- Antisocial behavior
- Pathological gambling
- Personality disorders
- Crime and violence especially when abused as children
- Psychological disorders such as autism, depression, sleep disorders, seizures Panic disorders
- Mental retardation (Brunner syndrome)
- Sudden infant death syndrome
DNA Warrior Gene Test
What is the “warrior” gene? The “warrior” gene refers to a genetic variant of the MAOA gene that was named due to its association with aggressive behavior. The MAOA gene encodes the monoamine oxidase A enzyme that breaks down neurotransmitters – chemical messengers involved in transmitting messages from the brain to the rest of the body. Dopamine, norepinephrine and epinephrine are a few examples of such neurotransmitters. Dopamine controls sensations involved in pleasure and reward and epinephrine and norepinephrine influence the flight-or-fight response. The “warrior” gene results in low levels of monoamine oxidase A, disrupting the normal breakdown of these neurotransmitters. How is the “warrior” gene inherited? The MAOA gene is located on the X-chromosome. Males inherit only one X chromosome so they have only one version of MAOA. If a male inherits the “warrior” gene, they are more likely to be affected by it. Females have two X chromosomes, hence females can inherit two different versions of the gene. This means that even if a female inherits one copy of the “warrior” gene, they are less likely to be affected as they also carry one normal version of MAOA. It is also possible for females to inherit two copies of the “Warrior” gene, but the affect of this genetic variant on females is not well understood. Characteristics associated with the “warrior” gene The “warrior” gene was named due to its association with aggressive behavior. Since then, studies have linked the warrior gene to various other characteristics including:
DNA testing for the “warrior” gene A simple DNA test can be done to find out which single form of MAOA a male has inherited and which two forms a female has inherited. Females can inherit two identical or two different copies of the MAOA gene. The test determines how many repeats are present in the regulatory region of the MAOA gene. There are five variants with different numbers of repeats – 2, 3, 3.5, 4 and 5. Individuals with 3.5 or 4 repeats, have the MAOA-H allele and make high levels of monoamine oxidase A. Individuals with 2, 3, or 5 repeats have the MAOA-L allele, known as the “warrior” gene.
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