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Sample records for comt val158 met

  1. COMT Val158Met Polymorphism Modulates Huntington's Disease Progression

    PubMed Central

    Rebeix, Isabelle; Dupoux, Emmanuel; Durr, Alexandra; Brice, Alexis; Charles, Perrine; Cleret de Langavant, Laurent; Youssov, Katia; Verny, Christophe; Damotte, Vincent; Azulay, Jean-Philippe; Goizet, Cyril; Simonin, Clémence; Tranchant, Christine; Maison, Patrick; Rialland, Amandine; Schmitz, David; Jacquemot, Charlotte; Fontaine, Bertrand; Bachoud-Lévi, Anne-Catherine

    2016-01-01

    Little is known about the genetic factors modulating the progression of Huntington’s disease (HD). Dopamine levels are affected in HD and modulate executive functions, the main cognitive disorder of HD. We investigated whether the Val158Met polymorphism of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene, which influences dopamine (DA) degradation, affects clinical progression in HD. We carried out a prospective longitudinal multicenter study from 1994 to 2011, on 438 HD gene carriers at different stages of the disease (34 pre-manifest; 172 stage 1; 130 stage 2; 80 stage 3; 17 stage 4; and 5 stage 5), according to Total Functional Capacity (TFC) score. We used the Unified Huntington’s Disease Rating Scale to evaluate motor, cognitive, behavioral and functional decline. We genotyped participants for COMT polymorphism (107 Met-homozygous, 114 Val-homozygous and 217 heterozygous). 367 controls of similar ancestry were also genotyped. We compared clinical progression, on each domain, between groups of COMT polymorphisms, using latent-class mixed models accounting for disease duration and number of CAG (cytosine adenine guanine) repeats. We show that HD gene carriers with fewer CAG repeats and with the Val allele in COMT polymorphism displayed slower cognitive decline. The rate of cognitive decline was greater for Met/Met homozygotes, which displayed a better maintenance of cognitive capacity in earlier stages of the disease, but had a worse performance than Val allele carriers later on. COMT polymorphism did not significantly impact functional and behavioral performance. Since COMT polymorphism influences progression in HD, it could be used for stratification in future clinical trials. Moreover, DA treatments based on the specific COMT polymorphism and adapted according to disease duration could potentially slow HD progression. PMID:27657697

  2. COMT val158met predicts reward responsiveness in humans.

    PubMed

    Lancaster, T M; Linden, D E; Heerey, E A

    2012-11-01

    A functional variant of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene [val158met (rs4680)] is frequently implicated in decision-making and higher cognitive functions. It may achieve its effects by modulating dopamine-related decision-making and reward-guided behaviour. Here we demonstrate that individuals with the met/met polymorphism have greater responsiveness to reward than carriers of the val allele and that this correlates with risk-seeking behaviour. We assessed performance on a reward responsiveness task and the Balloon analogue risk task, which measure how participants (N = 70, western European, university and postgraduate students) respond to reward and take risks in the presence of available reward. Individuals with the met/met genotype (n = 19) showed significantly higher reward responsiveness, F2,64 = 4.02, P = 0.02, and reward-seeking behaviour, F(2,68) = 4.52, P = 0.01, than did either val/met (n = 25) or val/val (n = 26) carriers. These results highlight a scenario in which genotype-dependent reward responsiveness shapes reward-seeking, therefore suggesting a novel framework by which COMT may modulate behaviour. PMID:22900954

  3. COMT Val158Met Genotype as a Risk Factor for Problem Behaviors in Youth

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Albaugh, Matthew D.; Harder, Valerie S.; Althoff, Robert R.; Rettew, David C.; Ehli, Erik A.; Lengyel-Nelson, Timea; Davies, Gareth E.; Ayer, Lynsay; Sulman, Julie; Stanger, Catherine; Hudziak, James J.

    2010-01-01

    Objective: To test the association between the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphism and both aggressive behavior and attention problems in youth. We hypothesized that youth carrying a Met allele would have greater average aggressive behavior scores, and that youth exhibiting Val-homozygosity would have greater average…

  4. COMT Val 158 Met polymorphism is associated with nonverbal cognition following mild traumatic brain injury.

    PubMed

    Winkler, Ethan A; Yue, John K; McAllister, Thomas W; Temkin, Nancy R; Oh, Sam S; Burchard, Esteban G; Hu, Donglei; Ferguson, Adam R; Lingsma, Hester F; Burke, John F; Sorani, Marco D; Rosand, Jonathan; Yuh, Esther L; Barber, Jason; Tarapore, Phiroz E; Gardner, Raquel C; Sharma, Sourabh; Satris, Gabriela G; Eng, Celeste; Puccio, Ava M; Wang, Kevin K W; Mukherjee, Pratik; Valadka, Alex B; Okonkwo, David O; Diaz-Arrastia, Ramon; Manley, Geoffrey T

    2016-01-01

    Mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) results in variable clinical outcomes, which may be influenced by genetic variation. A single-nucleotide polymorphism in catechol-o-methyltransferase (COMT), an enzyme which degrades catecholamine neurotransmitters, may influence cognitive deficits following moderate and/or severe head trauma. However, this has been disputed, and its role in mTBI has not been studied. Here, we utilize the Transforming Research and Clinical Knowledge in Traumatic Brain Injury Pilot (TRACK-TBI Pilot) study to investigate whether the COMT Val (158) Met polymorphism influences outcome on a cognitive battery 6 months following mTBI--Wechsler Adult Intelligence Test Processing Speed Index Composite Score (WAIS-PSI), Trail Making Test (TMT) Trail B minus Trail A time, and California Verbal Learning Test, Second Edition Trial 1-5 Standard Score (CVLT-II). All patients had an emergency department Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) of 13-15, no acute intracranial pathology on head CT, and no polytrauma as defined by an Abbreviated Injury Scale (AIS) score of ≥3 in any extracranial region. Results in 100 subjects aged 40.9 (SD 15.2) years (COMT Met (158) /Met (158) 29 %, Met (158) /Val (158) 47 %, Val (158) /Val (158) 24 %) show that the COMT Met (158) allele (mean 101.6 ± SE 2.1) associates with higher nonverbal processing speed on the WAIS-PSI when compared to Val (158) /Val (158) homozygotes (93.8 ± SE 3.0) after controlling for demographics and injury severity (mean increase 7.9 points, 95 % CI [1.4 to 14.3], p = 0.017). The COMT Val (158) Met polymorphism did not associate with mental flexibility on the TMT or with verbal learning on the CVLT-II. Hence, COMT Val (158) Met may preferentially modulate nonverbal cognition following uncomplicated mTBI.Registry: ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier NCT01565551. PMID:26576546

  5. Oppositional COMT Val158Met effects on resting state functional connectivity in adolescents and adults.

    PubMed

    Meyer, Bernhard M; Huemer, Julia; Rabl, Ulrich; Boubela, Roland N; Kalcher, Klaudius; Berger, Andreas; Banaschewski, Tobias; Barker, Gareth; Bokde, Arun; Büchel, Christian; Conrod, Patricia; Desrivières, Sylvane; Flor, Herta; Frouin, Vincent; Gallinat, Jurgen; Garavan, Hugh; Heinz, Andreas; Ittermann, Bernd; Jia, Tianye; Lathrop, Mark; Martinot, Jean-Luc; Nees, Frauke; Rietschel, Marcella; Smolka, Michael N; Bartova, Lucie; Popovic, Ana; Scharinger, Christian; Sitte, Harald H; Steiner, Hans; Friedrich, Max H; Kasper, Siegfried; Perkmann, Thomas; Praschak-Rieder, Nicole; Haslacher, Helmuth; Esterbauer, Harald; Moser, Ewald; Schumann, Gunter; Pezawas, Lukas

    2016-01-01

    Prefrontal dopamine levels are relatively increased in adolescence compared to adulthood. Genetic variation of COMT (COMT Val158Met) results in lower enzymatic activity and higher dopamine availability in Met carriers. Given the dramatic changes of synaptic dopamine during adolescence, it has been suggested that effects of COMT Val158Met genotypes might have oppositional effects in adolescents and adults. The present study aims to identify such oppositional COMT Val158Met effects in adolescents and adults in prefrontal brain networks at rest. Resting state functional connectivity data were collected from cross-sectional and multicenter study sites involving 106 healthy young adults (mean age 24 ± 2.6 years), gender matched to 106 randomly chosen 14-year-olds. We selected the anterior medial prefrontal cortex (amPFC) as seed due to its important role as nexus of the executive control and default mode network. We observed a significant age-dependent reversal of COMT Val158Met effects on resting state functional connectivity between amPFC and ventrolateral as well as dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, and parahippocampal gyrus. Val homozygous adults exhibited increased and adolescents decreased connectivity compared to Met homozygotes for all reported regions. Network analyses underscored the importance of the parahippocampal gyrus as mediator of observed effects. Results of this study demonstrate that adolescent and adult resting state networks are dose-dependently and diametrically affected by COMT genotypes following a hypothetical model of dopamine function that follows an inverted U-shaped curve. This study might provide cues for the understanding of disease onset or dopaminergic treatment mechanisms in major neuropsychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

  6. COMT Val158Met Polymorphism Is Associated with Verbal Working Memory in Neurofibromatosis Type 1

    PubMed Central

    Costa, Danielle de Souza; de Paula, Jonas J.; Alvim-Soares, Antonio M.; Pereira, Patrícia A.; Malloy-Diniz, Leandro F.; Rodrigues, Luiz O. C.; Romano-Silva, Marco A.; de Miranda, Débora M.

    2016-01-01

    Neurofibromatosis type I (NF1) is a neurogenetic disease marked by multiple cognitive and learning problems. Genetic variants may account for phenotypic variance in NF1. Here, we investigated the association between the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphism and working memory and arithmetic performance in 50 NF1 individuals. A significant association of the COMT polymorphism was observed only with verbal working memory, as measured by the backward digit-span task with an advantageous performance for Met/Met carriers. To study how genetic modifiers influence NF1 cognitive performance might be of importance to decrease the unpredictability of the cognitive profile among NF1 patients. PMID:27458360

  7. Modulation of the COMT Val(158)Met polymorphism on resting-state EEG power.

    PubMed

    Solís-Ortiz, Silvia; Pérez-Luque, Elva; Gutiérrez-Muñoz, Mayra

    2015-01-01

    The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val(158)Met polymorphism impacts cortical dopamine (DA) levels and may influence cortical electrical activity in the human brain. This study investigated whether COMT genotype influences resting-state electroencephalogram (EEG) power in the frontal, parietal and midline regions in healthy volunteers. EEG recordings were conducted in the resting-state in 13 postmenopausal healthy woman carriers of the Val/Val genotype and 11 with the Met/Met genotype. The resting EEG spectral absolute power in the frontal (F3, F4, F7, F8, FC3 and FC4), parietal (CP3, CP4, P3 and P4) and midline (Fz, FCz, Cz, CPz, Pz and Oz) was analyzed during the eyes-open and eyes-closed conditions. The frequency bands considered were the delta, theta, alpha1, alpha2, beta1 and beta2. EEG data of the Val/Val and Met/Met genotypes, brain regions and conditions were analyzed using a general linear model analysis. In the individuals with the Met/Met genotype, delta activity was increased in the eyes-closed condition, theta activity was increased in the eyes-closed and in the eyes-open conditions, and alpha1 band, alpha2 band and beta1band activity was increased in the eyes-closed condition. A significant interaction between COMT genotypes and spectral bands was observed. Met homozygote individuals exhibited more delta, theta and beta1 activity than individuals with the Val/Val genotype. No significant interaction between COMT genotypes and the resting-state EEG regional power and conditions were observed for the three brain regions studied. Our findings indicate that the COMT Val(158)Met polymorphism does not directly impact resting-state EEG regional power, but instead suggest that COMT genotype can modulate resting-state EEG spectral power in postmenopausal healthy women. PMID:25883560

  8. Modulation of the COMT Val(158)Met polymorphism on resting-state EEG power.

    PubMed

    Solís-Ortiz, Silvia; Pérez-Luque, Elva; Gutiérrez-Muñoz, Mayra

    2015-01-01

    The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val(158)Met polymorphism impacts cortical dopamine (DA) levels and may influence cortical electrical activity in the human brain. This study investigated whether COMT genotype influences resting-state electroencephalogram (EEG) power in the frontal, parietal and midline regions in healthy volunteers. EEG recordings were conducted in the resting-state in 13 postmenopausal healthy woman carriers of the Val/Val genotype and 11 with the Met/Met genotype. The resting EEG spectral absolute power in the frontal (F3, F4, F7, F8, FC3 and FC4), parietal (CP3, CP4, P3 and P4) and midline (Fz, FCz, Cz, CPz, Pz and Oz) was analyzed during the eyes-open and eyes-closed conditions. The frequency bands considered were the delta, theta, alpha1, alpha2, beta1 and beta2. EEG data of the Val/Val and Met/Met genotypes, brain regions and conditions were analyzed using a general linear model analysis. In the individuals with the Met/Met genotype, delta activity was increased in the eyes-closed condition, theta activity was increased in the eyes-closed and in the eyes-open conditions, and alpha1 band, alpha2 band and beta1band activity was increased in the eyes-closed condition. A significant interaction between COMT genotypes and spectral bands was observed. Met homozygote individuals exhibited more delta, theta and beta1 activity than individuals with the Val/Val genotype. No significant interaction between COMT genotypes and the resting-state EEG regional power and conditions were observed for the three brain regions studied. Our findings indicate that the COMT Val(158)Met polymorphism does not directly impact resting-state EEG regional power, but instead suggest that COMT genotype can modulate resting-state EEG spectral power in postmenopausal healthy women.

  9. COMT Val158Met genotype influences neurodegeneration within dopamine-innervated brain structures

    PubMed Central

    Gennatas, E.D.; Cholfin, J.A.; Zhou, J.; Crawford, R.K.; Sasaki, D.A.; Karydas, A.; Boxer, A.L.; Bonasera, S.J.; Rankin, K.P.; Gorno-Tempini, M.L.; Rosen, H.J.; Kramer, J.H.; Weiner, M.; Miller, B.L.

    2012-01-01

    Objective: We sought to determine whether the Val158Met polymorphism in the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene influences neurodegeneration within dopamine-innervated brain regions. Methods: A total of 252 subjects, including healthy controls and patients with Alzheimer disease, behavioral variant frontotemporal dementia, and semantic dementia, underwent COMT genotyping and structural MRI. Results: Whole-brain voxel-wise regression analyses revealed that COMT Val158Met Val allele dosage, known to produce a dose-dependent decrease in synaptic dopamine (DA) availability, correlated with decreased gray matter in the region of the ventral tegmental area (VTA), ventromedial prefrontal cortex, bilateral dorsal midinsula, left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, and right ventral striatum. Unexpectedly, patients carrying a Met allele showed greater VTA volumes than age-matched controls. Gray matter intensities within COMT-related brain regions correlated with cognitive and behavioral deficits. Conclusions: The results are consistent with the hypothesis that increased synaptic DA catabolism promotes neurodegeneration within DA-innervated brain regions. PMID:22573634

  10. Association between the COMT Val158Met polymorphism and fibromyalgia susceptibility and fibromyalgia impact questionnaire score: a meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Lee, Young Ho; Kim, Jae-Hoon; Song, Gwan Gyu

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this study was to explore whether the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphism is associated with susceptibility to fibromyalgia and fibromyalgia impact questionnaire (FIQ) score in fibromyalgia patients. We conducted a meta-analysis of the associations of the COMT Val158Met polymorphism with fibromyalgia risk as well as FIQ score in fibromyalgia patients. A total of 993 fibromyalgia patients and 778 controls from 10 studies on the COMT Val158Met polymorphism and 538 fibromyalgia patients from 5 studies on the COMT Val158Met polymorphism and FIQ score were included in this meta-analysis. The meta-analysis revealed an association between fibromyalgia and the COMT Met/Met + Val/Met genotype in all study subjects (odds ratio (OR) 1.635, 95 % confidence interval (CI) 1.029-2.597, p = 0.037). However, stratification by ethnicity indicated no association between the Met/Met + Val/Met genotype and fibromyalgia in the European and Turkish populations (OR 1.202, 95 % CI 0.876-1.649, p = 0.255; OR 2.132, 95 % CI 0.764-5.949, p = 0.148, respectively). Analysis using other genetic models showed no association between the COMT Val158Met polymorphism and fibromyalgia. The meta-analysis also revealed that the FIQ score was significantly higher in individuals with the COMT Met/Met genotype than in those with the Val/Val genotype [weighted mean difference (WMD) = 14.39, 95 % CI 3.316-25.48, p = 0.011] and the Val/Met genotype (WMD = 5.108, 95 % CI 2.212-4.891, p = 0.021). This meta-analysis identified an association between fibromyalgia risk and the COMT Val158Met polymorphism as well as the FIQ score in fibromyalgia patients.

  11. The roles of COMT val158met status and aviation expertise in flight simulator performance and cognitive ability.

    PubMed

    Kennedy, Q; Taylor, J L; Noda, A; Adamson, M; Murphy, G M; Zeitzer, J M; Yesavage, J A

    2011-09-01

    The polymorphic variation in the val158met position of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene is associated with differences in executive performance, processing speed, and attention. The purpose of this study is: (1) replicate previous COMT val158met findings on cognitive performance; (2) determine whether COMT val158met effects extend to a real-world task, aircraft navigation performance in a flight simulator; and (3) determine if aviation expertise moderates any effect of COMT val158met status on flight simulator performance. One hundred seventy two pilots aged 41-69 years, who varied in level of aviation training and experience, completed flight simulator, cognitive, and genetic assessments. Results indicate that although no COMT effect was found for an overall measure of flight performance, a positive effect of the met allele was detected for two aspects of cognitive ability: executive functioning and working memory performance. Pilots with the met/met genotype benefited more from increased levels of expertise than other participants on a traffic avoidance measure, which is a component of flight simulator performance. These preliminary results indicate that COMT val158met polymorphic variation can affect a real-world task.

  12. COMT val158met and 5-HTTLPR genetic polymorphisms moderate executive control in cannabis users.

    PubMed

    Verdejo-García, Antonio; Fagundo, Ana Beatriz; Cuenca, Aida; Rodriguez, Joan; Cuyás, Elisabet; Langohr, Klaus; de Sola Llopis, Susana; Civit, Ester; Farré, Magí; Peña-Casanova, Jordi; de la Torre, Rafael

    2013-07-01

    The adverse effects of cannabis use on executive functions are still controversial, fostering the need for novel biomarkers able to unveil individual differences in the cognitive impact of cannabis consumption. Two common genetic polymorphisms have been linked to the neuroadaptive impact of Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) exposure and to executive functions in animals: the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene val158met polymorphism and the SLC6A4 gene 5-HTTLPR polymorphism. We aimed to test if these polymorphisms moderate the harmful effects of cannabis use on executive function in young cannabis users. We recruited 144 participants: 86 cannabis users and 58 non-drug user controls. Both groups were genotyped and matched for genetic makeup, sex, age, education, and IQ. We used a computerized neuropsychological battery to assess different aspects of executive functions: sustained attention (CANTAB Rapid Visual Information Processing Test, RVIP), working memory (N-back), monitoring/shifting (CANTAB ID/ED set shifting), planning (CANTAB Stockings of Cambridge, SOC), and decision-making (Iowa Gambling Task, IGT). We used general linear model-based analyses to test performance differences between cannabis users and controls as a function of genotypes. We found that: (i) daily cannabis use is not associated with executive function deficits; and (ii) COMT val158met and 5-HTTLPR polymorphisms moderate the link between cannabis use and executive performance. Cannabis users carrying the COMT val/val genotype exhibited lower accuracy of sustained attention, associated with a more strict response bias, than val/val non-users. Cannabis users carrying the COMT val allele also committed more monitoring/shifting errors than cannabis users carrying the met/met genotype. Finally, cannabis users carrying the 5-HTTLPR s/s genotype had worse IGT performance than s/s non-users. COMT and SLC6A4 genes moderate the impact of cannabis use on executive functions.

