Shared genetic vulnerability for disordered gambling and alcohol use disorder in men and women: evidence from a national community-based Australian twin study.
ABSTRACT Disordered gambling (DG) will soon be included along with the substance use disorders in a revised diagnostic category of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders DSM-5 called 'Substance Use and Addictive Disorders'. This was premised in part on the common etiologies of DG and the substance use disorders. Using data from the national community-based Australian Twin Registry, we used biometric model fitting to examine the extent to which the genetic liabilities for DG and alcohol use disorder (AUD) were shared, and whether this differed for men and women. The effect of using categorical versus dimensional DG and AUD phenotypes was explored, as was the effect of using diagnoses based on the DSM-IV and the proposed DSM-5 diagnostic criteria. The genetic correlations between DG and AUD ranged from 0.29 to 0.44. There was a significantly larger genetic correlation between DG and AUD among men than women when using dimensional phenotypes. Overall, about one-half to two-thirds of the association between DG and AUD was due to a shared genetic vulnerability. This study represents one of the few empirical demonstrations of an overlap in the genetic risk for DG and another substance-related addictive disorder. More research is needed on the genetic overlap between DG and other substance use disorders, as well as the genetic overlap between DG and other (non-substance-related) psychiatric disorders.
Full-textDOI: · Available from: Jarrod Ellingson, May 30, 2015
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ABSTRACT: Like in the case of drugs, gambling hijacks reward circuits in a brain which is not prepared to receive such intense stimulation. Dopamine is normally released in response to reward and uncertainty in order to allow animals to stay alive in their environment – where rewards are relatively unpredictable. In this case, behavior is regulated by environmental feedbacks, leading animals to persevere or to give up. In contrast, drugs provide a direct, intense pharmacological stimulation of the dopamine system that operates independently of environmental feedbacks, and hence causes “motivational runaways”. With respect to gambling, the confined environment experienced by gamblers favors the emergence of excitatory conditioned cues, so that positive feedbacks take over negative feedbacks. Although drugs and gambling may act differently, their abnormal activation of reward circuitry generates an underestimation of negative consequences and promotes the development of addictive/compulsive behavior. In Parkinson’s and Huntington’s disease, dopamine-related therapies may disrupt these feedbacks on dopamine signalling, potentially leading to various addictions, including pathological gambling. The goal of this Research Topic is to further our understanding of the neurobiological mechanisms underlying the development of pathological gambling. This eBook contains a cross-disciplinary collection of research and review articles, ranging in scope from animal behavioral models to human imaging studies.11/2014; Frontiers Media SA.., ISBN: 978-2-88919-320-2
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ABSTRACT: Little is known about the mental health correlates of problem gambling in low- and-middle-income countries such as South Africa and whether these correlates vary by urbanicity. To address this gap, we examined mental health factors associated with problem gambling among gamblers in Limpopo Province, South Africa disaggregated by rural, peri-urban and urban location. A survey of gambling behaviour and mental health was conducted among 900 gamblers. Overall, 28.3 % were at high risk and 38.1 % were at moderate risk for problem gambling. For the entire sample, hazardous/harmful alcohol use was associated with almost twofold increased chance of being at moderate risk (AOR 1.83; 95 % CI 1.08, 3.11) and almost sevenfold greater odds (AOR 6.93; 95 % CI 4.03-11.93) of being at high risk for problem gambling. Psychological distress was associated with being at high risk for problem gambling only (AOR 1.18; 95 % CI 1.14-1.22). After stratifying by urbanicity, hazardous/harmful alcohol use and psychological distress remained associated with high risk gambling across all locations. We found little knowledge of a free gambling helpline and other gambling services-particularly in less urbanised environments [χ(2) (2), 900 = 40.4; p < 0.001]. These findings highlight the need to increase awareness of free helpline services among gamblers and to ensure gambling services include screening and treatment for common mental disorders.Journal of Gambling Behavior 01/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10899-015-9522-5 · 1.28 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders contains significant changes related to the diagnosis of gambling problems. These changes include the renaming of the disorder from pathological gambling to gambling disorder, reclassification of gambling disorder from an impulse control disorder to an addictive disorder, removal of the illegal acts criterion, lowering diagnostic threshold to endorsement of four criteria, and recognizing that the course of the disorder is no longer chronic for all diagnosed. This paper reviews the rationale and research support for these changes. Implications of the new revisions for both research and clinical practice are reviewed, including a discussion about future directions for research efforts.09/2014; 1(3). DOI:10.1007/s40429-014-0026-7