Freitag, 3. Januar 2014

Does a fitness factor contribute to the association between intelligence and health outcomes? Evidence from medical abnormality counts among 3654 US Veterans

Does a fitness factor contribute to the association between intelligence and health outcomes? Evidence from medical abnormality counts among 3654 US Veterans
Rosalind Arden , Linda S. Gottfredson, and Geoffrey Miller; 2009


Abstract

We suggest that an over-arching ‘fitness factor’ (an index of general genetic quality that predicts survival and reproductive success) partially explains the observed associations between health outcomes and intelligence. As a proof of concept, we tested this idea in a sample of 3654 US Vietnam veterans aged 31–49 who completed five cognitive tests (from which we extracted a g factor), a detailed medical examination, and self-reports concerning lifestyle health risks (such as smoking and drinking). As indices of physical health, we aggregated ‘abnormality counts’ of physician-assessed neurological, morphological, and physiological abnormalities in eight categories: cranial nerves, motor nerves, peripheral sensory nerves, reflexes, head, body, skin condition, and urine tests. Since each abnormality was rare, the abnormality counts showed highly skewed, Poisson-like distributions. The correlation matrix amongst these eight abnormality counts formed only a weak positive manifold and thus yielded only a weak common factor. However, Poisson regressions showed that intelligence was a significant positive predictor of six of the eight abnormality counts, even controlling for diverse lifestyle covariates (age, obesity, combat and toxin exposure owing to service in Vietnam, and use of tobacco, alcohol, marijuana, and hard drugs). These results give preliminary support for the notion of a superordinate fitness factor above intelligence and physical health, which could be further investigated with direct genetic assessments of mutation load across individuals.




Kommentare:

  1. "A Neural Mechanism Underlying Mating Preferences for Familiar Individuals in Medaka Fish"

    Editor's Summary:

    "Female mating preference is influenced by social familiarity in various species from fish to primates. Okuyama et al. (p. 91) showed in Japanese rice fish that females prefer to mate with visually familiarized males over unfamiliar males and that this preference is mediated by specific neuromodulatory neurons in the female brain. "

    http://www.sciencemag.org/content/343/6166/91

    (Full text available only for subscribers. Only the team's and editor's summaries are reachable as of today -01/03/2014- )

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  2. Thank you. If you want to write an article / a commentary about one of those topics, you are invited to post it at my blog.

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