Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Gene implicated in schizophrenia risk is also associated with risk for cannabis dependence

Date:
October 11, 2012
Source:
Elsevier
Summary:
New research implicates a new gene in the risk for cannabis dependence. This gene, NRG1, codes for the ErbB4 receptor, a protein implicated in synaptic development and function.

A paper by Shizhong Han and colleagues in the current issue of Biological Psychiatry implicates a new gene in the risk for cannabis dependence. This gene, NRG1, codes for the ErbB4 receptor, a protein implicated in synaptic development and function.

Related Articles


The researchers set out to investigate susceptibility genes for cannabis dependence, as research has already shown that it has a strong genetic component.

To do this, they employed a multi-stage design using genetic data from African American and European American families. In the first stage, a linkage analysis, the strongest signal was identified in African Americans on chromosome 8p21. Then using a genome-wide association study dataset, they identified one genetic variant at NRG1 that showed consistent evidence for association in both African Americans and European Americans. Finally, they replicated the association of that same variant in an independent sample of African-Americans.

All together, the findings suggest that NRG1 may be a susceptibility gene for cannabis dependence.

An interesting feature of this paper is that these findings may also suggest a link between the genetics of schizophrenia and the genetics of cannabis dependence. NRG1 emerged into public awareness after a series of genetic studies implicated it in the heritable risk for schizophrenia. Subsequent studies in post-mortem brain tissue also suggested that the regulation of NRG1 was altered in the brains of individuals diagnosed with schizophrenia.

Thus, the current findings may help to explain the already established link between cannabis use and the risk for developing schizophrenia. A number of epidemiologic studies have attributed the association of cannabis use and schizophrenia to the effects of cannabis on the brain rather than a common genetic link between these two conditions.

"The current data provide a potentially important insight into the heritable risk for schizophrenia and raise the possibility that there are some common genetic contributions to these two disorders," commented Dr. John Krystal, Editor of Biological Psychiatry.

However, further research will be necessary to further confirm the role that NRG1 plays in cannabis dependence and the potential link between cannabis use and psychosis.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Elsevier. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Shizhong Han, Bao-Zhu Yang, Henry R. Kranzler, David Oslin, Raymond Anton, Lindsay A. Farrer, Joel Gelernter. Linkage Analysis Followed by Association Show NRG1 Associated with Cannabis Dependence in African Americans. Biological Psychiatry, 2012; 72 (8): 637 DOI: 10.1016/j.biopsych.2012.02.038

Cite This Page:

Elsevier. "Gene implicated in schizophrenia risk is also associated with risk for cannabis dependence." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 October 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121011085342.htm>.
Elsevier. (2012, October 11). Gene implicated in schizophrenia risk is also associated with risk for cannabis dependence. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121011085342.htm
Elsevier. "Gene implicated in schizophrenia risk is also associated with risk for cannabis dependence." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121011085342.htm (accessed December 20, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) A double-amputee makes history by becoming the first person to wear and operate two prosthetic arms using only his mind. Jen Markham has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Prenatal Exposure To Pollution Might Increase Autism Risk

Prenatal Exposure To Pollution Might Increase Autism Risk

Newsy (Dec. 18, 2014) Harvard researchers found children whose mothers were exposed to high pollution levels in the third trimester were twice as likely to develop autism. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Yoga Could Be As Beneficial For The Heart As Walking, Biking

Yoga Could Be As Beneficial For The Heart As Walking, Biking

Newsy (Dec. 17, 2014) Yoga can help your weight, blood pressure, cholesterol and heart just as much as biking and walking does, a new study suggests. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins