Gene: Schizophrenia

Source: New Medical Research, 12-09-2006

Baby girls who possess a specific immune gene that too closely resembles their mothers’ immune gene are significantly more likely to develop schizophrenia later in life, say scientists at the University of California, Los Angeles. The gene, HLA-B, is linked to other prenatal complications such as pre-eclampsia and low birth weight, says a report in the American Journal of Human Genetics (Oct).

The whole article is here, and the abstract:

Schizophrenia and human leukocyte antigen (HLA) matching between couples or between mothers and offspring have independently been associated with prenatal/obstetric complications, including preeclampsia and low birth weight. Here, we report the results of a family-based candidate-gene study that brings together these two disparate lines of research by assessing maternal-fetal genotype matching at HLA-A, -B, and -DRB1 as a risk factor of schizophrenia. We used a conditional-likelihood modeling approach with a sample of 274 families that had at least one offspring with schizophrenia or a related spectrum disorder. A statistically significant HLA-B maternal-fetal genotype–matching effect on schizophrenia was demonstrated for female offspring (P=.01; parameter estimate 1.7 [95% confidence interval 1.22–2.49]). Because the matching effect could be associated with pregnancy complications rather than with schizophrenia per se, these findings are consistent with the neurodevelopmental hypothesis of schizophrenia and with accumulating evidence that the prenatal period is involved in the origins of this disease. Our approach demonstrates how genetic markers can be used to characterize the biology of prenatal risk factors of schizophrenia.

On the other hand, a method called Whole Genome Association (WGA) is used to determine potential susceptibility genes for the disease, from this article, 21-03-2007.

A genetic basis for schizophrenia found on both the X and Y chromosomes, is presented online in Molecular Psychiatry. Todd Lencz and colleagues examined over 500,000 genetic markers through WGA method.

The results from this analysis show a link with schizophrenia from a marker located in a chromosomal region called pseudoautosomal region 1 (PAR1), which is on both the X and Y chromosomes, and was located adjacent to two genes, CSF2RA and IL3RA. These genes, previously thought to play a role in inflammation and autoimmune disorders, produce receptors for two cytokines, GM-CSF and interleukin-3.

Abstract available online.

1 Comment

  1. March 11, 2008 at 12:04 pm

    […] Get the entire post from here. […]


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