Impulsive–aggressive behaviors (IABs) are regarded as possible suicide intermediate phenotypes, mediating the relationship between genes and suicide outcome. In this study, we aimed to investigate the putative relationship between genetic variation at the 5-HT1B receptor gene, which in animal models is involved in impulse-aggression control, IABs, and suicide risk. We investigated the relationship of variation at five 5-HT1B loci and IAB measures in a sample of 696 subjects, including 338 individuals who died by suicide and 358 normal epidemiological controls. We found that variation at the 5-HT1B promoter A-161T locus had a significant effect on levels of IABs, as measured by the Buss–Durkee Hostility Inventory (BDHI). Suicides also differed from controls in distribution of variants at this locus. The A-161T locus, which seems to impact 5-HT1B transcription, could play a role in suicide predisposition by means of mediating impulsive–aggressive behaviors. © 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.