Jacobs Journal of Genetics

Coupling of Submissiveness Trait with Higher Intelligence in Humans but not in Non-Human Primates via Low Activity Dopamine Beta Hydroxylase

Published on: 2018-08-03


Dopamine beta hydroxylase (DBH) catalyzes the conversion of the catecholamine neurotransmitter dopamine to norepinephrine, and its activity varies as a function of genetics. Dopaminergic neural tissue has roles in a wide variety of traits. In humans, submissiveness trait in tandem with higher intelligence would appear to be linked with decreased dopamine beta hydroxylase activity while in non-human primates and other animals submissiveness trait and lower intelligence are in tandem with higher DBH activity. This apparent state makes clear how pivotal an event was the mutation that caused low activity DBH: the higher intelligence it afforded animals gave them a survival advantage and gave them dominance over other animals while in humans the increased dopamine acting in a large cerebrum caused the evolution of a human ability to see the wisdom of restraint and control of aggression and cooperation instead of domination.