Serotonin and personality: How does serotonin relate to impulsivity and aggression?
The present article investigated the relationship between serotonin (5-HT) and personality. In particular, we examined the effect that serotonin has on impulsivity and aggression. Different neurotransmitters seem to affect different aspects of personality. The role of central serotonergic system in psychiatric disorders has been the main focus of research for more than two decades, mainly related to clinical depression. Aggression and impulsivity have been linked to dysregulation in central serotonergic systems. There is strong evidence that abnormalities in the central serotonergic system are involved in the pathogenesis of suicidal behaviour. We report the results of a series of neuroendocrine and post-mortem experiments, we also report studies which measure CSF serotonin metabolites, or use peripheral measures of 5-HT function. Genetic studies are also mentioned and criticism on the methodologies is made. The emerging picture is that a reduction in central 5-HT function is associated with a tendency toward impulsive aggressive behaviour in both animals and humans, which in turn is related to suicidal behaviour. ©Pharmakon-Press.