To identify whether a genetic variation (rs1800857; IVS1-5T>C) in the neuropeptide cholecystokinin-A receptor (CCKAR) gene is a risk factor in the pathogenesis of schizophrenia.
The variation was analysed in a case-control design comprising 508 patients with schizophrenia and 1619 control subjects. A possible functional impact of this variant on CCKAR protein synthesis through alterations in splicing was analysed in an exon-trapping assay.
In males only, the risk variant, IVS1-5C, was associated with a significantly increased risk of schizophrenia. Carrying one risk allele was associated with an increased risk of 1.74 (Odds Ratio, OR) and homozygosity (CC) was associated with an OR of 3.19. The variation had no impact on protein synthesis of CCKAR.
This is the first report associating the CCKAR gene variant with schizophrenia specifically in men. Our study strengthens the conclusion that a CCKAR dysfunction could be involved in the aetiology of schizophrenia.
The Danish Blood Donor Study (DBDS) is a prospective, population-based study and biobank. Since 2010, 100,000 Danish blood donors have been included in the study. Prior to July 2015 all participating donors had to complete a paper-based questionnaire. Here we describe the establishment of a digital tablet-based questionnaire platform implemented in blood bank sites across Denmark.
The digital questionnaire was developed using the open source survey software tool LimeSurvey. The participants accesses the questionnaire online with a standard SSL encrypted HTTP connection using their personal civil registration numbers. The questionnaire is placed at a front-end web server and a collection server retrieves the completed questionnaires. Data from blood samples, register data, genetic data and verification of signed informed consent are then transferred to and merged with the questionnaire data in the DBDS database.
The digital platform enables personalized questionnaires, presenting only questions relevant to the specific donor by hiding unneeded follow-up questions on screening question results. New versions of questionnaires are immediately available at all blood collection facilities when new projects are initiated.
The digital platform is a faster, cost-effective and more flexible solution to collect valid data from participating donors compared to paper-based questionnaires. The overall system can be used around the world by the use of Internet connection, but the level of security depends on the sensitivity of the data to be collected.
OBJECTIVE: A polymorphism in the promoter region of the NPY gene at position -399 C > T was recently reported to be associated with schizophrenia in a Japanese population and with treatment refractory unipolar depression in a Swedish population. The objective of this study was to investigate potential associations between the polymorphism and three psychiatric disorders in a Danish population. METHOD: We investigated the occurrence of the polymorphism in patients with schizophrenia (n = 291), unipolar depression (n = 256) and panic disorder (n = 142) compared with controls (n = 716). RESULTS: We detected the polymorphism -399 C > T at a frequency of 48% in controls. No significant differences were found between genotype or allele frequencies in controls vs. the patient groups. CONCLUSION: The lack of association between the -399 C > T polymorphism and schizophrenia, unipolar depression or panic disorder, respectively, suggests that the polymorphism is not involved in the etiology of these disorders in the Danish population.
Several studies have reported structural brain abnormalities, decreased myelination and oligodendrocyte dysfunction in schizophrenia. In the central nervous system, glia-derived de novo synthesized cholesterol is essential for both myelination and synaptogenesis. Previously, we demonstrated in glial cell lines that antipsychotic drugs induce the expression of genes involved in cholesterol and fatty acids biosynthesis through activation of the sterol regulatory element binding protein (SREBP) transcription factors, encoded by the sterol regulatory element binding transcription factor 1 (SREBF1) and sterol regulatory element binding transcription factor 2 (SREBF2) genes. Considering the importance of these factors in the lipid biosynthesis and their possible involvement in antipsychotic drug effects, we hypothesized that genetic variants of SREBF1 and/or SREBF2 could affect schizophrenia susceptibility. We therefore conducted a HapMap-based association study in a large German sample, and identified association between schizophrenia and five markers in SREBF1 and five markers in SREBF2. Follow-up studies in two independent samples of Danish and Norwegian origin (part of the Scandinavian collaboration of psychiatric etiology study, SCOPE) replicated the association for the five SREBF1 markers and for two markers in SREBF2. A combined analysis of all samples resulted in highly significant genotypic P-values of 9 x 10(-4) for SREBF1 (rs11868035, odd ration (OR)=1.26, 95% confidence interval (CI) (1.09-1.45)) and 4 x 10(-5) for SREBF2 (rs1057217, OR=1.39, 95% CI (1.19-1.63)). This finding strengthens the hypothesis that SREBP-controlled cholesterol biosynthesis is involved in the etiology of schizophrenia.