstein cows. The study included adult Holstein cows sampled from a slaughterhouse (Green Bay, WI, USA) during September 2016. Only animals with a body condition score between 2.75 and 3.25 were considered. The extent of omental fat at the level of the insertion of the lesser omentum over the pylorus area was assessed. A group of 100 Holstein cows with an omental fold <5 mm in thickness and minimum fat deposition throughout the entire omentum, and the second group of 100 cows with an omental fold ⩾20 mm in thickness and with a marked fat deposition observed throughout the entire omentum were sampled. A small piece of muscle from the neck was collected from each cow into a sterile container for DNA extraction. Samples were submitted to a commercial laboratory for interrogation of genome-wide genomic variation using the Illumina BovineHD Beadchip. Genome-Wide association analysis was performed to test potential associations between fat deposition and genomic variation. A univariate mixed linear model analysis was performed using genome-wide efficient mixed model association to identify single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) significantly associated with variation in a visceral fat deposition. The chip heritability was 0.686 and the estimated additive genetic and residual variance components were 0.427 and 0.074, respectively. In total, 11 SNPs defining four quantitative trait locus (QTL) regions were found to be significantly associated with visceral fat deposition (P<0.00001). Among them, two of the QTL were detected with four and five significantly associated SNPs, respectively; whereas, the QTLs detected on BTA12 and BTA19 were each detected with only one significantly associated SNP. No enriched gene ontology terms were found within the gene networks harboring these genes when supplied to DAVID using either the Bos taurus or human gene ontology databases. We conclude that excessive omental fat in Holstein cows with similar body condition scores is not caused by a single Mendelian locus and that the trait appears to be at least moderately heritable; consequently, selection to reduce excessive omental fat is potentially possible, but would require the generation of predicted transmitting abilities from larger and random samples of Holstein cattle.
Until now, data have not been available to elucidate the genetic and environmental sources of comorbidity between all 10 DSM-IV personality disorders (PDs) and cocaine use. Our aim was to determine which PD traits are linked phenotypically and genetically to cocaine use. Cross-sectional data were obtained in a face-to-face interview between 1999 and 2004. Subjects were 1,419 twins (µage = 28.2 years, range = 19–36) from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health Twin Panel, with complete lifetime cocaine use and criteria for all 10 DSM-IV PDs. Stepwise multiple and Least Absolute Shrinkage and Selection Operator (LASSO) regressions were used to identify PDs related to cocaine use. Twin models were fitted to estimate genetic and environmental associations between the PD traits and cocaine use. In the multiple regression, antisocial (OR = 4.24, 95% CI [2.66, 6.86]) and borderline (OR = 2.19, 95% CI [1.35, 3.57]) PD traits were significant predictors of cocaine use. In the LASSO regression, antisocial, borderline, and histrionic were significant predictors of cocaine use. Antisocial and borderline PD traits each explained 72% and 25% of the total genetic risks in cocaine use, respectively. Genetic risks in histrionic PD were not significantly related to cocaine use. Importantly, after removing criteria referencing substance use, antisocial PD explained 65% of the total genetic variance in cocaine use, whereas borderline explained only 4%. Among PD traits, antisocial is the strongest correlate of cocaine use, for which the association is driven largely by common genetic risks.
DSM-5 includes two conceptualizations of personality disorders (PDs). The classification in Section II is identical to the one found in DSM-IV, and includes 10 categorical PDs. The Alternative Model (Section III) includes criteria for dimensional measures of maladaptive personality traits organized into five domains. The degree to which the two conceptualizations reflect the same etiological factors is not known.
We use data from a large population-based sample of adult twins from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health Twin Panel on interview-based DSM-IV PDs and a short self-report inventory that indexes the five domains of the DSM-5 Alternative Model plus a domain explicitly targeting compulsivity. Schizotypal, Paranoid, Antisocial, Borderline, Avoidant, and Obsessive-compulsive PDs were assessed at the same time as the maladaptive personality traits and 10 years previously. Schizoid, Histrionic, Narcissistic, and Dependent PDs were only assessed at the first interview. Biometric models were used to estimate overlap in genetic and environmental risk factors.
