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Associations between diurnal preference, sleep quality and externalising behaviours: A behavioural genetic analysis.

Barclay, Nicola L.; Eley, Thalia C.; Maughan, Barbara; Rowe, Richard and Gregory, Alice M.. 2011. Associations between diurnal preference, sleep quality and externalising behaviours: A behavioural genetic analysis. Psychological Medicine, 41, pp. 1029-1040. [Article]

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Abstract or Description

Background. Certain aspects of sleep co-occur with externalizing behaviours in youth, yet little is known about these associations in adults. The present study : (1) examines the associations between diurnal preference (morningness versus eveningness), sleep quality and externalizing behaviours ; (2) explores the extent to which genetic and environmental influences are shared between or are unique to these phenotypes ; (3) examines the extent to which genetic and environmental influences account for these associations.

Method. Questionnaires assessing diurnal preference, sleep quality and externalizing behaviours were completed by
1556 young adult twins and siblings.

Results. A preference for eveningness and poor sleep quality were associated with greater externalizing symptoms [r=0.28 (95% CI 0.23–0.33) and 0.34 (95% CI 0.28–0.39), respectively]. A total of 18% of the genetic influences on externalizing behaviours were shared with diurnal preference and sleep quality and an additional 14% were shared with sleep quality alone. Non-shared environmental influences common to the phenotypes were small (2 %). The association between diurnal preference and externalizing behaviours was mostly explained by genetic influences [additive genetic influence (A)=80% (95% CI 0.56–1.01)], as was the association between sleep quality and externalizing behaviours [A=81% (95% CI 0.62–0.99)]. Non-shared environmental (E) influences accounted for the remaining variance for both associations [E=20% (95% CI x0.01 to 0.44) and 19% (95% CI 0.01–0.38), respectively].

Conclusions. A preference for eveningness and poor sleep quality are moderately associated with externalizing
behaviours in young adults. There is a moderate amount of shared genetic influences between the phenotypes and
genetic influences account for a large proportion of the association between sleep and externalizing behaviours.
Further research could focus on identifying specific genetic polymorphisms common to both sleep and externalizing
behaviours.

Item Type:

Article

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Psychology

Dates:

DateEvent
2011Published

Item ID:

7015

Date Deposited:

02 Jul 2012 10:35

Last Modified:

15 Jul 2018 13:58

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.

URI:

http://research.gold.ac.uk/id/eprint/7015

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