Sunday, December 11, 2016

Personality traits and psychiatric disorders linked to specific genomic locations

Ina study conducted by the University of California San Diego School of Medicine, personality traits were linked to psychiatric disorders with the use of meta-analysis of genome-wide association studies (GWAS). Six loci were identified that were linked to the personality traits: extraversion, neuroticism, agreeableness, conscientiousness, and openness to experience. The study used data from 23andme, the Genetics of Personality Consortium, UK Biobank and deCODE Genetics to analyze genetic variance of the five factors.

Specific loci were identified for the personality traits. For example, extraversion was association with the gene WSCD2 and near PCDH15. Also, neuroticism was associated with chromosome 8p23.1 and gene L3MBTL2. Notably, neuroticism and openness to experience were clustered in the same regions as the psychiatric disorders looked at. Genetic correlations were found between extraversion and ADHD, openness and schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, and neuroticism to depression and anxiety.


I think this study is important because it helps use better treat psychiatric disorders by sampling analyzing the phenotypic personality traits. I proves that there is a correlation so personality can give a hint to susceptibility to specific disorders. My only concern is that I hope people who have personality traits associated with the disorders do not experience prejudice.


  1. It is good to see psychiatric conditions being recognized and studied. If we can better understand risk factors for these disorders, we can better understand and medicate against them.

  2. I really enjoyed this article, and hope to better understand these conditions at a scientific level. I also believe that some factual evidence for these conditions will clear up a lot of the stigma surrounding mental illnesses. It is also extremely interesting to see the phenotypic relationship with genes that may not have other wise been interpreted as such.