The present study attempted to test whether the angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) genotypes can be associated with precompetitive anxiety that can be potentially used as predictors of athletic performance.
Eighty-seven track and field athletes (47 males, 40 females; age 20.55 ± 2.22 years; body mass = 77.5 ± 7.1 kg, height = 170.7 ± 5.4 cm) competing at an international level voluntarily participated in this study. The athletes were prospectively classified into two groups according to their genetic polymorphism to physical efforts: endurance group (allele I, n = 48) and power group (allele D, n = 39). Suggested, this genetic predisposition was specifically associated with athlete’s success in sports. Precompetitive anxiety was assessed before competition, and the ACE gene polymorphism was examined by polymerase chain reaction.
It was found that the score performances were associated with psychological factors. In carriers of allele I (related to the endurance), the self-confidence explained 18 % of the variance of score performance (R = 0.46, R 2 = 0.21, adjusted R 2 = 0.15; F = 3.83, p < 0.02). In carriers of allele D (related to the power) (R = 0.30, R 2 = 0.09, adjusted R 2 = 0.01; F = 1.19, p < 0.33), any factors of anxiety can explain the variance of performance.
The current study is the first to interpret the relationship between the ACE gene and somatic anxiety, cognitive anxiety and self-confidence in sportsmen and has provided evidence of association between ACE I/D polymorphism predisposition and success in distance runners. Taking into account the effects of multiple comparisons, this result should be interpreted with caution and needs confirmation in a larger sample.
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No sources of funding were used to assist in the preparation of this paper.
Conflict of interest
No potential conflict of interest was reported by the authors.
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.
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Znazen, H., Chtara, M., Butovskaya, M. et al. Association between angiotensin-converting enzyme gene polymorphism and competitive anxiety in Tunisian athlete. Sport Sci Health 12, 233–238 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11332-016-0280-2
- Gene ACE
- Pre-competitive anxiety
- Endurance and power performances