Association of polymorphisms of the serotonergic pathways with clinical traits of impulsive-aggression and suicidality in adolescents: A multi-center study

Gil Zalsman, Miriam Patya, Amos Frisch, Hadas Ofek, Lior Schapir, Ilana Blum, Daniella Harell, Alan Apter, Abraham Weizman, Samuel Tyano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objectives. Suicidal behaviour runs in families. This study evaluated association between common polymorphisms in the serotonergic and adrenergic candidate genes (HTR2A, 5HTTLPR, and MAOA) and suicidality, psychopathology and aggression in adolescents. Methods. Four groups of adolescents were included: Suicidal (N=35) and non-suicidal (N=30) psychiatric inpatients, suicide attempters admitted to three psychiatric emergency rooms (N=51) and a community-based control group (N=95). All were genotyped and underwent psychological assessment for relevant endophenotypes and plasma serotonin content (p5HT) was measured. Results. Homozygosity for the T allele of the HTR2A 102T/C polymorphism was associated with lower impulsivity (P=0.03) and aggression (P=0.01) compared to TC carriers. Low activity MAOA genotypes were associated with suicidality (P=0.04). No association was found between p5HT level and the examined polymorphisms. Conclusions. Our findings are in line with the associations described in adult suicidal population. Further studies are needed to evaluate the gene × environmental interactions in larger samples in an attempt to clarify the possible role of genetic factors in pediatric suicidal and impulsive-aggressive behaviour.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)33-41
Number of pages9
JournalWorld Journal of Biological Psychiatry
Volume12
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2011

Keywords

  • 5HTTLPR
  • HTR2A
  • MAOA
  • Suicide
  • aggression
  • polymorphism

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