Child maltreatment, adaptive functioning, and polygenic risk: A structural equation mixture model.
ABSTRACT: This study used a structural equation mixture model to examine associations between child maltreatment, polygenic risk, and indices of adaptive functioning. Children aged 6 to 13 years (N = 1,004), half maltreated, half nonmaltreated, were recruited to attend a research day camp. Multi-informant indicators of prosocial behavior, antisocial behavior, withdrawn behavior, and depression were collected and used in a latent class analysis. Four classes emerged, characterizing "well-adjusted," "externalizing," "internalizing," and "socially dominant" groups. Twelve genetic variants, previously reported in the Gene × Environment literature, were modeled as one weighted polygenic risk score. Large main effects between maltreatment and adaptive functioning were observed (Wald = 35.3, df = 3, p < .0001), along with evidence of a small Gene × Environment effect (Wald = 13.5, df = 3, p = .004), adjusting for sex, age, and covariate interaction effects.
Project description:In this investigation, gene-environment interaction effects in predicting resilience in adaptive functioning among maltreated and nonmaltreated low-income children (N = 595) were examined. A multicomponent index of resilient functioning was derived and levels of resilient functioning were identified. Variants in four genes (serotonin transporter linked polymorphic region, corticotropin releasing hormone receptor 1, dopamine receptor D4-521C/T, and oxytocin receptor) were investigated. In a series of analyses of covariance, child maltreatment demonstrated a strong negative main effect on children's resilient functioning, whereas no main effects for any of the genotypes of the respective genes were found. However, gene-environment interactions involving genotypes of each of the respective genes and maltreatment status were obtained. For each respective gene, among children with a specific genotype, the relative advantage in resilient functioning of nonmaltreated compared to maltreated children was stronger than was the case for nonmaltreated and maltreated children with other genotypes of the respective gene. Across the four genes, a composite of the genotypes that more strongly differentiated resilient functioning between nonmaltreated and maltreated children provided further evidence of genetic variations influencing resilient functioning in nonmaltreated children, whereas genetic variation had a negligible effect on promoting resilience among maltreated children. Additional effects were observed for children based on the number of subtypes of maltreatment children experienced, as well as for abuse and neglect subgroups. Finally, maltreated and nonmaltreated children with high levels of resilience differed in their average number of differentiating genotypes. These results suggest that differential resilient outcomes are based on the interaction between genes and developmental experiences.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Individuals with a history of maltreatment show altered amygdala reactivity to emotional stimuli, atypical frontal regulatory control, and differences in frontolimbic connectivity compared with nonmaltreated controls. However, despite early trauma, many individuals who experience maltreatment show resilience or adaptive functioning in adulthood including positive social, educational, and occupational outcomes. METHODS:The present study used a psychophysiological interaction model to examine the effect of adult adaptive functioning on group differences between maltreated and nonmaltreated adults in task-based amygdala functional connectivity. The task used was a facial emotion-matching paradigm. Functional magnetic resonance imaging scans were collected from 41 adults with a history of substantiated childhood maltreatment and 39 nonmaltreated adults who were well matched on demographic variables, all of whom had been studied since childhood. Adaptive functioning was measured with a composite score of success on stage-salient developmental tasks. RESULTS:Consistent with previous research, we found differences in task-related amygdala functional connectivity between the maltreated and nonmaltreated groups. Effects were seen in the left hippocampus, right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, dorsomedial prefrontal cortex, and right thalamus. However, when adult functioning was included in the model, maltreatment-related differences in amygdala connectivity were observed only in the hippocampus. Adult adaptive functioning independently predicted task-related amygdala connectivity in frontal and parietal regions across the entire sample. CONCLUSIONS:These results suggest that frontolimbic functional connectivity is predicted by positive developmental adaptation in this high-risk population, regardless of maltreatment history, whereas intralimbic connectivity (amygdala and hippocampus) is more specifically associated with maltreatment history.
