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Nees F.,University of Heidelberg | Witt S.H.,University of Heidelberg | Dinu-Biringer R.,University of Heidelberg | Lourdusamy A.,Kings College London | And 33 more authors.
Alcohol | Year: 2015

Changes in reward processing have been identified as one important pathogenetic mechanism in alcohol addiction. The nonsynonymous single nucleotide polymorphism in the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) gene (rs6265/Val66Met) modulates the central nervous system activity of neurotransmitters involved in reward processing such as serotonin, dopamine, and glutamate. It was identified as crucial for alcohol consumption in healthy adults and, in rats, specifically related to the function in the striatum, a region that is commonly involved in reward processing. However, studies in humans on the association of BDNF Val66Met and reward-related brain functions and its role for alcohol consumption, a significant predictor of later alcohol addiction, are missing. Based on an intermediate phenotype approach, we assessed the early orientation toward alcohol and alcohol consumption in 530 healthy adolescents that underwent a monetary incentive delay task during functional magnetic resonance imaging. We found a significantly lower response in the putamen to reward anticipation in adolescent Met carriers with high versus low levels of alcohol consumption. During reward feedback, Met carriers with low putamen reactivity were significantly more likely to orient toward alcohol and to drink alcohol 2 years later. This study indicates a possible effect of BDNF Val66Met on alcohol addiction-related phenotypes in adolescence. © 2015 Elsevier Inc.. Source


Samaan Z.,McMaster University | Samaan Z.,Population Health Research Institute | Anand S.,McMaster University | Anand S.,Population Health Research Institute | And 31 more authors.
Molecular Psychiatry | Year: 2013

Candidate gene and genome-wide association studies have not identified common variants, which are reliably associated with depression. The recent identification of obesity predisposing genes that are highly expressed in the brain raises the possibility of their genetic contribution to depression. As variation in the intron 1 of the fat mass- and obesity-associated (FTO) gene contributes to polygenic obesity, we assessed the possibility that FTO gene may contribute to depression in a cross-sectional multi-ethnic sample of 6561 depression cases and 21 932 controls selected from the EpiDREAM, INTERHEART, DeCC (depression case-control study) and Cohorte Lausannoise (CoLaus) studies. Major depression was defined according to DSM IV diagnostic criteria. Association analyses were performed under the additive genetic model. A meta-analysis of the four studies showed a significant inverse association between the obesity risk FTO rs9939609 A variant and depression (odds ratio=0.92 (0.89, 0.97), P=3 × 10 -4) adjusted for age, sex, ethnicity/population structure and body-mass index (BMI) with no significant between-study heterogeneity (I 2 =0%, P=0.63). The FTO rs9939609 A variant was also associated with increased BMI in the four studies (β 0.30 (0.08, 0.51), P=0.0064) adjusted for age, sex and ethnicity/population structure. In conclusion, we provide the first evidence that the FTO rs9939609 A variant may be associated with a lower risk of depression independently of its effect on BMI. This study highlights the potential importance of obesity predisposing genes on depression. © 2013 Macmillan Publishers Limited. Source

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