Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

First whole-genome scan for links to OCD reveals evidence for genetic susceptibility

12.06.2006
A federally funded team of researchers including several from Johns Hopkins have identified six regions of the human genome that might play a role in susceptibility to obsessive compulsive disorder, or OCD. The study was published online June 6 in Molecular Psychiatry.

"OCD once was thought to be primarily psychological in origin," says Yin Yao Shugart, Ph.D., statistical geneticist and associate professor of epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. "But now there is growing evidence that there is a genetic basis behind OCD, which will help us better understand the condition," she says.

OCD is characterized by intrusive and senseless thoughts and impulses that together are defined as obsessions, as well as repetitive and intentional behaviors, referred to as compulsions. OCD is estimated to affect up to 3 percent of the American population.

In what the research team describes as the first whole-genome scan to look for genetic "markers" or similarities in the genomes of people with OCD, results identified six potentially significant regions in the genome, which lie on five different chromosomes that appear "linked" to OCD. It's likely that any genes directly associated OCD are to be found in these regions.

"We've long suspected that, rather than being caused by a single gene, OCD has multiple genetic associations," says Jack Samuels, Ph.D., an epidemiologist and assistant professor of psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine.

To conduct the study, the researchers collected blood samples from 1,008 individuals from a total of 219 families in which at least two siblings were clinically diagnosed with OCD.

DNA from each sample was analyzed by the Hopkins Center for Inherited Disease Research (CIDR) using both molecular biology and statistical analysis computer programs. Specific DNA sequences – known as genetic markers – on chromosomes 1, 7, 6, and 15 and two markers on chromosome 3 appear more frequently in the patients with OCD than in those without it. The researchers want to further analyze the genetic regions they identified in this report and use more markers to possibly narrow down these regions to identify OCD risk genes.

The researchers suggest that whatever genes are found don't directly cause OCD but increase risk for it in conjunction with other genes or environmental factors.

"OCD is a relative newcomer to these genetic linkage studies," says Shugart, "so it's extremely important to follow up these findings by looking at more families and using more markers to assess the role of gene-environment interactions in OCD. "We are also very interested in finding genes underlying the different subtypes of OCD," she says.

Careful genetic analysis of different clinical categories of OCD has been limited by currently existing computer programs used in analyzing this type of data. The vast amount of data used in whole-genome analysis requires fine-tuned statistical calculations. The research team is eager to develop new methods in this area. "We predict that such findings may have immediate clinical implications for OCD patients," says Shugart.

Audrey Huang | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.cidr.jhmi.edu/
http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/ocd/default.asp

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Multi-institutional collaboration uncovers how molecular machines assemble
02.12.2016 | Salk Institute

nachricht Fertilized egg cells trigger and monitor loss of sperm’s epigenetic memory
02.12.2016 | IMBA - Institut für Molekulare Biotechnologie der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften GmbH

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

Im Focus: Molecules change shape when wet

Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water

In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...

Im Focus: Fraunhofer ISE Develops Highly Compact, High Frequency DC/DC Converter for Aviation

The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

UTSA study describes new minimally invasive device to treat cancer and other illnesses

02.12.2016 | Medical Engineering

Plasma-zapping process could yield trans fat-free soybean oil product

02.12.2016 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

What do Netflix, Google and planetary systems have in common?

02.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>