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Gene mutations may contribute to commission of violent crimes

Each day individuals in the state of Virginia are arrested and accused of committing violent crimes. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, crimes that fall into the category include assault, robbery, rape, murder and sexual assault. A study recently conducted in Sweden indicates that a person's genes could play a role in the likelihood of committing one of these crimes.

More specifically, the study found two genetic mutations that its authors think could be tied to the possibility that someone is more likely to engage in extremely violent behavior.

The first mutation impacts the CDH13 gene. The mutation, which has also been tied to Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder, appears to impact the way in which normal neural connections are developed and undermine impulse control.

The mutation in the MAOA gene seems to influence the way in which dopamine is both controlled and processed. According to previous research it is possible that too much dopamine could lead to aggressive behavior. The chance is thought to be even greater when alcohol or drugs are a part of the mix. Researchers suggest that in this case individuals found to have this gene mutation might lower the risk of committing a violent crime by avoiding those substances.

There is likely much more to come on this matter. In the meantime, anyone in the state of Virginia who is accused of a violent crime should take steps to build a strong defense. In most cases the best way to do this is to seek the assistance of a criminal defense attorney.

Source: HealthDay News, "Is Violent Crime in Some People's Genes?," Alan Mozes, Oct. 28, 2014

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