Genetics News

Chronic Anorexia Can Lead to Genetic Changes

February 9th, 2015
A new Canadian study is the first to observe that the longer one suffers from active anorexia nervosa, the more likely a person’s DNA may be altered. This biological change may lead to additional changes in physical and mental health. Howard Steiger, Ph.D., head ...

Brain Marker May Predict Later Stress-Related Depression

February 7th, 2015
Monitoring activity in the amygdala -- the part of the brain that detects and responds to danger -- can help determine who will become depressed or anxious in response to stressful life events, according to a new study. More importantly, the research could lead ...

‘Mr. Right Now’ a Safer Bet Than Waiting for ‘Mr. Right’

February 7th, 2015
Settling for “Mr. Okay” rather than waiting for the perfect mate may be in our nature, according to a new study. Tracing back to the earliest humans, researchers from Michigan State University noted it is a better evolutionary strategy to take the “safe ...

How “SuperAgers’ Maintain Cognitive Abilities

February 4th, 2015
How “SuperAgers’  Maintain Cognitive AbilitiesNew research discovers the brains of some 80+ year old individuals look 30 years younger, a finding that is associated with higher social intelligence and 90 percent fewer tangles linked ...
Mouse Study: Exposure to Common Pesticide May Increase Risk of ADHD

Mouse Study: Exposure to Common Pesticide May Increase Risk of ADHD

January 30th, 2015
A new lab study by scientists from several prominent universities suggests a commonly used pesticide may increase the risk of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in children. Researchers believe the pesticide alters the development of the brain's dopamine system, the part of the brain ...
Nicotine Metabolism May Show Best Route to Quit

Nicotine Metabolism May Show Best Route to Quit

January 20th, 2015
If you are trying to quit smoking, knowing the rate at which your body metabolizes nicotine may be the key to success, according to new research from the University of Toronto. The study findings may eventually lead to personalized cessation treatments which ...
Gene Deficiency Triggers Autistic Symptoms in Mice

Gene Deficiency Triggers Autistic Symptoms in Mice

January 20th, 2015
New findings strongly associate a certain gene with autistic symptoms. Autism is a highly heritable disorder, with up to 90 percent likelihood of both identical twins having the condition. Mutations in the NRXN2 gene, which makes a protein called alpha-neurexin II, have previously ...
Two Genes May Boost Risk for PTSD

Two Genes May Boost Risk for PTSD

January 13th, 2015
Researchers have linked two gene variants to the development of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The findings, published in the Journal of Affective Disorders, may help explain why some people develop PTSD after a traumatic experience while others do not. "Many people suffer with ...
'Sensitive' Gene Plus Early Stress May Lead to Mental Health Disorders

‘Sensitive’ Gene Plus Early Stress May Lead to Mental Health Disorders

January 8th, 2015
Researchers from Duke University have identified a gene variant linked to extreme sensitivity in children. They found that children with this gene who also live in high-risk environments are far more likely to develop mental health disorders and substance abuse problems as ...
Hunt for Depression Genes Presses On Despite Slow Start

Hunt for Depression Genes Presses On Despite Slow Start

January 8th, 2015
Despite the unraveling of the human genome and genomewide analysis techniques, it continues to be difficult to identify genetic factors affecting risk for depression. Nevertheless, researchers believe depression is heritable and that larger studies are necessary to help to solve the puzzle. These ...