Project description:In the present investigation, differential methylation analyses of the whole genome were conducted among a sample of 548 school-aged low-income children (47.8% female, 67.7% Black, M age = 9.40 years), 54.4% of whom had a history of child maltreatment. In the context of a summer research camp, DNA samples via saliva were obtained. Using GenomeStudio, Methylation Module, and the Illumina Custom Model, differential methylation analyses revealed a pattern of greater methylation at low methylation sites (n = 197 sites) and medium methylation sites (n = 730 sites) and less methylation at high methylation sites (n = 907 sites) among maltreated children. The mean difference in methylation between the maltreated and nonmaltreated children was 6.2%. The relative risk of maltreatment with known disease biomarkers was also investigated using GenoGo MetaCore Software. A large number of network objects previously associated with mental health, cancer, cardiovascular systems, and immune functioning were identified evidencing differential methylation among maltreated and nonmaltreated children. Site-specific analyses were also conducted for aldehyde dehydrogenase 2 (ALDH2), ankyrin repeat and kinase domain containing 1 (ANKK1), and nuclear receptor subfamily 3, group C, member 1 (NR3C1) genes, and the results highlight the importance of considering gender and the developmental timing of maltreatment. For ALDH2, the results indicated that maltreated girls evidenced significantly lower methylation compared to nonmaltreated girls, and maltreated boys evidenced significantly higher methylation compared to nonmaltreated boys. Moreover, early onset-not recently maltreated boys evidenced significantly higher methylation at ALDH2 compared to nonmaltreated boys. Similarly, children with early onset-nonrecent maltreatment evidenced significantly higher methylation compared to nonmaltreated children at ANKK1. The site-specific results were not altered by controlling for genotypic variation of respective genes. The findings demonstrate increased risk for adverse physical and mental health outcomes associated with differences in methylation in maltreated children and indicate differences among maltreated children related to developmental timing of maltreatment and gender in genes involved in mental health functioning.
Project description:Gene-environment interaction effects in predicting antisocial behavior in late childhood were investigated among maltreated and nonmaltreated low-income children (N = 627, M age = 11.27). Variants in three genes were examined: tryptophan hydroxylase 1 (TPH1), serotonin transporter linked polymorphic region (5-HTTLPR), and monoamine oxidase A (MAOA) upstream variable number tandem repeat. In addition to child maltreatment status, we considered the impact of maltreatment subtypes, developmental timing of maltreatment, and chronicity. Indicators of antisocial behavior were obtained from self-, peer, and adult counselor reports. In a series of analyses of covariance, child maltreatment and its parameters demonstrated strong main effects on early antisocial behavior as assessed by all report forms. Genetic effects operated primarily in the context of gene-environment interactions, moderating the impact of child maltreatment on outcomes. Across the three genes, among nonmaltreated children no differences in antisocial behavior were found based on genetic variation. In contrast, among maltreated children specific polymorphisms of TPH1, 5-HTTLPR, and MAOA were each related to heightened self-report of antisocial behavior; the interaction of 5-HTTLPR and developmental timing of maltreatment also indicated more severe antisocial outcomes for children with early onset and recurrent maltreatment based on genotype. TPH1 and 5-HTTLPR interacted with maltreatment subtype to predict peer reports of antisocial behavior; genetic variation contributed to larger differences in antisocial behavior among abused children. The TPH1 and 5-HTTLPR polymorphisms also moderated the effects of maltreatment subtype on adult reports of antisocial behavior; again, the genetic effects were strongest for children who were abused. In addition, TPH1 moderated the effect of developmental timing of maltreatment and chronicity on adult reports of antisocial behavior. The findings elucidate how genetic variation contributes to identifying which maltreated children are most vulnerable to antisocial development.