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MAOA

Protein:

Monoamine Oxidase A

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Monoamine Oxidase A (MAO-A) is an enzyme which encodes by the MAOA gene. MAO-A catalyses the oxidative deamination (break down) of the neurotransmitters:

  • Noradrenaline
  • Adrenaline
  • Serotonin
  • Dopamine

It therefore plays an important role in regulating mood. This was discovered by a study that found that mice lacking MAOA show enhanced aggression and altered emotional learning relative to wild-type (normal) animals.

Studies have shown that positive selection has directed the evolution of MAOA in humans and implies that natural selection has actively chosen a new variant in a gene that is intimately associated with behavior1.

Impact of MAOA mutations

A nonsense mutation in MAOA was shown to be involved in a rare X-linked behavioral syndrome, which is characterized by impaired impulse control, aggression, and borderline mental retardation (Brunner syndrome).

Research has also found that SNPs in a region that controls the expression of the MAOA gene have significant effects on behavior. It was found that certain variants in this region contribute to the behavioral attribute of “straightforwardness”, while others may contribute to “conscientiousness”2.

It’s important to note that MAOA variations do not solely contribute to aggressiveness, there are numerous other factors associated, with the most important thought to be early life abuse 35.

T1410C

Science Grade
B-
Brain Health
rsID Number Major Allele Minor Allele Minor Allele Frequency (%) Major Amino Acid Minor Amino Acid
rs1137070 c t 37AspAsp

Risk Description

As is discussed above it is not possible to completely understand MAOAactivity without genetic screening, which is not available to most consumers. However, the risk ‘T’ allele of T1410C does display a weak association with the 3R form of MAO-A. Therefore, those carrying the risk ‘T’ allele are at risk of displaying increased aggression, particularly when associated with other lifestyle traits 8,9.

Direct Nutrients:*

IngredientActive IngredientEffect
Vitamin B2 Riboflavin phosphate

Vitamin B2 is a cofactor for MAO-A, required for it to function correctly 10. The risk ‘T’ allele of T1410C displays a weak association with the 3R, reduced activity, form of MAO-A; therefore carriers may benefit from vitamin B2 supplementation 11.

Discuss this information with your doctor before taking any course of action.

G1052+680C

Science Grade
C+
Brain Health
rsID Number Major Allele Minor Allele Minor Allele Frequency (%)
rs3027399 g c 48

Risk Description

The risk ‘G’ allele of G1052+680C is associated with the 5R form of MAO-A which displays reduced activity. Therefore carriers are at risk of exhibiting increased aggression depending on other life factors  8,9.

Direct Nutrients:*

IngredientActive IngredientEffect
Vitamin B2 Riboflavin phosphate

Vitamin B2 is a cofactor for MAO-A, required for its proper function 10. The risk ‘G’ allele of G1052+680C is associated with the 5R, reduced activity, form of MAO-A; carriers of the ‘G’ allele may benefit from vitamin B2 supplementation 11.

Discuss this information with your doctor before taking any course of action.

G891T

Science Grade
B-
Brain Health
rsID Number Major Allele Minor Allele Minor Allele Frequency (%) Major Amino Acid Minor Amino Acid
rs6323 t g 35ArgArg

Risk Description

As discussed above a full understanding of MAOA status requires a complete genetic screen which is not available to most consumers. However, the risk ‘T’ allele of G891T is associated with the 5R form of MAO-A and therefore reduced activity, with the associated risk of aggression, although the link is rather weak 6,7.

Interestingly, the higher activity forms of MAO-A associated with the ‘G’ allele of G891T has been associated with depression, potentially due to more rapid degradation of neurotransmitters although results are conflicting, suggesting this aspect requires further research 8,9.

Direct Nutrients:*

IngredientActive IngredientEffect
Vitamin B2 Riboflavin phosphate

MAO-A uses vitamin B2 as a cofactor in order to function correctly 10. The risk ‘T’ allele of G891T is associated with the 5R, reduced activity, form of MAO-A; therefore carriers of the ‘T’ allele may benefit from vitamin B2 supplementation 11.

Discuss this information with your doctor before taking any course of action.

C306+527T

Science Grade
C+
Brain Health
rsID Number Major Allele Minor Allele Minor Allele Frequency (%)
rs909525 t c 28

Risk Description

A full understanding of MAOA status requires a complete genetic screen which is not available to most consumers. However, the risk ‘C’ allele of C306+527T is associated with the 3R and 5R variants of MAO-A which display reduced activity, thereby increasing the risk of aggression in association with other factors 6,7.

Direct Nutrients:*

IngredientActive IngredientEffect
Vitamin B2 Riboflavin phosphate

Vitamin B2 is a cofactor for MAO-A, required for it to function properly 10. The risk ‘C’ allele of C306+527T is associated with both the 3R and 5R, reduced activity, forms of MAO-A; therefore vitamin B2 supplementation may benefit carriers of the ‘C’ allele 11.

Discuss this information with your doctor before taking any course of action.

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