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, 50 (8), 818-27

Shared Genetic Influences on Negative Emotionality and Major Depression/Conduct Disorder Comorbidity

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Shared Genetic Influences on Negative Emotionality and Major Depression/Conduct Disorder Comorbidity

Jennifer L Tackett et al. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry.

Abstract

Objective: To investigate whether genetic contributions to major depressive disorder and conduct disorder comorbidity are shared with genetic influences on negative emotionality.

Method: Primary caregivers of 2,022 same- and opposite-sex twin pairs 6 to 18 years of age comprised a population-based sample. Participants were randomly selected across five regions in Tennessee, with stratification by age and geographic location. Face-to-face structured interviews were conducted with the primary caregiver of a representative sample of twins.

Results: After accounting for genetic influences on negative emotionality, genetic influences on major depressive disorder/conduct disorder comorbidity were nonsignficant, but only in male twins. Specifically, 19% of the variance in the two disorders was accounted for by genetic factors shared with negative emotionality in male twins. Although the full hypothesis could not be tested in female twins, 10% to 11% of the variance in the two disorders was also accounted for by genetic factors shared with negative emotionality. Common shared environmental and nonshared environmental influences were found for major depressive disorder/conduct disorder comorbidity in male and female twins.

Conclusions: Negative emotionality represents an important dispositional trait that may explain genetic influences on major depressive disorder/conduct disorder comorbidity, at least for boys. Models of major depressive disorder/conduct disorder comorbidity must simultaneously measure common and specific genetic and environmental factors for a full understanding of this phenomenon. Gender differences require specific research attention in dispositional factors and developmental progression.

Conflict of interest statement

Disclosure: Drs. Tackett, Waldman, Van Hulle, and Lahey report no biomedical financial interests or potential conflicts of interest.

Figures

Figure 1
Figure 1
Bivariate Cholesky model for conduct disorder (CD) and major depressive disorder (MDD) in male twins. Note: Variance components (i.e., squared standardized parameter estimates) and 95% confidence intervals are presented. ACD = additive genetic influences on CD; AMDD = additive genetic influences on MDD; CCD = shared environmental influences on CD; CMDD = shared environmental influences on major depressive disorder; ECD = nonshared environmental influences on CD; EMDD = nonshared environmental influences on MDD.
Figure 2
Figure 2
Bivariate Cholesky model for conduct disorder (CD) and major depressive disorder (MDD) in female twins. Note: Variance components (i.e., squared standardized parameter estimates) and 95% confidence intervals are presented. ACD = additive genetic influences on CD; AMDD = additive genetic influences on MDD; CCD = shared environmental influences on CD; CMDD = shared environmental influences on major depressive disorder; ECD = nonshared environmental influences on CD; EMDD = nonshared environmental influences on MDD.
Figure 3
Figure 3
Multivariate Cholesky model for negative emotionality (NE), conduct disorder (CD), and major depressive disorder (MDD) in male twins. Note: Variance components (i.e., squared standardized parameter estimates) and 95% confidence intervals are presented for additive genetic and nonshared environmental influences only. Shared environmental influences are omitted for clarity. ACD = additive genetic influences on CD; AMDD = additive genetic influences on MDD; ANE = additive genetic influences on negative emotionality; ECD = nonshared environmental influences on CD; EMDD = nonshared environmental influences on MDD; ENE = nonshared environmental influences on negative emotionality.
Figure 4
Figure 4
Multivariate Cholesky model for negative emotionality (NE), conduct disorder (CD), and major depressive disorder (MDD) in female twins. Note: Variance components (i.e., squared standardized parameter estimates) and 95% confidence intervals are presented for additive genetic and nonshared environmental influences only. Shared environmental influences are omitted for clarity. ACD = additive genetic influences on CD; AMDD = additive genetic influences on MDD; ANE = additive genetic influences on negative emotionality; ECD = nonshared environmental influences on CD; EMDD = nonshared environmental influences on MDD; ENE = nonshared environmental influences on negative emotionality.

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