Polygenic Risk for Major Depression Interacts with Parental Criticism in Predicting Adolescent Depressive Symptom Development

Stefanie A Nelemans, Marco Boks, Bochao Lin, Tineke Oldehinkel, Pol van Lier, Susan Branje, Wim Meeus

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Abstract

Research has focused more and more on the interplay between genetics and environment in predicting different forms of psychopathology, including depressive symptoms. While the polygenic nature of depressive symptoms is increasingly recognized, only few studies have applied a polygenic approach in gene-by-environment interaction (G x E) studies. Furthermore, longitudinal G x E studies on developmental psychopathological properties of depression are scarce. Therefore, this 6-year longitudinal community study examined the interaction between genetic risk for major depression and a multi-informant longitudinal index of critical parenting in relation to depressive symptom development from early to late adolescence. The sample consisted of 327 Dutch adolescents of European descent (56% boys; M-age T-1 = 13.00, SDage T-1 = 0.44). Polygenic risk for major depression was based on the Hyde et al. (Nature Genetics, 48, 1031-1036, 2016) meta-analysis and genetic sensitivity analyses were based on the 23andMe discovery dataset. Latent Growth Models suggested that polygenic risk score for major depression was associated with higher depressive symptoms across adolescence (significant main effect), particularly for those experiencing elevated levels of critical parenting (significant G x E). These findings highlight how polygenic risk for major depression in combination with a general environmental factor impacts depressive symptom development from early to late adolescence.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)159-176
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Youth and Adolescence
Issue number1
Early online date23-Nov-2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 23-Nov-2020

Keywords

  • Depressive symptoms
  • Adolescence
  • Longitudinal
  • Polygenic risk score (PRS)
  • Parenting
  • Gene-by-environment interaction (G&#8201
  • &#215
  • &#8201
  • E)
  • GENE-ENVIRONMENT INTERACTION
  • EXPRESSED EMOTION
  • DIFFERENTIAL SUSCEPTIBILITY
  • SEX-DIFFERENCES
  • LIFE STRESS
  • CHILDHOOD
  • PREVALENCE
  • DISORDERS
  • CHILDREN
  • PSYCHOPATHOLOGY

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