  13. COMT Val158Met Genotype and Individual Differences in Executive Function in Healthy Adults

    PubMed Central

    Wishart, Heather A.; Roth, Robert M.; Saykin, Andrew J.; Rhodes, C. Harker; Tsongalis, Gregory J.; Pattin, Kristine A.; Moore, Jason H.; Mcallister, Thomas W.

    2011-01-01

    The Val158Met polymorphism of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene may be related to individual differences in cognition, likely via modulation of prefrontal dopamine catabolism. However, the available studies have yielded mixed results, possibly in part because they do not consistently account for other genes that affect cognition. We hypothesized that COMT Met allele homozygosity, which is associated with higher levels of prefrontal dopamine, would predict better executive function as measured using standard neuropsychological testing, and that other candidate genes might interact with COMT to modulate this effect. Participants were 95 healthy, right-handed adults who underwent genotyping and cognitive testing. COMT genotype predicted executive ability as measured by the Trail-Making Test, even after covarying for demographics and APOE, BDNF and ANKK1 genotype. There was a COMT-ANKK1 interaction in which individuals having both the COMT Val allele and the ANKK1 T allele showed the poorest performance. This study suggests the heterogeneity in COMT effects reported in the literature may be due in part to gene-gene interactions that influence central dopaminergic systems. PMID:21144101

  14. DRD2 C957T polymorphism interacts with the COMT Val158Met polymorphism in human working memory ability.

    PubMed

    Xu, Haiyan; Kellendonk, Christoph B; Simpson, Eleanor H; Keilp, John G; Bruder, Gerard E; Polan, H Jonathan; Kandel, Eric R; Gilliam, T Conrad

    2007-02-01

    The C957T polymorphism in the dopamine D2 receptor (DRD2) gene and the Val158Met polymorphism in the Catechol-O-Methyl-Transferase (COMT) gene affect dopamine transmission and have been found to be associated with schizophrenia. Since DRD2 in mice and the COMT gene in humans modulate working memory, we examined the relationship and possible interaction of both polymorphisms to working memory performance in 188 healthy adults. Subjects having the DRD2 C/C allele showed the poorest performance in a word serial position test. Moreover, the effect of the C957T genotype was strengthened when interaction with the COMT Val158Met polymorphism was included in the analysis. We propose that an interaction of the DRD2 C957T and COMT Val158Met may be involved in the generation of some working memory deficits in schizophrenia.

  15. Pulse Pressure Magnifies the Effect of COMT Val(158)Met on 15 Years Episodic Memory Trajectories.

    PubMed

    Persson, Ninni; Lavebratt, Catharina; Sundström, Anna; Fischer, Håkan

    2016-01-01

    We investigated whether a physiological marker of cardiovascular health, pulse pressure (PP), and age magnified the effect of the functional COMT Val(158)Met (rs4680) polymorphism on 15-years cognitive trajectories [episodic memory (EM), visuospatial ability, and semantic memory] using data from 1585 non-demented adults from the Betula study. A multiple-group latent growth curve model was specified to gauge individual differences in change, and average trends therein. The allelic variants showed negligible differences across the cognitive markers in average trends. The older portion of the sample selectively age-magnified the effects of Val(158)Met on EM changes, resulting in greater decline in Val compared to homozygote Met carriers. This effect was attenuated by statistical control for PP. Further, PP moderated the effects of COMT on 15-years EM trajectories, resulting in greater decline in Val carriers, even after accounting for the confounding effects of sex, education, cardiovascular diseases (diabetes, stroke, and hypertension), and chronological age, controlled for practice gains. The effect was still present after excluding individuals with a history of cardiovascular diseases. The effects of cognitive change were not moderated by any other covariates. This report underscores the importance of addressing synergistic effects in normal cognitive aging, as the addition thereof may place healthy individuals at greater risk for memory decline. PMID:26973509

  16. Replication study implicates COMT val158met polymorphism as a modulator of probabilistic reward learning.

    PubMed

    Lancaster, T M; Heerey, E A; Mantripragada, K; Linden, D E J

    2015-07-01

    Previous studies suggest that a single nucleotide polymorphism in the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene (val158met) may modulate reward-guided decision making in healthy individuals. The polymorphism affects dopamine catabolism and thus modulates prefrontal dopamine levels, which may lead to variation in individual responses to risk and reward. We previously showed, using tasks that index reward responsiveness (measured by responses bias towards reinforced stimuli) and risk taking (measured by the Balloon Analogue Risk Task), that COMT met homozygotes had increased reward responsiveness and, thus, an increased propensity to seek reward. In this study, we sought to replicate these effects in a larger, independent cohort of Caucasian UK university students and staff with similar demographic characteristics (n = 101; 54 females, mean age: 22.2 years). Similarly to our previous study, we observed a significant trial × COMT genotype interaction (P = 0.047; η(2) = 0.052), which was driven by a significant effect of COMT on the incremental acquisition of response bias [response bias at block 3 - block 1 (met/met > val/val: P = 0.028) and block 3 - block 2 (met/met > val/val: P = 0.007)], suggesting that COMT met homozygotes demonstrated higher levels of reward responsiveness by the end of the task. However, we failed to see main effects of COMT genotype on overall response bias or risk-seeking behaviour. These results provide additional evidence that prefrontal dopaminergic variation may have a role in reward responsiveness, but not risk-seeking behaviour. Our findings may have implications for neuropsychiatric disorders characterized by clinical deficits in reward processing such as anhedonia. PMID:26096878

  17. Contributions of COMT Val158Met to cognitive stability and flexibility in infancy

    PubMed Central

    Markant, Julie; Cicchetti, Dante; Hetzel, Susan; Thomas, Kathleen M.

    2014-01-01

    Adaptive behavior requires focusing on relevant tasks while remaining sensitive to novel information. In adult studies of cognitive control, cognitive stability involves maintaining robust cognitive representations while cognitive flexibility involves updating of representations in response to novel information. Previous adult research has shown that the Met allele of the COMT Val158Met gene is associated with enhanced cognitive stability whereas the Val allele is associated with enhanced cognitive flexibility. Here we propose that the stability/flexibility framework can also be applied to infant research, with stability mapping onto early indices of behavioral regulation and flexibility mapping onto indices of behavioral reactivity. From this perspective, the present study examined whether COMT genotype was related to 7-month-old infants’ reactivity to novel stimuli and behavioral regulation. Cognitive stability and flexibility were assessed using (1) a motor approach task, (2) a habituation task, and (3) a parental-report measure of temperament. Val carriers were faster to reach for novel toys during the motor approach task and received higher scores on the temperament measure of approach to novelty. Met carriers showed enhanced dishabituation to the novel stimulus during the habituation task and received higher scores on the temperament measures of sustained attention and behavioral regulation. Overall, these results are consistent with adult research suggesting that the Met and Val alleles are associated with increased cognitive stability and flexibility, respectively, and thus suggest that COMT genotype may similarly affect cognitive function in infancy. PMID:24410746

  18. Effect of COMT Val158Met polymorphism on personality traits and educational attainment in a longitudinal population representative study.

    PubMed

    Lehto, K; Akkermann, K; Parik, J; Veidebaum, T; Harro, J

    2013-10-01

    The COMT Val158Met polymorphism has been associated with anxiety and affective disorders, but its effect on anxiety-related personality traits varies between studies. Our purpose was to investigate the effect of COMT Val158Met on personality traits from adolescence to young adulthood in a population representative Caucasian birth cohort. Also its association with educational attainment and anxiety and mood disorders by the age 25 were examined. This analysis is based on the older cohort of the Estonian Children Personality Behavior and Health Study (original number of subjects 593). The personality traits were assessed when the participants were 15, 18 and 25 years old. COMT Val158Met had an effect on Neuroticism in females by age 25 (p=0.001, Bonferroni-corrected for five traits), whereas female Val homozygotes scored the highest. In addition, the Conscientiousness scores of subjects with Val/Val genotype were decreasing in time, being the lowest by the age 25 (p=0.006, Bonferroni-corrected for five traits). By the age 25, males with the Val/Met genotype had mainly secondary or vocational education, whereas female heterozygotes mostly had obtained or were obtaining university education. COMT Val158Met was not associated with anxiety or mood disorders in either gender. These results suggest that genes affecting dopamine system are involved in the development of personality traits and contribute to educational attainment.

  19. A Meta-Analysis of the Val158Met COMT Polymorphism and Violent Behavior in Schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Jay P.; Volavka, Jan; Czobor, Pál; Van Dorn, Richard A.

    2012-01-01

    We conducted a meta-analysis of studies examining the association between the Val158Met COMT polymorphism and violence against others in schizophrenia. A systematic search current to November 1, 2011 was conducted using MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, PsycINFO, ProQuest, and the National Criminal Justice Reference Service and identified 15 studies comprising 2,370 individuals with schizophrenia for inclusion. Bivariate analyses of study sensitivities and specificities were conducted. This methodology allowed for the calculation of pooled diagnostic odds ratios (DOR). Evidence of a significant association between the presence of a Met allele and violence was found such that men's violence risk increased by approximately 50% for those with at least one Met allele compared with homozygous Val individuals (DOR = 1.45; 95% CI = 1.05–2.00; z = 2.37, p = 0.02). No significant association between the presence of a Met allele and violence was found for women or when outcome was restricted to homicide. We conclude that male schizophrenia patients who carry the low activity Met allele in the COMT gene are at a modestly elevated risk of violence. This finding has potential implications for the pharmacogenetics of violent behavior in schizophrenia. PMID:22905266

  20. Association between COMT Val158Met genotype and EEG alpha peak frequency tested in two independent cohorts.

    PubMed

    Veth, Cornelis P M; Arns, Martijn; Drinkenburg, Wilhelmus; Talloen, Willem; Peeters, Pieter J; Gordon, Evian; Buitelaar, Jan K

    2014-09-30

    This study could not confirm the association between the Catechol-O-Methyltransferase Val158Met polymorphism (COMT) and electroencephalographic (EEG) alpha peak frequency (APF) in two independent cohorts of 187 (96 depressed and 91 healthy participants) and 413 healthy participants. If COMT and APF play a role in depression or antidepressant treatment response, they do not have a shared pathway. We emphasize the importance of publishing null-findings for obtaining more accurate overall estimates of genetic effects.

  1. Investigating the genetic basis of altruism: the role of the COMT Val158Met polymorphism

    PubMed Central

    Frenzel, Clemens; Walter, Nora T.; Markett, Sebastian; Montag, Christian

    2011-01-01

    Findings from twin studies yield heritability estimates of 0.50 for prosocial behaviours like empathy, cooperativeness and altruism. First molecular genetic studies underline the influence of polymorphisms located on genes coding for the receptors of the neuropeptides, oxytocin and vasopressin. However, the proportion of variance explained by these gene loci is rather low indicating that additional genetic variants must be involved. Pharmacological studies show that the dopaminergic system interacts with oxytocin and vasopressin. The present experimental study tests a dopaminergic candidate polymorphism for altruistic behaviour, the functional COMT Val158Met SNP. N = 101 healthy Caucasian subjects participated in the study. Altruism was assessed by the amount of money donated to a poor child in a developing country, after having earned money by participating in two straining computer experiments. Construct validity of the experimental data was given: the highest correlation between the amount of donations and personality was observed for cooperativeness (r = 0.32, P ≤ 0.001). Carriers of at least one Val allele donated about twice as much money as compared with those participants without a Val allele (P = 0.01). Cooperativeness and the Val allele of COMT additively explained 14.6% of the variance in donation behaviour. Results indicate that the Val allele representing strong catabolism of dopamine is related to altruism. PMID:21030481

  2. COMT Val158Met modulates the effect of childhood adverse experiences on the risk of alcohol dependence.

    PubMed

    Schellekens, Arnt F A; Franke, Barbara; Ellenbroek, Bart; Cools, Alexander; de Jong, Cor A J; Buitelaar, Jan K; Verkes, Robbert-Jan

    2013-03-01

    Genetic factors and childhood adverse experiences contribute to the vulnerability to alcohol dependence. However, empirical data on the interplay between specific genes and adverse experiences are few. The COMT Val158Met and DRD2/ANKK1 Taq1A genotypes have been suggested to affect both stress sensitivity and the risk for alcohol dependence. This study tested the hypothesis that genetic variation in COMT Val158Met and DRD2/ANKK1 Taq1A interacts with childhood adverse experiences to predict alcohol dependence. Male abstinent alcohol-dependent patients (n = 110) and age-matched healthy male controls (n = 99) were genotyped for the COMT Val158Met and the DRD2/ANKK1 Taq1A genotypes. Childhood adverse events were measured using three self-report questionnaires. Alcohol dependence severity, age of onset and duration of alcohol dependence were analyzed as secondary outcome measures. Statistical analysis involved logistic regression analysis and analysis of variance. Alcohol-dependent patients reported increased childhood adversity. The interaction between childhood adversity and the COMT Val158Met genotype added significantly to the prediction model. This gene-environment interaction was confirmed in the analysis of the secondary outcome measures, i.e. alcohol dependence severity, age of onset and duration of alcohol dependence. The DRD2/ANKK1 Taq1A genotype was not related to alcohol dependence, nor did it interact with childhood adversity in predicting alcohol dependence. This study provides evidence for a gene-environment interaction in alcohol dependence, in which an individual's sensitivity to childhood adverse experience is moderated by the COMT genotype. Exposed carriers of a low-activity Met allele have a higher risk to develop severe alcohol dependence than individuals homozygous for the Val allele.

  3. Impact of COMT Val158Met-polymorphism on appetitive conditioning and amygdala/prefrontal effective connectivity.

    PubMed

    Klucken, Tim; Kruse, Onno; Wehrum-Osinsky, Sina; Hennig, Juergen; Schweckendiek, Jan; Stark, Rudolf

    2015-03-01

    Appetitive conditioning is an important mechanism for the development, maintenance, and treatment of psychiatric disorders like substance abuse. Therefore, it is important to identify genetic variations, which impact appetitive conditioning. It has been suggested that the Val(158) Met-polymorphism in the Catechol-O-Methyl-Transferase (COMT) is associated with the alteration of neural processes of appetitive conditioning due to the central role of the dopaminergic system in reward processing. However, no study has so far investigated the relationship between variations in the COMT Val(158) Met-polymorphism and appetitive conditioning. In this fMRI study, an appetitive conditioning paradigm was applied, in which one neutral stimulus (CS+) predicted appetitive stimuli (UCS) while a second neutral stimulus (CS-) was never paired with the UCS. As a main result, we observed a significant association between the COMT Val(158) Met-genotype and appetitive conditioning: skin conductance responses (SCRs) revealed a significant difference between CS+ and CS- in Val/Val-allele carriers but not in the other genotype groups. Val/Val-allele carriers showed increased hemodynamic responses in the amygdala compared with the Met/Met-allele group in the contrast CS+ > CS-. In addition, psychophysiological-interaction analysis revealed increased effective amygdala/ventromedial prefrontal cortex connectivity in Met/Met-allele carriers. The increased amygdala activity points to facilitated appetitive conditioning in Val/Val-allele carriers while the amygdala/prefrontal connectivity results could be regarded as a marker for altered emotion regulation during conditioning, which potentially impacts appetitive learning sensitivity. The SCRs finding indicates a stronger conditioned response in the Val/Val-allele group and dovetails with the neural differences between the groups. These findings contribute to the current research on COMT in emotional processing.

  4. Relationship between the COMT-Val158Met and BDNF-Val66Met Polymorphisms, Childhood Trauma and Psychotic Experiences in an Adolescent General Population Sample

    PubMed Central

    Ramsay, Hugh; Kelleher, Ian; Flannery, Padraig; Clarke, Mary C.; Lynch, Fionnuala; Harley, Michelle; Connor, Dearbhla; Fitzpatrick, Carol; Morris, Derek W.; Cannon, Mary

    2013-01-01

    Objective Psychotic experiences occur at a much greater prevalence in the population than psychotic disorders. There has been little research to date, however, on genetic risk for this extended psychosis phenotype. We examined whether COMT or BDNF genotypes were associated with psychotic experiences or interacted with childhood trauma in predicting psychotic experiences. Method Psychiatric interviews and genotyping for COMT-Val158Met and BDNF-Val66Met were carried out on two population-based samples of 237 individuals aged 11-15 years. Logistic regression was used to examine for main effects by genotype and childhood trauma, controlling for important covariates. This was then compared to a model with a term for interaction between genotype and childhood trauma. Where a possible interaction was detected, this was further explored in stratified analyses. Results While childhood trauma showed a borderline association with psychotic experiences, COMT-Val158Met and BDNF-Val66Met genotypes were not directly associated with psychotic experiences in the population. Testing for gene x environment interaction was borderline significant in the case of COMT-Val158Met with individuals with the COMT-Val158Met Val-Val genotype, who had been exposed to childhood trauma borderline significantly more likely to report psychotic experiences than those with Val-Met or Met-Met genotypes. There was no similar interaction by BDNF-Val66Met genotype. Conclusion The COMT-Val158Met Val-Val genotype may be a genetic moderator of risk for psychotic experiences in individuals exposed to childhood traumatic experiences. PMID:24224001

  5. Resting posterior versus frontal delta/theta EEG activity is associated with extraversion and the COMT VAL(158)MET polymorphism.

