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Eur Neuropsychopharmacol. 2003 Oct;13(5):313-20.

D2 dopamine receptor gene polymorphism: paroxetine and social functioning in posttraumatic stress disorder.

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Greenslopes Private Hospital, Queensland, Brisbane, Australia.


This study examined whether allelic status of the D2 dopamine receptor (DRD2) gene was associated with response to a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor, paroxetine, in the treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Sixty-three Caucasian war veterans with combat-related PTSD were treated with paroxetine for 8 weeks. Patients were assessed at baseline and at follow-up using the General Health Questionnaire-28 (GHQ). TaqI A DRD2 alleles were determined by PCR. Before paroxetine treatment, patients with the DRD2 A1+ allele (A1A2 genotype) compared to those with the A1- allele (A2A2 genotype) had higher total GHQ psychopathological scores (P=0.040) and higher GHQ subscale scores for anxiety/insomnia (0.046), social dysfunction (P=0.033) and depression (P=0.011). In an intention-to-treat analysis, paroxetine was associated with significant improvement in total GHQ scores (P=0.014) and in the factor scores of social dysfunction (P=0.033), anxiety (P=0.009) and depression (P=0.026). Furthermore, there was a significant allele by time interaction on the social dysfunction scale, with A1+ allelic patients showing significant improvement in social functioning compared to A1- allelic patients (P=0.031), an effect independent of changes in depression or anxiety. This suggests changes in social functioning induced by paroxetine may be, in part, mediated via D2 dopamine receptors. The DRD2 A1 allele may prove to be a useful marker to assist clinicians in predicting which patients with PTSD are likely to obtain improvements in social functioning with paroxetine treatment.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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