A Combination of Dopamine Genes Predicts Success by Professional Wall Street Traders

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A Combination of Dopamine Genes Predicts Success by Professional Wall Street Traders
Steve Sapra1, Laura E. Beavin1, Paul J. Zak1,2,3*

What determines success on Wall Street? This study examined if genes affecting dopamine levels of professional traders were associated with their career tenure. Sixty professional Wall Street traders were genotyped and compared to a control group who did not trade stocks. We found that distinct alleles of the dopamine receptor 4 promoter (DRD4P) and catecholamine-O-methyltransferase (COMT) that affect synaptic dopamine were predominant in traders. These alleles are associated with moderate, rather than very high or very low, levels of synaptic dopamine. The activity of these alleles correlated positively with years spent trading stocks on Wall Street. Differences in personality and trading behavior were also correlated with allelic variants. This evidence suggests there may be a genetic basis for the traits that make one a successful trader.

Abstract
What determines success on Wall Street? This study examined if genes affecting dopamine levels of professional traders were associated with their career tenure. Sixty professional Wall Street traders were genotyped and compared to a control group who did not trade stocks. We found that distinct alleles of the dopamine receptor 4 promoter (DRD4P) and catecholamine-O-methyltransferase (COMT) that affect synaptic dopamine were predominant in traders. These alleles are associated with moderate, rather than very high or very low, levels of synaptic dopamine. The activity of these alleles correlated positively with years spent trading stocks on Wall Street. Differences in personality and trading behavior were also correlated with allelic variants. This evidence suggests there may be a genetic basis for the traits that make one a successful trader.

Citation: Sapra S, Beavin LE, Zak PJ (2012) A Combination of Dopamine Genes Predicts Success by Professional Wall Street Traders. PLoS ONE 7(1): e30844. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0030844
Editor: Reiner Albert Veitia, Institut Jacques Monod, France
Received: July 1, 2011; Accepted: December 29, 2011; Published: January 24, 2012

Comments

Are there some books that

Are there some books that discuss this topic? Gary since you've read a lot about this, I would be curious to hear your opinion.

F.E. I'm really curious about the effect of one's genetics on his behavior, personality. Particurarily dopamine

I remember reading Helen Fisher's "why we fall in love" and it was really interesting. It also mentioned dopamine, but not in much detail.