    PubMed

    Wacker, Jan; Gatt, Justine Megan

    2010-07-01

    Recent studies suggest that resting posterior versus frontal EEG delta/theta activity (delta/theta Pz-Fz) is both sensitive to pharmacological manipulations of neural dopamine and associated with the agency facet of extraversion (i.e., a motivational disposition comprising enthusiasm, energy, assertiveness, achievement striving and social dominance). These observations suggest that posterior versus frontal resting EEG delta/theta activity may represent a useful marker for investigating the molecular genetic basis of extraversion. The present study aimed to test the novel hypothesis of an association between delta/theta Pz-Fz and a functional polymorphism of the enzyme catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT VAL(158)MET) involved in dopamine catabolism. This was conducted in a large EEG data set from the Brain Resource International Database (BRID; resting EEG from N=1093 healthy individuals, 382 of which also genotyped for COMT VAL(158)MET). In summary, we (1) showed for the first time that the VAL allele is associated with increased delta/theta Pz-Fz; (2) replicated the association between extraversion and delta/theta Pz-Fz in a large, heterogeneous sample including both genders; and (3) documented that the VAL allele of the COMT VAL(158)MET is associated with increased extraversion scores, as previously reported for an overlapping BRID sample. This coherent pattern of findings adds further support to the suggestion that the posterior-anterior distribution of resting EEG slow wave activity in the delta/theta range represents a useful tool for probing the dopaminergic basis of extraversion. PMID:20450956

  6. Association between the Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met Polymorphism and Alexithymia in Patients with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Koh, Min Jung; Kang, Jee In; Namkoong, Kee; Lee, Su Young

    2016-01-01

    Purpose Alexithymia, defined as a deficit in the ability to recognize and describe one's own feelings, may be related to the development and maintenance of obsessive-compulsive symptoms. The aim of this study was to evaluate the association between the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphism and alexithymia in patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Materials and Methods We recruited 244 patients with OCD (169 males, 75 females). Alexithymia was assessed using the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20), and genotyping of the COMT Val158Met polymorphism was evaluated. Results Patients with the COMT Val/Val genotype had significantly higher total and "difficulty identifying feelings" (DIF) subdimension scores than those with the Val/Met or Met/Met genotypes. Patients with the COMT Val/Val genotype had significantly higher "difficulty describing feelings" (DDF) subdimension scores than those with the COMT Val/Met genotype. However, there were no differences in the scores for the "externally oriented thinking" (EOT) subdimension among the three genotypes. Conclusion These results indicate that the high-activity Val allele of the COMT Val158Met polymorphism is associated with increased alexithymic traits in patients with OCD. The present finding suggests that alexithymia is an endophenotype of OCD that is mediated by the COMT Val158Met polymorphism. PMID:26996573

  7. The Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) val158met Polymorphism Affects Brain Responses to Repeated Painful Stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Gollub, Randy L.; Wasan, Ajay D.; Edwards, Robert R.; Kong, Jian

    2011-01-01

    Despite the explosion of interest in the genetic underpinnings of individual differences in pain sensitivity, conflicting findings have emerged for most of the identified “pain genes”. Perhaps the prime example of this inconsistency is represented by catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), as its substantial association to pain sensitivity has been reported in various studies, but rejected in several others. In line with findings from behavioral studies, we hypothesized that the effect of COMT on pain processing would become apparent only when the pain system was adequately challenged (i.e., after repeated pain stimulation). In the present study, we used functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) to investigate the brain response to heat pain stimuli in 54 subjects genotyped for the common COMT val158met polymorphism (val/val = n 22, val/met = n 20, met/met = n 12). Met/met subjects exhibited stronger pain-related fMRI signals than val/val in several brain structures, including the periaqueductal gray matter, lingual gyrus, cerebellum, hippocampal formation and precuneus. These effects were observed only for high intensity pain stimuli after repeated administration. In spite of our relatively small sample size, our results suggest that COMT appears to affect pain processing. Our data demonstrate that the effect of COMT on pain processing can be detected in presence of 1) a sufficiently robust challenge to the pain system to detect a genotype effect, and/or 2) the recruitment of pain-dampening compensatory mechanisms by the putatively more pain sensitive met homozygotes. These findings may help explain the inconsistencies in reported findings of the impact of COMT in pain regulation. PMID:22132136

  8. Does adult ADHD interact with COMT val (158) met genotype to influence working memory performance?

    PubMed

    Biehl, Stefanie C; Gschwendtner, Kathrin M; Guhn, Anne; Müller, Laura D; Reichert, Susanne; Heupel, Julia; Reif, Andreas; Deckert, Jürgen; Herrmann, Martin J; Jacob, Christian P

    2015-03-01

    Both attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) genotype have been linked to altered dopaminergic transmission and possible impairment in frontal lobe functioning. This study offers an investigation of a possible interaction between ADHD diagnosis and COMT genotype on measures of working memory and executive function. Thirty-five adults with ADHD, who were recruited from the ADHD outpatient clinic at the Department of Psychiatry, Psychosomatics and Psychotherapy, University of Würzburg, and thirty-five matched healthy controls completed the Digit Span test and the Stroop Color Word Test. While there were no main effects of ADHD or COMT, the two factors interacted on both Digit Span subtests with the two groups' met/met carriers showing significantly different performance on the Digit Span Forward subtest and the val/val carriers showing significantly different performance on the Digit Span Backward subtest. Findings provide preliminary support for a differential impact of COMT genotype on working memory measures in adult patients with ADHD compared to healthy controls.

  9. The interaction of early life experiences with COMT val158met affects anxiety sensitivity.

    PubMed

    Baumann, C; Klauke, B; Weber, H; Domschke, K; Zwanzger, P; Pauli, P; Deckert, J; Reif, A

    2013-11-01

    The pathogenesis of anxiety disorders is considered to be multifactorial with a complex interaction of genetic factors and individual environmental factors. Therefore, the aim of this study was to examine gene-by-environment interactions of the genes coding for catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) and monoamine oxidase A (MAOA) with life events on measures related to anxiety. A sample of healthy subjects (N = 782; thereof 531 women; mean age M = 24.79, SD = 6.02) was genotyped for COMT rs4680 and MAOA-uVNTR (upstream variable number of tandem repeats), and was assessed for childhood adversities [Childhood Trauma Questionnaire (CTQ)], anxiety sensitivity [Anxiety Sensitivity Index (ASI)] and anxious apprehension [Penn State Worry Questionnaire (PSWQ)]. Main and interaction effects of genotype, environment and gender on measures related to anxiety were assessed by means of regression analyses. Association analysis showed no main gene effect on either questionnaire score. A significant interactive effect of childhood adversities and COMT genotype was observed: Homozygosity for the low-active met allele and high CTQ scores was associated with a significant increment of explained ASI variance [R(2) = 0.040, false discovery rate (FDR) corrected P = 0.04]. A borderline interactive effect with respect to MAOA-uVNTR was restricted to the male subgroup. Carriers of the low-active MAOA allele who reported more aversive experiences in childhood exhibited a trend for enhanced anxious apprehension (R(2) = 0.077, FDR corrected P = 0.10). Early aversive life experiences therefore might increase the vulnerability to anxiety disorders in the presence of homozygosity for the COMT 158met allele or low-active MAOA-uVNTR alleles. PMID:24118915

  10. The interaction of early life experiences with COMT val158met affects anxiety sensitivity.

    PubMed

    Baumann, C; Klauke, B; Weber, H; Domschke, K; Zwanzger, P; Pauli, P; Deckert, J; Reif, A

    2013-11-01

    The pathogenesis of anxiety disorders is considered to be multifactorial with a complex interaction of genetic factors and individual environmental factors. Therefore, the aim of this study was to examine gene-by-environment interactions of the genes coding for catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) and monoamine oxidase A (MAOA) with life events on measures related to anxiety. A sample of healthy subjects (N = 782; thereof 531 women; mean age M = 24.79, SD = 6.02) was genotyped for COMT rs4680 and MAOA-uVNTR (upstream variable number of tandem repeats), and was assessed for childhood adversities [Childhood Trauma Questionnaire (CTQ)], anxiety sensitivity [Anxiety Sensitivity Index (ASI)] and anxious apprehension [Penn State Worry Questionnaire (PSWQ)]. Main and interaction effects of genotype, environment and gender on measures related to anxiety were assessed by means of regression analyses. Association analysis showed no main gene effect on either questionnaire score. A significant interactive effect of childhood adversities and COMT genotype was observed: Homozygosity for the low-active met allele and high CTQ scores was associated with a significant increment of explained ASI variance [R(2) = 0.040, false discovery rate (FDR) corrected P = 0.04]. A borderline interactive effect with respect to MAOA-uVNTR was restricted to the male subgroup. Carriers of the low-active MAOA allele who reported more aversive experiences in childhood exhibited a trend for enhanced anxious apprehension (R(2) = 0.077, FDR corrected P = 0.10). Early aversive life experiences therefore might increase the vulnerability to anxiety disorders in the presence of homozygosity for the COMT 158met allele or low-active MAOA-uVNTR alleles.

  11. COMT Val(158) Met genotype is associated with reward learning: a replication study and meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Corral-Frías, N S; Pizzagalli, D A; Carré, J M; Michalski, L J; Nikolova, Y S; Perlis, R H; Fagerness, J; Lee, M R; Conley, E Drabant; Lancaster, T M; Haddad, S; Wolf, A; Smoller, J W; Hariri, A R; Bogdan, R

    2016-06-01

    Identifying mechanisms through which individual differences in reward learning emerge offers an opportunity to understand both a fundamental form of adaptive responding as well as etiological pathways through which aberrant reward learning may contribute to maladaptive behaviors and psychopathology. One candidate mechanism through which individual differences in reward learning may emerge is variability in dopaminergic reinforcement signaling. A common functional polymorphism within the catechol-O-methyl transferase gene (COMT; rs4680, Val(158) Met) has been linked to reward learning, where homozygosity for the Met allele (linked to heightened prefrontal dopamine function and decreased dopamine synthesis in the midbrain) has been associated with relatively increased reward learning. Here, we used a probabilistic reward learning task to asses response bias, a behavioral form of reward learning, across three separate samples that were combined for analyses (age: 21.80 ± 3.95; n = 392; 268 female; European-American: n = 208). We replicate prior reports that COMT rs4680 Met allele homozygosity is associated with increased reward learning in European-American participants (β = 0.20, t = 2.75, P < 0.01; ΔR(2) = 0.04). Moreover, a meta-analysis of 4 studies, including the current one, confirmed the association between COMT rs4680 genotype and reward learning (95% CI -0.11 to -0.03; z = 3.2; P < 0.01). These results suggest that variability in dopamine signaling associated with COMT rs4680 influences individual differences in reward which may potentially contribute to psychopathology characterized by reward dysfunction. PMID:27138112

  12. COMT Val(158) Met genotype is associated with reward learning: a replication study and meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Corral-Frías, N S; Pizzagalli, D A; Carré, J M; Michalski, L J; Nikolova, Y S; Perlis, R H; Fagerness, J; Lee, M R; Conley, E Drabant; Lancaster, T M; Haddad, S; Wolf, A; Smoller, J W; Hariri, A R; Bogdan, R

    2016-06-01

    Identifying mechanisms through which individual differences in reward learning emerge offers an opportunity to understand both a fundamental form of adaptive responding as well as etiological pathways through which aberrant reward learning may contribute to maladaptive behaviors and psychopathology. One candidate mechanism through which individual differences in reward learning may emerge is variability in dopaminergic reinforcement signaling. A common functional polymorphism within the catechol-O-methyl transferase gene (COMT; rs4680, Val(158) Met) has been linked to reward learning, where homozygosity for the Met allele (linked to heightened prefrontal dopamine function and decreased dopamine synthesis in the midbrain) has been associated with relatively increased reward learning. Here, we used a probabilistic reward learning task to asses response bias, a behavioral form of reward learning, across three separate samples that were combined for analyses (age: 21.80 ± 3.95; n = 392; 268 female; European-American: n = 208). We replicate prior reports that COMT rs4680 Met allele homozygosity is associated with increased reward learning in European-American participants (β = 0.20, t = 2.75, P < 0.01; ΔR(2) = 0.04). Moreover, a meta-analysis of 4 studies, including the current one, confirmed the association between COMT rs4680 genotype and reward learning (95% CI -0.11 to -0.03; z = 3.2; P < 0.01). These results suggest that variability in dopamine signaling associated with COMT rs4680 influences individual differences in reward which may potentially contribute to psychopathology characterized by reward dysfunction.

  13. The Val158Met COMT polymorphism is a modifier of the age at onset in Parkinson's disease with a sexual dimorphism

    PubMed Central

    Klebe, Stephan; Golmard, Jean-Louis; Nalls, Michael A; Saad, Mohamad; Singleton, Andrew B; Bras, Jose M; Hardy, John; Simon-Sanchez, Javier; Heutink, Peter; Kuhlenbäumer, Gregor; Charfi, Rim; Klein, Christine; Hagenah, Johann; Gasser, Thomas; Wurster, Isabel; Lesage, Suzanne; Lorenz, Delia; Deuschl, Günther; Durif, Franck; Pollak, Pierre; Damier, Philippe; Tison, François; Durr, Alexandra; Amouyel, Philippe; Lambert, Jean-Charles; Tzourio, Christophe; Maubaret, Cécilia; Charbonnier-Beaupel, Fanny; Tahiri, Khadija; Vidailhet, Marie; Martinez, Maria; Brice, Alexis; Corvol, Jean-Christophe

    2013-01-01

    The catechol-O-methyltranferase (COMT) is one of the main enzymes that metabolise dopamine in the brain. The Val158Met polymorphism in the COMT gene (rs4680) causes a trimodal distribution of high (Val/Val), intermediate (Val/Met) and low (Met/Met) enzyme activity. We tested whether the Val158Met polymorphism is a modifier of the age at onset (AAO) in Parkinson's disease (PD). The rs4680 was genotyped in a total of 16 609 subjects from five independent cohorts of European and North American origin (5886 patients with PD and 10 723 healthy controls). The multivariate analysis for comparing PD and control groups was based on a stepwise logistic regression, with gender, age and cohort origin included in the initial model. The multivariate analysis of the AAO was a mixed linear model, with COMT genotype and gender considered as fixed effects and cohort and cohort-gender interaction as random effects. COMT genotype was coded as a quantitative variable, assuming a codominant genetic effect. The distribution of the COMT polymorphism was not significantly different in patients and controls (p=0.22). The Val allele had a significant effect on the AAO with a younger AAO in patients with the Val/Val (57.1±13.9, p=0.03) than the Val/Met (57.4±13.9) and the Met/Met genotypes (58.3±13.5). The difference was greater in men (1.9 years between Val/Val and Met/Met, p=0.007) than in women (0.2 years, p=0.81). Thus, the Val158Met COMT polymorphism is not associated with PD in the Caucasian population but acts as a modifier of the AAO in PD with a sexual dimorphism: the Val allele is associated with a younger AAO in men with idiopathic PD. PMID:23408064

  14. The effect of COMT Val158 Met genotype on decision-making and preliminary findings on its interaction with the 5-HTTLPR in healthy females.

    PubMed

    van den Bos, Ruud; Homberg, Judith; Gijsbers, Ellen; den Heijer, Esther; Cuppen, Edwin

    2009-02-01

    Poor decision-making is inherent to several psychiatric conditions for which a genetic basis may exist. We previously showed that healthy female volunteers homozygous for the short allele (s/s) of the serotonin transporter length polymorphic region (5-HTTLPR) chose more often cards from disadvantageous decks in the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT), which measures decision-making, than long (l) allele carriers. The 5-HTTLPR and catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val(158) Met polymorphism affect the same set of neuronal structures. Therefore, we explored the effect of the (COMT) Val(158) Met polymorphism on IGT performance and its interaction with the 5-HTTLPR in the same subjects in this study. We observed that subjects homozygous for methionine (Met/Met) chose more disadvantageously than subjects homozygous for valine (Val/Val). s/s-Met/Met-subjects appeared to show the poorest IGT performance of all possible combinations of 5-HTTLPR and COMT allelic variants. Using the Expectancy-Valence model, no differences were found for the three different 5-HTTLPR or COMT genotypes regarding (i) attention to wins versus losses, (ii) updating rate, or (iii) response consistency. However, subjects with at least one Met-allele were paying more attention to wins than subjects with no Met-alleles. We discuss whether a common neuronal mechanism relates to s- and Met-allele-related deficits in updating and/or processing of choice outcome to guide subsequent choices in this gamble-based test. PMID:18983999

  15. Increased sensitivity to thermal pain following a single opiate dose is influenced by the COMT val(158)met polymorphism.

    PubMed

    Jensen, Karin B; Lonsdorf, Tina B; Schalling, Martin; Kosek, Eva; Ingvar, Martin

    2009-01-01

    Increased pain sensitivity after opioid administration (opioid-induced hyperalgesia) and/or repeated painful stimuli is an individually varying and clinically important phenomenon. The functional polymorphism (val(158)met) of the Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene regulates the metabolism of dopamine/noradrenaline. Individuals homozygous for the met(158) allele have been reported to have increased pain sensitivity and there are findings of lower micro-opioid system activation during sustained pain. We hypothesized that met/met individuals would exhibit higher pain sensitization and opioid-induced hyperalgesia in response to repeated pain stimuli and an intravenous injection of an opioid drug. Participants were 43 healthy subjects who went through an experiment where five blocks of pain were induced to the hand using a heat probe. After each stimulus subjects rated the pain on a visual analogue scale (VAS) from 0 mm (no pain) to 100 mm (worst possible pain). Before the second stimulus there was an intravenous injection of a rapid and potent opioid drug. At baseline there was no difference in pain ratings between the COMTval(158)met genotypes, F(2, 39)<1. However, a repeated measures ANOVA for all five stimuli revealed a main effect for COMTval(158)met genotype, F(2, 36) = 4.17, p = 0.024. Met/met individuals reported significantly more pain compared to val/val, p = 0.010. A pairwise comparison of baseline and the opioid intervention demonstrated that analgesia was induced in all groups (p = 0.042) without a separating effect for genotype (n.s). We suggest that the initial response of the descending pain system is not influenced by the COMTval(158)met polymorphism but when the system is challenged the difference is revealed. An important clinical implication of this may be that the COMTval(158)met related differences may be more expressed in individuals where the inhibitory system is already challenged and sensitive, e.g. chronic pain patients. This has to be

  16. Meta-analysis reveals a lack of association between a common catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) polymorphism val158met and fibromyalgia

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Lei; Zhu, Junwei; Chen, Yong; Zhao, Jianning

    2014-01-01

    This study is to evaluate the association between the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene val158met polymorphism and FM risk. We performed a meta-analysis of 8 case-control studies that included 589 FM cases and 527 case-free controls. We assessed the strength of the association, using odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs). Overall, this meta-analysis showed that the COMT gene val158met polymorphism was not associated with FM risk in all genetic models, i.e., allele (met vs. val: OR=1.46, 95% CI=0.80-2.66, P heterpgeneity<0.001), homozygous (met/met vs. val/val: OR=1.72, 95% CI=0.61-4.87, P heterpgeneity<0.001), heterozygous (val/met vs. val/val: OR=1.25, 95% CI=0.82-1.92, P heterpgeneity=0.050), recessive (met/met vs. val/val+val/met: OR=1.52, 95% CI=0.60-3.86, P heterpgeneity<0.001) and dominant model (met/met+val/met vs. val/val: OR=1.52, 95% CI=0.80-2.90, P heterpgeneity<0.001). Similarly, there were no significant associations in the subgroup analyses by ethnicity and HWE. No publication bias was found in the present study. This meta-analysis suggests that the COMT gene val158met polymorphism is not associated with FM risk. Further large and well-designed studies are needed to confirm this association. PMID:25674213

  17. COMT Val158Met polymorphism influences the susceptibility to framing in decision-making: OFC-amygdala functional connectivity as a mediator.

