RESEARCH ARTICLE


Association Between a Functional Polymorphism in the Monoamine Oxidase A (MAOA) Gene and Both Emotional Coping Style and Neuroticism



Diego A. Forero1, 5, *, Ana Adan2, 3, Sandra Lopez-Leon4
1 Laboratory of Neuropsychiatric Genetics, Biomedical Sciences Research Group, School of Medicine, Universidad Antonio Nariño, Bogotá, Colombia
2 Department of Clinical Psychology and Psychobiology, School of Psychology, University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain
3 Institute of Neurosciences, University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain
4 Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation, One Health Plaza, East Hanover, NJ, USA
5 School of Health and Sport Sciences, Fundación Universitaria del Área Andina, Bogotá, Colombia


© 2020 Forero et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode. This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the School of Health and Sport Sciences, Fundación Universitaria del Área Andina, Bogotá, Colombia; Tel: +57 313 610427; Email: dforero41@areandina.edu.co


Abstract

Background:

Identification of novel genetic factors for Depressive Disorders (DD) represents a major challenge around the world. Molecular studies of endophenotypes associated with DD, such as personality traits and coping, are powerful strategies for finding genetic markers.

Objective:

The main objective of this work was to confirm the potential relationship between a functional polymorphism in the monoamine oxidase A (MAOA) gene and scores in coping and neuroticism in young adults.

Methods:

A Colombian sample of two hundred fifty-one young participants was evaluated with the short forms of the Coping Inventory for Stressful Situations (CISS-SF) and the Big Five Inventory (BFI-S). Genotypes for MAOA-VNTR polymorphism were obtained by PCR.

Results:

A significant relationship between the functional MAOA-VNTR polymorphism and scores in both emotion-oriented coping and neuroticism was found. Individuals carrying the 4 allele (3/4 or 4/4 genotypes) had higher scores for both emotion-oriented coping and neuroticism than individuals with a 3/3 genotype.

Conclusion:

Our current findings are novel in terms of being the first report of a relationship between a functional polymorphism in the MAOA gene and coping and add evidence to the association of this gene with neuroticism. Our results expand the associations between MAOA gene and multiple dimensions of human emotion and personality.

Keywords: Neurogenetics , Mental health , Psychological factors , Personality , Psychiatric disorders , Latin America .