GxE Interaction Influences Trajectories of Hand Grip Strength

Inge Petersen, Nancy Pedersen, Taina Rantanen, William Kremen, Wendy Johnson, Matthew Panizzon, Lene Christiansen, Carol Franz, Matt McGue, Kaare Christensen, Nayla Hamdi, Robert Krueger, Chandra Reynolds

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Age-related decline in grip strength predicts later life disability, frailty, lower well-being and cognitive change. While grip strength is heritable, genetic influence on change in grip strength has been relatively ignored, with non-shared environmental influence identified as the primary contributor in a single longitudinal study. The extent to which gene-environment interplay, particularly gene-environment interactions, contributes to grip trajectories has yet to be examined. We considered longitudinal grip strength measurements in seven twin studies of aging in the IGEMS consortium. Growth curve parameters were estimated for same-sex pairs, aged 34-99 (N=10,681). Fisher’s test for mixture distribution of within-monozygotic twin-pair differences (N=1,724) was performed on growth curve parameters. We observed significant gene-environment interaction on grip strength trajectories. Finally, we compared the variability of within-pair differences of growth curve parameters by APOE haplotypes. Though not statistically significant, the results suggested that APOE ɛ2ɛ2/ɛ2ɛ3 haplotypes might buffer environmental influences on grip strength trajectories.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)20-30
JournalBehavior Genetics
Issue number1
Early online date29 Aug 2015
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2016


  • Grip strength
  • gene-environment interaction
  • twins
  • APOE


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