Personal Page | Dr. Abdel Abdellaoui

Dr. Abdel Abdellaoui is assistant professor of Psychiatric Genetics at the Amsterdam University Medical Centers in Amsterdam. He has contributed to >100 publications spanning multiple branches of human genetics, including psychiatric genetics, behaviour genetics, population genetics, and evolutionary genetics. His most prominent work includes the development and application of approaches to study the impact of our collective behaviours in ancient and recent history on genetic variation and its relationship with geography. He also works on approaches to account for these historical and demographic processes in studies that search for genetic effects that are responsible for individual differences in a wide range of behavioural, physical, and mental health outcomes. Besides many research activities, Dr Abdellaoui contributed to the community through an extensive teaching career, teaching more than ten courses over the last decade, and through a strong online/media presence with a broad reach spreading the fruits of our research beyond our own research community. In 2021, he received the Fuller and Scott awards for outstanding scientific accomplishments by a member who is early in their career of the Behavior Genetics Association.

Dr. Abdel Abdellaoui

Genetic Epidemiology, Department of Psychiatry, Amsterdam UMC, University of Amsterdam

#Psychiatric Genetics #Population Genetics #Complex Trait Genetics

Key publications


  1. Abdel Abdellaoui, Conor V. Dolan, Karin J.H. Verweij, Michel G. Nivard. Gene–environment correlations across geographic regions affect genome-wide association studies. Nature Genetics, 2022; 54, 1345–1354. Link

  2. Abdel Abdellaoui. Genes influence complex traits through environments that vary between geographic regions. Nature Genetics, 2022; 54, 1265–1266. Link

  3. Abdel Abdellaoui, Karin J.H. Verweij. Dissecting polygenic signals from genome-wide association studies on human behavior. Nature Human Behavior, 2021; 5, 686-694. Link

  4. Abdel Abdellaoui, David Hugh-Jones, Loic Yengo, Kathryn E. Kemper, Michel G. Nivard, Yan Holtz, Laura Veul, Brendan P. Zietsch, Timothy M. Frayling, Naomi Wray, Jian Yang, Karin J.H. Verweij, Peter M. Visscher. Genetic correlates of social stratification in Great Britain. Nature Human Behaviour, 2019; 3, 1332–1342. Link

  5. Abdel Abdellaoui, Jouke-Jan Hottenga, Peter de Knijff, Michel G. Nivard, Xiangjun Xiao, Paul Scheet, Andrew Brooks, Erik A. Ehli, Yueshan Hu, Gareth E. Davies, James J. Hudziak, Patrick F. Sullivan, Toos van Beijsterveldt, Gonneke Willemsen, Eco J. de Geus, Brenda W.J.H. Penninx, Dorret I. Boomsma. Population structure, migration, and diversifying selection in the Netherlands. European journal of human genetics, 2013; 21, 1277-1285. Link

Grants and awards

Fuller and Scott Award (Behavior Genetics Association, 2021)

Talent Fellowship D&I (Amsterdam UMC, 2022)


  1. Studium Generale Universiteit Utrecht (11-2022) – Maken je genen je tot wie je bent?link
  2. Manifold (11-2022) – Abdel Abdellaoui: Genetics, Psychiatric Traits, and Educational Attainment #24link
  3. DNA (10-2022) – Genetische ontdekkingsreis
  4. Die Zeit (05-2022) – Die Lotterie des Lebenslink
  5. Razib Khan’s Unsupervised Learning (04-2021) – Abdel Abdellaoui: a behavior geneticist in the 21st centurylink
  6. International Society for Intelligence Research (06-2020) – An interview with Abdel Abdellaoui – link
  7. Janus (03-2020): Wat hebben je genen met Brexit te maken? – link
  8. Haaretz (01-2020): Brave New Baby – link
  9. Nature (10-2019): A Complex Inheritancelink
  10. New Scientist (10-2019): A ‘gene drain’ in the UK’s poorest areas? It’s really not that simplelink
  11. The Economist (10-2019): Migrants from coalfields take DNA as well as talent with themlink
  12. The Times (10-2019): Brain drain is carrying our clever genes southlink
  13. Bionieuws (10-2019): Maakt GWAS zijn belofte waar? link
  14. NRC Handelsblad (10-2019): Bedrijf gaat aan de haal met homogenetica-studielink
  15. NRC Onbehaarde Apen (09-2019): Hoe erfelijk is homoseksualiteit?link
  16. NPO Radio 1 – Nieuws & Co (08-2019): ‘Homogen’ en ‘heterogen’ bestaan nietlink
  17. NRC Handelsblad (08-2019): Het homogen bestaat niet link
  18. Ad Valvas (07-2017): Geen beurs? Dan doe ik het zelf wellink
  19. Readers Digest (07-2016): Is it love, or something else? link
  20. NRC Handelsblad (19-09-2016): We zoeken een kopie van onszelflink
  21. next (09-09-2016): We zoeken een kopie van onszelflink
  22. nl (08-09-2016): We zoeken een kopie van onszelflink
  23. next (05-09-2013): De vader, de zoon en het heilige genlink
  24. NRC Handelsblad (04-09-2013): Protestanten en katholieken blijken genetisch minder divers link
  25. next (04-04-2013): De Nederlander bestaat niet link
  26. NRC Handelsblad (03-04-2013): Tussen Nederlanders bestaan nog veel genetische verschillenlink
  27. Elsevier (17-11-2012): Toch niet helemaal identiek link
  28. Bionieuws (09-06-2012): Eeneiige tweeling genetisch ongelijk link
  29. New Scientist (23-05-2012): Eeneiige tweelingen zijn niet altijd genetisch identieklink
  30. De Volkskrant (12-11-2011): Meester & Gezel link




    1. Behavioural and Social Sciences at Nature Research (09-2022): The synergetic relationship between nature and nurture link
    2. Medium (06-2022): How to keep flies away from our picniclink
    3. Medium (09-2021): DNA is the key link
    4. Big Think (07-2021): Tiny genetic differences add up to big behavioral effectslink
    5. Behavioural and Social Sciences at Nature Research (05-2021): The Nature of Human Behaviour link
    6. Medium (07-2020): Why we should study the relationship between genes & school performancelink
    7. The Scientist (10-2019): The Nature of Social Inequalities in Great Britainlink
    8. The Conversation (10-2019): Inequality now extends to people’s DNAlink
    9. Behavioural and Social Sciences at Nature Research (10-2019): Genes & Geography in a Modern Meritocracylink
    10. New Scientist (12-2017): We zouden óf niemand genetisch moeten verbeteren, óf iedereenlink
    11. nl (14-02-2015): Kan de wetenschap ons aan de ideale partner helpen?link

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