Do you have the Warrior Gene?
Risk-taking and success may have genetic causes.
The MAOA-L gene variant, the so-called warrior gene, causes its carriers to be more willing to take risks while simultaneously enabling them to better assess their chances of success in critical situations.
For a recently published study, scientists at the California Institute of Technology pitted 83 young men against one another in a financial simulation. This entailed them having to gamble and multiply their seed money, USD 25, in different games. Each man had to choose between a sure option (100% no profit, no loss) and a risky option (various risks of loss and chances of profit) 140 times.
The findings of the study: carriers of the MAOA-L gene variant were more prone to take financial risks, but only if doing so was beneficial to them. This indicates that carriers of the warrior gene variant are in a better position to make decisions, which are beneficial to them.
Earlier studies have shown that the MAOA-L variant can also be responsible for impulsive behaviour and aggressive behaviour, which is why this variant was given the nickname warrior gene.
Human behaviour is complex and affected both by genes as well as by the environment or circumstances. Studies show that carriers of the warrior gene variant more likely show the described behaviour than men without the warrior gene variant.
The warrior gene is on the X-chromosome; hence, men inherit it from their mother. Since men have only one X-chromosome, the warrior gene is fully effective if present. In contrast, women have two X-chromosomes, which is why one single warrior gene either has no or less effect. The effect of the warrior gene on women who have it on both X-chromosomes has yet to be established. The warrior gene test is available for men and women.