Exploring the genetic correlations of antisocial behaviour and life history traits.
BJPsych open 2018 ; 4: 467-470.
DOI : 10.1192/bjo.2018.63
PubMed ID : 30450226
PMCID : PMC6235975
Prior evolutionary theory provided reason to suspect that measures of development and reproduction would be correlated with antisocial behaviours in human and non-human species. Behavioural genetics has revealed that most quantitative traits are heritable, suggesting that these phenotypic correlations may share genetic aetiologies. We use genome-wide association study data to estimate the genetic correlations between various measures of reproductive development ( = 52 776-318 863) and antisocial behaviour ( = 31 968). Our genetic correlation analyses demonstrate that alleles associated with higher reproductive output (number of children ever born, = 0.50, = 0.0065) were positively correlated with alleles associated with antisocial behaviour, whereas alleles associated with more delayed reproductive onset (age at first birth, = -0.64, = 0.0008) were negatively associated with alleles linked to antisocial behaviour. Ultimately, these findings coalesce with evolutionary theories suggesting that increased antisocial behaviours may partly represent a faster life history approach, which may be significantly calibrated by genes.