Heritable changes in regional cortical thickness with age

Francois Chouinard-Decorte, D. Reese McKay, Andrew Reid, Budhachandra Khundrakpam, Lu Zhao, Sherif Karama, Pierre Rioux, Emma Sprooten, Emma Knowles, Jack W. Kent, Joanne E Curran, Harald HH Goring, Thomas D. Dyer, Rene L. Olvera, Peter Kochunov, Ravindranath Duggirala, Peter T. Fox, Laura A Almasy, John C Blangero, Pierre BellecAlan C. Evans, David C. Glahn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


It is now well established that regional indices of brain structure such as cortical thickness, surface area or grey matter volume exhibit spatially variable patterns of heritability. However, a recent study found these patterns to change with age during development, a result supported by gene expression studies. Changes in heritability have not been investigated in adulthood so far and could have important implications in the study of heritability and genetic correlations in the brain as well as in the discovery of specific genes explaining them. Herein, we tested for genotype by age (G ×A) interactions, an extension of genotype by environment interactions, through adulthood and healthy aging in 902 subjects from the Genetics of Brain Structure (GOBS) study. A "jackknife" based method for the analysis of stable cortical thickness clusters (JASC) and scale selection is also introduced. Although additive genetic variance remained constant throughout adulthood, we found evidence for incomplete pleiotropy across age in the cortical thickness of paralimbic and parieto-temporal areas. This suggests that different genetic factors account for cortical thickness heritability at different ages in these regions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)208-216
Number of pages9
JournalBrain Imaging and Behavior
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2014


  • Clustering
  • Cortical Thickness
  • Genotype by Age Interaction
  • Heritability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


Dive into the research topics of 'Heritable changes in regional cortical thickness with age'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this