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Nievergelt C.M.,University of California at San Diego | Maihofer A.X.,University of California at San Diego | Mustapic M.,University of California at San Diego | Schork N.J.,J. Craig Venter Institute | And 7 more authors.
Psychoneuroendocrinology | Year: 2015

Background: Research on the etiology of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has rapidly matured, moving from candidate gene studies to interrogation of the entire human genome in genome-wide association studies (GWAS). Here we present the results of a GWAS performed on samples from combat-exposed U.S. Marines and Sailors from the Marine Resiliency Study (MRS) scheduled for deployment to Iraq and/or Afghanistan. The MRS is a large, prospective study with longitudinal follow-up designed to identify risk and resiliency factors for combat-induced stress-related symptoms. Previously implicated PTSD risk loci from the literature and polygenic risk scores across psychiatric disorders were also evaluated in the MRS cohort. Methods: Participants (. N=. 3494) were assessed using the Clinician-Administered PTSD Scale and diagnosed using the DSM-IV diagnostic criterion. Subjects with partial and/or full PTSD diagnosis were called cases, all other subjects were designated controls, and study-wide maximum CAPS scores were used for longitudinal assessments. Genomic DNA was genotyped on the Illumina HumanOmniExpressExome array. Individual genetic ancestry was determined by supervised cluster analysis for subjects of European, African, Hispanic/Native American, and other descent. To test for association of SNPs with PTSD, logistic regressions were performed within each ancestry group and results were combined in meta-analyses. Measures of childhood and adult trauma were included to test for gene-by-environment (GxE) interactions. Polygenic risk scores from the Psychiatric Genomic Consortium were used for major depressive disorder (MDD), bipolar disorder (BPD), and schizophrenia (SCZ). Results: The array produced >800K directly genotyped and >21M imputed markers in 3494 unrelated, trauma-exposed males, of which 940 were diagnosed with partial or full PTSD. The GWAS meta-analysis identified the phosphoribosyl transferase domain containing 1 gene (PRTFDC1) as a genome-wide significant PTSD locus (rs6482463; OR=1.47, SE=0.06, p=2.04×10-9), with a similar effect across ancestry groups. Association of PRTFDC1 with PTSD in an independent military cohort showed some evidence for replication. Loci with suggestive evidence of association (n=25 genes, p<5×10-6) further implicated genes related to immune response and the ubiquitin system, but these findings remain to be replicated in larger GWASs. A replication analysis of 25 putative PTSD genes from the literature found nominally significant SNPs for the majority of these genes, but associations did not remain significant after correction for multiple comparison. A cross-disorder analysis of polygenic risk scores from GWASs of BPD, MDD, and SCZ found that PTSD diagnosis was associated with risk sores of BPD, but not with MDD or SCZ. Conclusions: This first multi-ethnic/racial GWAS of PTSD highlights the potential to increase power through meta-analyses across ancestry groups. We found evidence for PRTFDC1 as a potential novel PTSD gene, a finding that awaits further replication. Our findings indicate that the genetic architecture of PTSD may be determined by many SNPs with small effects, and overlap with other neuropsychiatric disorders, consistent with current findings from large GWAS of other psychiatric disorders. © 2014 . Source

Mathew A.R.,Medical University of South Carolina | Cook J.W.,University of Wisconsin - Madison | Japuntich S.J.,National Center for at Boston Healthcare System | Leventhal A.M.,University of Southern California
American Journal on Addictions | Year: 2015

Background and Objectives Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is overrepresented among cigarette smokers. It has been hypothesized that those with PTSD smoke to alleviate negative affect and counteract deficient positive affect commonly associated with the disorder; however, limited research has examined associations between PTSD symptoms, smoking motives, and affective vulnerability factors. In the current study, we examined (1) whether PTSD symptoms were associated with positive reinforcement and negative reinforcement smoking motives; and (2) whether two affective vulnerability factors implicated in PTSD - anxiety sensitivity and anhedonia - mediated relationships between PTSD symptoms and smoking motives. Methods Data were drawn from a community sample of non-treatment-seeking smokers recruited without regard for trauma history (N = 342; 10+ cig/day). We used the Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Checklist-Civilian Version (PCL-C) to assess overall PTSD symptom severity as well as individual PTSD subfactors. Results Overall, PTSD symptom severity was significantly associated with negative reinforcement, but not positive reinforcement, smoking motives. Variation in anxiety sensitivity significantly mediated the relation between PTSD symptom severity and negative reinforcement smoking motives, whereas anhedonia did not. Regarding PTSD subfactors, emotional numbing was the only PTSD subfactor associated with smoking rate, while re-experiencing symptoms were uniquely associated with both positive reinforcement and negative reinforcement smoking motives. Conclusions and Scientific Significance Findings suggest that anxiety sensitivity may be an important feature associated with PTSD that enhances motivation to smoke for negative reinforcement purposes. Smoking cessation interventions that alleviate anxiety sensitivity and enhance coping with negative affect may be useful for smokers with elevated PTSD symptoms. (Am J Addict 2015;24:39-46) © American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry. Source

