1Biol. Psychiatry 2004 May 55: 981-8
TitleIdentification of PIK3C3 promoter variant associated with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.
AbstractGenes involved in phosphoinositide (PI) lipid metabolism are excellent candidates to consider in the pathogenesis of bipolar disorder (BD) and schizophrenia (SZ). One is PIK3C3, a member of the phosphatidylinositide 3-kinase family that maps closely to markers on 18q linked to both BD and SZ in a few studies.
The promoter region of PIK3C3 was analyzed for mutations by single-strand conformation polymorphism analysis and sequencing. A case-control association study was conducted to determine the distribution of variant alleles in unrelated patients from three cohorts. Electromobility gel shift assays (EMSA) were performed to assess the functional significance of variants.
Two polymorphisms in complete linked disequilibrium with each other were identified, -432C- > T and a "C" insert at position -86. The -432T allele occurs within an octamer containing an ATTT motif resembling members of the POU family of transcription factors. In each population analyzed, an increase in -432T was found in patients. EMSAs showed that a -432T containing oligonucleotide binds to brain proteins that do not recognize -432C.
A promoter mutation in a PI regulator affecting the binding of a POU-type transcription factor may be involved in BD and SZ in a subset of patients.
SCZ Keywordsschizophrenia
2Schizophr. Res. 2005 Jul 76: 361-2
TitleAnalysis of PIK3C3 promoter variant in African-Americans with schizophrenia.
SCZ Keywordsschizophrenia
3Neurosci. Lett. 2005 Apr 379: 32-6
TitleA family-based association study of schizophrenia with polymorphisms at three candidate genes.
AbstractClinical researches have shown that there is a genetic contribution to the pathogenesis of schizophrenia. Recent studies have suggested that three genes neuropeptide Y (NPY), phosphoinositide-3-kinase class 3 (PIK3C3) and 14-3-3 eta chain gene (YWHAH) are probably associated with schizophrenia. To replicate these findings, we carried out a family-based study on a sample of 235 trios. Our results suggest that the polymorphisms at the NPY and YWHAH genes are unlikely to be linked with genetic susceptibility to schizophrenia. However, we found significant evidence of preferential transmission of the -432C allele of the PIK3C3 gene in the entire trios (Z=2.91, d.f.=1, P=0.0036) and the male probands trios (Z=2.66, d.f.=1, P=0.0079).
SCZ Keywordsschizophrenia
4Schizophr Bull 2007 Nov 33: 1343-53
TitleeIF2B and oligodendrocyte survival: where nature and nurture meet in bipolar disorder and schizophrenia?
AbstractBipolar disorder and schizophrenia share common chromosomal susceptibility loci and many risk-promoting genes. Oligodendrocyte cell loss and hypomyelination are common to both diseases. A number of environmental risk factors including famine, viral infection, and prenatal or childhood stress may also predispose to schizophrenia or bipolar disorder. In cells, related stressors (starvation, viruses, cytokines, oxidative, and endoplasmic reticulum stress) activate a series of eIF2-alpha kinases, which arrest protein synthesis via the eventual inhibition, by phosphorylated eIF2-alpha, of the translation initiation factor eIF2B. Growth factors increase protein synthesis via eIF2B activation and counterbalance this system. The control of protein synthesis by eIF2-alpha kinases is also engaged by long-term potentiation and repressed by long-term depression, mediated by N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) and metabotropic glutamate receptors. Many genes reportedly associated with both schizophrenia and bipolar disorder code for proteins within or associated with this network. These include NMDA (GRIN1, GRIN2A, GRIN2B) and metabotropic (GRM3, GRM4) glutamate receptors, growth factors (BDNF, NRG1), and many of their downstream signaling components or accomplices (AKT1, DAO, DAOA, DISC1, DTNBP1, DPYSL2, IMPA2, NCAM1, NOS1, NOS1AP, PIK3C3, PIP5K2A, PDLIM5, RGS4, YWHAH). They also include multiple gene products related to the control of the stress-responsive eIF2-alpha kinases (IL1B, IL1RN, MTHFR, TNF, ND4, NDUFV2, XBP1). Oligodendrocytes are particularly sensitive to defects in the eIF2B complex, mutations in which are responsible for vanishing white matter disease. The convergence of natural and genetic risk factors on this area in bipolar disorder and schizophrenia may help to explain the apparent vulnerability of this cell type in these conditions. This convergence may also help to reconcile certain arguments related to the importance of nature and nurture in the etiology of these psychiatric disorders. Both may affect common stress-related signaling pathways that dictate oligodendrocyte viability and synaptic plasticity.
SCZ Keywordsschizophrenia
5Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 2007 Dec 104: 19942-7
TitleRuns of homozygosity reveal highly penetrant recessive loci in schizophrenia.
AbstractEvolutionarily significant selective sweeps may result in long stretches of homozygous polymorphisms in individuals from outbred populations. We developed whole-genome homozygosity association (WGHA) methodology to characterize this phenomenon in healthy individuals and to use this genomic feature to identify genetic risk loci for schizophrenia (SCZ). Applying WGHA to 178 SCZ cases and 144 healthy controls genotyped at 500,000 markers, we found that runs of homozygosity (ROHs), ranging in size from 200 kb to 15 mb, were common in unrelated Caucasians. Properties of common ROHs in healthy subjects, including chromosomal location and presence of nonancestral haplotypes, converged with prior reports identifying regions under selective pressure. This interpretation was further supported by analysis of multiethnic HapMap samples genotyped with the same markers. ROHs were significantly more common in SCZ cases, and a set of nine ROHs significantly differentiated cases from controls. Four of these 9 "risk ROHs" contained or neighbored genes associated with SCZ (NOS1AP, ATF2, NSF, and PIK3C3). Several of these risk ROHs were very rare in healthy subjects, suggesting that recessive effects of relatively high penetrance may explain a proportion of the genetic liability for SCZ. Other risk ROHs feature haplotypes that are also common in healthy individuals, possibly indicating a source of balancing selection.
SCZ Keywordsschizophrenia
6Neurosci. Lett. 2008 May 437: 42-4
TitleInvestigation of variants in the promoter region of PIK3C3 in schizophrenia.
AbstractThe PIK3C3 gene has been implicated as a candidate gene for schizophrenia by functional evidence and genetic association studies. A series of previous studies have found susceptibility SNPs in promoter region. To further verify its susceptibility to schizophrenia in the Chinese population and the function of the polymorphisms, we performed a case control study in 556 unrelated schizophrenia patients and 563 normal controls as well as an in vitro functional analysis. In our association analysis of-432C-/T, we discovered obvious differences in allele frequency between patients and controls (P=0.017). A T/C haplotype constructed by -432C-/T and -86insC, which are tightly linked with each other (r(2)=1) can significantly weaken promoter's transcriptional activity by 20% (p=0.002 by t-test). Though we cannot exclude the possibility that susceptibility of -432C-/T is caused by its linkage disequilibrium with other causal variants, our results do support PIK3C3 play a significant role in the etiology of schizophrenia.
SCZ Keywordsschizophrenia
7Schizophr Bull 2009 Nov 35: 1163-82
TitleSchizophrenia susceptibility genes directly implicated in the life cycles of pathogens: cytomegalovirus, influenza, herpes simplex, rubella, and Toxoplasma gondii.
