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Am J Med Genet B Neuropsychiatr Genet. 2006 Dec 5;141B(8):929-34.

Possible role of preproghrelin gene polymorphisms in susceptibility to bulimia nervosa.

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Department of Psychosomatic Research, National Institute of Mental Health, National Center of Neurology and Psychiatry, Kodaira, Tokyo, Japan.


Previous investigations have suggested that ghrelin, an endogenous orexigenic peptide, is involved in the pathology of eating disorders. We conducted a study to determine whether any preproghrelin gene polymorphisms are associated with eating disorders. Three hundred thirty-six eating disorder patients, including 131 anorexia nervosa (AN)-restricting types (AN-R), 97 AN-binge eating/purging types (AN-BP) and 108 bulimia nervosa (BN)-purging types (BN-P), and 300 healthy control subjects participated in the study. Genotyping was performed to determine the polymorphisms present, and with this information, linkage disequilibrium (LD) between the markers was analyzed and the distributions of the genotypes, the allele frequencies, and the haplotype frequencies were compared between the groups. The Leu72Met (408 C > A) (rs696217) polymorphism in exon 2 and the 3056 T > C (rs2075356) polymorphism in intron 2 were in LD (D' = 0.902, r2 = 0.454). Both polymorphisms were significantly associated with BN-P (allele-wise: P = 0.0410, odds ratio (OR) = 1.48; P = 0.0035, OR = 1.63, for Leu72Met and 3056 T > C, respectively). In addition, we observed a significant increase in the frequency of the haplotype Met72-3056C in BN-P patients (P = 0.0059, OR = 1.71). Our findings suggest that the Leu72Met (408 C > A) and the 3056 T > C polymorphisms of the preproghrelin gene are associated with susceptibility to BN-P.

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