Finding gene-environment interactions for generalised anxiety disorder

  • Alice M. GregoryEmail author
  • Jennifer Y. F. Lau
  • Thalia C. Eley


It is becoming increasingly apparent that genetic research into psychiatric disorders would benefit from consideration of the environment because these risk mechanisms are likely to interact. Despite generalised anxiety disorder (GAD) being one of the most prevalent disorders presented in primary care, there is a paucity of published studies of gene-environment interactions (G × E) for this phenotype. This article describes how our current knowledge of GAD is useful in designing studies of G × E for GAD. To increase the chances of identifying replicable G × E for GAD further information is needed with regards to: defining and measuring GAD, difficulties co-occurring with GAD, quantitative genetic estimations for GAD, specific genes associated with GAD, and specific environmental risks for GAD.

Key words

generalized anxiety disorder anxiety genes environment 



Thalia C. Eley is funded by a Medical Research Council Career Development Award. The authors thank Megan Crawford and Jessica Holland for assistance in preparing this article.


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Copyright information

© Springer 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alice M. Gregory
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Jennifer Y. F. Lau
    • 2
    • 3
  • Thalia C. Eley
    • 2
  1. 1.Psychology Department, Goldsmiths CollegeUniversity of LondonLondonUK
  2. 2.Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry Centre, Institute of PsychiatryKing’s College, University of LondonLondonUK
  3. 3.Mood and Anxiety Disorders ProgramNational Institute of Mental Health, National Institutes of HealthBethesdaUSA

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