The 5HTTLPR polymorphism of the serotonin transporter gene
is associated with affective temperaments as measured by TEMPS-A
Gonda X, Rihmer Z, Zsombok T, Bagdy G, Akiskal KK, Akiskal HS.
Laboratory of Neurochemistry and Experimental Medicine,
National Institute for Psychiatry and Neurology,
J Affect Disord. 2006 Apr;91(2-3):125-31.
ABSTRACTBACKGROUND: Increasing evidence supports the notion of a continuum between affective temperaments and major mood disorders, suggesting that these temperament types represent the subclinical manifestations of affective disorders and often present an increased vulnerability for these diseases. METHODS: The Hungarian rendition of the full-scale 110-item version of the TEMPS-A questionnaire and 5HTTLPR genotype was investigated in a sample of 139 unrelated Caucasian females with no current or lifetime Axis I psychiatric disorders. RESULTS: A significant association was found between the s allele and the TEMPS scores of the depressive, anxious, irritable, and particularly the cyclothymic temperaments; no such association emerged with respect to the hyperthymic temperament. LIMITATION: The database is entirely female. Given that the hyperthymic type predominates in males, our results could have been different if men were included in our sample. CONCLUSIONS: Our results are in good agreement with earlier studies reporting a strong association between the s allele of the 5HTTLPR and major as well as subthreshold forms of depression, and extend this association to the normative temperament level. Indeed, these temperaments might best be regarded as proximate behavioural endophenotypes. Our data raise the provocative possibility that the genetic potential for mood episodes lies in these temperaments. Further studies are needed to delineate the role of gender in the associations under consideration, as well as to investigate the genetic background of the hyperthymia-mania part of the affective spectrum. Given that affective temperaments are widely distributed in the general population, the strategy employed by us is of potential public health significance in terms of detecting individuals in the community at risk for affective spectrum disorders.5-HTTLPR
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