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The enduring impact of childhood maltreatment on biological systems and ensuing psychopathology remains incompletely understood. Long-term effects of stress may be reflected in cumulative cortisol secretion over several months, which is now quantifiable via hair cortisol concentrations (HCC). We conducted a first comprehensive investigation utilizing the potential of hair cortisol analysis in a large sample of maltreated and nonmaltreated children and adolescents. METHOD:Participants included 537 children and adolescents (3-16 years; 272 females) with maltreatment (n = 245) or without maltreatment histories (n = 292). Maltreated subjects were recruited from child protection services (CPS; n = 95), youth psychiatric services (n = 56), and the community (n = 94). Maltreatment was coded using the Maltreatment Classification System drawing on caregiver interviews and complemented with CPS records. Caregivers and teachers reported on child mental health. HCC were assessed in the first 3 cm hair segment. RESULTS:Analyses uniformly supported that maltreatment coincides with a gradual and dose-dependent reduction in HCC from 9 to 10 years onwards relative to nonmaltreated controls. This pattern emerged consistently from both group comparisons between maltreated and nonmaltreated subjects (27.6% HCC reduction in maltreated 9-16-year-olds) and dimensional analyses within maltreated subjects, with lower HCC related to greater maltreatment chronicity and number of subtypes. Moreover, both group comparisons and dimensional analyses within maltreated youth revealed that relative HCC reduction mediates the effect of maltreatment on externalizing symptoms. CONCLUSIONS:From middle childhood onwards, maltreatment coincides with a relative reduction in cortisol secretion, which, in turn, may predispose to externalizing symptoms.
Project description:Despite the detrimental consequences of child maltreatment on developmental processes, some individuals show remarkable resilience, with few signs of psychopathology, while others succumb to dysfunction. Given that oxytocin has been shown to be involved in social affiliation, attachment, social support, trust, empathy, and other social or reproductive behaviors, we chose to examine the possible moderation of maltreatment effects on perceived social support and on psychological symptoms by a common single nucleotide polymorphism (rs53576) in the oxytocin receptor gene. We studied adolescents (N = 425) aged approximately 13-15, including participants with objectively documented maltreatment histories (N = 263) and a nonmaltreated comparison group from a comparable low socioeconomic status background (N = 162). There was a significant genotype by maltreatment interaction, such that maltreated adolescents with the G/G genotype perceived significantly lower social support compared to maltreated A-carriers, with no effect of genotype in the comparison group. Maltreated G/Gs also reported higher levels of internalizing symptoms than did A-carriers, even though they did not differ from them on objective measures of maltreatment (type, duration, or severity). G/G homozygotes may be more attuned to negative social experiences, such as family maltreatment, while maltreated A-carriers were indistinguishable from nonmaltreated adolescents in levels of mental health symptoms.
Project description:Childhood maltreatment increases risk for psychopathology. For some highly prevalent disorders (major depression, substance abuse, anxiety disorders, and posttraumatic stress disorder) a substantial subset of individuals have a history of maltreatment and a substantial subset do not. The authors examined the evidence to assess whether those with a history of maltreatment represent a clinically and biologically distinct subtype.The authors reviewed the literature on maltreatment as a risk factor for these disorders and on the clinical differences between individuals with and without a history of maltreatment who share the same diagnoses. Neurobiological findings in maltreated individuals were reviewed and compared with findings reported for these disorders.Maltreated individuals with depressive, anxiety, and substance use disorders have an earlier age at onset, greater symptom severity, more comorbidity, a greater risk for suicide, and poorer treatment response than nonmaltreated individuals with the same diagnoses. Imaging findings associated with these disorders, such as reduced hippocampal volume and amygdala hyperreactivity, are more consistently observed in maltreated individuals and may represent a maltreatment-related risk factor. Maltreated individuals also differ from others as a result of epigenetic modifications and genetic polymorphisms that interact with experience to increase risk for psychopathology.Phenotypic expression of psychopathology may be strongly influenced by exposure to maltreatment, leading to a constellation of ecophenotypes. While these ecophenotypes fit within conventional diagnostic boundaries, they likely represent distinct subtypes. Recognition of this distinction may be essential in determining the biological bases of these disorders. Treatment guidelines and algorithms may be enhanced if maltreated and nonmaltreated individuals with the same diagnostic labels are differentiated.