When measured concurrently, there was 100% genetic overlap between the maladaptive trait domains and Paranoid, Schizotypal, Antisocial, Borderline, and Avoidant PDs. For OCPD, 43% of the genetic variance was shared with the domains. Genetic correlations between the individual domains and PDs ranged from +0.21 to +0.91.
The pathological personality trait domains, which are part of the Alternative Model for classification of PDs in DSM-5 Section III, appears to tap, at an aggregate level, the same genetic risk factors as the DSM-5 Section II classification for most of the PDs.
Antisocial personality disorder (ASPD) and borderline personality disorder (BPD) share genetic and environmental risk factors. Little is known about the temporal stability of these etiological factors in adulthood.
DSM-IV criteria for ASPD and BPD were assessed using structured interviews in 2282 Norwegian twins in early adulthood and again approximately 10 years later. Longitudinal biometric models were used to analyze the number of endorsed criteria.
The mean criterion count for ASPD and BPD decreased 40% and 28%, respectively, from early to middle adulthood. Rank-order stability was 0.58 for ASPD and 0.45 for BPD. The best-fitting longitudinal twin model included only genetic and individual-specific environmental factors. Genetic effects, both those shared by ASPD and BPD, and those specific to each disorder remained completely stable. The unique environmental effects, however, changed substantially, with a correlation across time of 0.19 for the shared effects, and 0.39 and 0.15, respectively, for those specific to ASPD and BPD. Genetic effects accounted for 71% and 72% of the stability over time for ASPD and BPD, respectively. The genetic and environmental correlations between ASPD and BPD were 0.73, and 0.43, respectively, at both time points.
ASPD and BPD traits were moderately stable from early to middle adulthood, mostly due to genetic risk factors which did not change over the 10-year assessment period. Environmental risk factors were mostly transient, and appear to be the main source of phenotypic change. Genetic liability factors were, to a large extent, shared by ASPD and BPD.
While cluster A personality disorders (PDs) have been shown to be moderately heritable, we know little about the temporal stability of these genetic risk factors.
Paranoid PD (PPD) and schizotypal PD (STPD) were assessed using the Structured Interview for DSM-IV Personality in 2793 young adult twins from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health Twin Panel at wave 1 and 2282 twins on average 10 years later at wave 2. Using the program Mx, we fitted a longitudinal latent factor model using the number of endorsed criteria for PPD and STPD.
The stability over time of the criteria counts for PPD and STPD, estimated as polychoric correlations, were +0.34 and +0.40, respectively. The best-fit longitudinal model included only additive genetic and individual-specific environmental factors with parameter estimates constrained to equality across the two waves. The cross-wave genetic and individual-specific environmental correlations for a latent cluster A factor were estimated to equal +1.00 and +0.13, respectively. The cross-time correlations for genetic and environmental effects specific to the individual PDs were estimated at +1.00 and +0.16–0.20, respectively. We found that 68% and 71% of the temporal stability of PPD and STPD derived, respectively, from the effect of genetic factors.
Shared genetic risk factors for two of the cluster A PDs are highly stable in adults over a 10-year period while environmental risk factors are relatively transient. Over two-thirds of the long-term stability of the common cluster A PD liability can be attributed to genetic influences.
Understanding the genetic and environmental contributions to measures of brain structure such as surface area and cortical thickness is important for a better understanding of the nature of brain-behavior relationships and changes due to development or disease. Continuous spatial maps of genetic influences on these structural features can contribute to our understanding of regional patterns of heritability, since it remains to be seen whether genetic contributions to brain structure respect the boundaries of any traditional parcellation approaches. Using data from magnetic resonance imaging scans collected on a large sample of monozygotic and dizygotic twins in the Vietnam Era Twin Study of Aging, we created maps of the heritability of areal expansion (a vertex-based area measure) and cortical thickness and examined the degree to which these maps were affected by adjustment for total surface area and mean cortical thickness. We also compared the approach of estimating regional heritability based on the average heritability of vertices within the region to the more traditional region-of-interest (ROI)-based approach. The results suggested high heritability across the cortex for areal expansion and, to a slightly lesser degree, for cortical thickness. There was a great deal of genetic overlap between global and regional measures for surface area, so maps of region-specific genetic influences on surface area revealed more modest heritabilities. There was greater inter-regional variability in heritabilities when calculated using the traditional ROI-based approach compared to summarizing vertex-by-vertex heritabilities within regions. Discrepancies between the approaches were greatest in small regions and tended to be larger for surface area than for cortical thickness measures. Implications regarding brain phenotypes for future genetic association studies are discussed.
