, Volume 44, Issue 1, pp 59-67
Date: 29 Mar 2011

Candidate-Gene Approach in Posttraumatic Stress Disorder After Urban Violence: Association Analysis of the Genes Encoding Serotonin Transporter, Dopamine Transporter, and BDNF

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Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a prevalent, disabling anxiety disorder marked by behavioral and physiologic alterations which commonly follows a chronic course. Exposure to a traumatic event constitutes a necessary, but not sufficient, factor. There is evidence from twin studies supporting a significant genetic predisposition to PTSD. However, the precise genetic loci still remain unclear. The objective of the present study was to identify, in a case–control study, whether the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) val66met polymorphism (rs6265), the dopamine transporter (DAT1) three prime untranslated region (3′UTR) variable number of tandem repeats (VNTR), and the serotonin transporter (5-HTTPRL) short/long variants are associated with the development of PTSD in a group of victims of urban violence. All polymorphisms were genotyped in 65 PTSD patients as well as in 34 victims of violence without PTSD and in a community control group (n = 335). We did not find a statistical significant difference between the BDNF val66met and 5-HTTPRL polymorphism and the traumatic phenotype. However, a statistical association was found between DAT1 3′UTR VNTR nine repeats and PTSD (OR = 1.82; 95% CI, 1.20–2.76). This preliminary result confirms previous reports supporting a susceptibility role for allele 9 and PTSD.