Genetic studies of alcoholism

Taro Muramatsu, Susumu Higuchi

研究成果: Article査読

抄録

Twin and adoption studies consistently show the involvement of genetic factors in alcoholism. Prevention of this common disease is, at least theoretically, simple: Drink sensibly or abstinence. Accordingly, search for genes related to alcoholism will be of great help in the future preventive activities. 1. Alcohol metabolizing enzymes: Ethanol is eliminated from the body by oxidation to acetaldehyde and then to acetate, reactions catalyzed by alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH2) and aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH2), respectively. The latter gene has a common mutation which leads to inactivation of the enzyme activity. Individuals who have this mutant ailele, ALDH22, are prevented from becoming alcoholics because of acetaldehydemia and associated unpleasant symptoms after drinking. In Japan, approximately 10% of alcoholics have this ailele, compared with approximately 50% of controls. 2. Dopamine system: Because its involvement in reward-seeking behavior, dysfunction of dopamine system could be the biological factor of alcoholism. Thus polymorphic genes of this system have been targets of association studies of alcoholism, with conflicting results, due mostly to the heterogeneity of the disease. One strategy to obtain a homogeneous group is to focus on alcoholics with ALDH2*2 ailele, because these patients should have some strong factor(s) to overcome the negative risk factor. In fact, ailele distributions of dopamine D4 receptor and dopamine transporter differed between this group and control.

本文言語English
ページ数1
ジャーナルJapanese Journal of Human Genetics
42
1
出版ステータスPublished - 1997 12 1
外部発表はい

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics(clinical)

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