AbstractMany genes implicated in schizophrenia can be related to glutamatergic transmission and neuroplasticity, oligodendrocyte function, and other families clearly related to neurobiology and schizophrenia phenotypes. Others appear rather to be involved in the life cycles of the pathogens implicated in the disease. For example, aspartylglucosaminidase (AGA), PLA2, SIAT8B, GALNT7, or B3GAT1 metabolize chemical ligands to which the influenza virus, herpes simplex, cytomegalovirus (CMV), rubella, or Toxoplasma gondii bind. The epidermal growth factor receptor (EGR/EGFR) is used by the CMV to gain entry to cells, and a CMV gene codes for an interleukin (IL-10) mimic that binds the host cognate receptor, IL10R. The fibroblast growth factor receptor (FGFR1) is used by herpes simplex. KPNA3 and RANBP5 control the nuclear import of the influenza virus. Disrupted in schizophrenia 1 (DISC1) controls the microtubule network that is used by viruses as a route to the nucleus, while DTNBP1, MUTED, and BLOC1S3 regulate endosomal to lysosomal routing that is also important in viral traffic. Neuregulin 1 activates ERBB receptors releasing a factor, EBP1, known to inhibit the influenza virus transcriptase. Other viral or bacterial components bind to genes or proteins encoded by CALR, FEZ1, FYN, HSPA1B, IL2, HTR2A, KPNA3, MED12, MED15, MICB, NQO2, PAX6, PIK3C3, RANBP5, or TP53, while the cerebral infectivity of the herpes simplex virus is modified by Apolipoprotein E (APOE). Genes encoding for proteins related to the innate immune response, including cytokine related (CCR5, CSF2RA, CSF2RB, IL1B, IL1RN, IL2, IL3, IL3RA, IL4, IL10, IL10RA, IL18RAP, lymphotoxin-alpha, tumor necrosis factor alpha [TNF]), human leukocyte antigen (HLA) antigens (HLA-A10, HLA-B, HLA-DRB1), and genes involved in antigen processing (angiotensin-converting enzyme and tripeptidyl peptidase 2) are all concerned with defense against invading pathogens. Human microRNAs (Hsa-mir-198 and Hsa-mir-206) are predicted to bind to influenza, rubella, or poliovirus genes. Certain genes associated with schizophrenia, including those also concerned with neurophysiology, are intimately related to the life cycles of the pathogens implicated in the disease. Several genes may affect pathogen virulence, while the pathogens in turn may affect genes and processes relevant to the neurophysiology of schizophrenia. For such genes, the strength of association in genetic studies is likely to be conditioned by the presence of the pathogen, which varies in different populations at different times, a factor that may explain the heterogeneity that plagues such studies. This scenario also suggests that drugs or vaccines designed to eliminate the pathogens that so clearly interact with schizophrenia susceptibility genes could have a dramatic effect on the incidence of the disease.
SCZ Keywordsschizophrenia
8Psychiatr. Genet. 2009 Aug 19: 165-70
TitleNo evidence for excess runs of homozygosity in bipolar disorder.
AbstractRecent studies have reported large common regions of homozygosity (ROHs) that are the result of autozygosity, that is, the cooccurrence within individuals of long haplotypes that have a high frequency in the population. A recent study reports that such regions are found more commonly in individuals with schizophrenia compared with controls, and identified nine 'risk ROHs' that were individually more common in cases. Of these, four contained or neighboured genes associated with schizophrenia (NOS1AP/UHMK1, ATF2, NSF and PIK3C3).
We have applied the same methodology to a UK sample of 506 cases with bipolar disorder and 510 controls.
There was no overall excess of common ROHs among bipolar individuals. With one exception, the haplotypes accounting for the ROHs appeared to be distributed according to the Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium. One ROH was individually more common among cases (uncorrected P = 0.0003). This ROH spanned the chromosome 2p23.3 gene ITSN2 (the gene for intersectin 2 isoform 2). However, inspection of the homozygous haplotypes and haplotype-based tests for association failed to provide a clearer understanding of why this ROH was occurring more commonly.
Overall, we conclude that, in contrast with schizophrenia, common ROHs are rarely associated with susceptibility to bipolar disorder. This supports the idea that predominantly different genes are increasing susceptibility to schizophrenia and bipolar affective disorders.
SCZ Keywordsschizophrenia
9Brain Behav 2011 Nov 1: 119-24
TitleGenetic association of the Phosphoinositide-3 kinase in schizophrenia and bipolar disorder and interaction with a BDNF gene polymorphism.
AbstractPhosphoinositide-3-kinase, class III (PIK3C3) is a member of the phosphoinosite-3-kinases family, involved in cell signaling, membrane trafficking, and neurodevelopment. Previous studies have indeed shown an association between PIK3C3 gene variants and both bipolar disorder (BD) and schizophrenia (SZ). Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is a neurodevelopmental factor, which can regulate the PI3K signaling pathway. Associations have been reported between BDNF gene polymorphisms and affective and psychotic disorders. The aim of the present study was to replicate an association between PIK3C3 and BDNF gene variants in SZ and BD and a putative epistasis between the two genes. Patients meeting the DSM-IV criteria of BD and SZ were included in this study (98 BD and 79 SZ) as well as 158 healthy controls. Blood DNA was extracted and genotyping was performed either by the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) technique followed by enzymatic digestion or by the high-resolution melt (HRM) method. Genotype and haplotype association was assessed with the UNPHASED statistical program.The results showed one nominal association with BD (P < 0.02) and two risk haplotypes in both SZ (P < 0.001) and BP (P < 0.0005), which survived multiple testing correction. A modest interaction between a BDNF variant and PI3KC3 polymorphism was observed (P < 0.04).These preliminary results confirm the genetic association of PI3K gene variants with both SZ and BD, and support the hypothesis that SZ and BD share a genetic background.
