neurotic disorders


Summary: Disorders in which the symptoms are distressing to the individual and recognized by him or her as being unacceptable. Social relationships may be greatly affected but usually remain within acceptable limits. The disturbance is relatively enduring or recurrent without treatment.

Top Publications

  1. Hansen P, Floderus B, Frederiksen K, Johansen C. Personality traits, health behavior, and risk for cancer: a prospective study of Swedish twin court. Cancer. 2005;103:1082-91 pubmed
    ..The current results did not support the hypothesis that certain personality traits are associated with cancer risk. ..
  2. Huezo Diaz P, Tandon K, Aitchison K. The genetics of depression and related traits. Curr Psychiatry Rep. 2005;7:117-24 pubmed
    ..Improved study design and the use of new molecular techniques hold promise for the identification of more specific vulnerability genes for unipolar depression. ..
  3. Omura K, Todd Constable R, Canli T. Amygdala gray matter concentration is associated with extraversion and neuroticism. Neuroreport. 2005;16:1905-8 pubmed
    ..Furthermore, our data are consistent with the view that amygdala reduction seen in depressed patients precedes the onset of the disease, rather than being a consequence of the illness. ..
  4. Kendler K, Gatz M, Gardner C, Pedersen N. Personality and major depression: a Swedish longitudinal, population-based twin study. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2006;63:1113-20 pubmed
    ..However, substantial proportions of the genetic vulnerability to MD are not reflected in neuroticism. By contrast, extroversion is only weakly related to risk for MD. ..
  5. Quilty L, Meusel L, Bagby R. Neuroticism as a mediator of treatment response to SSRIs in major depressive disorder. J Affect Disord. 2008;111:67-73 pubmed publisher
    ..Neuroticism mediates changes in depression in response to treatment with SSRIs, such that any treatment effect of SSRIs occurs through neuroticism reduction. ..
  6. Nater U, Hoppmann C, Klumb P. Neuroticism and conscientiousness are associated with cortisol diurnal profiles in adults--role of positive and negative affect. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2010;35:1573-7 pubmed publisher
    ..No such association emerged for N. Our findings might further elucidate the role of personality in HPA axis regulation and improve our understanding of the association of endocrine states and health outcomes. ..
  7. Tang T, Derubeis R, Hollon S, Amsterdam J, Shelton R, Schalet B. Personality change during depression treatment: a placebo-controlled trial. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2009;66:1322-30 pubmed publisher
    ..If replicated, this pattern would disconfirm the state effect hypothesis and instead support the notion that SSRIs' effects on personality go beyond and perhaps contribute to their antidepressant effects. ..
  8. Kendler K, Myers J. The genetic and environmental relationship between major depression and the five-factor model of personality. Psychol Med. 2010;40:801-6 pubmed publisher
    ..A large proportion of the genetic risk for MD that is expressed via personality is captured by N, with a modest amount due to C, and small amounts from O, E and A. ..
  9. Craske M, Waters A, Nazarian M, Mineka S, Zinbarg R, Griffith J, et al. Does neuroticism in adolescents moderate contextual and explicit threat cue modulation of the startle reflex?. Biol Psychiatry. 2009;65:220-6 pubmed publisher
    ..Results are discussed in comparison with other studies of groups at risk for anxiety and depressive disorders. ..

More Information


  1. Cotton C, Flint J, Campbell T. Is there an association between NPY and neuroticism?. Nature. 2009;458:E6; discussion E7 pubmed publisher about the efficacy and replicability of candidate driven versus genome wide approaches to psychiatric genetics. ..
  2. Sutin A, Ferrucci L, Zonderman A, Terracciano A. Personality and obesity across the adult life span. J Pers Soc Psychol. 2011;101:579-92 pubmed publisher
    ..Such associations may elucidate the role of personality traits in disease progression and may help to design more effective interventions. ..
  3. Canli T. Toward a neurogenetic theory of neuroticism. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2008;1129:153-74 pubmed publisher
    ..This chapter is intended to serve as a tutorial bridge for psychologists who may be intrigued by molecular genetics and for molecular biologists who may be curious about how to apply their research to the study of personality. ..
  4. Haas B, Constable R, Canli T. Stop the sadness: Neuroticism is associated with sustained medial prefrontal cortex response to emotional facial expressions. Neuroimage. 2008;42:385-92 pubmed publisher
    ..Based on the relationship between neuroticism and sensitivity to negative information, the current finding identifies a sustained temporal mechanism to this relationship. ..
