The families of 25 probands with sleepwalking and 27 probands with night terrors were studied. Eighty per cent of the sleepwalking pedigrees and 96% of the night terror pedigrees included 1 or more individuals, other than the proband, who were affected by sleepwalking, night terrors, or both. The authors' data appear to fit a '2 threshold' multifactorial mode of inheritance. This finding supports the hypothesis that sleepwalking and night terrors share a common genetic predisposition, with sleepwalking being a more prevalent and less severe manifestation of the same substrate that underlies night terrors. Heritable factors predispose an individual to develop sleepwalking and/or night terrors, but expression of the trait may be influenced by environmental factors.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Psychiatry and Mental health