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Published on Aug 25, 2011
Google Tech Talk (more info below) August 18, 2011
Presented by Steve Hsu.
How do genes affect cognitive ability? I begin with a brief review of psychometric measurements of intelligence, introducing the idea of a "general factor" or IQ score. The main results concern the stability, validity (predictive power), and heritability of adult IQ. Next, I discuss ongoing Genome Wide Association Studies which investigate the genetic basis of intelligence. Due mainly to the rapidly decreasing cost of sequencing, it is likely that within the next 5-10 years we will identify genes which account for a significant fraction of total IQ variation.
We are currently seeking volunteers for a study of high cognitive ability. Participants will receive free genotyping.
Steve Hsu is Professor of Theoretical Physics at the University of Oregon and Director of its Institute of Theoretical Science. Educated at Caltech and Berkeley, he was a Harvard Junior Fellow and Assistant Professor at Yale before moving to Oregon in 1998. He is also the founder of two Silicon Valley software startups in the area of information security. He serves as Scientific Advisor to the Cognitive Genomics Lab of BGI (formerly the Beijing Genomics Institute), one of the leading genomics research centers in the world.