[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Large, rare copy number variants (CNVs) have been implicated in a variety of psychiatric disorders, but the role of CNVs in recurrent depression is unclear. We performed a genome-wide analysis of large, rare CNVs in 3106 cases of recurrent depression, 459 controls screened for lifetime-absence of psychiatric disorder and 5619 unscreened controls from phase 2 of the Wellcome Trust Case Control Consortium (WTCCC2). We compared the frequency of cases with CNVs against the frequency observed in each control group, analysing CNVs over the whole genome, genic, intergenic, intronic and exonic regions. We found that deletion CNVs were associated with recurrent depression, whereas duplications were not. The effect was significant when comparing cases with WTCCC2 controls (P=7.7 × 10(-6), odds ratio (OR) =1.25 (95% confidence interval (CI) 1.13-1.37)) and to screened controls (P=5.6 × 10(-4), OR=1.52 (95% CI 1.20-1.93). Further analysis showed that CNVs deleting protein coding regions were largely responsible for the association. Within an analysis of regions previously implicated in schizophrenia, we found an overall enrichment of CNVs in our cases when compared with screened controls (P=0.019). We observe an ordered increase of samples with deletion CNVs, with the lowest proportion seen in screened controls, the next highest in unscreened controls and the highest in cases. This may suggest that the absence of deletion CNVs, especially in genes, is associated with resilience to recurrent depression.Molecular Psychiatry advance online publication, 1 November 2011; doi:10.1038/mp.2011.144.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Many association studies have reported associations between the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene and psychiatric disorders including major depression (MDD). The COMT gene has further been associated with suicidal behaviour, as well as with treatment response, although with conflicting results. In the present study, we further elucidate the impact of COMT in treatment response in MDD patients with suicide risk and/or a personal history of suicide attempts. Two hundred fifty MDD patients were collected in the context of a European multicentre resistant depression study and treated with antidepressants at adequate doses for at least 4 weeks. Suicidality was assessed using Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview (MINI) and the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HAM-D). Treatment response was defined as HAM-D ≤ 17 and remission as HAM-D ≤ 7 after 4 weeks of treatment with antidepressants at adequate dose. Genotyping was performed for seven SNPs (rs4680, rs2075507, rs737865, rs6269, rs4633, rs4818 and rs165599) within the COMT gene. With regard to suicide risk and personal history of suicide attempts, neither single marker nor haplotypic association was found with any SNP after multiple testing correction. In non-responders, we found significant single marker and haplotypic association with suicide risk, but not in responders. The same holds true for both remitters and non-remitters, and when testing for association with a personal history of suicide attempts and treatment response phenotypes. In conclusion, we found significant association of COMT SNPs with suicide risk in MDD patients not responding to antidepressant treatment. Larger well-defined cohorts will be required to dissect this further.
European neuropsychopharmacology: the journal of the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology 09/2011; 22(4):259-66. · 3.68 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The High-Throughput Disease-specific target Identification Program (HiTDIP) aimed to study case-control association samples for 18 common diseases. Here we present the results of a follow-up case-control association study of HiTDIP in major depressive disorder (MDD). The HiTDIP in MDD was conducted in a sample of 974 cases of recurrent MDD of white German origin collected at the Max-Planck Institute (MP-GSK) and 968 ethnically matched controls screened for lifetime absence of depression. Six genes were identified as of interest for a follow-up, based on the strength of the association and based on the interest as potential candidate target for developing new treatment for depression: Solute Carrier Family 4 Member 10 (SLC4A10), Dipeptidyl Peptidase IV (DPP4), Dopamine Receptor D3 (DRD3), Zinc Finger Protein 80 (ZNF80), Nitric Oxide Synthase 2A (NOS2A) and Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor-Gamma, Coactivator 1, Alpha (PPARGC1A). Within the current study, we attempted to follow-up these findings in a sample from the UK, the Depression Case Control (DeCC) sample consisting of 1,196 cases and 842 screened controls, phenotyped using exactly the same methods as the MP-GSK sample. Performing Cochran-Mantel-Haenzel statistics to test for genotypic and/or allelic differences between the DeCC and MP-GSK samples, we found no significant differences, thus being able to combine the two samples for association testing. In the combined sample of 2,170 MDD cases and 1,810 controls, there were positive findings in the Nitric Oxide Synthase 2A (NOS2A) gene both using single SNP analysis and haplotype analysis.
