1Mol. Psychiatry 2011 Jan 16: 37-58
TitleIdentification of blood biomarkers for psychosis using convergent functional genomics.
AbstractThere are to date no objective clinical laboratory blood tests for psychotic disease states. We provide proof of principle for a convergent functional genomics (CFG) approach to help identify and prioritize blood biomarkers for two key psychotic symptoms, one sensory (hallucinations) and one cognitive (delusions). We used gene expression profiling in whole blood samples from patients with schizophrenia and related disorders, with phenotypic information collected at the time of blood draw, then cross-matched the data with other human and animal model lines of evidence. Topping our list of candidate blood biomarkers for hallucinations, we have four genes decreased in expression in high hallucinations states (Fn1, Rhobtb3, Aldh1l1, Mpp3), and three genes increased in high hallucinations states (ARHGEF9, Phlda1, S100a6). All of these genes have prior evidence of differential expression in schizophrenia patients. At the top of our list of candidate blood biomarkers for delusions, we have 15 genes decreased in expression in high delusions states (such as Drd2, Apoe, Scamp1, Fn1, Idh1, Aldh1l1), and 16 genes increased in high delusions states (such as Nrg1, Egr1, Pvalb, Dctn1, Nmt1, Tob2). Twenty-five of these genes have prior evidence of differential expression in schizophrenia patients. Predictive scores, based on panels of top candidate biomarkers, show good sensitivity and negative predictive value for detecting high psychosis states in the original cohort as well as in three additional cohorts. These results have implications for the development of objective laboratory tests to measure illness severity and response to treatment in devastating disorders such as schizophrenia.
SCZ Keywordsschizophrenia
2Hum. Mol. Genet. 2013 May 22: 2055-66
TitleRare exonic deletions implicate the synaptic organizer Gephyrin (GPHN) in risk for autism, schizophrenia and seizures.
AbstractThe GPHN gene codes for gephyrin, a key scaffolding protein in the neuronal postsynaptic membrane, responsible for the clustering and localization of glycine and GABA receptors at inhibitory synapses. Gephyrin has well-established functional links with several synaptic proteins that have been implicated in genetic risk for neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD), schizophrenia and epilepsy including the neuroligins (NLGN2, NLGN4), the neurexins (NRXN1, NRXN2, NRXN3) and collybistin (ARHGEF9). Moreover, temporal lobe epilepsy has been linked to abnormally spliced GPHN mRNA lacking exons encoding the G-domain of the gephyrin protein, potentially arising due to cellular stress associated with epileptogenesis such as temperature and alkalosis. Here, we present clinical and genomic characterization of six unrelated subjects, with a range of neurodevelopmental diagnoses including ASD, schizophrenia or seizures, who possess rare de novo or inherited hemizygous microdeletions overlapping exons of GPHN at chromosome 14q23.3. The region of common overlap across the deletions encompasses exons 3-5, corresponding to the G-domain of the gephyrin protein. These findings, together with previous reports of homozygous GPHN mutations in connection with autosomal recessive molybdenum cofactor deficiency, will aid in clinical genetic interpretation of the GPHN mutation spectrum. Our data also add to the accumulating evidence implicating neuronal synaptic gene products as key molecular factors underlying the etiologies of a diverse range of neurodevelopmental conditions.
SCZ Keywordsschizophrenia