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Biol Psychiatry. 2009 Jan 15;65(2):111-5. doi: 10.1016/j.biopsych.2008.08.036. Epub 2008 Oct 18.

Dense genomewide linkage scan for alcohol dependence in African Americans: significant linkage on chromosome 10.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, Division of Human Genetics, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, USA. joel.gelernter@yale.edu



Alcohol dependence (AD) is costly to societies worldwide, moderately heritable, and genetically complex. Risk loci in several populations have been identified with genetic linkage analysis. To date, there has been no published linkage study of AD focused on African Americans (AAs).


We completed a genomewide linkage scan with approximately 6000 single nucleotide polymorphism markers to map loci increasing risk for DSM-IV AD in a set of 238 small nuclear families ascertained on the basis of multiple individuals affected with cocaine or opioid dependence. Model free linkage analysis was completed with Merlin software. A modified marker set was used to avoid bias due to markers in strong linkage disequilibrium.


We identified a genomewide-significant linkage to markers near 117.2 centiMorgans on chromosome 10q23.3-24.1 (logarithm of odds score 3.32; p = 5.0E-05; empirical genomewide p = .033).


These data add to the growing evidence for locations for AD risk loci and provide the first linkage evidence for such a locus in the AA population.

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