American Journal of Medical Genetics Part B Neuropsychiatric Genetics 05/2011; 156B(6):640-50. · 3.23 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: There is evidence that obesity-related disorders are increased among people with depression. Variation in the FTO (fat mass and obesity associated) gene has been shown to contribute to common forms of human obesity. This study aimed to investigate the genetic influence of polymorphisms in FTO in relation to body mass index (BMI) in two independent samples of major depressive disorder (MDD) cases and controls. We analysed 88 polymorphisms in the FTO gene in a clinically ascertained sample of 2442 MDD cases and 809 controls (Radiant Study). In all, 8 of the top 10 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) showing the strongest associations with BMI were followed-up in a population-based cohort (PsyCoLaus Study) consisting of 1292 depression cases and 1690 controls. Linear regression analyses of the FTO variants and BMI yielded 10 SNPs significantly associated with increased BMI in the depressive group but not the control group in the Radiant sample. The same pattern was found in the PsyCoLaus sample. We found a significant interaction between genotype and affected status in relation to BMI for seven SNPs in Radiant (P<0.0057), with PsyCoLaus giving supportive evidence for five SNPs (P-values between 0.03 and 0.06), which increased in significance when the data were combined in a meta-analysis. This is the first study investigating FTO and BMI within the context of MDD, and the results indicate that having a history of depression moderates the effect of FTO on BMI. This finding suggests that FTO is involved in the mechanism underlying the association between mood disorders and obesity.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Eric Strömgren was one of the pioneers of psychiatric genetics and family studies. There has now been an explosion of interest in this field and research progress, including linkage and association studies, whole genome genotyping, copy number variants and epigenetics is reviewed here.
An overview of this area of psychiatric research is presented and discussed based on the relevant literature aiming at giving a recent status of the progress.
Broadly speaking linkage and association are complementary approaches used to locate genes contributing to the genetic aetiology of psychopathology. Linkage can be detected over comparatively large distances, however power is problematic when searching for quantitative trait loci with small effect sizes. In contrast, association studies can detect small effects but only over very small distances. Therefore, while several genome-wide linkage studies in psychiatric disorders have been performed, the majority of association studies have investigated specific functional candidate genes.
Due to very recent technological advancements, genome-wide association studies have now become possible and have identified some completely novel susceptibility loci. Other recent advances include the discovery of epigenetic phenomena and copy number variants.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Neuregulin 1 (NRG1) gene was initially implicated in schizophrenia (SZ) and has recently been associated with bipolar disorder (BPD) in two studies. An association with major depressive disorder (MDD) has not yet been investigated but is warranted in view of the genetic overlap between MDD and BPD. We have performed a large-scale case-control study investigating the association between NRG1 polymorphisms and MDD, genotyping a selection of 14 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) spanning the NRG1 gene in a sample of 1,398 patients of White European ancestry with a diagnosis of MDD and 1,304 ethnically matched controls from three clinical sites in the UK. We found no single marker or haplotype associations that withstood correction for multiple testing. Our findings do not provide evidence that NRG1 plays a role in MDD or that this gene explains part of the genetic overlap with BPD.
American Journal of Medical Genetics Part B Neuropsychiatric Genetics 05/2009; 153B(1):141-7. · 3.23 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The gene known as Disrupted-in-Schizophrenia-1, DISC1, was originally discovered in a large family, in which it also co-segregated with bipolar affective disorder (BD) and with major depressive disorder (MDD). The TSNAX (Translin-associated factor X) gene, located immediately upstream of DISC1, has also been suggested as a candidate gene in relation to psychiatric illness, as one transcript resulting from intergenic splicing encodes a novel TSNAX-DISC1 fusion protein. We explored the TSNAX-DISC1 gene region for an association with BD and MDD in a sample of 1984 patients (1469 MDD, 515 BD) and 1376 ethnically matched controls. Eight single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) within the TSNAX-DISC1 region (rs766288, rs3738401, rs2492367, rs6675281, rs12133766, rs1000731, rs7546310 and rs821597) were investigated using the SNPlex Genotyping System. We found a significant allelic and genotypic association of the TSNAX-DISC1 gene region with BD, whereas a haplotypic association was found for both BD and MDD. Therefore, our results suggest an association between the TSNAX-DISC1 region and both forms of affective disorders, and support the hypothesis that a portion of the genotypic overlap between schizophrenia and affective disorders is attributable to this gene.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Major depressive disorder (MDD) is a common complex trait with enormous public health significance. As part of the Genetic Association Information Network initiative of the US Foundation for the National Institutes of Health, we conducted a genome-wide association study of 435 291 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) genotyped in 1738 MDD cases and 1802 controls selected to be at low liability for MDD. Of the top 200, 11 signals localized to a 167 kb region overlapping the gene piccolo (PCLO, whose protein product localizes to the cytomatrix of the presynaptic active zone and is important in monoaminergic neurotransmission in the brain) with P-values of 7.7 x 10(-7) for rs2715148 and 1.2 x 10(-6) for rs2522833. We undertook replication of SNPs in this region in five independent samples (6079 MDD independent cases and 5893 controls) but no SNP exceeded the replication significance threshold when all replication samples were analyzed together. However, there was heterogeneity in the replication samples, and secondary analysis of the original sample with the sample of greatest similarity yielded P=6.4 x 10(-8) for the nonsynonymous SNP rs2522833 that gives rise to a serine to alanine substitution near a C2 calcium-binding domain of the PCLO protein. With the integrated replication effort, we present a specific hypothesis for further studies.