Effects of Genotype and Sleep on Temperament.

TitleEffects of Genotype and Sleep on Temperament.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsBouvette-Turcot A-A, Pluess M, Bernier A, Pennestri M-H, Levitan R, Sokolowski MB, Kennedy JL, Minde K, Steiner M, Pokhvisneva I, Meaney MJ, Gaudreau H
Corporate AuthorsMAVAN Research Team
Date Published2015 Oct
KeywordsCanada, Child, Preschool, Cohort Studies, Female, Genotype, Humans, Infant, Longitudinal Studies, Male, Polymorphism, Genetic, Regression Analysis, Serotonin Plasma Membrane Transport Proteins, Sleep, Temperament

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Sleep problems are frequent in young children; however, children vary in the degree to which they are affected by poor sleep quality. We investigated whether a polymorphism in the serotonin transporter gene, which is linked to emotional function, is a potential moderator of the influences of sleep duration on infant temperament using longitudinal data.METHODS: We examined the interactive effects of average sleep duration between 6 and 36 months of age and the 5-HTTLPR genotype on negative emotionality/behavioral dysregulation at 36 months in 209 children recruited into a longitudinal birth cohort study. Triallelic genotyping of 5-HTTLPR was performed by looking at SLC6A4 genotype, focusing on the serotonin transporter-linked polymorphic region (5-HTTLPR) including the SNP polymorphism (rs23351). Child sleep habits were assessed with a maternal self-report questionnaire.RESULTS: After controlling for demographics and both previous and concurrent maternal depression, multiple linear regression analyses revealed a significant interaction effect of average sleep duration for the first 3 years of life and 5-HTTLPR genotype on child negative emotionality/behavioral dysregulation such that the effects were exclusive to those with low-expressing 5-HTTLPR genotypes.CONCLUSIONS: The results suggest differential susceptibility to the effect of sleep duration early in life, which reiterates that the short allele of the 5-HTTLPR represents a marker of increased environmental sensitivity regarding emotional development. Differential susceptibility theory posits that certain factors may increase an individual's susceptibility to the environment, in either a positive or negative fashion.

Alternate JournalPediatrics
PubMed ID26371199
Grant List / / Canadian Institutes of Health Research / Canada