  5. Song Y, Huang Y, Liu D, Kwan J, Zhang F, Sham P, et al. Depression in college: depressive symptoms and personality factors in Beijing and Hong Kong college freshmen. Compr Psychiatry. 2008;49:496-502 pubmed publisher
    ..Personality differences in the 2 sites explain only part, but not all, of the difference in depressive symptoms between the 2 sites. ..
  6. van den Oord E, Kuo P, Hartmann A, Webb B, Moller H, Hettema J, et al. Genomewide association analysis followed by a replication study implicates a novel candidate gene for neuroticism. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2008;65:1062-71 pubmed publisher
    ..However, the present study demonstrates the potential of a GWAS to discover potentially important pathogenic pathways for which clinically more powerful (bio)markers may eventually be developed. ..
  7. Herrman H, Chopra P. Quality of life and neurotic disorders in general healthcare. Curr Opin Psychiatry. 2009;22:61-8 pubmed publisher
    To review recent findings on the relationship between neurotic disorders (specifically depression, anxiety and somatization) and function and quality of life (QoL) in patients with complex clinical presentations, and to consider the ..
  8. Wang H, Karp A, Herlitz A, Crowe M, Kareholt I, Winblad B, et al. Personality and lifestyle in relation to dementia incidence. Neurology. 2009;72:253-9 pubmed publisher
    ..Low neuroticism in combination with high extraversion is the personality trait associated with the lowest dementia risk; however, among socially isolated individuals even low neuroticism alone seems to decrease dementia risk. ..
  9. Grossardt B, Bower J, Geda Y, Colligan R, Rocca W. Pessimistic, anxious, and depressive personality traits predict all-cause mortality: the Mayo Clinic cohort study of personality and aging. Psychosom Med. 2009;71:491-500 pubmed publisher
    ..Our findings suggest that personality traits related to neuroticism are associated with an increased risk of all-cause mortality even when they are measured early in life. ..
  10. Paine P, Kishor J, Worthen S, Gregory L, Aziz Q. Exploring relationships for visceral and somatic pain with autonomic control and personality. Pain. 2009;144:236-44 pubmed publisher
    ..Visceral pain-related parasympathetic change correlated with personality. ANS defence responses are nuanced and may relate to personality type for visceral pain. Clinical relevance of these findings warrants further exploration. ..
  11. Cremers H, Demenescu L, Aleman A, Renken R, van Tol M, van der Wee N, et al. Neuroticism modulates amygdala-prefrontal connectivity in response to negative emotional facial expressions. Neuroimage. 2010;49:963-70 pubmed publisher
    ..These connectivity patterns might be associated with vulnerability to developing affective disorders such as depression and anxiety. ..
  12. Fullerton J, Cubin M, Tiwari H, Wang C, Bomhra A, Davidson S, et al. Linkage analysis of extremely discordant and concordant sibling pairs identifies quantitative-trait loci that influence variation in the human personality trait neuroticism. Am J Hum Genet. 2003;72:879-90 pubmed
    ..One locus, on chromosome 1, is syntenic with that reported from QTL mapping of rodent emotionality, an animal model of neuroticism, suggesting that some animal and human QTLs influencing emotional stability may be homologous. ..
  13. Khan A, Jacobson K, Gardner C, Prescott C, Kendler K. Personality and comorbidity of common psychiatric disorders. Br J Psychiatry. 2005;186:190-6 pubmed
    ..Extraversion contributed negligibly. High neuroticism appears to be a broad vulnerability factor for comorbid psychiatric disorders. Novelty seeking is modestly important for comorbid externalising disorders. ..
  14. Sen S, Villafuerte S, Nesse R, Stoltenberg S, Hopcian J, Gleiberman L, et al. Serotonin transporter and GABAA alpha 6 receptor variants are associated with neuroticism. Biol Psychiatry. 2004;55:244-9 pubmed
    ..These findings support a role for the serotonin transporter and GABA(A) alpha6 subunit in depression-related traits. ..
  15. Hettema J, Prescott C, Kendler K. Genetic and environmental sources of covariation between generalized anxiety disorder and neuroticism. Am J Psychiatry. 2004;161:1581-7 pubmed
    ..The life experiences that increase vulnerability to generalized anxiety disorder, however, have only modest overlap with those that contribute to an individual's level of neuroticism. ..
  16. Eisenberger N, Lieberman M, Satpute A. Personality from a controlled processing perspective: an fMRI study of neuroticism, extraversion, and self-consciousness. Cogn Affect Behav Neurosci. 2005;5:169-81 pubmed
    ..74) than by self-reported neuroticism (r2 = .16), suggesting that neural reactivities may provide a more direct measure of personality than self-reports do. ..
