The genetic predisposition to addiction to opioids and other substances is transmitted as a complex genetic trait, which investigators are attempting to characterize using genetic linkage and association. We now report a high-density genome-wide linkage study of opioid dependence. We ascertained 305 DSM-IV opioid dependent affected sibling pairs from an ethnically mixed population of methadone maintained subjects and genotyped their DNA using Affymetrix 10K v2 arrays. Analysis with MERLIN identified a region on chromosome 14q with a non-parametric lod (NPL) of 3.30. Secondary analyses indicated that this locus was relatively specific to the self-identified Puerto Rican subset, as the NPL increased from 3.30 to 5.00 (NPLCaucasian = 5 0.05 and NPLAfrican Amer. = 5 0.15). The 14q peak encompasses the NRXN3 gene (neurexin 3), which was previously identified as a potential candidate gene for addiction. Secondary analyses also identified several regions with gender-specific NPL scores greater than 2.00. The most significant was a peak on (10q) that increased from 0.90 to 3.22 when only males were considered (NPLfemale = 5 0.05). Our linkage data suggest specific chromosomal loci for future fine-mapping genetic analysis and support the hypothesis that ethnic and gender specific genes underlie addiction susceptibility.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology