Is there any research done on the genetic variance for Music appreciation?
If not, why is there no genetic variance for this trait?
In 2013, Dr. Liisa Ukkola-Vuoti, University of Helsinki, Finland, done a detailed GWCNV(Genome-Wide Copy Number Variation) Analysis of certain group of people for musical creativity and aptitude.
They did a Genome Wide Copy Number Variations (CNVs) in five extended pedigrees and in 172 unrelated subjects characterized for musical aptitude and creative functions in music
Muscial Aptitude is taken as Sum of Scores of Auditory structuring ability, Seashores test for pitch and for time. Along with data on creativity in music was surveyed using a web-based questionnaire.
A deletion at 5q31.1 covering the protocadherin-α gene cluster (Pcdha 1-9) was found co-segregating with low music test scores (COMB) in both sample sets. Pcdha is involved in neural migration, differentiation and synaptogenesis.
Creativity in music was found to co-segregate with a duplication covering glucose mutarotase gene (GALM) at 2p22. GALM has influence on serotonin release and membrane trafficking of the human serotonin transporter.
Genes related to serotonergic systems have been shown to associate not only with psychiatric disorders but also with creativity and music perception.
Both, Pcdha and GALM, are related to the serotonergic systems influencing cognitive and motor functions, important for music perception and practice.
A 1.3 Mb duplication was identified in a subject with low COMB scores in the region previously linked with absolute pitch (AP) at 8q24.
No differences in the CNV burden was detected among the high/low music test scores or creative/non-creative groups.
In summary, CNVs and genes found in this study are related to cognitive functions. Our result suggests new candidate genes for music perception related traits and supports the previous results from AP study.