Association of Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms in Catechol-OMethyltransferase and Serine-Threonine Protein Kinase Genes in the Pakistani Schizophrenic Population: A Study with Special Emphasis on Cannabis and Smokeless Tobacco

Author(s): Rukhsana Nawaz, Sonia Siddiqui.

Journal Name: CNS & Neurological Disorders - Drug Targets
(Formerly Current Drug Targets - CNS & Neurological Disorders)

Volume 14 , Issue 8 , 2015

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Schizophrenia is a neuropsychiatric disorder in which abnormalities in the prefrontal cortex lead to impaired synthesis of dopamine. It is associated with hallucination, psychosis and hearing impairments. Many susceptible genes have been identified in schizophrenia such as catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) and serine/threonine kinase (AKT1). Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in these genes have not been identified in Pakistan. Therefore, we investigated the allelic and genotypic frequencies in COMT and AKT1 genes in the Pakistani population. Polymerase chain reactionrestriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP) and DNA sequencing were used to identify SNPs in the genes. The present study shows that COMT Val and COMT Met allelic frequencies for the controls were p=0.52, q=0.48 and for the schizophrenic cases they were p=0.34, q=0.66 respectively. The distribution of polymorphism in COMT Val158Met genotype by Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium (HWE) was P=0.61 for controls and P=0.005 for cases. The data reveal that SNP rs1130214 T allele mutation was found neither in patients nor in controls in the 5’ untranslated region (UTR). This proves that no association of AKT1 and positive association of COMT with schizophrenia exist in the population of Pakistan. Moreover, a study based on a single family showed COMT Met allele inheritance in schizophrenic offspring. This suggested that COMT allele alteration influences susceptibility to at least some forms of psychosis in the Pakistani population. Interestingly, according to our socio-economical survey, COMT genotype has no association with cannabis but it is strongly associated with tobacco. The Pakistani population with Val158Met SNP showed more susceptibility towards developing schizophrenia. This study highlights the genetic differences between Pakistani and other Caucasian populations.

Keywords: Catechol-O-methyltransferase, Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium, methionine, Pakistan, schizophrenia, serine-threonine protein kinase, single nucleotide polymorphisms, valine.

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Article Details

Year: 2015
Page: [1086 - 1095]
Pages: 10
DOI: 10.2174/1871527314666150317225828
Price: $58

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