Monoamine oxidase type A (MAOA) has been implicated to be part of mechanisms underlying human temperament and psychiatric disorders. We hypothesised that a functional polymorphism in the 5′ untranslated region of the MAOA gene is associated with specific personality traits. In 371 healthy Caucasians, we estimated personality traits by the use of the Karolinska Scales of Personality (KSP), Scandinavian Universities Scales of Personality, Health-Relevant 5-Factor Personality inventory, Temperament and Character Inventory and the revised NEO Personality Inventory. In the same subjects, we analysed the genotype of a polymorphic region consisting of a variable number of a 30-bp repeat sequence located approximately 1.2 kb upstream of the MAOA gene. After correction for multiple testing, no statistically significant differences between MAOA genotype and personality were observed in men (n = 206) nor in women (n = 165). We conclude that the structure of this MAOA promoter region does not have a large impact on the expression of personality characteristics in the present Swedish population.

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