  17. Norris C, Larsen J, Cacioppo J. Neuroticism is associated with larger and more prolonged electrodermal responses to emotionally evocative pictures. Psychophysiology. 2007;44:823-6 pubmed
    ..Implications for health are discussed. ..
  18. Haas B, Omura K, Constable R, Canli T. Emotional conflict and neuroticism: personality-dependent activation in the amygdala and subgenual anterior cingulate. Behav Neurosci. 2007;121:249-56 pubmed
    ..This effect was driven to a greater extent by the anxious relative to the depressive characteristics of neuroticism and may constitute vulnerability markers for anxiety-related disorders. ..
  19. Wilhelm K, Mitchell P, Niven H, Finch A, Wedgwood L, Scimone A, et al. Life events, first depression onset and the serotonin transporter gene. Br J Psychiatry. 2006;188:210-5 pubmed
    ..The 5-HTTLPR genotype is a significant predictor of onset of major depression following multiple adverse events. This is one of the more robust findings concerning specific biological risk factors for depression. ..
  20. Fanous A, Neale M, Aggen S, Kendler K. A longitudinal study of personality and major depression in a population-based sample of male twins. Psychol Med. 2007;37:1163-72 pubmed
    ..In men, N may be a vulnerability factor for MD but does not cause it directly. However, MD may have a direct causal effect on N. The genetic overlap between N and MD in men may be greater than in women. ..
  21. Bienvenu O, Samuels J, Costa P, Reti I, Eaton W, Nestadt G. Anxiety and depressive disorders and the five-factor model of personality: a higher- and lower-order personality trait investigation in a community sample. Depress Anxiety. 2004;20:92-7 pubmed
    ..Neuroticism in particular was related to acuity of disorder. Longitudinal study is necessary to differentiate state versus pathoplastic effects. ..
  22. Farmer A, Redman K, Harris T, Mahmood A, Sadler S, Pickering A, et al. Neuroticism, extraversion, life events and depression. The Cardiff Depression Study. Br J Psychiatry. 2002;181:118-22 pubmed
    ..Regression analyses showed that the major influence on neuroticism was current mood. Neither extraversion nor neuroticism measures trait vulnerability to depression, and neuroticism scores mainly reflect symptoms of depression. ..
  23. Bebbington P, Meltzer H, Brugha T, Farrell M, Jenkins R, Ceresa C, et al. Unequal access and unmet need: neurotic disorders and the use of primary care services. Int Rev Psychiatry. 2003;15:115-22 pubmed
    In this paper we use data from the National Survey of Psychiatric Morbidity to examine how many people with neurotic disorders receive professional evaluation, and how this is affected by clinical and sociodemographic differences...
  24. Hettema J, Neale M, Myers J, Prescott C, Kendler K. A population-based twin study of the relationship between neuroticism and internalizing disorders. Am J Psychiatry. 2006;163:857-64 pubmed
    ..This may have important implications for identifying the susceptibility genes for these conditions. ..
  25. Nash M, Huezo Diaz P, Williamson R, Sterne A, Purcell S, Hoda F, et al. Genome-wide linkage analysis of a composite index of neuroticism and mood-related scales in extreme selected sibships. Hum Mol Genet. 2004;13:2173-82 pubmed
    ..2) around 64 cM (43-70 cM) near marker D1S2892 and another on chromosome 6p (LOD 2.7) around 47 cM (34-63 cM) near marker D6S1610. Further exploratory sex-specific analyses suggested that these QTLs might have sex-limited effects. ..
  26. Ormel J, Rosmalen J, Farmer A. Neuroticism: a non-informative marker of vulnerability to psychopathology. Soc Psychiatry Psychiatr Epidemiol. 2004;39:906-12 pubmed
    ..Only then will we understand why neuroticism appears to "predict" the outcomes it predicts. ..
  27. Middeldorp C, de Geus E, Beem A, Lakenberg N, Hottenga J, Slagboom P, et al. Family based association analyses between the serotonin transporter gene polymorphism (5-HTTLPR) and neuroticism, anxiety and depression. Behav Genet. 2007;37:294-301 pubmed
    ..No additive effect of the s allele was found for DSM-IV depression. Our results strongly suggest that there is no straightforward association between 5-HTTLPR and neuroticism, anxiety and depression. ..