    PubMed

    Gao, Xiaoxue; Gong, Pingyuan; Liu, Jinting; Hu, Jie; Li, Yue; Yu, Hongbo; Gong, Xiaoliang; Xiang, Yang; Jiang, Changjun; Zhou, Xiaolin

    2016-05-01

    Individuals tend to avoid risk in a gain frame, in which options are presented in a positive way, but seek risk in a loss frame, in which the same options are presented negatively. Previous studies suggest that emotional responses play a critical role in this "framing effect." Given that the Met allele of COMT Val158Met polymorphism (rs4680) is associated with the negativity bias during emotional processing, this study investigated whether this polymorphism is associated with individual susceptibility to framing and which brain areas mediate this gene-behavior association. Participants were genotyped, scanned in resting state, and completed a monetary gambling task with options (sure vs risky) presented as potential gains or losses. The Met allele carriers showed a greater framing effect than the Val/Val homozygotes as the former gambled more than the latter in the loss frame. Moreover, the gene-behavior association was mediated by resting-state functional connectivity (RSFC) between orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) and bilateral amygdala. Met allele carriers showed decreased RSFC, thereby demonstrating higher susceptibility to framing than Val allele carriers. These findings demonstrate the involvement of COMT Val158Met polymorphism in the framing effect in decision-making and suggest RSFC between OFC and amygdala as a neural mediator underlying this gene-behavior association. Hum Brain Mapp 37:1880-1892, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. COMT Val158Met polymorphism influences the susceptibility to framing in decision-making: OFC-amygdala functional connectivity as a mediator.

    PubMed

    Gao, Xiaoxue; Gong, Pingyuan; Liu, Jinting; Hu, Jie; Li, Yue; Yu, Hongbo; Gong, Xiaoliang; Xiang, Yang; Jiang, Changjun; Zhou, Xiaolin

    2016-05-01

    Individuals tend to avoid risk in a gain frame, in which options are presented in a positive way, but seek risk in a loss frame, in which the same options are presented negatively. Previous studies suggest that emotional responses play a critical role in this "framing effect." Given that the Met allele of COMT Val158Met polymorphism (rs4680) is associated with the negativity bias during emotional processing, this study investigated whether this polymorphism is associated with individual susceptibility to framing and which brain areas mediate this gene-behavior association. Participants were genotyped, scanned in resting state, and completed a monetary gambling task with options (sure vs risky) presented as potential gains or losses. The Met allele carriers showed a greater framing effect than the Val/Val homozygotes as the former gambled more than the latter in the loss frame. Moreover, the gene-behavior association was mediated by resting-state functional connectivity (RSFC) between orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) and bilateral amygdala. Met allele carriers showed decreased RSFC, thereby demonstrating higher susceptibility to framing than Val allele carriers. These findings demonstrate the involvement of COMT Val158Met polymorphism in the framing effect in decision-making and suggest RSFC between OFC and amygdala as a neural mediator underlying this gene-behavior association. Hum Brain Mapp 37:1880-1892, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26917235

  19. Association of the Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met Polymorphism and Anxiety-Related Traits: A Meta-Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Lewina O.; Prescott, Carol A.

    2014-01-01

    Objectives The main goals of this study were: (i) to examine genotypic association of the COMT val158met polymorphism with anxiety-related traits via a meta-analysis; (ii) to examine sex and ethnicity as moderators of the association, and (iii) to evaluate whether the association differed by particular anxiety traits. Methods Association studies of the COMT val18met polymorphism and anxiety traits were identified from the PubMed or PsycInfo databases, conference abstracts and listserv postings. Exclusion criteria were: (a) pediatric samples, (b) exclusively clinical samples, and (c) samples selected for a non-anxiety phenotype. Standardized mean differences in anxiety between genotypes were aggregated to produce mean effect sizes across all available samples, and for subgroups stratified by sex and ethnicity (Caucasians vs. Asians). Construct-specific analysis was conducted to evaluate the association of COMT with neuroticism, harm avoidance, and behavioral inhibition. Results Twenty seven eligible studies (N=15,979) with available data were identified. Overall findings indicate sex-specific and ethnic-specific effects: Val homozygotes had higher neuroticism than Met homozygotes in studies of Caucasian males ( ES¯=0.13, 95%CI: 0.02 – 0.25, p = 0.03), and higher harm avoidance in studies of Asian males ( ES¯=0.43, 95%CI: 0.14 – 0.72, p = 0.004). No significant associations were found in women and effect sizes were diminished when studies were aggregated across ethnicity or anxiety traits. Conclusions: This meta-analysis provides evidence for sex and ethnicity differences in the association of the COMT val158met polymorphism with anxiety traits. Our findings contribute to current knowledge on the relation between prefrontal dopaminergic transmission and anxiety. PMID:24300663

  20. Neonatal pain and COMT Val158Met genotype in relation to serotonin transporter (SLC6A4) promoter methylation in very preterm children at school age

    PubMed Central

    Chau, Cecil M. Y.; Ranger, Manon; Sulistyoningrum, Dian; Devlin, Angela M.; Oberlander, Tim F.; Grunau, Ruth E.

    2014-01-01

    Children born very preterm are exposed to repeated neonatal procedures that induce pain and stress during hospitalization in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). The COMT Val158Met genotype is involved with pain sensitivity, and early life stress is implicated in altered expression of methylation of the serotonin transporter. We examined: (1) whether methylation of the serotonin transporter gene (SLC6A4) promoter differs between very preterm children and full-term controls at school age, (2) relationships with child behavior problems, and (3) whether the extent of neonatal pain exposure interacts with the COMT Val158Met genotype to predict SLC6A4 methylation at 7 years in the very preterm children. We examined the associations between the COMT genotypes, neonatal pain exposure (adjusted for neonatal clinical confounders), SLC6A4 methylation and behavior problems. Very preterm children had significantly higher methylation at 7/10 CpG sites in the SLC6A4 promoter compared to full-term controls at 7 years. Neonatal pain (adjusted for clinical confounders) was significantly associated with total child behavior problems on the Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL) questionnaire (adjusted for concurrent stressors and 5HTTLPR genotype) (p = 0.035). CBCL Total Problems was significantly associated with greater SLC6A4 methylation in very preterm children (p = 0.01). Neonatal pain (adjusted for clinical confounders) and COMT Met/Met genotype were associated with SLC6A4 promoter methylation in very preterm children at 7 years (p = 0.001). These findings provide evidence that both genetic predisposition and early environment need to be considered in understanding susceptibility for developing behavioral problems in this vulnerable population. PMID:25520635

  1. Association of COMT val158met and DRD2 G>T genetic polymorphisms with individual differences in motor learning and performance in female young adults.

    PubMed

    Noohi, Fatemeh; Boyden, Nate B; Kwak, Youngbin; Humfleet, Jennifer; Burke, David T; Müller, Martijn L T M; Bohnen, Nico I; Seidler, Rachael D

    2014-02-01

    Individuals learn new skills at different rates. Given the involvement of corticostriatal pathways in some types of learning, variations in dopaminergic transmission may contribute to these individual differences. Genetic polymorphisms of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) enzyme and dopamine receptor D2 (DRD2) genes partially determine cortical and striatal dopamine availability, respectively. Individuals who are homozygous for the COMT methionine (met) allele show reduced cortical COMT enzymatic activity, resulting in increased dopamine levels in the prefrontal cortex as opposed to individuals who are carriers of the valine (val) allele. DRD2 G-allele homozygotes benefit from a higher striatal dopamine level compared with T-allele carriers. We hypothesized that individuals who are homozygous for COMT met and DRD2 G alleles would show higher rates of motor learning. Seventy-two young healthy females (20 ± 1.9 yr) performed a sensorimotor adaptation task and a motor sequence learning task. A nonparametric mixed model ANOVA revealed that the COMT val-val group demonstrated poorer performance in the sequence learning task compared with the met-met group and showed a learning deficit in the visuomotor adaptation task compared with both met-met and val-met groups. The DRD2 TT group showed poorer performance in the sequence learning task compared with the GT group, but there was no difference between DRD2 genotype groups in adaptation rate. Although these results did not entirely come out as one might predict based on the known contribution of corticostriatal pathways to motor sequence learning, they support the role of genetic polymorphisms of COMT val158met (rs4680) and DRD2 G>T (rs 1076560) in explaining individual differences in motor performance and motor learning, dependent on task type. PMID:24225542

  2. Association of COMT val158met and DRD2 G>T genetic polymorphisms with individual differences in motor learning and performance in female young adults

    PubMed Central

    Boyden, Nate B.; Kwak, Youngbin; Humfleet, Jennifer; Burke, David T.; Müller, Martijn L. T. M.; Bohnen, Nico I.; Seidler, Rachael D.

    2013-01-01

    Individuals learn new skills at different rates. Given the involvement of corticostriatal pathways in some types of learning, variations in dopaminergic transmission may contribute to these individual differences. Genetic polymorphisms of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) enzyme and dopamine receptor D2 (DRD2) genes partially determine cortical and striatal dopamine availability, respectively. Individuals who are homozygous for the COMT methionine (met) allele show reduced cortical COMT enzymatic activity, resulting in increased dopamine levels in the prefrontal cortex as opposed to individuals who are carriers of the valine (val) allele. DRD2 G-allele homozygotes benefit from a higher striatal dopamine level compared with T-allele carriers. We hypothesized that individuals who are homozygous for COMT met and DRD2 G alleles would show higher rates of motor learning. Seventy-two young healthy females (20 ± 1.9 yr) performed a sensorimotor adaptation task and a motor sequence learning task. A nonparametric mixed model ANOVA revealed that the COMT val-val group demonstrated poorer performance in the sequence learning task compared with the met-met group and showed a learning deficit in the visuomotor adaptation task compared with both met-met and val-met groups. The DRD2 TT group showed poorer performance in the sequence learning task compared with the GT group, but there was no difference between DRD2 genotype groups in adaptation rate. Although these results did not entirely come out as one might predict based on the known contribution of corticostriatal pathways to motor sequence learning, they support the role of genetic polymorphisms of COMT val158met (rs4680) and DRD2 G>T (rs 1076560) in explaining individual differences in motor performance and motor learning, dependent on task type. PMID:24225542

  3. Association of COMT val158met and DRD2 G>T genetic polymorphisms with individual differences in motor learning and performance in female young adults.

    PubMed

    Noohi, Fatemeh; Boyden, Nate B; Kwak, Youngbin; Humfleet, Jennifer; Burke, David T; Müller, Martijn L T M; Bohnen, Nico I; Seidler, Rachael D

    2014-02-01

    Individuals learn new skills at different rates. Given the involvement of corticostriatal pathways in some types of learning, variations in dopaminergic transmission may contribute to these individual differences. Genetic polymorphisms of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) enzyme and dopamine receptor D2 (DRD2) genes partially determine cortical and striatal dopamine availability, respectively. Individuals who are homozygous for the COMT methionine (met) allele show reduced cortical COMT enzymatic activity, resulting in increased dopamine levels in the prefrontal cortex as opposed to individuals who are carriers of the valine (val) allele. DRD2 G-allele homozygotes benefit from a higher striatal dopamine level compared with T-allele carriers. We hypothesized that individuals who are homozygous for COMT met and DRD2 G alleles would show higher rates of motor learning. Seventy-two young healthy females (20 ± 1.9 yr) performed a sensorimotor adaptation task and a motor sequence learning task. A nonparametric mixed model ANOVA revealed that the COMT val-val group demonstrated poorer performance in the sequence learning task compared with the met-met group and showed a learning deficit in the visuomotor adaptation task compared with both met-met and val-met groups. The DRD2 TT group showed poorer performance in the sequence learning task compared with the GT group, but there was no difference between DRD2 genotype groups in adaptation rate. Although these results did not entirely come out as one might predict based on the known contribution of corticostriatal pathways to motor sequence learning, they support the role of genetic polymorphisms of COMT val158met (rs4680) and DRD2 G>T (rs 1076560) in explaining individual differences in motor performance and motor learning, dependent on task type.

  4. COMT Val158Met Genotype Selectively Alters Prefrontal [18F]Fallypride Displacement and Subjective Feelings of Stress in Response to a Psychosocial Stress Challenge

    PubMed Central

    Lataster, Johan; Ceccarini, Jenny; Kenis, Gunther; Booij, Linda; Pruessner, Jens; Van Laere, Koen; van Winkel, Ruud; van Os, Jim; Myin-Germeys, Inez

    2013-01-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) plays an essential role in degradation of extracellular dopamine in prefrontal regions of the brain. Although a polymorphism in this gene, COMT Val158Met, affects human behavior in response to stress little is known about its effect on dopaminergic activity associated with the human stress response, which may be of interest for stress-related psychiatric disorders such as psychosis. We aimed to investigate the effect of variations in COMT genotype on in vivo measures of stress-induced prefrontal cortex (PFC) dopaminergic processing and subjective stress responses. A combined sample of healthy controls and healthy first-degree relatives of psychosis patients (n = 26) were subjected to an [18F]fallypride Positron Emission Tomography scan. Psychosocial stress during the scan was induced using the Montreal Imaging Stress Task and subjective stress was assessed every 12 minutes. Parametric t-maps, generated using the linear extension of the simplified reference region model, revealed an effect of COMT genotype on the spatial extent of [18F]fallypride displacement. Detected effects of exposure to psychosocial stress were unilateral and remained restricted to the left superior and right inferior frontal gyrus, with Met-hetero- and homozygotes showing less [18F]fallypride displacement than Val-homozygotes. Additionally, Met-hetero- and homozygotes experienced larger subjective stress responses than Val-homozygotes. The direction of the effects remained the same when the data was analyzed separately for controls and first-degree relatives. The human stress response may be mediated in part by COMT-dependent dopaminergic PFC activity, providing speculation for the neurobiology underlying COMT-dependent differences in human behaviour following stress. Implications of these results for stress-related psychopathology and models of dopaminergic functioning are discussed. PMID:23799032

  5. COMT Val158Met, but not BDNF Val66Met, is associated with white matter abnormalities of the temporal lobe in patients with first-episode, treatment-naïve major depressive disorder: a diffusion tensor imaging study

    PubMed Central

    Hayashi, Kenji; Yoshimura, Reiji; Kakeda, Shingo; Kishi, Taro; Abe, Osamu; Umene-Nakano, Wakako; Katsuki, Asuka; Hori, Hikaru; Ikenouchi-Sugita, Atsuko; Watanabe, Keita; Ide, Satoru; Ueda, Issei; Moriya, Junji; Iwata, Nakao; Korogi, Yukunori; Kubicki, Marek; Nakamura, Jun

    2014-01-01

    We investigated the association between the Val158Met polymorphism of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene, the Val66Met polymorphism of the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) gene, and white matter changes in patients with major depressive disorder (MDD) and healthy subjects using diffusion tensor imaging (DTI). We studied 30 patients with MDD (17 males and 13 females, with mean age ± standard deviation [SD] =44±12 years) and 30 sex- and age-matched healthy controls (17 males and 13 females, aged 44±13 years). Using DTI analysis with a tract-based spatial statistics (TBSS) approach, we investigated the differences in fractional anisotropy, radial diffusivity, and axial diffusivity distribution among the three groups (patients with the COMT gene Val158Met, those with the BDNF gene Val66Met, and the healthy subjects). In a voxel-wise-based group comparison, we found significant decreases in fractional anisotropy and axial diffusivity within the temporal lobe white matter in the Met-carriers with MDD compared with the controls (P<0.05). No correlations in fractional anisotropy, axial diffusivity, or radial diffusivity were observed between the MDD patients and the controls, either among those with the BDNF Val/Val genotype or among the BDNF Met-carriers. These results suggest an association between the COMT gene Val158Met and the white matter abnormalities found in the temporal lobe of patients with MDD. PMID:25061303

  6. Functional COMT Val158Met Polymorphism, Risk of Acute Coronary Events and Serum Homocysteine: The Kuopio Ischaemic Heart Disease Risk Factor Study

    PubMed Central

    Voutilainen, Sari; Tuomainen, Tomi-Pekka; Korhonen, Maarit; Mursu, Jaakko; Virtanen, Jyrki K.; Happonen, Pertti; Alfthan, Georg; Erlund, Iris; North, Kari E.; Mosher, M.J.; Kauhanen, Jussi; Tiihonen, Jari; Kaplan, George A.; Salonen, Jukka T.

    2007-01-01

    Background The role of circulating levels of total homocysteine tHcy in the development of coronary heart disease (CHD) is still under debate. One reason for conflicting results between previous studies on homocysteine and heart diseases could be consequence of different interactions between homocysteine and genes in different study populations. Many genetic factors play a role in folate-homocysteine metabolism, like functional polymorphism (Val108Met) in the Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene. Methodology and Findings Our aim was to examine the role of COMT Val158Met polymorphism and interaction of this polymorphism with serum tHcy and folate concentration on the risk of acute coronary and events in middle-aged men from eastern Finland. A population-based prospective cohort of 792 men aged 46–64 years was examined as part of the Kuopio Ischaemic Heart Disease Risk Factor Study. During an average follow-up of 9.3 years, there were 69 acute coronary events in men with no previous history of CHD. When comparing the COMT low activity genotype with the others, we found an age and examination year adjusted hazard rate ratio (HRR) of 1.73 (95% confidence interval (CI), 1.07–2.79), and an age, examination year, serum LDL and HDL cholesterol, and triglyceride concentration, systolic blood pressure and smoking adjusted HRR of 1.77 (95% CI, 1.05–2.77). Although serum tHcy concentration was not statistically significantly associated with acute coronary events (HRR for the highest third versus others 1.52, 95% CI, 0.93–2.49), subjects with both high serum tHcy and the COMT low activity genotype had an additionally increased adjusted risk of HRR 2.94 (95% CI 1.50–5.76) as compared with other men. Conclusions This prospective cohort study suggests that the functional COMT Val158Met polymorphism is associated with increased risk of acute coronary events and it may interact with high serum tHcy levels. PMID:17264883

  7. Differential influence of 5-HTTLPR - polymorphism and COMT Val158Met - polymorphism on emotion perception and regulation in healthy women.

    PubMed

    Weiss, Elisabeth M; Freudenthaler, H Harald; Fink, Andreas; Reiser, Eva M; Niederstätter, Harald; Nagl, Simone; Parson, Walther; Papousek, Ilona

    2014-05-01

    Converging evidence indicates that a considerable amount of variance in self-estimated emotional competency can be directly attributed to genetic factors. The current study examined the associations between the polymorphisms of the Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT Met158Val) and the serotonin transporter (5-HTTLPR) and specific measures of the self-estimated effectiveness of an individual's emotion perception and regulation. Emotional competence was measured in a large sample of 289 healthy women by using the Self-report Emotional Ability Scale (SEAS), which includes two subscales for the assessment of emotion perception and regulation in the intra-personal domain and two subscales for the assessment of emotion perception and regulation in the inter-personal domain. Participants' reports of effective emotion regulation in everyday life were associated with the COMT Met-allele, with women homozygous for the Val-allele scoring lowest on this scale. Self-estimated effectiveness of emotion perception of the individual's own emotions was related to the 5-HTTLPR. Both homozygous groups (s/s and l/l) rated their intra-personal emotion perception less effective than participants in the heterozygous s/l group. Taken together, the results indicate that genetic variants of the COMT and 5HTTLPR genes are differentially associated with specific measures of the self-estimated effectiveness of an individual's emotion perception and regulation in the intra-personal domain.

  8. COMT Val(158)Met and 5HTTLPR functional loci interact to predict persistence of anxiety across adolescence: results from the Victorian Adolescent Health Cohort Study.

