For the formation of human intelligence to answer at least 52 of the gene. This was reported by scientists after the analysis of the genome of almost 80 thousand people.
The results of their research are published in the journal Nature Genetics.
The basis of the work was 13 earlier studies that have examined the genomes of a total of 78 thousand people. The authors searched for genes they have that could affect the development of intelligence.
They began their study with a genome-wide Association search method, linking genomic variants and phenotypic traits. Often we are talking about the single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) — differences of the DNA sequence one nucleotide.
It is noted that this approach allowed the researchers to isolate 336 significant SNPS.
However, most SNPS tend to be in noncoding regions of DNA. This means that they point to the part of DNA that can regulate gene expression, but the gene itself is regulated is unknown.
This complicates the interpretation of search results, so the authors added the study also associative analysis, which calculates the impact of multiple SNPS on genes and allows to identify specific genes with which they are associated.
By combining both approaches, scientists have reduced the number of important for the development of intelligence genes to 52. The relationship with intelligence 12 have already been previously identified.
It turned out that the genes that had the most pronounced effect, also played an important role in the regulation of nervous system development and apoptosis, a mechanism of programmed cell death.
The researchers note that intelligence is quite a complex trait, and in addition genetic factors it is affected by the level of education and General access to higher education, lifestyle, education. However, similar studies show that we are able to identify the biological basis of intelligence.