Genetic and Environmental Links Between General Factors of Psychopathology and Cognitive Ability in Early Childhood

Andrew D. Grotzinger, Amanda K. Cheung, Megan W. Patterson, Kathryn Harden, Elliot Tucker-Drob

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In adults, psychiatric disorders are highly comorbid and are negatively associated with cognitive abilities. Individual cognitive measures have been linked with domains of child psychopathology, but the specificity of these associations and the extent to which they reflect shared genetic influences are unknown. In this study we examined the relationship between general factors of cognitive ability (g) and psychopathology (p) in early development using two genetically informative samples: the Texas “Tiny” Twin Project (TXtT; N = 626, age range = 0.16–6.31 years) and the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study–Birth Cohort (ECLS-B; N ≈ 1,300 individual twins, age range = 3.7–7.1 years). The total p–g correlation (−.21 in ECLS-B; −.34 in TXtT) was primarily attributable to genetic and shared environmental factors. The early age range of participants indicates that the p–g association is a reflection of overlapping genetic and shared environmental factors that operate in the first years of life.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)430-444
Number of pages15
JournalClinical Psychological Science
Volume7
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2019

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Aptitude
Psychopathology
Psychiatry

Keywords

  • behavioral genetics
  • early childhood
  • intelligence
  • psychopathology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology

Cite this

Genetic and Environmental Links Between General Factors of Psychopathology and Cognitive Ability in Early Childhood. / Grotzinger, Andrew D.; Cheung, Amanda K.; Patterson, Megan W.; Harden, Kathryn; Tucker-Drob, Elliot.

In: Clinical Psychological Science, Vol. 7, No. 3, 01.05.2019, p. 430-444.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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