    PubMed

    Olsson, C A; Byrnes, G B; Anney, R J L; Collins, V; Hemphill, S A; Williamson, R; Patton, G C

    2007-10-01

    We investigated whether a composite genetic factor, based on the combined actions of catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) (Val(158)Met) and serotonin transporter (5HTTLPR) (Long-Short) functional loci, has a greater capacity to predict persistence of anxiety across adolescence than either locus in isolation. Analyses were performed on DNA collected from 962 young Australians participating in an eight-wave longitudinal study of mental health and well-being (Victorian Adolescent Health Cohort Study). When the effects of each locus were examined separately, small dose-response reductions in the odds of reporting persisting generalized (free-floating) anxiety across adolescence were observed for the COMT Met(158) [odds ratio (OR) = 0.85, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 0.76-0.95, P = 0.004] and 5HTTLPR Short alleles (OR = 0.88, CI = 0.79-0.99, P = 0.033). There was no evidence for a dose-response interaction effect between loci. However, there was a double-recessive interaction effect in which the odds of reporting persisting generalized anxiety were more than twofold reduced (OR = 0.45, CI = 0.29-0.70, P < 0.001) among carriers homozygous for both the COMT Met(158) and the 5HTTLPR Short alleles (Met(158)Met + Short-Short) compared with the remaining cohort. The double-recessive effect remained after multivariate adjustment for a range of psychosocial predictors of anxiety. Exploratory stratified analyses suggested that genetic protection may be more pronounced under conditions of high stress (insecure attachments and sexual abuse), although strata differences did not reach statistical significance. By describing the interaction between genetic loci, it may be possible to describe composite genetic factors that have a more substantial impact on psychosocial development than individual loci alone, and in doing so, enhance understanding of the contribution of constitutional processes in mental health outcomes. PMID:17504250

  9. Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene variants: possible association of the Val158Met variant with opiate addiction in Hispanic women.

    PubMed

    Oosterhuis, Bronson E; LaForge, K Steven; Proudnikov, Dmitri; Ho, Ann; Nielsen, David A; Gianotti, Robert; Barral, Sandra; Gordon, Derek; Leal, Suzanne M; Ott, Jurg; Kreek, Mary Jeanne

    2008-09-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) catalyzes the breakdown of catechol neurotransmitters, including dopamine, which plays a prominent role in drug reward. A common single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP), G472A, codes for a Val158Met substitution and results in a fourfold down regulation of enzyme activity. We sequenced exon IV of COMT gene in search for novel polymorphisms and then genotyped four out of five identified by direct sequencing, using TaqMan assay on 266 opioid-dependent and 173 control subjects. Genotype frequencies of the G472A SNP varied significantly (P = 0.029) among the three main ethnic/cultural groups (Caucasians, Hispanics, and African Americans). Using a genotype test, we found a trend to point-wise association (P = 0.053) of the G472A SNP in Hispanic subjects with opiate addiction. Further analysis of G472A genotypes in Hispanic subjects with data stratified by gender identified a point-wise significant (P = 0.049) association of G/A and A/A genotypes with opiate addiction in women, but not men. These point-wise significant results are not significant experiment-wise (at P < 0.05) after correction for multiple testing. No significant association was found with haplotypes of the three most common SNPs. Linkage disequilibrium patterns were similar for the three ethnic/cultural groups.

  10. White matter alterations related to attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder and COMT val158met polymorphism: children with valine homozygote attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder have altered white matter connectivity in the right cingulum (cingulate gyrus)

    PubMed Central

    Kabukcu Basay, Burge; Buber, Ahmet; Basay, Omer; Alacam, Huseyin; Ozturk, Onder; Suren, Serkan; Izci Ay, Ozlem; Acikel, Cengizhan; Agladıoglu, Kadir; Erdal, Mehmet Emin; Ercan, Eyup Sabri; Herken, Hasan

    2016-01-01

    Introduction In this article, the COMT gene val158met polymorphism and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)-related differences in diffusion-tensor-imaging-measured white matter (WM) structure in children with ADHD and controls were investigated. Patients and methods A total of 71 children diagnosed with ADHD and 24 controls aged 8–15 years were recruited. Using diffusion tensor imaging, COMT polymorphism and ADHD-related WM alterations were investigated, and any interaction effect between the COMT polymorphism and ADHD was also examined. The effects of age, sex, and estimated total IQ were controlled by multivariate analysis of covariance (MANCOVA). Results First, an interaction between the COMT val158met polymorphism and ADHD in the right (R) cingulum (cingulate gyrus) (CGC) was found. According to this, valine (val) homozygote ADHD-diagnosed children had significantly lower fractional anisotropy (FA) and higher radial diffusivity (RD) in the R-CGC than ADHD-diagnosed methionine (met) carriers, and val homozygote controls had higher FA and lower RD in the R-CGC than val homozygote ADHD patients. Second, met carriers had higher FA and axial diffusivity in the left (L)-uncinate fasciculus and lower RD in the L-posterior corona radiata and L-posterior thalamic radiation (include optic radiation) than the val homozygotes, independent of ADHD diagnosis. Third, children with ADHD had lower FA in the L-CGC and R-retrolenticular part of the internal capsule than the controls, independent of the COMT polymorphism. Conclusion Significant differences reported here may be evidence that the COMT gene val158met polymorphism variants, as well as ADHD, could affect brain development. ADHD and the COMT polymorphism might be interactively affecting WM development in the R-CGC to alter the WM connectivity in children with val homozygote ADHD. PMID:27143897

  11. Association of COMT (Val158Met) and BDNF (Val66Met) Gene Polymorphisms with Anxiety, ADHD and Tics in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gadow, Kenneth D.; Roohi, Jasmin; Devincent, Carla J.; Kirsch, Sarah; Hatchwell, Eli

    2009-01-01

    The aim of the study is to examine rs4680 ("COMT") and rs6265 ("BDNF") as genetic markers of anxiety, ADHD, and tics. Parents and teachers completed a DSM-IV-referenced rating scale for a total sample of 67 children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Both "COMT" (p = 0.06) and "BDNF" (p = 0.07) genotypes were marginally significant for teacher…

  12. The Effect of Single Dose Methylphenidate on Neurometabolites according to COMT Gene Val158Met Polymorphism in the Patient with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: A Study Using Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy

    PubMed Central

    Ozturk, Onder; Alacam, Huseyin; Basay, Burge Kabukcu; Basay, Omer; Buber, Ahmet; Ay, Ozlem Izci; Agladıoglu, Kadir; Erdal, Mehmet Emin; Herken, Hasan

    2016-01-01

    Objective Attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a common neurodevelopmental disorder. Thus, the present study aimed to determine the effects of a single dose of methylphenidate (Mph) on neurometabolite levels according to polymorphisms of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene. Methods This study evaluated the neurometabolite levels including N-acetylaspartate (NAA), creatine (Cr), and choline (Cho) of ADHD patients, before and after treatment with Mph (10 mg) according to the presence of COMT polymorphisms. The spectra were obtained from the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), cerebellum, and striatum. Results The NAA levels of the val/val and val genotype carriers (val/val and val/met genotypes) increased in the DLPFC and ACC, respectively, following Mph treatment. The NAA/Cr ratio was lower in the DLPFC of val carriers than in the met/met genotype carriers prior to Mph administration. The Cho levels of the val/met genotype and val carriers increased in the striatum following Mph treatment. Following Mph treatment, the Cr levels of the met/met genotype carriers were higher than those of the val/met genotype and val carriers. Additionally, after Mph treatment, there was a significant increase in Cr levels in the DLPFC of the met/met genotype carriers but a significant decrease in such levels in the striatum of val/val genotype carriers. Conclusion These findings suggest that polymorphisms of the COMT gene can account for individual differences in neuro-chemical responses to Mph among ADHD patients. Therefore, further studies are needed to fully characterize the effects of the Val158met polymorphism of the COMT gene on treatment outcomes in patients with ADHD. PMID:27121430

  13. Catechol-O-Methyltransferase val158met Polymorphism Predicts Placebo Effect in Irritable Bowel Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Hall, Kathryn T.; Lembo, Anthony J.; Kirsch, Irving; Ziogas, Dimitrios C.; Douaiher, Jeffrey; Jensen, Karin B.; Conboy, Lisa A.; Kelley, John M.; Kokkotou, Efi; Kaptchuk, Ted J.

    2012-01-01

    Identifying patients who are potential placebo responders has major implications for clinical practice and trial design. Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), an important enzyme in dopamine catabolism plays a key role in processes associated with the placebo effect such as reward, pain, memory and learning. We hypothesized that the COMT functional val158met polymorphism, was a predictor of placebo effects and tested our hypothesis in a subset of 104 patients from a previously reported randomized controlled trial in irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). The three treatment arms from this study were: no-treatment (“waitlist”), placebo treatment alone (“limited”) and, placebo treatment “augmented” with a supportive patient-health care provider interaction. The primary outcome measure was change from baseline in IBS-Symptom Severity Scale (IBS-SSS) after three weeks of treatment. In a regression model, the number of methionine alleles in COMT val158met was linearly related to placebo response as measured by changes in IBS-SSS (p = .035). The strongest placebo response occurred in met/met homozygotes treated in the augmented placebo arm. A smaller met/met associated effect was observed with limited placebo treatment and there was no effect in the waitlist control. These data support our hypothesis that the COMT val158met polymorphism is a potential biomarker of placebo response. PMID:23110189

  14. The Role of the Catechol-o-methyltransferase (COMT) Gene Val158Met in Aggressive Behavior, A Review of Genetic Studies

    PubMed Central

    Qayyum, Arqam; Zai, Clement C.; Hirata, Yuko; Tiwari, Arun K.; Cheema, Sheraz; Nowrouzi, Behdin; Beitchman, Joseph H.; Kennedy, James L.

    2015-01-01

    Aggressive behaviors have become a major public health problem, and early-onset aggression can lead to outcomes such as substance abuse, antisocial personality disorder among other issues. In recent years, there has been an increase in research in the molecular and genetic underpinnings of aggressive behavior, and one of the candidate genes codes for the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT). COMT is involved in catabolizing catecholamines such as dopamine. These neurotransmitters appear to be involved in regulating mood which can contribute to aggression. The most common gene variant studied in the COMT gene is the Valine (Val) to Methionine (Met) substitution at codon 158. We will be reviewing the current literature on this gene variant in aggressive behavior. PMID:26630958

  15. The role of maternal stress during pregnancy, maternal discipline, and child COMT Val158Met genotype in the development of compliance.

    PubMed

    Kok, Rianne; Bakermans-Kranenburg, Marian J; van Ijzendoorn, Marinus H; Velders, Fleur P; Linting, Mariëlle; Jaddoe, Vincent W V; Hofman, Albert; Verhulst, Frank C; Tiemeier, Henning

    2013-07-01

    Maternal discipline is an important predictor of child committed compliance. Maternal stress can affect both parenting and child development. In a large population-based cohort study (N = 613) we examined whether maternal discipline mediated the association between maternal stress during pregnancy and child compliance, and whether COMT or DRD4 polymorphisms moderated the association between maternal discipline and child compliance. Family-related and general stress were measured through maternal self-report and genetic material was collected through cord blood sampling at birth. Mother-child dyads were observed at 36 months in disciplinary tasks in which the child was not allowed to touch attractive toys. Maternal discipline and child compliance were observed in two different tasks and independently coded. The association between family stress during pregnancy and child committed compliance was mediated by maternal positive discipline. Children with more COMT Met alleles seemed more susceptible to maternal positive discipline than children with more COMT Val alleles.

  16. Association of COMT (Val158Met) and BDNF (Val66Met) gene polymorphisms with anxiety, ADHD and tics in children with autism spectrum disorder.

    PubMed

    Gadow, Kenneth D; Roohi, Jasmin; DeVincent, Carla J; Kirsch, Sarah; Hatchwell, Eli

    2009-11-01

    The aim of the study is to examine rs4680 (COMT) and rs6265 (BDNF) as genetic markers of anxiety, ADHD, and tics. Parents and teachers completed a DSM-IV-referenced rating scale for a total sample of 67 children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Both COMT (p = 0.06) and BDNF (p = 0.07) genotypes were marginally significant for teacher ratings of social phobia (etap (2) = 0.06). Analyses also indicated associations of BDNF genotype with parent-rated ADHD (p = 0.01, etap (2) = 0.10) and teacher-rated tics (p = 0.04; etap (2) = 0.07). There was also evidence of a possible interaction (p = 0.02, etap (2) = 0.09) of BDNF genotype with DAT1 3' VNTR with tic severity. BDNF and COMT may be biomarkers for phenotypic variation in ASD, but these preliminary findings remain tentative pending replication with larger, independent samples.

  17. Differences in 4-hydroxyestradiol levels in leukocytes are related to CYP1A1(∗)2C, CYP1B1(∗)3 and COMT Val158Met allelic variants.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Ramírez, O C; Pérez-Morales, R; Petrosyan, P; Castro-Hernández, C; Gonsebatt, M E; Rubio, J

    2015-10-01

    Exposure to estrogen and its metabolites, including catechol estrogens (CEs) and catechol estrogen quinones (CE-Qs) is closely related to breast cancer. Polymorphisms of the genes involved in the catechol estrogens metabolism pathway (CEMP) have been shown to affect the production of CEs and CE-Qs. In this study, we measured the induction of CYP1A1, CYP1B1, COMT, and GSTP1 by 17β-estradiol (17β-E2) in leukocytes with CYP1A1(∗)2C, CYP1B1(∗)3, COMT Val158Met and GSTP1 Ile105Val polymorphisms by semi quantitative RT-PCR and compared the values to those of leukocytes with wild type alleles; we also compared the differences in formation of 4- hydroxyestradiol (4-OHE2) and DNA-adducts. The data show that in the leukocytes with mutant alleles treatment with 17β-E2 up-regulates CYP1A1 and CYP1B1 and down-regulates COMT mRNA levels, resulting in major increments in 4-OHE2 levels compared to leukocytes with wild-type alleles. Therefore, we propose induction levels of gene expression and intracellular 4-OHE2 concentrations associated with allelic variants in response to exposure of 17β-E2 as a noninvasive biomarker that can help determine the risk of developing non-hereditary breast cancer in women. PMID:26123186

  18. Association between the catechol-o-methyltransferase val158met polymorphism with susceptibility and severity of carpal tunnel syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Eroğlu, P; Görükmez, O; Özemri Sağ, Ş; Yakut, T

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) is the most common entrapment neuropathy of the upper extremity. In this study, we aimed to clarify the relationships between the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene Val158Met (rs4680) polymorphism and development, functional and clinical status of CTS. Ninety-five women with electro diagnostically confirmed CTS and 95 healthy controls were enrolled in the study. The functional and clinical status of the patients was measured by the Turkish version of the Boston Questionnaire and intensity of pain related to the past 2 weeks was evaluated on a visual analog scale (VAS). The Val158Met polymorphism was determined using the polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP), method. We divided patients according to the genotypes of the Val158Met polymorphism as Val/Val, Val/Met and Met/Met. There were not any significant differences in terms of Val158Met polymorphisms between patients and healthy controls (p >0.05). We also did not find any relationships between the Val158Met polymorphism and CTS (p >0.05). In conclusion, although we did not find any relationships between CTS and the Val158Met polymorphism, we could not generalize this result to the general population. Future studies are warranted to conclude precise associations.

  19. Cathecol-O-methyl transferase Val158Met genotype is not a risk factor for conversion disorder.

    PubMed

    Armagan, E; Almacıoglu, M L; Yakut, T; Köse, A; Karkucak, M; Köksal, O; Görükmez, O

    2013-03-19

    Alterations in catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) activity are involved in various types of neurological disorders. We examined a possible association between the COMT Val158Met polymorphism and conversion disorder in a study of 48 patients with conversion disorder and 48 control patients. In the conversion disorder group, 31 patients were Val/Met heterozygotes, 15 patients were Val/Val homozygotes and 2 patients were Met/Met homozygotes. In the control group, 32 patients were Val/Met heterozygotes and 16 patients were Val/Val homozygotes. There was no significant difference between the groups. We conclude that the COMT Val158Met genotype is quite common in Turkey and that it is not a risk factor for conversion disorder in the Turkish population.

  20. Predictors of heroin relapse: Personality traits, impulsivity, COMT gene Val158met polymorphism in a 5-year prospective study in Shanghai, China.

    PubMed

    Su, Hang; Li, Zhibin; Du, Jiang; Jiang, Haifeng; Chen, Zhikang; Sun, Haiming; Zhao, Min

    2015-12-01

    Relapse is a typical feature of heroin addiction and rooted in genetic and psychological determinants. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of personality traits, impulsivity, and COMT gene polymorphism (rs4680) on relapse to heroin use during 5-year follow up. 564 heroin dependent patients were enrolled in compulsory drug rehabilitation center. 12 months prior to their release, personality traits were measured by BIS-11 (Barratt Impulsiveness Scale-11) and Temperament and Character Inventory (TCI). The COMT gene rs4680 polymorphism was genotyped using a DNA sequence detection system. The heroin use status was evaluated for 5 years after discharged. Among the 564 heroin-dependent patients, 500 were followed for 5 years after discharge and 53.0% (n = 265) were considered as relapsed to heroin use according to a strict monitor system. Univariate analysis showed that age, having ever been in methadone maintenance treatment (MMT), the total scores and non-planning scores of BIS-11, and the COMT rs4680 gene variants were different between relapse and abstinent groups. Logistic regression analysis showed higher BIS total score, having ever been in MMT and younger first heroin use age are the predictors of relapse to heroin use during 5 years follow-up, and the COMT rs4680 gene had an interaction with BIS scores. Our findings indicated that the impulsive personality traits, methadone use history, and onset age could predict relapse in heroin-dependent patients during 5 year's follow up. The COMT gene showed a moderational effect in part the relationship of impulsivity with heroin relapse.

  1. Predictors of heroin relapse: Personality traits, impulsivity, COMT gene Val158met polymorphism in a 5-year prospective study in Shanghai, China.

    PubMed

    Su, Hang; Li, Zhibin; Du, Jiang; Jiang, Haifeng; Chen, Zhikang; Sun, Haiming; Zhao, Min

    2015-12-01

    Relapse is a typical feature of heroin addiction and rooted in genetic and psychological determinants. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of personality traits, impulsivity, and COMT gene polymorphism (rs4680) on relapse to heroin use during 5-year follow up. 564 heroin dependent patients were enrolled in compulsory drug rehabilitation center. 12 months prior to their release, personality traits were measured by BIS-11 (Barratt Impulsiveness Scale-11) and Temperament and Character Inventory (TCI). The COMT gene rs4680 polymorphism was genotyped using a DNA sequence detection system. The heroin use status was evaluated for 5 years after discharged. Among the 564 heroin-dependent patients, 500 were followed for 5 years after discharge and 53.0% (n = 265) were considered as relapsed to heroin use according to a strict monitor system. Univariate analysis showed that age, having ever been in methadone maintenance treatment (MMT), the total scores and non-planning scores of BIS-11, and the COMT rs4680 gene variants were different between relapse and abstinent groups. Logistic regression analysis showed higher BIS total score, having ever been in MMT and younger first heroin use age are the predictors of relapse to heroin use during 5 years follow-up, and the COMT rs4680 gene had an interaction with BIS scores. Our findings indicated that the impulsive personality traits, methadone use history, and onset age could predict relapse in heroin-dependent patients during 5 year's follow up. The COMT gene showed a moderational effect in part the relationship of impulsivity with heroin relapse. PMID:26345603

  2. Catechol-O-methyltransferase val(158)met Polymorphism Interacts with Sex to Affect Face Recognition Ability.

    PubMed

    Lamb, Yvette N; McKay, Nicole S; Singh, Shrimal S; Waldie, Karen E; Kirk, Ian J

    2016-01-01

    The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) val158met polymorphism affects the breakdown of synaptic dopamine. Consequently, this polymorphism has been associated with a variety of neurophysiological and behavioral outcomes. Some of the effects have been found to be sex-specific and it appears estrogen may act to down-regulate the activity of the COMT enzyme. The dopaminergic system has been implicated in face recognition, a form of cognition for which a female advantage has typically been reported. This study aimed to investigate potential joint effects of sex and COMT genotype on face recognition. A sample of 142 university students was genotyped and assessed using the Faces I subtest of the Wechsler Memory Scale - Third Edition (WMS-III). A significant two-way interaction between sex and COMT genotype on face recognition performance was found. Of the male participants, COMT val homozygotes and heterozygotes had significantly lower scores than met homozygotes. Scores did not differ between genotypes for female participants. While male val homozygotes had significantly lower scores than female val homozygotes, no sex differences were observed in the heterozygotes and met homozygotes. This study contributes to the accumulating literature documenting sex-specific effects of the COMT polymorphism by demonstrating a COMT-sex interaction for face recognition, and is consistent with a role for dopamine in face recognition. PMID:27445927

  3. Catechol-O-methyltransferase val158met Polymorphism Interacts with Sex to Affect Face Recognition Ability

    PubMed Central

    Lamb, Yvette N.; McKay, Nicole S.; Singh, Shrimal S.; Waldie, Karen E.; Kirk, Ian J.

