, Volume 36, Issue 1, pp 56-64
Date: 13 Dec 2005

A Linkage Study of Academic Skills Defined by the Queensland Core Skills Test

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This study used genome-wide linkage analysis to detect Quantitative Trait Loci (QTLs) implicated in variation in general academic achievement as measured by the Queensland Core Skills Test (QCST) (Queensland Studies Authority, 2004). Data from 210 families were analysed. While no empirically derived significant or suggestive peaks for general academic achievement were indicated a peak on chromosome 2 was observed in a region where Posthuma et al. (2005) reported significant linkage for Performance IQ (PIQ) and suggestive linkage for Full Scale IQ (FSIQ), and Luciano et al. (this issue) observed significant linkage for PIQ and word reading. A peak on chromosome 18 was also observed approximately 20 cM removed from a region recently implicated in reading achievement. In addition, on chromosomes 2 and 18 peaks for a number of specific academic skills, two of which were suggestive, coincided with the general academic achievement peaks. The findings suggest that variation in general academic achievement is influenced by genes on chromosome 2 which have broad influence on a variety of cognitive abilities.