The Madeleine Brand Show for April 17, 2012

How a single gene is linked to IQ

A woman looks at a functional magnetic r

MIGUEL MEDINA/AFP/Getty Images

A woman looks at a functional magnetic resonance image (fMRI) showing the effect of Stravinsky's Rite of Spring and Kant's 3rd Critique on the human brain during the Wellcome Collection's major new exhibition "Brains: mind of matter" in London on March 27, 2012.

A new study has found that with a bigger brain, comes a higher IQ. It may seem like an obvious conclusion, but more than two hundred scientists around the world collaborated to scientifically prove the link.

They looked at how genes and brain size could affect memory, intelligence, and risk of getting disorders like dementia. They found that a small change in one gene can mean a person has a higher or lower IQ. Don't fret though, the average difference is 1 IQ point.

Guest:

Paul Thompson is a professor of neurology at the UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles and was one of the senior authors of the study.


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