Search for the influence of the tyrosine hydroxylase (TCAT)(n) repeat polymorphism on personality traits

Psychiatry Res. 2000 Jul 24;95(1):1-8. doi: 10.1016/s0165-1781(00)00160-8.


A putatively functional tetranucleotide repeat polymorphism in the tyrosine hydroxylase gene (TH) has been investigated with regard to different aspects of psychopathology. We investigated whether reported associations of this TH polymorphism may reflect associations with common personality traits. Personality was assessed by the NEO Personality Inventory-Revised version (NEO PI-R), in 205 healthy Caucasian volunteers. Tendencies for higher scores in the neuroticism (N) facets, Angry hostility (P=0.008) and Vulnerability (P=0.021), were observed among carriers of one of the alleles (T8). Healthy women with the T6/T10 genotype had significantly higher scores (P=0.001) in the Deliberation and Dutifulness facets (P=0.031) (the Conscientiousness dimension, C) and lower scores (P=0.031) in the Feelings facet (the Openness dimension, O). We concluded that: (1) higher mean scores in the Neuroticism facets among T8 allele carriers are consistent with previous data and warrants further research; (2) the T6/T10 genotype may influence personality among women; (3) these data should be cautiously interpreted in the absence of corroborating data.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Alleles
  • Female
  • Gene Expression / physiology
  • Genetic Carrier Screening
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Microsatellite Repeats / genetics*
  • Middle Aged
  • Personality / genetics*
  • Personality Inventory / statistics & numerical data
  • Polymorphism, Genetic / genetics*
  • Psychometrics
  • Reference Values
  • Tyrosine 3-Monooxygenase / genetics*


  • Tyrosine 3-Monooxygenase