A gene plays a role in influencing how much coffee people drink, according researchers from the Queensland Institute of Medical Research (QIMR).Dr Enda Byrne from QIMR said that coffee is the most popular beverage in the world and their study has shown there is a small genetic variant in the population that determines how people react to coffee and therefore explains why some people will consume coffee at higher levels and why others won’t drink it at all.
"Our study found coffee consumption is not only influenced by genes, but caffeine can also affect the expression of genes," said Dr Byrne.
“With caffeine impacting gene expression, we believe that caffeine then influences chemical pathways in the body.
“We also found a link between caffeine genes and other complex conditions, such as hypertension and Parkinson’s disease.
“Our study showed there were changes in the expression of genes previously linked to Parkinson’s disease after exposure to caffeine. This follows previous studies that have shown caffeine to be protective against Parkinson’s disease.
“While this finding relates directly to coffee consumption, it provides another small piece of the puzzle and could lead to further discoveries around the affect of caffeine on a range of complex disorders,” Dr Byrne added.