The American College of Neuropsychopharmacology has revealed that being impulsive is an inherited trait. The research team said, "If the tendencies of delay discounting keeps on bugging you and you often choose to take a smaller reward that is available immediately, then it isn't your fault, as it is influenced by a person's genetic makeup."
Researchers claimed that identifying the delay discounting genes and the proteins they code for, will play an important part in understanding the basis of a variety of psychiatric disorders, especially addictions and other disorders that involve impulsive decision-making.
‘Being impulsive is an inherited trait. Identifying the delay discounting genes and the proteins they code for, will play an important part in understanding the basis addictions and other psychiatric disorders that involve impulsive decision-making.’
During the study, the team found that delay discounting gradually improves as teens get older, such that 18 year old teens have a greater ability or tendency to wait for the larger delayed reward, as compared to younger teens.
Dr. Anokhin said, "While it is tantalizing to speculate that the associations between delay discounting and serotonin-related genes may ultimately point the way to new treatments for addictions and other disorders involving impulsive choice, it is very early to link this speculation to a clinical application."
The research is published in Neuropsychopharmacology.