The evolution of glyphosate resistance in weedy species places an environmentally benign herbicide in peril. The first report of a dicot plant with evolved glyphosate resistance was horseweed, which occurred in 2001. Since then, several species have evolved glyphosate resistance and genomic information about nontarget resistance mechanisms in any of them ranges from none to little. Here, we report a study combining iGentifier transcriptome analysis, cDNA sequencing, and a heterologous microarray analysis to explore potential molecular and transcriptomic mechanisms of nontarget glyphosate resistance of horseweed. The results indicate that similar molecular mechanisms might exist for nontarget herbicide resistance across multiple resistant plants from different locations, even though resistance among these resistant plants likely evolved independently and available evidence suggests resistance has evolved at least four separate times. In addition, both the microarray and sequence analyses identified non–target-site resistance candidate genes for follow-on functional genomics analysis.
Recent behavioral genetic studies have emphasized the importance of investigating eating disorders at the level of individual symptoms, rather than as overall diagnoses. We examined the heritability of binge eating disorder (BED) using an item-factor analytic approach, which estimates contributions of additive genetic (A), common environmental (C), and unique environmental (E) influences on liability to BED as well as individual symptoms.
Participants were 614 monozygotic and 410 dizygotic same-sex female twins from the Mid-Atlantic Twin Registry who completed a self-report measure of BED symptoms based upon DSM-IV criteria. Genetic and environmental contributions to BED liability were assessed at the diagnostic and symptom levels, using an item-factor approach.
Liability to BED was moderately heritable; 45% of the variance was due to A, with smaller proportions due to C (13%), and E (42%). Additive genetic effects accounted for 29–43% of the variance in individual items, while only 8–14% was due to C.
Results highlight the relevance of examining eating disorders at the symptom level, rather than focusing on aggregate diagnoses.
Major depressive disorder (MDD) co-occurs frequently with personality disorders (PDs). The extent to which this results from shared genetic or environmental risk factors remains uncertain.
Young adult twins (n=2801) from the population-based Norwegian Institute of Public Health Twin Panel were assessed at personal interview for DSM-IV lifetime MDD and the 10 Axis II PDs. The relationship between MDD and dimensional representations of all PDs was explored by stepwise logistic regression. Multivariate Cholesky twin models were fitted using the Mx program, and genetic and environmental correlations were estimated.
Dimensional representations of borderline (BPD), avoidant (AVPD) and paranoid personality disorder (PPD) were independently and significantly associated with increased risk for MDD. Multivariate twin modeling indicated that one latent factor accounted for the genetic covariance between MDD and the three PDs. The genetic correlations between MDD and dimensional representations of BPD, AVPD and PPD were +0.56, +0.22 and +0.40 respectively. No sex differences or shared environmental effects were found. The structure of the individual-specific environmental factors influencing MDD and the three PDs were similar to the genetic factors but the environmental correlations were lower: +0.39, +0.23 and +0.27 respectively.
There is substantial overlap between liability factors for MDD and BPD from cluster B, PPD from cluster A and AVPD from cluster C. The vulnerability to general PD pathology and MDD seem to be closely related. The patterns of co-morbidity observed between diverse psychiatric disorders might result from just a few liability factors.
Twin studies have suggested that additive genetic factors significantly contribute to liability to bulimia nervosa (BN). However, the diagnostic criteria for BN remain controversial. In this study, an item-factor model was used to examine the BN diagnostic criteria and the genetic and environmental contributions to BN in a population-based twin sample. The validity of the equal environment assumption (EEA) for BN was also tested.