SCZ Keywordsschizophrenia
10Mol. Psychiatry 2016 Jun 21: 768-85
TitleTowards understanding and predicting suicidality in women: biomarkers and clinical risk assessment.
AbstractWomen are under-represented in research on suicidality to date. Although women have a lower rate of suicide completion than men, due in part to the less-violent methods used, they have a higher rate of suicide attempts. Our group has previously identified genomic (blood gene expression biomarkers) and clinical information (apps) predictors for suicidality in men. We now describe pilot studies in women. We used a powerful within-participant discovery approach to identify genes that change in expression between no suicidal ideation (no SI) and high suicidal ideation (high SI) states (n=12 participants out of a cohort of 51 women psychiatric participants followed longitudinally, with diagnoses of bipolar disorder, depression, schizoaffective disorder and schizophrenia). We then used a Convergent Functional Genomics (CFG) approach to prioritize the candidate biomarkers identified in the discovery step by using all the prior evidence in the field. Next, we validated for suicidal behavior the top-ranked biomarkers for SI, in a demographically matched cohort of women suicide completers from the coroner's office (n=6), by assessing which markers were stepwise changed from no SI to high SI to suicide completers. We then tested the 50 biomarkers that survived Bonferroni correction in the validation step, as well as top increased and decreased biomarkers from the discovery and prioritization steps, in a completely independent test cohort of women psychiatric disorder participants for prediction of SI (n=33) and in a future follow-up cohort of psychiatric disorder participants for prediction of psychiatric hospitalizations due to suicidality (n=24). Additionally, we examined how two clinical instruments in the form of apps, Convergent Functional Information for Suicidality (CFI-S) and Simplified Affective State Scale (SASS), previously tested in men, perform in women. The top CFI-S item distinguishing high SI from no SI states was the chronic stress of social isolation. We then showed how the clinical information apps combined with the 50 validated biomarkers into a broad predictor (UP-Suicide), our apriori primary end point, predicts suicidality in women. UP-Suicide had a receiver-operating characteristic (ROC) area under the curve (AUC) of 82% for predicting SI and an AUC of 78% for predicting future hospitalizations for suicidality. Some of the individual components of the UP-Suicide showed even better results. SASS had an AUC of 81% for predicting SI, CFI-S had an AUC of 84% and the combination of the two apps had an AUC of 87%. The top biomarker from our sequential discovery, prioritization and validation steps, BCL2, predicted future hospitalizations due to suicidality with an AUC of 89%, and the panel of 50 validated biomarkers (BioM-50) predicted future hospitalizations due to suicidality with an AUC of 94%. The best overall single blood biomarker for predictions was PIK3C3 with an AUC of 65% for SI and an AUC of 90% for future hospitalizations. Finally, we sought to understand the biology of the biomarkers. BCL2 and GSK3B, the top CFG scoring validated biomarkers, as well as PIK3C3, have anti-apoptotic and neurotrophic effects, are decreased in expression in suicidality and are known targets of the anti-suicidal mood stabilizer drug lithium, which increases their expression and/or activity. Circadian clock genes were overrepresented among the top markers. Notably, PER1, increased in expression in suicidality, had an AUC of 84% for predicting future hospitalizations, and CSNK1A1, decreased in expression, had an AUC of 96% for predicting future hospitalizations. Circadian clock abnormalities are related to mood disorder, and sleep abnormalities have been implicated in suicide. Docosahexaenoic acid signaling was one of the top biological pathways overrepresented in validated biomarkers, which is of interest given the potential therapeutic and prophylactic benefits of omega-3 fatty acids. Some of the top biomarkers from the current work in women showed co-directionality of change in expression with our previous work in men, whereas others had changes in opposite directions, underlying the issue of biological context and differences in suicidality between the two genders. With this study, we begin to shed much needed light in the area of female suicidality, identify useful objective predictors and help understand gender commonalities and differences. During the conduct of the study, one participant committed suicide. In retrospect, when the analyses were completed, her UP-Suicide risk prediction score was at the 100 percentile of all participants tested.
SCZ Keywordsschizophrenia