[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Evidence suggests that myelin alterations could predispose to schizophrenia. Reduced expression of several myelin genes has been observed in schizophrenia patients. Recently, we identified the discoidin domain receptor 1 (DDR1; located at human chromosome 6p21.3) as a myelin gene in the mouse model and in a human oligodendroglial cell line. In the present study we screened for single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the DNA from 100 schizophrenia patients. We identified a novel mutation within exon 10 that produces the amino-acid substitution N502S in the a-d isoforms, and M475V in the e isoform. However the frequency of the mutation (2%) was similar in schizophrenia patients and in control subjects. In a case-control assessment with 389 schizophrenic patients and 615 controls, we identified one SNP (SNP9, rs1049623) associated with schizophrenia (odds ratio=1.44, 95% confidence interval: 1.15-1.79, adjusted P=0.0016). This association was confirmed in haplotype analysis; the SNPs 9-10-11 (rs1049623, rs2267641 and rs2239518) haplotype remaining significant even after adjustment for multiple testing (adjusted P=0.0136). Of note was a strong gender dependence in the association, that is, statistical significance restricted to men (adjusted P-value=0.0002). Regression analysis of DDR1 mRNA expression in peripheral blood lymphocytes from schizophrenia patients showed that the presence of the G allele significantly decreased the relative number of mRNA copies in a dose-dependent manner (P=0.003). These data suggest that the risk haplotype tags a cis-acting variant involved in the transcription regulation system of the gene. In conclusion, we propose the DDR1 as a new susceptibility gene for schizophrenia.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Discoidin domain receptor 1 is a tyrosine kinase receptor expressed in a variety of tissues including the brain. This study describes mRNA and protein expression of discoidin domain receptor 1 in mouse brain during development and provides new insights into its role during gliogenesis and neurogenesis. We performed in situ hybridization for discoidin domain receptor 1 in mouse brains at embryonic day 18, postnatal days 5, 9, 15, 21 and adulthood and observed a diffuse pattern in the proliferative areas during embryogenesis. From postnatal day 5 onwards, a defined cellular expression pattern of discoidin domain receptor 1 was observed, mainly located in white matter tracts and following a spatio-temporal pattern that overlapped the progress of myelination. Next, we performed double-labeling reactions (in situ hybridization followed by immunohistochemistry) that confirmed that discoidin domain receptor 1 was expressed by mature oligodendrocytes. We observed that cells positive for discoidin domain receptor 1 also expressed carnosine and anti-adenomatous polyposis coli, two mature oligodendrocyte markers. Based on the localization of discoidin domain receptor 1 specifically in the white matter fiber tracts during postnatal development, we suggest that discoidin domain receptor 1 participates in the development and maintenance of the myelin sheath.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: It has been suggested that total plasma homocysteine (tHcy) concentrations and methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) gene polymorphisms are risk factors for schizophrenia. We conducted a case-control study to investigate whether tHcy levels and MTHFR C677T and A1298C variants are associated with schizophrenia, giving special consideration to confounding factors. Logistic regression analysis showed that neither tHcy nor MTHFR polymorphisms were associated with schizophrenia. Homozygosity for MTHFR C677T was associated with higher tHcy concentrations in control and schizophrenia groups (P<0.01), which was mainly driven by the male group. The A1298C variant did not show any association with tHcy concentrations. In conclusion, these results do not confirm an independent relationship of tHcy and MTHFR genotype with risk of schizophrenia.
Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry 10/2005; 29(7):1169-74. DOI:10.1016/j.pnpbp.2005.07.001 · 3.69 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Elevated plasma levels of lipoprotein(a) [Lp(a)] represent a major independent risk factor for the development of atherosclerosis. The kringle IV type 10 of apolipoprotein(a) [apo(a)] is the primary lysine binding site (LBS) of Lp(a) and is associated with lesion formation in transgenic mice. The purpose of this study was to search for mutations in the apo(a) kringle IV type 10 which could alter the LBS activity of Lp(a) from patients with coronary artery disease. We found the DNA region of kringle IV type 10 of apo(a) to be mutable but relatively well preserved in the Spanish population. We identified a novel mutation which probably leads to a truncated form of apo(a) in a patient heterozygous for the mutation and with low lysine binding activity and low plasma Lp(a) concentration. Two other mutations have been previously identified in humans, the substitutions W81R and M75T. The W81R was not found in our sample, but the M75T mutation was present in 43% of patients with coronary artery disease and 23% of age-matched controls. The genotype TT conferred a significant risk for myocardial infarction (odds ratio 2.53). This association was not due to linkage disequilibrium with kringle IV repeats. The M75T polymorphism was not associated with the LBS function of apo(a), but it influenced plasma Lp(a) concentration.
Journal of Molecular Medicine 07/2001; 79(5-6):294-9. DOI:10.1007/s001090100203 · 5.11 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The epsilon 4 allele of APOE is generally accepted to be a risk factor in Alzheimer's disease and it has been related to other neuropsychiatric disorders, including schizophrenia. The results of several case-control studies have been inconclusive. To shed more light on this issue we carried out an association study that compared the APOE common variant in a group of 365 schizophrenia patients and 584 controls. We found no differences in the genotype distributions and allele frequencies of patients and controls. In the group of patients, we also analysed the possible influence of the epsilon 4 allele in the clinical variables. The most important findings are that the age at onset (AAO) of epsilon 4+ schizophrenic women, those that have one or two epsilon 4 alleles, is 4 years earlier than that of epsilon 4- women and their risk of suffering a negative syndrome subtype is four times greater. This was not found in schizophrenic men. Our results show that the APOE variant is not a risk factor for developing schizophrenia but that it may modulate its phenotypic expression in a sex-dependent manner.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Clinical studies have shown that there is a genetic contribution to the pathogenesis of schizophrenia. The molecular mechanisms of effective antipsychotic drugs and recent advances in neural development suggest that several dopamine receptor, serotonin receptor and neurotrophic factor genes might be involved in the disorder. In this study, we assessed the associations between schizophrenia and polymorphisms in the D2 and D3 dopamine receptor (DRD2, DRD3), the serotonin 2A receptor (5HTR2A), the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), the ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) and the neurotrophin-3 (NT-3) genes. Our results suggest that the polymorphisms at the DRD3, 5HTR2A, CNTF and BDNF gene loci are unlikely to make our sample more genetically susceptible to schizophrenia. However, we found significant differences in microsatellite allele frequencies between schizophrenic and control groups for DRD2 in the whole sample and for DRD2 and NT-3 only in women. Therefore, clinical differences in the presentation of schizophrenia between gender might be related to genetic factors.
Schizophrenia Research 05/2001; 49(1-2):65-71. DOI:10.1016/S0920-9964(00)00106-7 · 3.92 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Disturbances in methyl-carbon metabolism, which result in hyperhomocysteinemia, have been associated with schizophrenia. Homozygosity for the T677 allele of the methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) gene, which encodes for a thermolabile enzyme associated with hyperhomocysteinemia, has been found to be increased in schizophrenic patients. We have investigated whether plasma homocysteine concentration and the frequency of C677T MTHFR variant were increased in schizophrenic inpatients of a psychiatric hospital (n=210) compared with controls (n=218). There were no significant differences in plasma homocysteine concentrations between the schizophrenia and the control group. The distributions of T allele and TT genotype frequencies were similar in both groups (40% and 15%). These results show that impaired homocysteine metabolism is unlikely in schizophrenia.