    2016-01-01

    The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) val158met polymorphism affects the breakdown of synaptic dopamine. Consequently, this polymorphism has been associated with a variety of neurophysiological and behavioral outcomes. Some of the effects have been found to be sex-specific and it appears estrogen may act to down-regulate the activity of the COMT enzyme. The dopaminergic system has been implicated in face recognition, a form of cognition for which a female advantage has typically been reported. This study aimed to investigate potential joint effects of sex and COMT genotype on face recognition. A sample of 142 university students was genotyped and assessed using the Faces I subtest of the Wechsler Memory Scale – Third Edition (WMS-III). A significant two-way interaction between sex and COMT genotype on face recognition performance was found. Of the male participants, COMT val homozygotes and heterozygotes had significantly lower scores than met homozygotes. Scores did not differ between genotypes for female participants. While male val homozygotes had significantly lower scores than female val homozygotes, no sex differences were observed in the heterozygotes and met homozygotes. This study contributes to the accumulating literature documenting sex-specific effects of the COMT polymorphism by demonstrating a COMT-sex interaction for face recognition, and is consistent with a role for dopamine in face recognition. PMID:27445927

  4. Catechol O-methyltransferase Val158Met polymorphism is associated with cognitive performance in nondemented adults.

    PubMed

    de Frias, Cindy M; Annerbrink, Kristina; Westberg, Lars; Eriksson, Elias; Adolfsson, Rolf; Nilsson, Lars-Göran

    2005-07-01

    The catechol O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene is essential in the metabolic degradation of dopamine in the prefrontal cortex. In the present study, we examined the effect of a Val158Met polymorphism in the COMT gene on individual differences and changes in cognition (executive functions and visuospatial ability) in adulthood and old age. The participants were 292 nondemented men (initially aged 35-85 years) from a random sample of the population (i.e., the Betula study) tested at two occasions with a 5-year interval. Confirmatory factor analyses were used to test the underlying structure of three indicators of executive functions (verbal fluency, working memory, and Tower of Hanoi). Associations between COMT, age, executive functioning, and visuospatial (block design) tasks were examined using repeated-measures analyses of variance. Carriers of the Val allele (with higher enzyme activity) compared with carriers of the Met/Met genotype (with low enzyme activity) performed worse on executive functioning and visuospatial tasks. Individuals with the Val/Val genotype declined in executive functioning over the 5-year period, whereas carriers of the Met allele remained stable in performance. An Age x COMT interaction for visuospatial ability located the effect for middle-aged men only. This COMT polymorphism is a plausible candidate gene for executive functioning and fluid intelligence in nondemented middle-aged and older adults. PMID:16102234

  5. Catechol-O-Methyltransferase Val158Met Polymorphism Associates with Individual Differences in Sleep Physiologic Responses to Chronic Sleep Loss

    PubMed Central

    Goel, Namni; Banks, Siobhan; Lin, Ling; Mignot, Emmanuel; Dinges, David F.

    2011-01-01

    Background The COMT Val158Met polymorphism modulates cortical dopaminergic catabolism, and predicts individual differences in prefrontal executive functioning in healthy adults and schizophrenic patients, and associates with EEG differences during sleep loss. We assessed whether the COMT Val158Met polymorphism was a novel marker in healthy adults of differential vulnerability to chronic partial sleep deprivation (PSD), a condition distinct from total sleep loss and one experienced by millions on a daily and persistent basis. Methodology/Principal Findings 20 Met/Met, 64 Val/Met, and 45 Val/Val subjects participated in a protocol of two baseline 10h time in bed (TIB) nights followed by five consecutive 4 h TIB nights. Met/Met subjects showed differentially steeper declines in non-REM EEG slow-wave energy (SWE)—the putative homeostatic marker of sleep drive—during PSD, despite comparable baseline SWE declines. Val/Val subjects showed differentially smaller increases in slow-wave sleep and smaller reductions in stage 2 sleep during PSD, and had more stage 1 sleep across nights and a shorter baseline REM sleep latency. The genotypes, however, did not differ in performance across various executive function and cognitive tasks and showed comparable increases in subjective and physiological sleepiness in response to chronic sleep loss. Met/Met genotypic and Met allelic frequencies were higher in whites than African Americans. Conclusions/Significance The COMT Val158Met polymorphism may be a genetic biomarker for predicting individual differences in sleep physiology—but not in cognitive and executive functioning—resulting from sleep loss in a healthy, racially-diverse adult population of men and women. Beyond healthy sleepers, our results may also provide insight for predicting sleep loss responses in patients with schizophrenia and other psychiatric disorders, since these groups repeatedly experience chronically-curtailed sleep and demonstrate COMT

  6. Affect-modulated startle: interactive influence of catechol-O-methyltransferase Val158Met genotype and childhood trauma.

    PubMed

    Klauke, Benedikt; Winter, Bernward; Gajewska, Agnes; Zwanzger, Peter; Reif, Andreas; Herrmann, Martin J; Dlugos, Andrea; Warrings, Bodo; Jacob, Christian; Mühlberger, Andreas; Arolt, Volker; Pauli, Paul; Deckert, Jürgen; Domschke, Katharina

    2012-01-01

    The etiology of emotion-related disorders such as anxiety or affective disorders is considered to be complex with an interaction of biological and environmental factors. Particular evidence has accumulated for alterations in the dopaminergic and noradrenergic system--partly conferred by catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene variation--for the adenosinergic system as well as for early life trauma to constitute risk factors for those conditions. Applying a multi-level approach, in a sample of 95 healthy adults, we investigated effects of the functional COMT Val158Met polymorphism, caffeine as an adenosine A2A receptor antagonist (300 mg in a placebo-controlled intervention design) and childhood maltreatment (CTQ) as well as their interaction on the affect-modulated startle response as a neurobiologically founded defensive reflex potentially related to fear- and distress-related disorders. COMT val/val genotype significantly increased startle magnitude in response to unpleasant stimuli, while met/met homozygotes showed a blunted startle response to aversive pictures. Furthermore, significant gene-environment interaction of COMT Val158Met genotype with CTQ was discerned with more maltreatment being associated with higher startle potentiation in val/val subjects but not in met carriers. No main effect of or interaction effects with caffeine were observed. Results indicate a main as well as a GxE effect of the COMT Val158Met variant and childhood maltreatment on the affect-modulated startle reflex, supporting a complex pathogenetic model of the affect-modulated startle reflex as a basic neurobiological defensive reflex potentially related to anxiety and affective disorders.

  7. Affect-Modulated Startle: Interactive Influence of Catechol-O-Methyltransferase Val158Met Genotype and Childhood Trauma

    PubMed Central

    Klauke, Benedikt; Winter, Bernward; Gajewska, Agnes; Zwanzger, Peter; Reif, Andreas; Herrmann, Martin J.; Dlugos, Andrea; Warrings, Bodo; Jacob, Christian; Mühlberger, Andreas; Arolt, Volker; Pauli, Paul; Deckert, Jürgen; Domschke, Katharina

    2012-01-01

    The etiology of emotion-related disorders such as anxiety or affective disorders is considered to be complex with an interaction of biological and environmental factors. Particular evidence has accumulated for alterations in the dopaminergic and noradrenergic system – partly conferred by catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene variation – for the adenosinergic system as well as for early life trauma to constitute risk factors for those conditions. Applying a multi-level approach, in a sample of 95 healthy adults, we investigated effects of the functional COMT Val158Met polymorphism, caffeine as an adenosine A2A receptor antagonist (300 mg in a placebo-controlled intervention design) and childhood maltreatment (CTQ) as well as their interaction on the affect-modulated startle response as a neurobiologically founded defensive reflex potentially related to fear- and distress-related disorders. COMT val/val genotype significantly increased startle magnitude in response to unpleasant stimuli, while met/met homozygotes showed a blunted startle response to aversive pictures. Furthermore, significant gene-environment interaction of COMT Val158Met genotype with CTQ was discerned with more maltreatment being associated with higher startle potentiation in val/val subjects but not in met carriers. No main effect of or interaction effects with caffeine were observed. Results indicate a main as well as a GxE effect of the COMT Val158Met variant and childhood maltreatment on the affect-modulated startle reflex, supporting a complex pathogenetic model of the affect-modulated startle reflex as a basic neurobiological defensive reflex potentially related to anxiety and affective disorders. PMID:22745815

  8. Catechol-O-Methyltransferase Val158Met Polymorphism and Clinical Response to Antipsychotic Treatment in Schizophrenia and Schizo-Affective Disorder Patients: a Meta-Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Eric; Zai, Clement C.; Lisoway, Amanda; Maciukiewicz, Malgorzata; Felsky, Daniel; Tiwari, Arun K.; Bishop, Jeffrey R.; Ikeda, Masashi; Molero, Patricio; Ortuno, Felipe; Porcelli, Stefano; Samochowiec, Jerzy; Mierzejewski, Pawel; Gao, Shugui; Crespo-Facorro, Benedicto; Pelayo-Terán, José M; Kaur, Harpreet; Kukreti, Ritushree; Meltzer, Herbert Y.; Lieberman, Jeffrey A.; Potkin, Steven G.; Müller, Daniel J.

    2016-01-01

    Background: The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) enzyme plays a crucial role in dopamine degradation, and the COMT Val158Met polymorphism (rs4680) is associated with significant differences in enzymatic activity and consequently dopamine concentrations in the prefrontal cortex. Multiple studies have analyzed the COMT Val158Met variant in relation to antipsychotic response. Here, we conducted a meta-analysis examining the relationship between COMT Val158Met and antipsychotic response. Methods: Searches using PubMed, Web of Science, and PsycInfo databases (03/01/2015) yielded 23 studies investigating COMT Val158Met variation and antipsychotic response in schizophrenia and schizo-affective disorder. Responders/nonresponders were defined using each study’s original criteria. If no binary response definition was used, authors were asked to define response according to at least 30% Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale score reduction (or equivalent in other scales). Analysis was conducted under a fixed-effects model. Results: Ten studies met inclusion criteria for the meta-analysis. Five additional antipsychotic-treated samples were analyzed for Val158Met and response and included in the meta-analysis (ntotal=1416). Met/Met individuals were significantly more likely to respond than Val-carriers (P=.039, ORMet/Met=1.37, 95% CI: 1.02–1.85). Met/Met patients also experienced significantly greater improvement in positive symptoms relative to Val-carriers (P=.030, SMD=0.24, 95% CI: 0.024–0.46). Posthoc analyses on patients treated with atypical antipsychotics (n=1207) showed that Met/Met patients were significantly more likely to respond relative to Val-carriers (P=.0098, ORMet/Met=1.54, 95% CI: 1.11–2.14), while no difference was observed for typical-antipsychotic-treated patients (n=155) (P=.65). Conclusions: Our findings suggest that the COMT Val158Met polymorphism is associated with response to antipsychotics in schizophrenia and schizo-affective disorder

  9. Differential Effects of the Catechol-O-Methyltransferase Val158Met Genotype on the Cognitive Function of Schizophrenia Patients and Healthy Japanese Individuals

    PubMed Central

    Tsuchimine, Shoko; Yasui-Furukori, Norio; Kaneda, Ayako; Kaneko, Sunao

    2013-01-01

    Background The functional polymorphism Val158Met in the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene has been associated with differences in prefrontal cognitive functions in patients with schizophrenia and healthy individuals. Several studies have indicated that the Met allele is associated with better performance on measures of cognitive function. We investigated whether the COMT Val158Met genotype was associated with cognitive function in 149 healthy controls and 118 patients with schizophrenia. Methods Cognitive function, including verbal memory, working memory, motor speed, attention, executive function and verbal fluency, was assessed by the Brief Assessment of Cognition in Schizophrenia (BACS-J). We employed a one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) and a multiple regression analysis to determine the associations between the COMT Val158Met genotype and the BACS-J measurements. Results The one-way ANOVA revealed a significant difference in the scores on the Tower of London, a measure of executive function, between the different Val158Met genotypes in the healthy controls (p = 0.023), and a post-hoc analysis showed significant differences between the scores on the Tower of London in the val/val genotype group (18.6 ± 2.4) compared to the other two groups (17.6 ± 2.7 for val/met and 17.1 ± 3.2 for met/met; p = 0.027 and p = 0.024, respectively). Multiple regression analyses revealed that executive function was significantly correlated with the Val158Met genotype (p = 0.003). However, no evidence was found for an effect of the COMT on any cognitive domains of the BACS-J in the patients with schizophrenia. Conclusion These data support the hypothesis that the COMT Val158Met genotype maintains an optimal level of dopamine activity. Further studies should be performed that include a larger sample size and include patients on and off medication, as these patients would help to confirm our findings. PMID:24282499

  10. The Influence of the Val158Met Catechol-O-Methyltransferase Polymorphism on the Personality Traits of Bipolar Patients

    PubMed Central

    Dávila, Wendy; Basterreche, Nieves; Arrue, Aurora; Zamalloa, María I.; Gordo, Estíbaliz; Dávila, Ricardo; González-Torres, Miguel A.; Zumárraga, Mercedes

    2013-01-01

    Introduction Certain personality traits and genetic polymorphisms are contributing factors to bipolar disorder and its symptomatology, and in turn, this syndrome influences personality. The aim of the present study is to compare the personality traits of euthymic bipolar patients with healthy controls and to investigate the effect of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met genotype on those traits. We recruited thirty seven bipolar I patients in euthymic state following a manic episode and thirty healthy controls and evaluated their personality by means of the Cloninger’s Temperament and Character Inventory (version TCI-R-140). We assessed the influence of the polymorphism Val158Met in the COMT gene on the personality of these patients. The patients scored higher than controls in harm avoidance (61.3±12.5 vs. 55.3±8.1) and self-transcendence (45.3±12.8 vs. 32.7±8.2) and scored lower than controls in self-directedness (68.8±13.3 vs. 79.3±8.1), cooperativeness (77.1±9.1 vs. 83.9±6.5) and persistence (60.4±15.1 vs. 67.1±8.9). The novelty seeking dimension associates with the Val158Met COMT genotype; patients with the low catabolic activity genotype, Met/Met, show a higher score than those with the high catabolic activity genotype, Val/Val. Conclusions Suffering from bipolar disorder could have an impact on personality. A greater value in harm avoidance may be a genetic marker for a vulnerability to the development of a psychiatric disorder, but not bipolar disorder particularly, while a low value in persistence may characterize affective disorders or a subgroup of bipolar patients. The association between novelty seeking scores and COMT genotype may be linked with the role dopamine plays in the brain’s reward circuits. PMID:23646156

  11. The impact of the Catechol-O-methyltransferase Val158Met polymorphism on survival in the general population – the HUNT study

    PubMed Central

    Hagen, Knut; Stovner, Lars J; Skorpen, Frank; Pettersen, Elin; Zwart, John-Anker

    2007-01-01

    Background The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene contains a functional polymorphism, Val158Met which has been related to common diseases like cancer, psychiatric illness and myocardial infarction. Whether the Val158Met polymorphism is associated with survival has not been evaluated in the general population. The aim of this prospective study was to evaluate the impact of codon 158 COMT gene polymorphism on survival in a population-based cohort. Methods The sample comprised 2979 non-diabetic individuals who participated in the Nord-Trøndelag Health Study (HUNT) in the period 1995–97. The subjects were followed up with respect to mortality throughout year 2004. Results 212 men and 183 women died during the follow up. No association between codon 158 COMT gene polymorphism and survival was found. The unadjusted relative risk of death by non-ischemic heart diseases with Met/Met or Met/Val genotypes was 3.27 (95% confidence interval, 1.19–9.00) compared to Val/Val genotype. When we adjusted for age, gender, smoking, coffee intake and body mass index the relative risk decreased to 2.89 (95% confidence interval, 1.04–8.00). Conclusion During 10 year of follow-up, the Val158Met polymorphism had no impact on survival in a general population. Difference in mortality rates from non-ischemic heart diseases may be incidental and should be evaluated in other studies. PMID:17577421

  12. Influence of catechol-o-methyltransferase genotype (Val158Met) on endocrine, sympathetic nervous and mucosal immune systems in breast cancer survivors.

    PubMed

    Fernández-de-Las-Peñas, César; Cantarero-Villanueva, Irene; Fernández-Lao, Carolina; Ambite-Quesada, Silvia; Díaz-Rodríguez, Lourdes; Rivas-Martínez, Inés; del Moral-Avila, Rosario; Arroyo-Morales, Manuel

    2012-04-01

    Stress can play an important role in development of cancer-related fatigue (CRF) by activating the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis, the sympathetic nervous system (SNS), and altering the immune system. This study examined the influence of catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met genotypes on salivary markers of HPA axis (cortisol), SNS (α-amylase) and immune (IgA) systems, as well as on CRF in breast cancer survivors (BCS). One-hundred BCS participated. After amplifying Val158Met COMT polymorphisms by polymerase chain reaction, three COMT genotypes were considered: Val/Val, Val/Met, Met/Met. Salivary cortisol, α-amylase activity, salivary flow rate, and IgA concentration were collected from non-stimulated saliva. CRF was assessed with the fatigue subscale of the Profile of Mood State (POMS) questionnaire. We found that BCS carrying Met/Met genotype reported higher cortisol concentration, α-amylase activity and greater CRF than those with Val/Met (P < 0.05) and Val/Val (P < 0.001) genotypes. No differences in salivary flow rate or IgA concentration (P > 0.20) were found. The results suggest that BCS carrying Met/Met genotype exhibit greater dysfunction of the HPA axis and SNS system associated with severe CRF. This study is important because it strives to understand biological factors that predispose some BCS to higher levels of CRF. PMID:21974969

  13. Influence of catechol-O-methyltransferase Val158Met polymorphism on neuropsychological and functional outcomes of classical rehabilitation and cognitive remediation in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Bosia, Marta; Bechi, Margherita; Marino, Elena; Anselmetti, Simona; Poletti, Sara; Cocchi, Federica; Smeraldi, Enrico; Cavallaro, Roberto

    2007-05-01

    Neurocognitive deficits are recognized as core features of schizophrenia and have a great impact on functional outcome. Recent reports have suggested that a functional polymorphism, Val158Met, of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene, partially influences cognitive performances (mainly cognitive flexibility and working memory) both in schizophrenic patients and in healthy controls, probably by modulating prefrontal dopamine function. While previous studies focused on single evaluation of cognitive functioning, we aimed to analyse the additive effect of COMT genotype and cognitive exercise on dynamic modulation of cognitive performances. We analysed the COMT Val158Met polymorphism in 50 patients with chronic schizophrenia randomly allocated to two treatment conditions for 3 months: standard rehabilitation treatment (SRT) alone and SRT plus specific cognitive exercise of impaired functions. We then divided our sample in four subgroups on the basis of genotype (Val/Val versus Met carriers) and treatment (placebo versus active). We assessed patients with a neuropsychological battery, the Positive and Negative Symptoms Scale (PANSS) and the Quality of Life Scale (QLS) at enrolment, after 3 months of therapy and after further 3 months of follow-up. We found significantly greater improvement of cognitive flexibility performance and QLS total score for Met carriers on active treatment in comparison to Val/Val on placebo. The findings support the hypothesis that COMT polymorphism influences individual capacity to recover from cognitive deficit through rehabilitation therapy after a wider intervention also including deficit-specific cognitive exercise as a potentiating tool.