  28. Ettinger U, Kumari V, Crawford T, Flak V, Sharma T, Davis R, et al. Saccadic eye movements, schizotypy, and the role of neuroticism. Biol Psychol. 2005;68:61-78 pubmed
    ..We conclude that saccadic performance patterns in schizotypy are not due to negative emotionality or general psychopathology, but specific to schizophrenia spectrum signs and symptoms. ..
  29. Kuo P, Neale M, Riley B, Patterson D, Walsh D, Prescott C, et al. A genome-wide linkage analysis for the personality trait neuroticism in the Irish affected sib-pair study of alcohol dependence. Am J Med Genet B Neuropsychiatr Genet. 2007;144B:463-8 pubmed
    ..These results, together with prior studies, indicate several potential regions for quantitative trait loci for neuroticism that warrant further study. ..
  30. Munafo M, Clark T, Roberts K, Johnstone E. Neuroticism mediates the association of the serotonin transporter gene with lifetime major depression. Neuropsychobiology. 2006;53:1-8 pubmed
  31. Seivewright H, Tyrer P, Johnson T. Change in personality status in neurotic disorders. Lancet. 2002;359:2253-4 pubmed
    ..The measure of agreement between baseline and 12-year personality clusters was poor or slight (kappa=0.14, 95% CI 0.04-0.23). Our results suggest that the assumption that personality characteristics do not change with time is incorrect. ..
  32. Shifman S, Bhomra A, Smiley S, Wray N, James M, Martin N, et al. A whole genome association study of neuroticism using DNA pooling. Mol Psychiatry. 2008;13:302-12 pubmed
    ..Our findings argue the need for much larger samples than anticipated in genetic association studies and that the biological basis of emotional disorders is extremely complex. ..
  33. Takano A, Arakawa R, Hayashi M, Takahashi H, Ito H, Suhara T. Relationship between neuroticism personality trait and serotonin transporter binding. Biol Psychiatry. 2007;62:588-92 pubmed
    ..001). Subjects with higher thalamic 5-HTT binding are more likely to express higher levels of neuroticism and depressive feeling. Serotonin transporter binding in the thalamus might be a marker of vulnerability to depression. ..
  34. Fanous A, Gardner C, Prescott C, Cancro R, Kendler K. Neuroticism, major depression and gender: a population-based twin study. Psychol Med. 2002;32:719-28 pubmed
  35. Bebbington P, Brugha T, Meltzer H, Jenkins R, Ceresa C, Farrell M, et al. Neurotic disorders and the receipt of psychiatric treatment. Int Rev Psychiatry. 2003;15:108-14 pubmed
    Access to psychiatric treatment by people with neurotic disorders in the general population is likely to be affected both by the severity of disorder and by sociodemographic differences...
  36. Gurrera R, Dickey C, Niznikiewicz M, Voglmaier M, Shenton M, McCarley R. The five-factor model in schizotypal personality disorder. Schizophr Res. 2005;80:243-51 pubmed
    ..These findings suggest that gender-associated differences in openness may account for prior inconsistent findings regarding this dimension, and they further underscore the importance of examining gender effects in future studies of SPD. ..
  37. Caspi A, Roberts B, Shiner R. Personality development: stability and change. Annu Rev Psychol. 2005;56:453-84 pubmed
    ..In each of these four areas, we note gaps and identify priorities for further research. ..
  38. Meltzer H, Bebbington P, Brugha T, Farrell M, Jenkins R, Lewis G. The reluctance to seek treatment for neurotic disorders. Int Rev Psychiatry. 2003;15:123-8 pubmed
    ..from the National Survey of Psychiatric Morbidity in Great Britain, we have demonstrated that people with neurotic disorders rarely present their symptoms to primary care physicians and when they do, are quite likely not to be given ..
  39. Neale B, Sullivan P, Kendler K. A genome scan of neuroticism in nicotine dependent smokers. Am J Med Genet B Neuropsychiatr Genet. 2005;132B:65-9 pubmed
    ..52 and 1.97 (P-value of 0.003 and 0.0108) respectively, and have some evidence for a novel finding on chromosome 12 with a LOD of 2.85 (P-value of 0.0014). ..
  40. Cox B, MacPherson P, Enns M, McWilliams L. Neuroticism and self-criticism associated with posttraumatic stress disorder in a nationally representative sample. Behav Res Ther. 2004;42:105-14 pubmed
  41. Wray N, Birley A, Sullivan P, Visscher P, Martin N. Genetic and phenotypic stability of measures of neuroticism over 22 years. Twin Res Hum Genet. 2007;10:695-702 pubmed
    ..33 for a single measure to .43 for mean score because of the reduction in the estimate of the environmental variance, and this will increase power in genetic linkage or association studies of neuroticism. ..
