To support the free and open dissemination of research findings and information on alcoholism and alcohol-related problems. To encourage open access to peer-reviewed articles free for all to view.

For full versions of posted research articles readers are encouraged to email requests for "electronic reprints" (text file, PDF files, FAX copies) to the corresponding or lead author, who is highlighted in the posting.


Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Incorporating Genetics into Your Studies: A Guide for Social Scientists

There has been a surge of interest in recent years in incorporating genetic components into on-going longitudinal, developmental studies and related psychological studies. 

While this represents an exciting new direction in developmental science, much of the research on genetic topics in developmental science does not reflect the most current practice in genetics. 

This is likely due, in part, to the rapidly changing landscape of the field of genetics, and the difficulty this presents for developmental scientists who are trying to learn this new area. 

In this review, we present an overview of the paradigm shifts that have occurred in genetics and we introduce the reader to basic genetic methodologies. 

We present our view of the current stage of research ongoing at the intersection of genetics and social science, and we provide recommendations for how we could do better. 

We also address a number of issues that social scientists face as they integrate genetics into their projects, including choice of a study design (candidate gene versus genome-wide association versus sequencing), different methods of DNA collection, and special considerations involved in the analysis of genotypic data. 

Through this review, we hope to equip social scientists with a deeper understanding of the many considerations that go into genetics research, in an effort to foster more meaningful cross-disciplinary initiatives.

Read Full Article   (PDF)