Researchers identify over 500 genes related to intelligence

DNA tests can predict intelligence, scientists show for first time

DNA tests can predict intelligence, scientists show for first time

More than 500 genes linked to intelligence have been identified by scientists - ten times more than were previously known.

Researchers used data from the UK Biobank, comparing DNA variants from more than 240,000 people.

Previous studies have suggested that between 50 per cent and 75 per cent of intelligence is inherited, and the rest comes through upbringing, friendship groups and education.

They found that the genes accounted for a difference of up to seven per cent in IQ by boosting the way neurons carry signals in the brain. Some of these genes are also linked to other biological processes, including living longer.

"We know that environments and genes both contribute to the differences we observe in peoples intelligence", said Ian Deary, from University of Edinburgh. Their analysis identified 538 genes linked to intellectual ability, and 187 regions of the human genome that are associated with thinking skills.

"Importantly we were also able to identify some of the biological processes that genetic variation appears to influence to produce such differences in intelligence - and we were also able to predict intelligence in another group using only their DNA". The study was aimed at finding out which genes are associated with intelligence. People who had them were less likely to suffer Alzheimer's, depression, schizophrenia and obesity.