• delayed-response;
  • event-related potentials;
  • genes;
  • QTDT;
  • twins

Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) may play a role in modulating memory function and there is growing evidence that the BDNF V166M polymorphism may influence episodic memory in humans. However, previous association studies examining this polymorphism and working memory are inconsistent. The current study examined this association in a large sample of adolescent twin-pairs and siblings (785 individuals from 439 families). A range of measures (event-related potential, general performance and reaction time) was obtained from a delayed-response working-memory task and total association was examined using the quantitative transmission disequilibrium tests (QTDT) program. Analyses had approximately 93–97% power (α= 0.05) to detect an association accounting for as little as 2% of the variance in the phenotypes examined. Results indicated that the BDNF V166M polymorphism is not associated with variation in working memory in healthy adolescents.