The catechol-O-methyltransferase gene (COMT) and cognitive function from childhood through adolescence

Darya Gaysina (Lead / Corresponding author), Man K. Xu, Jennifer H. Barnett, Tim J. Croudace, Andrew Wong, Marcus Richards, Peter B. Jones, the LHA genetics group

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    Abstract

    Genetic variation in the catechol-O-methyltransferase gene (COMT) can influence cognitive function, and this effect may depend on developmental stage. Using a large representative British birth cohort, we investigated the effect of COMT on cognitive function (verbal and non-verbal) at ages 8 and 15 years taking into account the possible modifying effect of pubertal stage. Five functional COMT polymorphisms, rs6269, rs4818, rs4680, rs737865 and rs165599 were analysed. Associations between COMT polymorphisms and cognition were tested using regression and latent variable structural equation modelling (SEM). Before correction for multiple testing, COMT rs737865 showed association with reading comprehension, verbal ability and global cognition at age 15 years in pubescent boys only. Although there was some evidence for age- and sex-specific effects of the COMT rs737865 none remained significant after correction for multiple testing. Further studies are necessary in order to make firmer conclusions.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)359-364
    Number of pages6
    JournalBiological Psychology
    Volume92
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Feb 2013

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    Keywords

    • Neuroscience
    • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology

    Cite this

    Gaysina, D., Xu, M. K., Barnett, J. H., Croudace, T. J., Wong, A., Richards, M., Jones, P. B., & the LHA genetics group (2013). The catechol-O-methyltransferase gene (COMT) and cognitive function from childhood through adolescence. Biological Psychology, 92(2), 359-364. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biopsycho.2012.11.007