Genes and behaviour

Many studies have linked genetic variations to differences in individuals' behaviour or traits such as intelligence (usually measured by IQ) or other qualities such as risk taking or leadership. However, all these studies are controversial and most have been refuted as more research is done.

The debate about the extent to which genetic differences explain behaviour is known as the "nature-nurture" debate. Many claims for an important role of genes come from twin studies, which are also controversial.

Psychiatric illness is very different from what is regarded as "normal" behaviour, but many of the concerns about behvioural genetic research also apply to genetic studies in psychiatry.


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