A study of genetic and environmental effects on the co-occurence of problem behaviors in three-year-old twins

E.J.C.G. van den Oord, D.I. Boomsma, F.C. Verhulst

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Abstract

The authors examined the genetic and environmental causes of the co-occurrence of problem behaviors in children. The analyses involved mother and father ratings of Oppositional, Withdrawn/Depressed, Aggressive, Anxious, Overactive, and Sleep Problems in 446 monozygotic and 912 dizygotic pairs of 3-year-old twins. Genetic factors contributed on average .150 (37.3%), shared environment .206 (51.2%), and nonshared environment .046 (11.4%) to the phenotypic correlations between the syndromes. Genetic and environmental factors caused different groupings. Internalizing and Externalizing groupings were indicative of nonshared environmental factors; clusters of problem behaviors with either the Aggressive or Anxious symptoms were most suggestive of genetic factors, and high scores on all syndromes indicated shared environmental influences.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)360-372
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Abnormal Psychology
Volume109
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2000

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