  14. Morphological changes in gray matter volume correlate with catechol-O-methyl transferase gene Val158Met polymorphism in first-episode treatment-naïve patients with schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Li, Ming-Li; Xiang, Bo; Li, Yin-Fei; Hu, Xun; Wang, Qiang; Guo, Wan-Jun; Lei, Wei; Huang, Chao-Hua; Zhao, Lian-Sheng; Li, Na; Ren, Hong-Yan; Wang, Hui-Yao; Ma, Xiao-Hong; Deng, Wei; Li, Tao

    2015-02-01

    The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene is a schizophrenia susceptibility gene. A common functional polymorphism of this gene, Val158/158Met, has been proposed to influence gray matter volume (GMV). However, the effects of this polymorphism on cortical thickness/surface area in schizophrenic patients are less clear. In this study, we explored the relationship between the Val158Met polymorphism of the COMT gene and the GMV/cortical thickness/cortical surface area in 150 first-episode treatment-naïve patients with schizophrenia and 100 healthy controls. Main effects of diagnosis were found for GMV in the cerebellum and the visual, medial temporal, parietal, and middle frontal cortex. Patients with schizophrenia showed reduced GMVs in these regions. And main effects of genotype were detected for GMV in the left superior frontal gyrus. Moreover, a diagnosis × genotype interaction was found for the GMV of the left precuneus, and the effect of the COMT gene on GMV was due mainly to cortical thickness rather than cortical surface area. In addition, a pattern of increased GMV in the precuneus with increasing Met dose found in healthy controls was lost in patients with schizophrenia. These findings suggest that the COMTMet variant is associated with the disruption of dopaminergic influence on gray matter in schizophrenia, and the effect of the COMT gene on GMV in schizophrenia is mainly due to changes in cortical thickness rather than in cortical surface area. PMID:25564193

  15. Effect of catechol-O-methyltransferase-val158met-polymorphism on the automatization of motor skills - a post hoc view on an experimental data.

    PubMed

    Krause, Daniel; Beck, Frieder; Agethen, Manfred; Blischke, Klaus

    2014-06-01

    The purpose of this study was to evaluate if the catechol-O-methyltransferase-val158met (COMT)-polymorphism, which is known to affect prefrontal dopaminergic metabolism, affects the automatization of motor skills. Twenty-two participants volunteered for gene analysis after they had participated in experiments in which they practiced a single-joint arm movement sequence 460-760 times under different feedback conditions. Motor automaticity was assessed in a pre-test and a post-test according to the dual-task paradigm, which incorporated a visuo-spatial secondary task. To account for the different practice conditions in the four original studies, dual-task cost reduction was assessed using single case effect sizes proportioned to the respective group mean. For the secondary task but not for the prioritized motor task, these relative single case effect sizes proved to be positively (and significantly) correlated with the number of met-alleles on the COMT-genotype, rs=.553; p=.004. Thus, the number of met-alleles indicated a tendency toward enhanced motor automatization. Thus, due to an increased prefrontal dopamine level, met-carriers may be able to develop a well formed and stable, spatially coded movement representation early in practice, thereby supporting the formation of a representation in motor coordinates in the course of extended practice, which later enables automatic movement execution. This process might also be enhanced by a prevalence of met-carriers to functionally evaluate positive feedback information (i.e., rewards) and to better maintain recent reward information in active working memory. PMID:24607512

  16. Catechol-O-methyltransferase Val158Met genotype moderates the effect of disorganized attachment on social development in young children.

    PubMed

    Hygen, Beate Wold; Guzey, Ismail Cuneyt; Belsky, Jay; Berg-Nielsen, Turid Suzanne; Wichstrøm, Lars

    2014-11-01

    Children with histories of disorganized attachment exhibit diverse problems, possibly because disorganization takes at least two distinctive forms as children age: controlling-punitive and controlling-caregiving. This variation in the developmental legacy of disorganization has been attributed primarily to variations in children's rearing experiences. Here an alternative explanation of these divergent sequelae of disorganization is evaluated: one focused on genotype. Structural equation modeling was applied to data on 704 Norwegian children to test whether the catechol-O-methyltransferase Val158Met genotype moderates the effect of disorganized attachment, which was measured dimensionally at 4 years of age using the Manchester Child Attachment Story Task, on changes in aggressive behavior and social competence from ages 4 to 6. Children who scored high on disorganization and were homozygous for the valine allele displayed significantly greater increases in aggression and decreases in self-oriented social skills (e.g., self-regulation and assertiveness) over time than did their disorganized counterparts carrying the methionine allele, whereas disorganized children carrying the methionine allele increased their other-oriented social skill (e.g., cooperation and responsibility) scores more than did valine-homozygous children. These results are consistent with the controlling-punitive and controlling-caregiving behaviors observed in disorganized children, suggesting that the children's genotype contributed to variations in the social development of disorganized children. PMID:24914507

  17. Catechol-O-methyltransferase Val158Met genotype and the clinical responses to duloxetine treatment or plasma levels of 3-methoxy-4-hydroxyphenylglycol and homovanillic acid in Japanese patients with major depressive disorder

    PubMed Central

    Atake, Kiyokazu; Yoshimura, Reiji; Hori, Hikaru; Katsuki, Asuka; Nakamura, Jun

    2015-01-01

    Purpose This study investigated the relationships among the plasma levels of catecholamine metabolites, the clinical response to duloxetine treatment, and Val158Met polymorphism of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene. Subjects and methods Sixty-four patients and 30 healthy control subjects were recruited. Major depressive episodes were diagnosed using the Structured Clinical Interview for the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition, Text Revision criteria. The severity of depression was evaluated using the 17-item Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HAMD17). Patients whose HAMD17 scores were 15 or greater were enrolled in the study. Blood sampling and clinical evaluation were performed at week 0 and week 8. The levels of plasma catecholamine metabolites were measured using high-performance liquid chromatography with electrochemical detection. Genotyping was performed using direct sequencing. Results Thirty of 45 patients (67%) responded to duloxetine treatment during the 8 weeks of treatment. The baseline plasma levels of 3-methoxy-4-hydroxyphenylglycol (MHPG), but not homovanillic acid (HVA), were lower in patients with major depressive disorder (MDD) who had the Val/Val genotype than in patients who were Met-carriers. Patients with MDD and the Val/Val genotype, but not Met carriers, had increased plasma levels of MHPG after 8 weeks of duloxetine treatment. The baseline plasma MHPG levels in healthy control subjects with the Val/Val genotype were significantly higher than those in patients with MDD. Among the subjects in the MDD group with the Val/Val genotype, the plasma MHPG levels increased to the same degree as in the healthy control subjects with the Val/Val genotype after 8 weeks of duloxetine treatment. Conclusion The relationship among the COMT Val158Met polymorphism, plasma levels of catecholamine metabolites, and responses to duloxetine is complex. Nevertheless, our results suggest that patients with MDD and the

  18. Modulation of brain structure by catechol-O-methyltransferase Val(158) Met polymorphism in chronic cannabis users.

    PubMed

    Batalla, Albert; Soriano-Mas, Carles; López-Solà, Marina; Torrens, Marta; Crippa, José A; Bhattacharyya, Sagnik; Blanco-Hinojo, Laura; Fagundo, Ana B; Harrison, Ben J; Nogué, Santiago; de la Torre, Rafael; Farré, Magí; Pujol, Jesús; Martín-Santos, Rocío

    2014-07-01

    Neuroimaging studies have shown that chronic consumption of cannabis may result in alterations in brain morphology. Recent work focusing on the relationship between brain structure and the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene polymorphism suggests that functional COMT variants may affect brain volume in healthy individuals and in schizophrenia patients. We measured the influence of COMT genotype on the volume of four key regions: the prefrontal cortex, neostriatum (caudate-putamen), anterior cingulate cortex and hippocampus-amygdala complex, in chronic early-onset cannabis users and healthy control subjects. We selected 29 chronic cannabis users who began using cannabis before 16 years of age and matched them to 28 healthy volunteers in terms of age, educational level and IQ. Participants were male, Caucasians aged between 18 and 30 years. All were assessed by a structured psychiatric interview (PRISM) to exclude any lifetime Axis-I disorder according to Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders-Fourth Edition. COMT genotyping was performed and structural magnetic resonance imaging data was analyzed by voxel-based morphometry. The results showed that the COMT polymorphism influenced the volume of the bilateral ventral caudate nucleus in both groups, but in an opposite direction: more copies of val allele led to lesser volume in chronic cannabis users and more volume in controls. The opposite pattern was found in left amygdala. There were no effects of COMT genotype on volumes of the whole brain or the other selected regions. Our findings support recent reports of neuroanatomical changes associated with cannabis use and, for the first time, reveal that these changes may be influenced by the COMT genotype.

  19. Association of Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) Polymorphism and Academic Achievement in a Chinese Cohort

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yeh, Ting-Kuang; Chang, Chun-Yen; Hu, Chung-Yi; Yeh, Ting-Chi; Lin, Ming-Yeh

    2009-01-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is a methylation enzyme that catalyzes the degradation pathway and inactivation of dopamine. It is accepted widely as being involved in the modulation of dopaminergic physiology and prefrontal cortex (PFC) function. The COMT Val158Met polymorphism is associated with variation in COMT activity. COMT 158Met allele…

  20. Meta-analysis reveals a lack of association between a common catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) polymorphism val¹⁵⁸met and fibromyalgia.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Lei; Zhu, Junwei; Chen, Yong; Zhao, Jianning

    2014-01-01

    This study is to evaluate the association between the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene val(158)met polymorphism and FM risk. We performed a meta-analysis of 8 case-control studies that included 589 FM cases and 527 case-free controls. We assessed the strength of the association, using odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs). Overall, this meta-analysis showed that the COMT gene val(158)met polymorphism was not associated with FM risk in all genetic models, i.e., allele (met vs. val: OR=1.46, 95% CI=0.80-2.66, P heterpgeneity<0.001), homozygous (met/met vs. val/val: OR=1.72, 95% CI=0.61-4.87, P heterpgeneity<0.001), heterozygous (val/met vs. val/val: OR=1.25, 95% CI=0.82-1.92, P heterpgeneity=0.050), recessive (met/met vs. val/val+val/met: OR=1.52, 95% CI=0.60-3.86, P heterpgeneity<0.001) and dominant model (met/met+val/met vs. val/val: OR=1.52, 95% CI=0.80-2.90, P heterpgeneity<0.001). Similarly, there were no significant associations in the subgroup analyses by ethnicity and HWE. No publication bias was found in the present study. This meta-analysis suggests that the COMT gene val(158)met polymorphism is not associated with FM risk. Further large and well-designed studies are needed to confirm this association.

  1. Meta-analysis reveals a lack of association between a common catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) polymorphism val¹⁵⁸met and fibromyalgia.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Lei; Zhu, Junwei; Chen, Yong; Zhao, Jianning

    2014-01-01

    This study is to evaluate the association between the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene val(158)met polymorphism and FM risk. We performed a meta-analysis of 8 case-control studies that included 589 FM cases and 527 case-free controls. We assessed the strength of the association, using odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs). Overall, this meta-analysis showed that the COMT gene val(158)met polymorphism was not associated with FM risk in all genetic models, i.e., allele (met vs. val: OR=1.46, 95% CI=0.80-2.66, P heterpgeneity<0.001), homozygous (met/met vs. val/val: OR=1.72, 95% CI=0.61-4.87, P heterpgeneity<0.001), heterozygous (val/met vs. val/val: OR=1.25, 95% CI=0.82-1.92, P heterpgeneity=0.050), recessive (met/met vs. val/val+val/met: OR=1.52, 95% CI=0.60-3.86, P heterpgeneity<0.001) and dominant model (met/met+val/met vs. val/val: OR=1.52, 95% CI=0.80-2.90, P heterpgeneity<0.001). Similarly, there were no significant associations in the subgroup analyses by ethnicity and HWE. No publication bias was found in the present study. This meta-analysis suggests that the COMT gene val(158)met polymorphism is not associated with FM risk. Further large and well-designed studies are needed to confirm this association. PMID:25674213

  2. Association between COMT, PTSD, and increased smoking following hurricane exposure in an epidemiologic sample.

    PubMed

    Amstadter, Ananda B; Nugent, Nicole R; Koenen, Karestan C; Ruggiero, Kenneth J; Acierno, Ron; Galea, Sandro; Kilpatrick, Dean G; Gelernter, Joel

    2009-01-01

    Tobacco smoking has been found to increase after the experience of a traumatic event and has been associated with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Initiation and persistence of cigarette smoking is moderately heritable; two recent investigations have implicated the COMT Val158Met (also known as rs4680) polymorphism in smoking age of initiation, dependence, as well as in quantity and frequency of smoking. To examine a possible association of COMT Val158Met and posttrauma increases in cigarette smoking, we studied 614 adults from the 2004 Florida Hurricane Study who returned saliva DNA samples via mail. PTSD was strongly associated with increased smoking. Moreover, each COMT Val158Met 'Met' allele predicted a 2.10-fold risk of smoking post-hurricane, independent of PTSD; follow-up analyses revealed that this finding was primarily driven by European-American males. This study represents the first genetic association study (to our knowledge) of smoking behavior following an acute stressor.

  3. Catehol-O-Methyltransferase gene Val158Met polymorphism as a potential predictor of response to computer-assisted delivery of cognitive-behavioral therapy among cocaine-dependent individuals: Preliminary findings from a randomized controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Carroll, Kathleen M.; Herman, Aryeh; DeVito, Elise E.; Frankforter, Tami L.; Potenza, Marc N; Sofuoglu, Mehmet

    2015-01-01

    Background Findings from uncontrolled studies suggest that the COMT Val108/158Met polymorphism may affect response to cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) in some populations. Using data from a randomized controlled trial evaluating computerized CBT (CBT4CBT), we evaluated treatment response by COMT genotype, with the a priori hypothesis that Val carriers would have improved response to computerized delivery of CBT. Methods 101 cocaine-dependent individuals, of whom 81 contributed analyzable genetic samples, were randomized to standard methadone maintenance treatment plus CBT4CBT or standard treatment alone in an 8-week trial. Results There was a significant genotype by time effect on frequency of cocaine use from baseline to the end of the 6-month follow-up, suggesting greater reductions over time for Val carriers relative to individuals with the Met/Met genotype. There was a significant treatment condition by genotype interactions for rates of participants attaining 21 or more days of continuous abstinence as well as self-reported percent days of abstinence, suggesting less cocaine use among Val carriers when assigned to CBT compared to standard treatment. Exploration of possible mechanisms using measures of attentional biased also pointed to greater change over time in these measures among the Val carriers assigned to CBT. Conclusion These are the first data from a randomized controlled trial indicating significant interactions of COMT polymorphism and behavioral therapy condition on treatment outcome, where Val carriers appeared to respond particularly well to computerized CBT. These preliminary data point to a potential biomarker of response to CBT linked to its putative mechanism of action, enhanced cognitive control. PMID:25930952

  4. Child Exposure to Serious Life Events, COMT, and Aggression: Testing Differential Susceptibility Theory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hygen, Beate Wold; Belsky, Jay; Stenseng, Frode; Lydersen, Stian; Guzey, Ismail Cuneyt; Wichstrøm, Lars

    2015-01-01

    Both genetic and environmental factors contribute to individual differences in aggression. Catechol-O-methyltransferase Val158Met (COMT), a common, functional polymorphism, has been implicated in aggression and aggression traits, as have childhood experiences of adversity. It is unknown whether these effects are additive or interactional and, in…

  5. Variants in COMT and DBH influence on response inhibition ability in Chinese Han females.

    PubMed

    Gong, Pingyuan; Li, Jing; Chi, Wanyu; Wang, Jian; Yao, Tianbao; Zhang, Kejin; Gao, Xiaocai; Zhang, Fuchang

    2011-11-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) and dopamine-beta hydroxylase (DBH) are key enzymes to breakdown dopamine. Some previous studies have indicated that val158met in COMT and 19 bp insertion/deletion in 5' flank of DBH are related to the performance of executive function. To further investigate the associations of the two genes with executive function, we performed a population-based study in a Chinese Han population. The results indicated that val158met in COMT and the 19 bp insertion/deletion of DBH were associated with the average reaction time of response inhibition in female group (P = 0.01, P = 0.03), respectively. Furthermore, there was a significant interaction of the two genes on the reaction time (P = 0.006). This present study suggests that not only do COMT and DBH influence independently on response inhibition in females, but also exert a significant interaction on response inhibition.

  6. Epistasis between polymorphisms in COMT, ESR1, and GCH1 influences COMT enzyme activity and pain.

    PubMed

    Smith, Shad B; Reenilä, Ilkka; Männistö, Pekka T; Slade, Gary D; Maixner, William; Diatchenko, Luda; Nackley, Andrea G

    2014-11-01

    Abnormalities in the enzymatic activity of catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) contribute to chronic pain conditions, such as temporomandibular disorders (TMD). Thus, we sought to determine the effects of polymorphisms in COMT and functionally related pain genes in the COMT pathway (estrogen receptor 1 [ESR1], guanosine-5-triphosphate cyclohydrolase 1 [GCH1], methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase [MTHFR]) on COMT enzymatic activity, musculoskeletal pain, and pain-related intermediate phenotypes among TMD cases and healthy control subjects. Results show that the COMT rs4680 (val(158)met) polymorphism is most strongly associated with outcome measures, such that individuals with the minor A allele (met) exhibit reduced COMT activity, increased TMD risk, and increased musculoskeletal pain. Epistatic interactions were observed between the COMT rs4680 polymorphism and polymorphisms in GCH1 and ESR1. Among individuals with the COMT met allele, those with 2 copies of the GCH1 rs10483639 minor G allele exhibit normalized COMT activity and increased mechanical pain thresholds. Among individuals with the COMT val allele, those with 2 copies of the ESR1 rs3020377 minor A allele exhibit reduced COMT activity, increased bodily pain, and poorer self-reported health. These data reveal that the GCH1 minor G allele confers a protective advantage among met carriers, whereas the ESR1 minor A allele is disadvantageous among val carriers. Furthermore, these data suggest that the ability to predict the downstream effects of genetic variation on COMT activity is critically important to understanding the molecular basis of chronic pain conditions.