Participants were 1024 female twins (MZ n=614, DZ n=410) from the population-based Mid-Atlantic Twin Registry. BN was assessed using symptom-level (self-report) items consistent with DSM-IV and ICD-10 diagnostic criteria. Items assessing BN were included in an item-factor model. The EEA was measured by items assessing similarity of childhood and adolescent environment, which have demonstrated construct validity. Scores on the EEA factor were used to specify the degree to which twins shared environmental experiences in this model.
The EEA was not violated for BN. Modeling results indicated that the majority of the variance in BN was due to additive genetic factors. There was substantial variability in additive genetic and environmental contributions to specific BN symptoms. Most notably, vomiting was very strongly influenced by additive genetic factors, while other symptoms were much less heritable, including the influence of weight on self-evaluation. These results highlight the importance of assessing eating disorders at the symptom level.
Refinement of eating disorder phenotypes could ultimately lead to improvements in treatment and targeted prevention, by clarifying sources of variation for specific components of symptomatology.
Twin data permit decomposition of comorbidity into genetically and environmentally derived correlations. No previous twin study includes all major forms of anxiety disorder.
To estimate the degree to which genetic and environmental risk factors are shared rather than unique to dimensionally scored panic disorder, generalised anxiety disorder, phobias, obsessive–compulsive disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder.
Data obtained from 2801 young-adult Norwegian twins by means of the Composite International Diagnostic Interview were analysed with the Mx program.
A multivariate common factor model fitted best. The latent liability to all anxiety disorders was substantially more heritable (54%) than the individual disorders (23% to 40%). Most of the genetic effect was common to the disorders. Genes contributed just over 50% to the covariance between liabilities.
The five anxiety disorders all share genetic and environmental risk factors. This has implications for the revision of the anxiety disorder section in DSM–V.
Despite its importance as a paradigmatic personality disorder, little is known about the measurement invariance of the DSM-IV borderline personality disorder (BPD) criteria; that is, whether the criteria assess the disorder equivalently across different groups.
BPD criteria were evaluated at interview in 2794 young adult Norwegian twins. Analyses, based on item-response modeling, were conducted to test for differential age and sex moderation of the individual BPD criteria characteristics given factor-level covariate effects.
Confirmatory factor analytic results supported a unidimensional structure for the nine BPD criteria. Compared to males, females had a higher BPD factor mean, larger factor variance and there was a significant age by sex interaction on the factor mean. Strong differential sex and age by sex interaction effects were found for the ‘impulsivity’ criterion factor loading and threshold. Impulsivity related to the BPD factor poorly in young females but improved significantly in older females. Males reported more impulsivity compared to females and this difference increased with age. The ‘affective instability’ threshold was also moderated, with males reporting less than expected.
The results suggest the DSM-IV BPD ‘impulsivity’ and ‘affective instability’ criteria function differentially with respect to age and sex, with impulsivity being especially problematic. If verified, these findings have important implications for the interpretation of prior research with these criteria. These non-invariant age and sex effects may be identifying criteria-level expression features relevant to BPD nosology and etiology. Criterion functioning assessed using modern psychometric methods should be considered in the development of DSM-V.
We report the synthesis of nanostructured stage-2 potassium graphite, KC24, by intercalation of turbostratic graphite nanofibers produced from an electrospun polymer, and compare its properties with exfoliated graphite-based KC24. The nanostructured KC24 sample has low crystalline order and slightly increased interlayer spacing of 8.76 Å, compared with 8.65 Å in the bulk sample, indicating minimal registration of the graphite planes. Time-resolved time-of-flight neutron diffraction on both nanostructured and bulk KC24 under ammoniation is suggestive of a more homogeneous and faster pressure-modulated phase transition to the ternary ammoniated potassium-graphite in the nanostructured material. Following ammoniation, negligible hydrogen uptake is observed at 50 K.
Assessment of eating disorders at the symptom level can facilitate the refinement of phenotypes. We examined genetic and environmental contributions to liability to anorexia nervosa (AN) symptoms in a population-based twin sample using a genetic common pathway model.
