On improving the credibility of candidate gene studies: A review of candidate gene studies published in Emotion

Aysu Okbay, Cornelius A. Rietveld*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

The discovery of genetic variants associated with psychological traits deepens our knowledge about causes and consequences of individual differences. In psychology, the standard approach to identify these variants is the "candidate gene study." In a candidate gene study, a limited set of genetic variants is selected based on their hypothesized or known biological function, and these variants are tested for association with the psychological trait of interest. The successful replication of published candidate gene studies, however, is alarmingly scarce. In this article we describe the challenges to successfully identifying genetic associations, and review the candidate gene studies published in Emotion. We conclude that the implementation of 4 methodological guidelines developed by the Behavior Genetics Association for evaluating candidate gene studies will help to increase the credibility of candidate gene study findings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)531-537
Number of pages7
JournalEmotion
Volume15
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2015

Keywords

  • Candidate gene study
  • Model specification
  • Power
  • Replication
  • Significance

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