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Researchers identify genetic causes of flakiness
Dexterity and forgetfulness can have genetic causes. Scientists at the University of Bonn discovered a connection between everyday cognitive impairments and the “DRD2” gene. The University of Bonn reports in a current press release that certain variants of the gene would make it easier for people to be distracted and experience moments that are due to a lack of attention.
According to the current findings of the Bonn psychologists, everyday mischief such as misplacing the house key or forgetting names can sometimes be traced back to a genetic cause. "Such short-term dropouts are widespread, but they occur particularly often in some people," explained Professor Dr. Martin Reuter from the Department of Differential and Biological Psychology at the University of Bonn. Those affected often have a special genetic variant that is to be regarded as the cause of short-term attention deficits and flakiness, reports the University of Bonn.
DRD2 the cause of flakyness According to the information provided by the first author of the current study, Dr. According to Sebastian Markett, the “familial clustering of susceptibility to errors suggested that these dropouts have genetic influences.” In addition, some time ago, evidence was found in the laboratory that the so-called “dopamine D2 receptor gene” (DRD2 ) is involved in forgetfulness, reports the University of Bonn. DRD2 play a crucial role in signal transmission to the frontal lobes. These structures are “comparable to a conductor who coordinates the brain as an orchestra,” emphasized Dr. Markett and added that the DRD2 gene forms the baton "because it is involved in the dopamine binding in the brain." If the baton indicates the wrong tense in between, the whole orchestra gets mixed up. The result is short-term weaknesses in concentration and flakiness.
Difference with only one base of the gene According to their own statements, the scientists tested a total of 500 women and men "by taking a saliva sample and then examining it from a molecular biological point of view." Although everyone was a carrier of the DRD2 gene, this could be done in two ways are present, "which differ only in a single base in the genetic code." One variant has the nucleic base cytosine at one point, while the other variant has thymine instead. The analysis of the laboratory tests showed that around a quarter of the test subjects only possessed the DRD2 gene with the nucleic base cytosine, while three quarters belong to a genotype with at least one thymine base. In the subsequent investigations, the researchers checked whether the different expression of the gene also had an impact on everyday behavior.
Effects of the DRD2 gene on memory and attention In a questionnaire, the test subjects were asked to indicate “how often they experience certain dodges.” It was also asked how easily the test subjects were distracted from their actual tasks and how long they were can concentrate. "The results show that such functions as attention and memory are less pronounced with the thymine gene variant than with the cytosine type," reports the University of Bonn. "The connection is clear: such misfires can be partially determined by this gene variant," emphasized first author Dr. Markett added: "This result coincides very well with the results of other studies."
Genes no justification for flaccidity However, the researchers see no genetic justification for the flaccidity of the latter. Because "something can be done against forgetfulness: You can write notices or do more to keep the front door key somewhere, but in a certain place," explained Dr. Markett. Those who know their own weaknesses can put together strategies for different situations in order to cope better with their flaccidity and lack of concentration. (fp)