Archives of Women's Mental Health

, Volume 11, Issue 5–6, pp 347–355

Serotonin transporter (5-HTTLPR) and monoamine oxidase (MAOA) promoter polymorphisms in women with severe alcoholism

  • Camilla Gokturk
  • Stefan Schultze
  • Kent W. Nilsson
  • Lars von Knorring
  • Lars Oreland
  • Jarmila Hallman
Original Contribution


The serotonin system is known to play a pivotal role for mood, behaviour and psychic illness as e.g. alcoholism. Alcoholism in both males and females has been associated with polymorphisms in genes encoding for proteins of importance for central serotonergic function. Genotyping of two functional polymorphisms in the promoter region of the serotonin transporter and monoamine oxidase-A, respectively, (5-HTT-LPR and MAOA-VNTR), was performed in a group of women with severe alcohol addiction. A large sample of adolescent females from a normal population was used as controls. A significantly higher frequency of the LL 5-HTT genotype (high activity) was found in female addicts without a known co-morbid psychiatric disorder than in the controls. Genotype of the MAOA-VNTR polymorphism did not differ significantly between addicts and controls. However, within the group of alcoholics, when the patients with known co-morbid psychiatric disorders were excluded, aggressive anti-social behaviour was significantly linked to the presence of the high activity MAOA allele. The pattern of associations between genotypes of 5-HTT-LPR and MAOA-VNTR in women with severe alcoholism differs from most corresponding studies on males.


5-HTTLPR MAOA-VNTR Alcoholism Gender 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Camilla Gokturk
    • 1
  • Stefan Schultze
    • 2
  • Kent W. Nilsson
    • 3
  • Lars von Knorring
    • 2
  • Lars Oreland
    • 1
  • Jarmila Hallman
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Neuroscience, PharmacologyUppsala UniversityUppsalaSweden
  2. 2.Department of Neuroscience, PsychiatryUppsala University HospitalUppsalaSweden
  3. 3.Center for Clinical ResearchCentral Hospital VästeråsVästeråsSweden

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