CENTER ON BEHAVIORAL MEDICINE

BODY-MIND CONNECTION

BEHAVIORAL GENETICS

Behavioral Genetics:  Research Article

Behavioral Genetics Menu

Genetic Polymorphism in Panic Disorder

CITATION:  Jong-Min Woo,  Kyung-Sik Yoon,  Bun-Hee Yu.  (2002)  Catecho O-Methyltransferase Genetic Polymorphism In Panic Disorder.  Am J Psychiatry 159.1785-1787.

ABSTRACT:  

Objective: The authors examined the distribution of catechol O-methyltransferase (COMT) genotypes in patients with panic disorder as well as the relationship between a COMT polymorphism and the clinical characteristics of these patients. 

Method: Fifty-one patients with panic disorder and 45 healthy comparison subjects were tested for a genetic polymorphism of COMT. Clinical variables were assessed for the patients with panic disorder. 

Results: The frequency of the L/L genotype was significantly higher in the patients with panic disorder than in the healthy subjects (19.6% versus 2.2%). Panic disorder was significantly associated with the L allele and L/L genotype. Patients with panic disorder who had the L/L genotype showed poorer treatment response than those with other genotypes. 

Conclusion: These results suggest that the L/L genotype of the COMT gene may be related to the development and treatment outcome of panic disorder in some patients.

References

1. Axelrod J, Tomchick R: Enzymatic 0-methylation of epinephrine and other catechols. J Biol Chem 1958; 233:702-705 

2. Lachman HIM, Papolos DF, Saito T, Yu YM, Szumlanski CL, Weinshilboum RM: Human catechol-O-methyltransferase pharmacogenetics: description of a functional polymorphism and its potential application to neuropsychiatric disorders. Pharmacogenetics 1996; 6:243-250 

3. Wilkinson DJC, Thompson JM, Lambert GW, Jennings GL, Schwarz RG, Jefferys D, Turner AG, Esler MD: Sympathetic activity in patients with panic disorder at rest, under laboratory mental stress, and during panic attacks. Arch Gen Psychiatry 1998; 55:511-520 

4. Li T, Vallada H, Curtis D, Arranz M, Xu K, Cai G, Deng H, Liu J, Murray R, Liu X, Collier DA: Catechol-O-methyltransferase VaI158Met polymorphism: frequency analysis in Han Chinese subjects and allelic association of the low activity allele with bipolar affective disorder. Pharmacogenetics 1997; 7:349-353 

5. Ohara K, Nagai M, Suzuki Y, Ochiai M, Ohara K: No association between anxiety disorders and catechol-O-methyltransferase polymorphism. Psychiatry Res 1998; 80:145-148 

6. Hamilton SP, Slager SL, Heiman GA, Deng Z, Haghighi F, Klein DF, Hodge SE, Weissman MM, Fyer AJ, Knowles JA: Evidence for a susceptibility locus for panic disorder near the catechol-Omethyltransferase gene on chromosome 22, Biol Psychiatry 2002; 51:591-601 

7. Daniels JK, Williams NM, Williams J, Jones LA, Cardno AG, Murphy KC, Spurlock G, Riley B, Scambler P, Asherson P, McGuffin P, Owen MJ: No evidence for allelic association between schizophrenia and a polymorphism determining high or low catechol O-methyltransferase activity. Am J Psychiatry 1996; 153:268-270 

8. Hwu HG, Yeh EK, Chang LY: Prevalence of psychiatric disorders in Taiwan defined by the Chinese Diagnostic Interview Schedule. Acta Psychiatr Scand 1989; 79:136-147 

9. Aoki Y, Fujihara S, Kitamura T: Panic attacks and panic disorder in Japanese non-patient population: epidemiology and psychosocial correlates. J Affect Disord 1994; 32:51-59 

10. Lee CK, Kwak YS, Yamamoto J, Rhee H, Kim YS, Han JH, Choi J, Lee YH: Psychiatric epidemiology in Korea, I: gender and age differences in Seoul. J New Ment Dis 1990; 178:242-246 

11. Eaton WW, Kessler RC, Wittchen HU, Magee WJ: Panic and panic disorder in the United States. Am J Psychiatry 1994; 151:413420