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J Psychiatr Res. 2018 Aug;103:208-211. doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychires.2018.05.026. Epub 2018 May 30.

Methylation of MORC1: A possible biomarker for depression?

Author information

1
Division of Experimental and Molecular Psychiatry, Department of Psychiatry, Psychotherapy and Preventive Medicine, LWL University Hospital, Ruhr-University Bochum, Universitätsstraße 150, 44780 Bochum, Germany.
2
Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, Department Biopsychology, Ruhr University Bochum, Universitätsstraße 150, 44780 Bochum, Germany.
3
Division of Experimental and Molecular Psychiatry, Department of Psychiatry, Psychotherapy and Preventive Medicine, LWL University Hospital, Ruhr-University Bochum, Universitätsstraße 150, 44780 Bochum, Germany. Electronic address: nadja.freund@ruhr-uni-bochum.de.

Abstract

New findings identified the MORC1 gene as a link between early life stress and major depression. In this study, MORC1 methylation was investigated in 60 healthy human adults (30 women, 30 men) between 19 and 33 years of age. For analysis, DNA was isolated from buccal cells. The results show that DNA methylation in the MORC1 promoter region significantly correlates with the Beck Depression Inventory score in the examined non-clinical population. Sum score of birth complications, however, seems to correlate negatively with methylation. These findings further confirm that MORC1 is a stress sensitive gene and a possible biomarker for depression.

KEYWORDS:

Beck depression inventory; Biomarker; Epigenetics

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