Mitchell K.S.,National Center for at Boston Healthcare System | Mitchell K.S.,Boston University | Aiello A.E.,University of Michigan | Galea S.,Columbia University | And 3 more authors.
General Hospital Psychiatry | Year: 2013

Objective: Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has been associated with adverse health consequences, including overweight, obesity and cardiovascular disease. African Americans, particularly women, have among the highest rates of overweight and obesity in the U.S. compared to other racial groups. High rates of violence exposure in urban African Americans may lead to the development of PTSD and increase risk for overweight and obesity. The current study investigated the comorbidity of lifetime PTSD and overweight/obesity in a population-based African American, urban sample. Method: Data were from 463 African American male and female participants of the Detroit Neighborhood Health Study. Multivariable logistic regression models estimated the impact of lifetime PTSD on risk for overweight and obesity. Results: The prevalence of obesity was significantly higher among women (60.9%) than men (33.1%; P< .001). In sex-stratified models, after controlling for demographic variables, PTSD was associated obesity (odds ratio=4.4, 95% confidence interval: 1.3, 14.3) only among women. Conclusions: PTSD was associated with obesity, after controlling for confounding variables, among African American women. Results underscore the contribution of PTSD to obesity among African American women and the importance of addressing the physical health correlates of women with PTSD. © 2013. Source

Logue M.W.,Boston University | Solovieff N.,Massachusetts General Hospital | Solovieff N.,Harvard University | Solovieff N.,The Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard | And 13 more authors.
Psychoneuroendocrinology | Year: 2013

Background: The ankyrin 3 gene (ANK3) produces the ankyrin G protein that plays an integral role in regulating neuronal activity. Previous studies have linked ANK3 to bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. A recent mouse study suggests that ANK3 may regulate behavioral disinhibition and stress reactivity. This led us to hypothesize that ANK3 might also be associated with stress-related psychopathology such as posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), as well as disorders of the externalizing spectrum such as antisocial personality disorder and substance-related disorders that are etiologically linked to impulsivity and temperamental disinhibition. Methods: We examined the possibility of association between ANK3 SNPs and both PTSD and externalizing (defined by a factor score representing a composite of adult antisociality and substance abuse) in a cohort of white non-Hispanic combat veterans and their intimate partners (n= 554). Initially, we focused on rs9804190-a SNP previously reported to be associated with bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and ankyrin G expression in brain. Then we examined 358 additional ANK3 SNPs utilizing a multiple-testing correction. Results: rs9804190 was associated with both externalizing and PTSD (p=0.028 and p=0.042 respectively). Analysis of other ANK3 SNPs identified several that were more strongly associated with either trait. The most significant association with externalizing was observed at rs1049862 (p=0.00040, pcorrected=0.60). The most significant association with PTSD (p=0.00060, pcorrected=0.045) was found with three SNPs in complete linkage disequilibrium (LD)-rs28932171, rs11599164, and rs17208576. Conclusions: These findings support a role of ANK3 in risk of stress-related and externalizing disorders, beyond its previous associations with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. © 2013. Source

Miller M.W.,National Center for at Boston Healthcare System | Miller M.W.,Boston University | Wolf E.J.,National Center for at Boston Healthcare System | Wolf E.J.,Boston University | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Affective Disorders | Year: 2013

Background This study followed on findings from a recent genome-wide association study of PTSD that implicated the retinoid-related orphan receptor alpha (RORA) gene (Logue et al.; 2012) by examining its relationship to broader array of disorders. Methods Using data from the same cohort (N=540), we analyzed patterns of association between 606 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) spanning the RORA gene and comorbidity factors termed fear, distress (i.e.; internalizing factors) and externalizing. Results Results showed that rs17303244 was associated with the fear component of internalizing (i.e.; defined by symptoms of panic, agoraphobia, specific phobia, and obsessive-compulsive disorder) at a level of significance that withstood correction for gene-wide multiple testing. Limitations The primary limitations were the modest size of the cohort and the absence of a replication sample. Conclusions Results add to a growing literature implicating the RORA gene in a wide range of neuropsychiatric disorders and offer new insight into possible molecular mechanisms of the effects of traumatic stress on the brain and the role of genetic factors in those processes. Source

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