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A DRD4 gene by maternal sensitivity interaction predicts risk for overweight or obesity in two independent cohorts of preschool children.
J Child Psychol Psychiatry. 2017 02; 58(2):180-188.JC

Abstract

BACKGROUND

Recent evidence suggests that early exposure to low maternal sensitivity is a risk factor for obesity in children and adolescents. A separate line of study shows that the seven-repeat (7R) allele of the dopamine-4 receptor gene (DRD4) increases susceptibility to environmental factors including maternal sensitivity. The current study integrates these lines of work by examining whether preschoolers carrying the 7R allele are more vulnerable to low maternal sensitivity as it relates to overweight/obesity risk.

METHOD

The Maternal Adversity Vulnerability and Neurodevelopment (MAVAN) project in Canada was used as the discovery cohort (N = 203), while the Generation R study in the Netherlands was used as a replication sample (N = 270). Regression models to predict both continuous BMI z-scores and membership in any higher BMI category based on established World Health Organization (WHO) cutoffs for 48 months of age were completed.

RESULTS

In both cohorts, there was a significant maternal sensitivity by DRD4 by sex interaction predicting higher body mass indices and/or obesity risk. As hypothesized, post hoc testing revealed an inverse relationship between maternal sensitivity and body mass indices in 7R allele carriers relative to noncarriers. This finding was strongest in girls in the Canadian cohort and in boys in the Dutch cohort.

CONCLUSIONS

Many children who carry the 7R allele of DRD4 appear to be more influenced by maternal sensitivity as it relates to overweight/obesity risk, consistent with a plasticity effect. Given the relatively small sample sizes available for these analyses, further replications will be needed to confirm and extend these results.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Centre for Addition and Mental Health (CAMH), Toronto, ON, Canada. Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada. Department of Physiology, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada.Institute of Psychology, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Rotterdam, Netherlands. Departments of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Psychology, and Epidemiology, and Psychiatry, Erasmus University Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.Institute of Medical Science, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada.Departments of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Psychology, and Epidemiology, and Psychiatry, Erasmus University Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.Departments of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Psychology, and Epidemiology, and Psychiatry, Erasmus University Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.Ludmer Centre for Neuroinformatics and Mental Health, Douglas Mental Health University Institute, McGill University, Montreal, QC, Canada.Centre for Addition and Mental Health (CAMH), Toronto, ON, Canada. Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada. Department of Physiology, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada.Ryerson University, Toronto, ON, Canada.Department of Psychology, University of Toronto Mississauga, Mississauga, ON, Canada.Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada.Department of Psychiatry and Neurology, McGill University, Montreal, QC, Canada.McMaster University, Hamilton, ON, Canada.Department of Management, McGill University, Montreal, QC, Canada.Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, ON, Canada.Department of Psychology, Université du Québec à Montréal, Montreal, QC, Canada.Centre for Child Development and Mental Health, Jewish General Hospital, McGill University, Montreal, QC, Canada.Ludmer Centre for Neuroinformatics and Mental Health, Douglas Mental Health University Institute, McGill University, Montreal, QC, Canada. Department of Psychiatry and Neurology, McGill University, Montreal, QC, Canada.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

27726127

Citation

Levitan, Robert D., et al. "A DRD4 Gene By Maternal Sensitivity Interaction Predicts Risk for Overweight or Obesity in Two Independent Cohorts of Preschool Children." Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, and Allied Disciplines, vol. 58, no. 2, 2017, pp. 180-188.
Levitan RD, Jansen P, Wendland B, et al. A DRD4 gene by maternal sensitivity interaction predicts risk for overweight or obesity in two independent cohorts of preschool children. J Child Psychol Psychiatry. 2017;58(2):180-188.
Levitan, R. D., Jansen, P., Wendland, B., Tiemeier, H., Jaddoe, V. W., Silveira, P. P., Kennedy, J. L., Atkinson, L., Fleming, A., Sokolowski, M., Gaudreau, H., Steiner, M., Dubé, L., Hamilton, J., Moss, E., Wazana, A., & Meaney, M. (2017). A DRD4 gene by maternal sensitivity interaction predicts risk for overweight or obesity in two independent cohorts of preschool children. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, and Allied Disciplines, 58(2), 180-188. https://doi.org/10.1111/jcpp.12646
Levitan RD, et al. A DRD4 Gene By Maternal Sensitivity Interaction Predicts Risk for Overweight or Obesity in Two Independent Cohorts of Preschool Children. J Child Psychol Psychiatry. 2017;58(2):180-188. PubMed PMID: 27726127.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - A DRD4 gene by maternal sensitivity interaction predicts risk for overweight or obesity in two independent cohorts of preschool children. AU - Levitan,Robert D, AU - Jansen,Pauline, AU - Wendland,Barbara, AU - Tiemeier,Henning, AU - Jaddoe,Vincent W, AU - Silveira,Patricia P, AU - Kennedy,James L, AU - Atkinson,Leslie, AU - Fleming,Alison, AU - Sokolowski,Marla, AU - Gaudreau,Helene, AU - Steiner,Meir, AU - Dubé,Laurette, AU - Hamilton,Jill, AU - Moss,Ellen, AU - Wazana,Ashley, AU - Meaney,Michael, Y1 - 2016/10/11/ PY - 2016/07/13/accepted PY - 2016/10/12/pubmed PY - 2017/9/28/medline PY - 2016/10/12/entrez KW - DRD4 KW - Maternal sensitivity KW - obesity KW - sex differences SP - 180 EP - 188 JF - Journal of child psychology and psychiatry, and allied disciplines JO - J Child Psychol Psychiatry VL - 58 IS - 2 N2 - BACKGROUND: Recent evidence suggests that early exposure to low maternal sensitivity is a risk factor for obesity in children and adolescents. A separate line of study shows that the seven-repeat (7R) allele of the dopamine-4 receptor gene (DRD4) increases susceptibility to environmental factors including maternal sensitivity. The current study integrates these lines of work by examining whether preschoolers carrying the 7R allele are more vulnerable to low maternal sensitivity as it relates to overweight/obesity risk. METHOD: The Maternal Adversity Vulnerability and Neurodevelopment (MAVAN) project in Canada was used as the discovery cohort (N = 203), while the Generation R study in the Netherlands was used as a replication sample (N = 270). Regression models to predict both continuous BMI z-scores and membership in any higher BMI category based on established World Health Organization (WHO) cutoffs for 48 months of age were completed. RESULTS: In both cohorts, there was a significant maternal sensitivity by DRD4 by sex interaction predicting higher body mass indices and/or obesity risk. As hypothesized, post hoc testing revealed an inverse relationship between maternal sensitivity and body mass indices in 7R allele carriers relative to noncarriers. This finding was strongest in girls in the Canadian cohort and in boys in the Dutch cohort. CONCLUSIONS: Many children who carry the 7R allele of DRD4 appear to be more influenced by maternal sensitivity as it relates to overweight/obesity risk, consistent with a plasticity effect. Given the relatively small sample sizes available for these analyses, further replications will be needed to confirm and extend these results. SN - 1469-7610 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/27726127/A_DRD4_gene_by_maternal_sensitivity_interaction_predicts_risk_for_overweight_or_obesity_in_two_independent_cohorts_of_preschool_children_ L2 - https://doi.org/10.1111/jcpp.12646 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -