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Biol Psychiatry. 2002 May 1;51(9):762-5.

Association of 5-HT(2A) receptor gene polymorphism with major affective disorders: the case of a subgroup of bipolar disorder with low suicide risk.

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  • 1Hôpital Mignot, Service de Psychiatrie, Le Chesney, France.



The implication of serotonin in suicide and affective disease explains why the 5-HT(2A) receptor gene has been proposed as a candidate gene in these disorders, although with conflicting results.


We analysed the distribution of the 5-HT(2A)-1438A/G genetic polymorphism in 192 patients with major affective disorder (127 bipolar disorders and 65 unipolar disorders) compared to 142 healthy control subjects.


We found a higher frequency of the A allele in affected patients than in control subjects (p =.034), this difference being particularly striking for the subgroup of patients with type I bipolar disorder (p =.015). Patients with no personal and/or familial history of suicide attempts mainly accounted for the excess of the A allele in affected patients.


The association detected in this study suggests that the 5-HT(2A) receptor gene may play a role in the genetic susceptibility to bipolar disorder, through a specific subgroup of bipolar type I patients with lower risk of suicidal behavior.

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