The Genetics of Success: How Single-Nucleotide Polymorphisms Associated With Educational Attainment Relate to Life-Course Development.
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A previous genome-wide association study (GWAS) of more than 100,000 individuals identified molecular-genetic predictors of educational attainment. We undertook in-depth life-course investigation of the polygenic score derived from this GWAS using the four-decade Dunedin Study (N = 918). There were five main findings. First, polygenic scores predicted adult economic outcomes even after accounting for educational attainments. Second, genes and environments were correlated: Children with higher polygenic scores were born into better-off homes. Third, children's polygenic scores predicted their adult outcomes even when analyses accounted for their social-class origins; social-mobility analysis showed that children with higher polygenic scores were more upwardly mobile than children with lower scores. Fourth, polygenic scores predicted behavior across the life course, from early acquisition of speech and reading skills through geographic mobility and mate choice and on to financial planning for retirement. Fifth, polygenic-score associations were mediated by psychological characteristics, including intelligence, self-control, and interpersonal skill. Effect sizes were small. Factors connecting DNA sequence with life outcomes may provide targets for interventions to promote population-wide positive development.
Published Version (Please cite this version)10.1177/0956797616643070
Publication InfoBelsky, Daniel W; Caspi, Avshalom; Corcoran, DL; Domingue, B; Harrington, Hona Lee; Hogan, Sean; ... Williams, BS (2016). The Genetics of Success: How Single-Nucleotide Polymorphisms Associated With Educational Attainment Relate to Life-Course Development. Psychol Sci, 27(7). pp. 957-972. 10.1177/0956797616643070. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/12447.
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Assistant Professor in Population Health Sciences
The goal of Dan’s work is to reduce social inequalities in aging outcomes in the US and elsewhere. Dan's research seeks to understand how genes and environments combine to shape health across the life course. His work uses tools from genome science and longitudinal data from population-based cohort studies. The aim is to identify targets for policy and clinical interventions to promote positive development in early life and extend healthspan.Areas of interest: Aging, health
Edward M. Arnett Distinguished Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience
Nannerl O. Keohane University Distinguished Professor
Research Project Mgr, University
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