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Neurosci Lett. 1998 Feb 27;243(1-3):109-12.

Association study of a functional catechol-O-methyltransferase gene polymorphism in Japanese schizophrenics.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, School of Medicine, University of Occupational and Environmental Health, Kitakyushu, Japan.


Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is an enzyme which inactivates catecholamine neurotransmitters by methylation, and is considered a candidate for involvement in schizophrenia. A functional COMT gene polymorphism influencing the enzyme activities, the high activity (val-108) and the low activity allele (met-108), was recently confirmed. We investigated a genetic association between schizophrenia and the COMT gene polymorphism in 150 Japanese schizophrenics and controls. We detected the low activity met-108 allele more frequently in schizophrenics than in the controls, and found that subjects sharing the met-108 allele (val/met and met/met) are significantly more common in the patients than in the controls. The results suggest that the low activity met-108 allele may be involved in susceptibility for schizophrenia.

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