Gender moderates the relationship between mania spectrum
and serotonin transporter polymorphisms in depression

Rucci P, Nimgaonkar VL, Mansour H, Miniati M,
Masala I, Fagiolini A, Cassano GB, Frank E.
Department of Psychiatry,
University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine,
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Am J Med Genet B Neuropsychiatr Genet. 2009 Jan 5.


The short (s) variant of the serotonin transporter gene linked functional polymorphic region (5-HTTLPR) is associated with depression. Stressful life events, gender, and race have been shown to moderate this association. Because features of mania/hypomania seem to constitute an indicator of higher severity of depression, we examined the relationship between 5-HTTLPR genotype and symptoms of mania-hypomania spectrum occurring over the lifetime in patients with major depression. The possible moderating role of gender in this relationship was taken into account. Two hundred twenty-two patients with unipolar major depression were genotyped for 5-HTTLPR and nine other representative polymorphisms, and were administered the Mood Spectrum Questionnaire, Lifetime Version (MOODS-SR). The manic-hypomanic (MH) component score was used for analysis. Using a linear model of the MH score as a function of genotypes and gender, controlling for age, severity of depression, and site, we found significant effects of gender (F = 8.003, df = 1, P = 0.005), of the interaction gender x genotype (F = 4.505, df = 2, P = 0.012), and of the baseline Hamilton score (F = 5.404, df = 1, P = 0.021), non-significant effects of genotype (F = 1.298, df = 2, P = 0.275), age (F = 0.310, df = 1, P = 0.578) site (F = 0.504, df = 1, P = 0.479). Significant associations were also detected at three other SNPs. The association between the manic/hypomanic component of the MOODS-SR and the polymorphisms of the 5-HTTLPR is moderated by gender. This finding is intriguing from a clinical point of view because women with unipolar disorder and the "ss" genotype seem to constitute a sub-group with higher severity of depression. These results should be considered tentative pending replication in other samples.
Personal genomics
Depression genetics
5-HTTPR polymorphism
Affective temperaments
Selecting potential children
Mood genes and human nature
Artistic creativity/bipolar disorder
Transhumanism/Brave New World?
Hyperthymic and depressive temperaments
Gene therapy and performance enhancement
The commercialisation of pre-natal enhancement

and further reading

BLTC Research
Utopian Surgery?
The Good Drug Guide
The Abolitionist Project
The Hedonistic Imperative
The Reproductive Revolution
MDMA: Utopian Pharmacology
Critique of Huxley's Brave New World