Project description:Neuroticism is a personality trait reflecting the tendency to experience negative affect. It is a major risk for psychopathology, especially depression and anxiety disorders. Childhood maltreatment is another major risk factor for psychopathology and may influence personality. Maltreatment may interact with genotype to predict developmental outcomes. Variation in three polymorphisms of the CRHR1 gene has been found to moderate the association of childhood maltreatment with depression, and we hypothesized that it would also be linked to neuroticism.Variation in three CRHR1 SNPs (rs110402, rs242924, rs7209436) was assessed in 339 maltreated and 275 demographically similar nonmaltreated children, who participated in a day camp research program. Maltreated children were further categorized based on the number of types of maltreatment they had experienced and the most severe form of maltreatment experienced. Genotype and maltreatment status were used to predict the Big Five personality traits, as assessed by camp counselors following a week of interaction with children.? CRHR1 genotype significantly moderated the association of maltreatment with neuroticism but none of the other traits. Having two copies of the TAT haplotype of CRHR1 was associated with higher levels of neuroticism among maltreated children relative to nonmaltreated children, with the exception of sexually abused children and children who had experienced 3 or 4 types of abuse. Effects sizes of these interactions ranged from ?2=.01 (p=.02) to ?2=.03 (p=.006).Variation in CRHR1 moderates the association of maltreatment with neuroticism. The effects of specific types of maltreatment on neuroticism are differentially moderated by CRHR1 genotype, as are the effects of experiencing more or fewer types of maltreatment.
Project description:In this investigation, gene-environment-gender interaction effects in predicting child borderline personality disorder symptomatology among maltreated and nonmaltreated low-income children (N = 1,051) were examined. In the context of a summer research camp, adult-, peer-, and self-report assessments of borderline precursor indicators were obtained, as well as child self-report on the Borderline Personality Features Scale for Children. Genetic variants of the oxytocin receptor genotype and the FK506 binding protein 5 gene CATT haplotype were investigated. Children who self-reported high levels of borderline personality symptomatology were differentiated by adults, peers, and additional self-report on indicators of emotional instability, conflictual relationships with peers and adults, preoccupied attachment, and indicators of self-harm and suicidal ideation. Maltreated children also were more likely to evince many of these difficulties relative to nonmaltreated children. A series of analyses of covariance, controlling for age and ancestrally informative markers, indicated significant Maltreatment × Gene × Gender three-way interactions. Consideration of the maltreatment parameters of subtype, onset, and recency expanded understanding of variation among maltreated children. The three-way interaction effects demonstrated differential patterns among girls and boys. Among girls, the gene-environment interaction was more consistent with a diathesis-stress model, whereas among boys a differential-sensitivity interaction effect was indicated. Moreover, the genetic variants associated with greater risk for higher borderline symptomatology, dependent on maltreatment experiences, were opposite in girls compared to boys. The findings have important implications for understanding variability in early predictors of borderline personality pathology.
Project description:Within an allostatic load framework, the effect of Gene × Environment (G × E) interactions on diurnal cortisol regulation and internalizing symptomatology were investigated. Variation in the corticotropin releasing hormone receptor 1 (CRHR1) TAT haplotype and serotonin transporter linked polymorphic region (5-HTTLPR) was determined in a sample of maltreated (n = 238, 21.4% with early physical and sexual abuse) and nonmaltreated (n = 255) children (M age = 10.08) participating in a summer research camp. Internalizing and depressive symptoms were assessed by other and self-report. G × E effects for CRHR1 and maltreatment and early abuse on diurnal cortisol regulation were observed; CRHR1 variation was related to cortisol dysregulation only among maltreated children. Early abuse and high internalizing symptoms also interacted to predict atypical diurnal cortisol regulation. The interaction of CRHR1, 5-HTTLPR, and child maltreatment (G × G × E) identified a subgroup of maltreated children with high internalizing symptoms who shared the same combination of the two genes. The findings support an allostatic load perspective on the effects of the chronic stress associated with child maltreatment on cortisol regulation and internalizing symptomatology as moderated by genetic variation.