  42. Kendler K, Kuhn J, Prescott C. The interrelationship of neuroticism, sex, and stressful life events in the prediction of episodes of major depression. Am J Psychiatry. 2004;161:631-6 pubmed
    ..Complete etiologic models for major depression should incorporate interactions between risk factor classes. ..
  43. Canli T. Functional brain mapping of extraversion and neuroticism: learning from individual differences in emotion processing. J Pers. 2004;72:1105-32 pubmed
    ..The multidisciplinary integration of brain imaging and molecular genetic methods offers an exciting and novel approach for investigators who seek to uncover the biological mechanisms by which personality and health are interrelated. ..
  44. Kendler K, Gardner C, Gatz M, Pedersen N. The sources of co-morbidity between major depression and generalized anxiety disorder in a Swedish national twin sample. Psychol Med. 2007;37:453-62 pubmed
    ..Although genetic risk factors indexed by the personality trait of N contribute substantially to risk for both MD and GAD, the majority of genetic covariance between the two disorders results from factors not shared with N. ..
  45. Steunenberg B, Braam A, Beekman A, Deeg D, Kerkhof A. Evidence for an association of the big five personality factors with recurrence of depressive symptoms in later life. Int J Geriatr Psychiatry. 2009;24:1470-7 pubmed publisher
    ..Efforts to prevent recurrence of late-life depression should focus on those with high levels of neuroticism and future research should aim at further unravelling the association between depression and personality in later life. ..
  46. Cuijpers P, Smit F, Penninx B, de Graaf R, Ten Have M, Beekman A. Economic costs of neuroticism: a population-based study. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2010;67:1086-93 pubmed publisher
    ..However, most research has focused on the association between neuroticism and a single specific disorder or health outcome, and the overall effect of neuroticism on use of somatic and mental health care and on society is not clear...
  47. Liu S, Wei G, Zhang W, Xiang Y, Huang X, Yang C, et al. [Epidemiological survey on neuropsychiatric disorders in Tibet of China: neuroses, alcohol-related disorders, mental retardation and epilepsy]. Sichuan Da Xue Xue Bao Yi Xue Ban. 2012;43:210-3, 225 pubmed
    ..Mental retardation and epilepsy are the two serious neuropsychiatric disorders affecting Tibetan children and adolescence. These disorders should be identified as priorities in the reginonal health planning in Tibet. ..
  48. Tifferet S, Elizur Y, Constantini S, Friedman O, Manor O. Maternal adaptation to pediatric neurosurgical diagnosis: a growth curve analysis. Psychol Health. 2010;25:213-29 pubmed publisher
    ..The rate of change in mental health was moderated by neuroticism. Maternal adaptation to pediatric illness changes over time. The trajectories of adaptation vary in relation to personal, social and medical variables. ..
  49. O Rourke N, Neufeld E, Claxton A, Smith J. Knowing me-knowing you: Reported personality and trait discrepancies as predictors of marital idealization between long-wed spouses. Psychol Aging. 2010;25:412-21 pubmed publisher
    ..These results are discussed in relation to gender socialization and between-sex differences. ..
  50. Wouts L, Janzing J, Lampe I, Franke B, de Vegt F, Tendolkar I, et al. The interaction between cerebrovascular disease and neuroticism in late-life depression: a cross-sectional study. Int J Geriatr Psychiatry. 2011;26:702-10 pubmed publisher
    ..6-0.9; stroke by neuroticism: OR: 0.8, 95% CI: 0.6-0.96) when predicting CRDS. In men vascular disease attenuates the predictive value of neuroticism in CRDS, which might be mediated by apathy caused by cerebrovascular disease. ..
  51. Kuyken W, Dalgleish T. Overgeneral autobiographical memory in adolescents at risk for depression. Memory. 2011;19:241-50 pubmed publisher
  52. Watson D, Clark L, Chmielewski M. Structures of personality and their relevance to psychopathology: II. Further articulation of a comprehensive unified trait structure. J Pers. 2008;76:1545-86 pubmed publisher
  53. Ziomkiewicz A, Wichary S, Bochenek D, Pawlowski B, Jasienska G. Temperament and ovarian reproductive hormones in women: evidence from a study during the entire menstrual cycle. Horm Behav. 2012;61:535-40 pubmed publisher
    ..Our findings thus suggest a possible explanation for these relationships, linking personality and women's reproductive success through a hormonal pathway. ..