Institute of Genetics and Cancer

Genetic variation linked to problem-solving abilities

A DNA study of Generation Scotland participants reveals that genes are a key to problem-solving powers: January 2018

Genetic variation linked to intelligence

More than half of the difference in intelligence between people can be traced to their genes, a study from Generation Scotland suggests.

Led by Dr David Hill and colleagues, from the University of Edinburgh’s Centre for Cognitive Ageing and Cognitive Epidemiology, thousands of genetic markers in 20,000 participants within the Generation Scotland biobank were tested for signals associated with their problem-solving abilities.

These abilities vary quite widely between different individuals. This study was able to show that fully half of the variation in problem solving powers was down to genetic variation, a higher proportion than had previously been recognised. This revised estimate was possible because of the large size and high quality of the measures within Generation Scotland and the state-of-the-art genetic information also available.

The study was published in the journal Molecular Psychiatry on 10 January 2018.

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