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Biol Psychiatry. 2002 Jul 1;52(1):40-52.

Genome scan for susceptibility loci for schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

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  • 1Department of General Psychiatry, University Hospital for Psychiatry, Vienna, Austria.



Despite the widely accepted view that schizophrenia and bipolar disorder represent independent illnesses and modes of inheritance, some data in the literature suggest that the diseases may share some genetic susceptibility. The objective of our analyses was to search for vulnerability loci for the two disorders.


A genomewide map of 388 microsatellite DNA markers was genotyped in five schizophrenia and three bipolar disorder Austrian families. Linkage analyses was used to compute the usual parametric logarithm of the likelihood of linkage (LOD) scores and nonparametric linkage analysis (NPL scores Z(all)) was used to assess the pattern of allele sharing at each marker locus relative to the presence of the disease (GENEHUNTER). Affected status was defined as severe affective disorder or schizophrenia.


Across the genome, p values associated with NPL scores resulted in evidence (i.e., p <.0007) for linkage at marker D3S1265 on chromosome 3q (NPL score Z (all) = 3.74, p =.0003). Two other markers (on 3q and 6q) showed p values of <.01.


We detected a potential susceptibility locus for bipolar disorder and schizophrenia on chromosome 3q, which has not been reported previously. The possibility of a false positive result has to be taken into account. Our data suggest shared loci for schizophrenia and bipolar affective disorders and are consistent with the continuum model of psychosis.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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