Methodology of quantitative behavior and molecular genetics

Susan C. South and Amber M. Jarnecke

in Genetics of Psychological Well-Being

Published in print June 2015 | ISBN: 9780199686674
Published online August 2015 | e-ISBN: 9780191766787 | DOI:

Series: Series in Positive Psychology

Methodology of quantitative behavior and molecular genetics

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Within the social and behavioral sciences, there is a long history of the study of genetic and environmental influences on individual differences between people. This chapter provides an overview of the methods used to study behavioral and molecular genetics of well-being. The focus of behavior genetics is quantitative modeling using genetically informative family data to determine the relative influence of genes and environment on individual differences. Studies based on the well-known twin method report consistently that the inter-individual variability of almost any psychologically meaningful variable, including well-being, has a significant heritable component. More recently, molecular genetics techniques have been developed and used to identify measured sequences of DNA that can be tied to differences between people. New techniques from both behavior and molecular genetics continue to evolve, including biometric moderation models, biometric growth curve models, genome-wide and epigenome-wide association studies, and most recently, genome-wide complex trait analyses.

Keywords: behavior genetics; molecular genetics; twin study; genome-wide association study; epigenome-wide association study

Chapter.  9376 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Cognitive Psychology ; Psychology

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