Participants were from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health Twin Panel (NIPHTP) and included all female monozygotic (MZ; 448 complete pairs and four singletons) and dizygotic (DZ; 263 complete pairs and four singletons) twins who completed the Composite International Diagnostic Interview (CIDI) assessing DSM-IV Axis I and ICD-10 criteria. Responses to items assessing AN symptoms were included in a model fitted using the marginal maximum likelihood (MML) approach.
Heritability of the overall AN diagnosis was moderate [a2=0.22, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.0–0.50] whereas heritabilities of the specific items varied. Heritability estimates for weight loss items were moderate (a2=0.31–0.34) and items assessing weight concern when at a low weight were smaller (0.18–0.29). Additive genetic factors contributed little to the variance of amenorrhea, which was most strongly influenced by unshared environment (a2=0.16, e2=0.71).
AN symptoms are differentially heritable. Specific criteria such as those related to body weight and weight loss history represent more biologically driven potential endophenotypes or liability indices. The results regarding weight concern differ somewhat from those of previous studies, highlighting the importance of assessing genetic and environmental influences on variance of traits within specific subgroups of interest.
The personality disorders (PDs) in the ‘dramatic’ cluster B [antisocial (ASPD), histrionic (HPD), narcissistic (NPD) and borderline (BPD)] demonstrate co-morbidity. However, the degree to which genetic and/or environmental factors influence their co-occurrence is not known and, with the exception of ASPD, the relative impact of genetic and environmental risk factors on liability to the cluster B PDs has not been conclusively established.
PD traits were assessed in 1386 Norwegian twin pairs between the age of 19 and 35 years using the Structured Interview for DSM-IV Personality Disorders (SIDP-IV). Using the statistical package Mx, multivariate twin models were fitted to dimensional representations of the PDs.
The best-fitting model, which did not include sex or shared family environment effects, included common genetic and environmental factors influencing all four dramatic PD traits, and factors influencing only ASPD and BPD. Heritability was estimated at 38% for ASPD traits, 31% for HPD traits, 24% for NPD traits and 35% for BPD traits. BPD traits had the lowest and ASPD traits the highest disorder-specific genetic variance.
The frequently observed co-morbidity between cluster B PDs results from both common genetic and environmental influences. Etiologically, cluster B has a ‘substructure’ in which ASPD and BPD are more closely related to each other than to the other cluster B disorders.
The equal environments assumption, which holds that trait-relevant environments are equally correlated among monozygotic (MZ) and dizygotic (DZ) twin pairs, is essential to twin designs. Violations of this assumption could lead to biased parameter estimates in twin models. A variety of methods and measures have been used to test this assumption. No studies to date have evaluated the measurement invariance of such items or examined the distribution of the underlying equal environments trait. The current study was an investigation of the psychometric properties of a self-report measure of twins' equal environments. Exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis results indicated that items loaded onto ‘child’ and ‘teen’ equal environments factors. Factor loadings and factor variances and their covariance were invariant for MZ and DZ twins; however, DZ twins had significantly lower factor means than MZ twins. Further, these items demonstrated adequate test–retest reliability. Lastly, the child and teen factors may be bimodally distributed, particularly for MZ twin pairs. Measurement invariance issues, as well as distributions of equal environments traits, should be considered when evaluating the equal environments assumption, in order to produce accurate parameter estimates in twin models.
This article offers a multilevel perspective on resilience to depression, with a focus on interactions among social and neurobehavioral systems involved in emotional reactivity and regulation. We discuss models of cross-contextual mediation and moderation by which the social context influences or modifies the effects of resilience processes at the biological level, or the biological context influences or modifies the effects of resilience processes at the social level. We highlight the socialization of emotion regulation as a candidate process contributing to resilience against depression at the social context level. We discuss several factors and their interactions across levels—including genetic factors, stress reactivity, positive affect, neural systems of reward, and sleep—as candidate processes contributing to resilience against depression at the neurobehavioral level. We then present some preliminary supportive findings from two studies of children and adolescents at high risk for depression. Study 1 shows that elevated neighborhood level adversity has the potential to constrain or limit the benefits of protective factors at other levels. Study 2 indicates that ease and quickness in falling asleep and a greater amount of time in deep Stage 4 sleep may be protective against the development of depressive disorders for children. The paper concludes with a discussion of clinical implications of this approach.