  7. Epistasis Between Polymorphisms in COMT, ESR1, and GCH1 Influences COMT Enzyme Activity and Pain

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Shad B.; Reenilä, Ilkka; Männistö, Pekka T.; Slade, Gary D.; Maixner, William; Diatchenko, Luda; Nackley, Andrea G.

    2014-01-01

    Abnormalities in the enzymatic activity of catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) contribute to chronic pain conditions, such as temporomandibular disorders (TMD). Thus, we sought to determine the effects of polymorphisms in COMT and functionally-related pain genes in the COMT pathway (estrogen receptor 1: ESR1, guanosine-5-triphosphate cyclohydrolase 1: GCH1, methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase: MTHFR) on COMT enzymatic activity, musculoskeletal pain, and pain-related intermediate phenotypes among TMD cases and healthy controls. Results demonstrate that the COMT rs4680 (val158met) polymorphism is most strongly associated with outcome measures, such that individuals with the minor A allele (met) exhibit reduced COMT activity, increased TMD risk, and increased musculoskeletal pain. Epistatic interactions were observed between the COMT rs4680 polymorphism and polymorphisms in GCH1 and ESR1. Among individuals with the COMT met allele, those with two copies of the GCH1 rs10483639 minor G allele exhibit normalized COMT activity and increased mechanical pain thresholds. Among individuals with the COMT val allele, those with two copies of the ESR1 rs3020377 minor A allele exhibit reduced COMT activity, increased bodily pain, and poorer self-reported health. These data reveal that the GCH1 minor G allele confers a protective advantage among met carriers, while the ESR1 minor A allele is disadvantageous among val carriers. Furthermore, these data suggest that the ability to predict the downstream effects of genetic variation on COMT activity is critically important to understanding the molecular basis of chronic pain conditions. PMID:25218601

  8. Perception of emotion in facial stimuli: The interaction of ADRA2A and COMT genotypes, and sex.

    PubMed

    Tamm, Gerly; Kreegipuu, Kairi; Harro, Jaanus

    2016-01-01

    Emotional facial stimuli are important social signals that are essential to be perceived and recognized in order to make appropriate decisions and responses in everyday communication. The ability to voluntarily guide attention to perceive and recognize emotions, and react to them varies largely across individuals, and has a strong genetic component (Friedman et al., 2008). Two key genetic variants of the catecholamine system that have been related to emotion perception and attention are the catechol-O-methyl transferase genetic variant (COMT Val158Met) and the α2A-receptor gene promoter polymorphism (ADRA2A C-1291G) accordingly. So far, the interaction of the two with sex in emotion perception has not been studied. Multilevel modeling method was applied to study how COMT Val158Met, ADRA2A C-1291G and sex are associated with measures of emotion perception in a large sample of young adults. Participants (n=506) completed emotion recognition and behavioral emotion detection tasks. It was found that COMT Val158Met genotype in combination with the ADRA2A C-1291G and sex predicts emotion detection, and perception of valence and arousal. In simple visual detection, the ADRA2A C-1291G G-allele leads to slower detection of a highly arousing face (scheming), which is modulated by each additional COMT Val158Met Met-allele and male sex predicting faster responses. The combination of G-allele, Met-allele and male sex also predicts higher perceived negativity in sad faces. No effects of C-1291G, Val158Met, and sex were found on verbal emotion recognition. Applying the findings to study the interplay between catecholamine-O-methyl transferase activity and α2A-receptors in emotion perception disorders (such as ADHD, autism and schizophrenia) in men and women would be the next step towards understanding individual differences in emotion perception.

  9. Genetic Modulation of GABA Levels in the Anterior Cingulate Cortex by GAD1 and COMT

    PubMed Central

    Marenco, Stefano; Savostyanova, Antonina A; van der Veen, Jan Willem; Geramita, Matthew; Stern, Alexa; Barnett, Alan S; Kolachana, Bhaskar; Radulescu, Eugenia; Zhang, Fengyu; Callicott, Joseph H; Straub, Richard E; Shen, Jun; Weinberger, Daniel R

    2010-01-01

    γ-Aminobutyric acid (GABA)-ergic transmission is critical for normal cortical function and is likely abnormal in a variety of neuropsychiatric disorders. We tested the in vivo effects of variations in two genes implicated in GABA function on GABA concentrations in prefrontal cortex of living subjects: glutamic acid decarboxylase 1 (GAD1), which encodes GAD67, and catechol-o-methyltransferase (COMT), which regulates synaptic dopamine in the cortex. We studied six single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in GAD1 previously associated with risk for schizophrenia or cognitive dysfunction and the val158met polymorphism in COMT in 116 healthy volunteers using proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Two of the GAD1 SNPs (rs1978340 (p=0.005) and rs769390 (p=0.004)) showed effects on GABA levels as did COMT val158met (p=0.04). We then tested three SNPs in GAD1 (rs1978340, rs11542313, and rs769390) for interaction with COMT val158met based on previous clinical results. In this model, rs11542313 and COMT val158met showed significant main effects (p=0.001 and 0.003, respectively) and a trend toward a significant interaction (p=0.05). Interestingly, GAD1 risk alleles for schizophrenia were associated with higher GABA/Cre, and Val-Val homozygotes had high GABA/Cre levels when on a GAD1 risk genotype background (N=6). These results support the importance of genetic variation in GAD1 and COMT in regulating prefrontal cortical GABA function. The directionality of the effects, however, is inconsistent with earlier evidence of decreased GABA activity in schizophrenia. PMID:20357758

  10. COMT Associations with Disordered Gambling and Drinking Measures

    PubMed Central

    Guillot, Casey R.; Fanning, Jennifer R.; Liang, Tiebing; Berman, Mitchell E.

    2014-01-01

    Disordered gambling and alcohol dependence are influenced by unique and shared genetic factors. Although the evidence is mixed, some research has linked COMT rs4680 (or COMT Val158Met) to the development of gambling or drinking problems; however, no molecular genetic study has jointly examined gambling and drinking problems. Furthermore, the majority of past studies examined gambling or drinking problems using a case-control design. The purpose of the current study was to examine associations of COMT rs4680 with dimensionally and categorically measured gambling and drinking problems in a nonclinical sample (139 Caucasian adults). The current study found that COMT rs4680 was related to both dimensionally and categorically measured gambling and drinking problems. It appears that the COMT Met/Met genotype may be a genetic risk factor that contributes to the development of both gambling and drinking problems. PMID:24390676

  11. Cortical Dopamine Transmission as Measured with the [11C]FLB 457 – Amphetamine PET Imaging Paradigm Is Not Influenced by COMT Genotype

    PubMed Central

    Narendran, Rajesh; Tumuluru, Divya; May, Maureen A.; Chowdari, Kodavali V.; Himes, Michael L.; Fasenmyer, Kelli; Frankle, W. Gordon; Nimgaonkar, Vishwajit L.

    2016-01-01

    Basic investigations link a Val158Met polymorphism (rs4680) in the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene to not only its enzymatic activity, but also to its dopaminergic tone in the prefrontal cortex. Previous PET studies have documented the relationship between COMT Val158Met polymorphism and D1 and D2/3 receptor binding potential (BP), and interpreted them in terms of dopaminergic tone. The use of baseline dopamine D1 and D2/3 receptor binding potential (BPND) as a proxy for dopaminergic tone is problematic because they reflect both endogenous dopamine levels (a change in radiotracer's apparent affinity) and receptor density. In this analysis of 31 healthy controls genotyped for the Val158Met polymorphism (Val/Val, Val/Met, and Met/Met), we used amphetamine-induced displacement of [11C]FLB 457 as a direct measure of dopamine release. Our analysis failed to show a relationship between COMT genotype status and prefrontal cortical dopamine release. COMT genotype was also not predictive of baseline dopamine D2/3 receptor BPND. PMID:27322568

  12. Comprehensive interrogation of CpG island methylation in the gene encoding COMT, a key estrogen and catecholamine regulator

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) enzyme has been widely studied due to its multiple roles in neurological functioning, estrogen biology, and methylation metabolic pathways. Numerous studies have investigated variation in the large COMT gene, with the majority focusing on single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). This body of work has linked COMT genetic variation with a vast array of conditions, including several neurobehavioral disorders, pain sensitivity, and multiple human cancers. Based on COMT’s numerous biological roles and recent studies suggesting that methylation of the COMT gene impacts COMT gene expression, we comprehensively interrogated methylation in over 200 CpG dinucleotide sequences spanning the length of the COMT gene. Methods Using saliva-derived DNA from a non-clinical sample of human subjects, we tested for associations between COMT CpG methylation and factors reported to interact with COMT genetic effects, including demographic factors and alcohol use. Finally, we tested associations between COMT CpG methylation state and COMT gene expression in breast cancer cell lines. We interrogated >200 CpGs in 13 amplicons spanning the 5’ UTR to the last exon of the CpG dinucleotide-rich COMT gene in n = 48 subjects, n = 11 cell lines and 1 endogenous 18S rRNA control. Results With the exception of the CpG island in the 5’UTR and 1st exon, all other CpG islands were strongly methylated with typical dynamic ranges between 50-90%. In the saliva samples, methylation of multiple COMT loci was associated with socioeconomic status or ethnicity. We found associations between methylation at numerous loci and genotype at the functional Val 158 Met SNP (rs4680), and most of the correlations between methylation and demographic and alcohol use factors were Val 158 Met allele-specific. Methylation at several of these loci also associated with COMT gene expression in breast cancer cell lines. Conclusions We report the first comprehensive

  13. Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene modulates private self-consciousness and self-flexibility.

    PubMed

    Wang, Bei; Ru, Wenzhao; Yang, Xing; Yang, Lu; Fang, Pengpeng; Zhu, Xu; Shen, Guomin; Gao, Xiaocai; Gong, Pingyuan

    2016-08-01

    Dopamine levels in the brain influence human consciousness. Inspired by the role of Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) in inactivating dopamine in the brain, we investigated to what extent COMT could modulate individual's self-consciousness dispositions and self-consistency by genotyping the COMT Val158Met (rs4680) polymorphism and measuring self-consciousness and self-consistency and congruence in a college student population. The results indicated that COMT Val158Met polymorphism significantly modulated the private self-consciousness. The individuals with Val/Val genotype, corresponding to lower dopamine levels in the brain, were more likely to be aware of their feelings and beliefs. The results also indicated that this polymorphism modulated one's self-flexibility. The individuals with Val/Val genotype showed higher levels of stereotype in self-concept compared with those with Met/Met genotype. These findings suggest that COMT is a predictor of the individual differences in self-consciousness and self-flexibility. PMID:27522491

  14. Serotonin Transporter and COMT Polymorphisms as Independent Predictors of Health-related Quality of Life in Patients with Panic Disorder

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    There is growing evidence of poor health-related quality of life (HRQOL) in patients with panic disorder (PD). However, little is known about the factors affecting HRQOL in patients with PD. The authors examined whether 5-HTTLPR tri-allelic approach and Cathechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphism can predict HRQOL in patients with PD controlling for sociodemographic factors and disorder-related symptom levels. The sample consisted of 179 patients with PD consecutively recruited from an outpatient clinic and age- and gender ratio-matched 110 healthy controls. The SF-36 was used to assess multiple domains of HRQOL. Hierarchical multiple regression analysis was performed to determine the independent effect of the 5-HTTLPR and COMT Val158Met on the SF-36 in panic patients. Patients with PD showed lowered HRQOL in all sub-domains of the SF-36 compared to healthy controls. The 5-HTTLPR independently and additively accounted for 2.2% of variation (6.7% of inherited variance) of perceived general health and the COMT Val158Met independently and additively accounted for 1.5% of variation (5.0% of inherited variance) of role limitation due to emotional problems in patient group. The present study suggests that specific genetic polymorphisms are associated with certain domains of HRQOL and provides a new insight on exploring the factors that predict HRQOL in patients with PD. PMID:27134498

  15. Serotonin Transporter and COMT Polymorphisms as Independent Predictors of Health-related Quality of Life in Patients with Panic Disorder.

    PubMed

    Kang, Eunho; Choe, Ah Young; Kim, Borah; Lee, Jun-Yeob; Choi, Tai Kiu; Na, Hae-Ran; Lee, Sang-Hyuk

    2016-05-01

    There is growing evidence of poor health-related quality of life (HRQOL) in patients with panic disorder (PD). However, little is known about the factors affecting HRQOL in patients with PD. The authors examined whether 5-HTTLPR tri-allelic approach and Cathechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val(158)Met polymorphism can predict HRQOL in patients with PD controlling for sociodemographic factors and disorder-related symptom levels. The sample consisted of 179 patients with PD consecutively recruited from an outpatient clinic and age- and gender ratio-matched 110 healthy controls. The SF-36 was used to assess multiple domains of HRQOL. Hierarchical multiple regression analysis was performed to determine the independent effect of the 5-HTTLPR and COMT Val(158)Met on the SF-36 in panic patients. Patients with PD showed lowered HRQOL in all sub-domains of the SF-36 compared to healthy controls. The 5-HTTLPR independently and additively accounted for 2.2% of variation (6.7% of inherited variance) of perceived general health and the COMT Val(158)Met independently and additively accounted for 1.5% of variation (5.0% of inherited variance) of role limitation due to emotional problems in patient group. The present study suggests that specific genetic polymorphisms are associated with certain domains of HRQOL and provides a new insight on exploring the factors that predict HRQOL in patients with PD. PMID:27134498

  16. The enzymatic activities of brain COMT and methionine sulfoxide reductase are correlated in a COMT Val/Met allele-dependent fashion

    PubMed Central

    Moskovitz, Jackob; Walss-Bass, Consuelo; Cruz, Dianne A; Thompson, Peter M.; Hairston, Jenaqua; Bortolato, Marco

    2015-01-01

    Aims The enzyme catechol-O-methyl transferase (COMT) plays a primary role in the metabolism of catecholamine neurotransmitters and is implicated in the modulation of cognitive and emotional responses. The best-characterized single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) of the COMT gene consists of a valine (Val)-to-methionine (Met) substitution at codon 108/158. The Met-containing variant confers a marked reduction in COMT catalytic activity. We recently showed that the activity of recombinant COMT is positively regulated by the enzyme Met sulfoxide reductase (MSR), which counters the oxidation of Met residues of proteins. The current study was designed to assess whether brain COMT activity may be correlated to MSR in an allele-dependent fashion. Methods COMT and MSR activities were measured from post-mortem samples of prefrontal cortices, striata and cerebella of 32 subjects, by using catechol and dabsyl-Met sulfoxide as substrates, respectively. Allelic discrimination of COMT Val108/185Met SNP was performed using the Taqman 5’nuclease assay. Results Our studies revealed that, in homozygous carriers of Met, but not Val alleles, the activity of COMT and MSR were significantly correlated throughout all tested brain regions. Discussion These results suggest that the reduced enzymatic activity of Met-containing COMT may be secondary to Met sulfoxidation, and point to MSR as a key molecular determinant for the modulation of COMT activity. PMID:25640985

  17. Genetic moderation of the effects of cannabis: catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) affects the impact of Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) on working memory performance but not on the occurrence of psychotic experiences.

    PubMed

    Tunbridge, Elizabeth M; Dunn, Graham; Murray, Robin M; Evans, Nicole; Lister, Rachel; Stumpenhorst, Katharina; Harrison, Paul J; Morrison, Paul D; Freeman, Daniel

    2015-11-01

    Cannabis use can induce cognitive impairments and psychotic experiences. A functional polymorphism in the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene (Val(158)Met) appears to influence the immediate cognitive and psychotic effects of cannabis, or ∆(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), its primary psychoactive ingredient. This study investigated the moderation of the impact of experimentally administered THC by COMT. Cognitive performance and psychotic experiences were studied in participants without a psychiatric diagnosis, using a between-subjects design (THC vs. placebo). The effect of COMT Val(158)Met genotype on the cognitive and psychotic effects of THC, administered intravenously in a double-blind, placebo-controlled manner to 78 participants who were vulnerable to paranoia, was examined. The results showed interactive effects of genotype and drug group (THC or placebo) on working memory, assayed using the Digit Span Backwards task. Specifically, THC impaired performance in COMT Val/Val, but not Met, carriers. In contrast, the effect of THC on psychotic experiences, measured using the Community Assessment of Psychic Experiences (CAPE) positive dimension, was unaffected by COMT genotype. This study is the largest to date examining the impact of COMT genotype on response to experimentally administered THC, and the first using a purely non-clinical cohort. The data suggest that COMT genotype moderates the cognitive, but not the psychotic, effects of acutely administered THC.

  18. Positive symptoms in first-episode psychosis patients experiencing low maternal care and stressful life events: a pilot study to explore the role of the COMT gene.

    PubMed

    Ira, Elisa; De Santi, Katia; Lasalvia, Antonio; Bonetto, Chiara; Zanatta, Gioia; Cristofalo, Doriana; Bertani, Mariaelena; Bissoli, Sarah Saviana; Riolo, Rossana; Gardellin, Francesco; Morandin, Idana; Ramon, Luana; Tansella, Michele; Ruggeri, Mirella; Tosato, Sarah

    2014-09-01

    COMT Val(158)Met moderates the effect of stress on psychotic symptoms. Exposure to stress is also associated with mesolimbic dopamine release in individuals experiencing low maternal care. We therefore test the hypothesis that recent stressful life events are associated with more severe positive symptoms (associated with mesolimbic dopamine release) in first-episode psychosis (FEP) patients who experienced low maternal care during childhood. We hypothesized that COMT Val(158)Met moderates this association. A total of 149 FEP patients recruited within the Psychosis Incident Cohort Outcome Study (PICOS) participated in the present study. Maternal care was assessed by the Parental Bonding Instrument (PBI), stressful life events were collected by the List of Events Scale and positive symptoms were assessed by the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS). We found that low maternal care and recent stressful life events were associated with higher level of positive symptoms at the onset (analysis of variance [ANOVA], p = 0.012), and that patients who were also homozygotes for the COMT Val(158) allele had the highest level of positive symptoms (ANOVA, p = 0.024). Low maternal care and severe stressful life events may contribute to a symptomatology characterized by more severe positive symptoms at the onset, possibly due to an increased mesolimbic dopamine release. Homozygosity for the COMT Val(158) allele seems to confer a biological predisposition to the stress-related hyperactivity of the mesolimbic dopaminergic system. The data imply that the mesolimbic dopaminergic system is involved in the mediation/modulation of the effect of stressful events on the vulnerability for psychosis.

  19. How to consistently link extraversion and intelligence to the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene: on defining and measuring psychological phenotypes in neurogenetic research.

    PubMed

    Wacker, Jan; Mueller, Erik M; Hennig, Jürgen; Stemmler, Gerhard

    2012-02-01

    The evidence for associations between genetic polymorphisms and complex behavioral/psychological phenotypes (traits) has thus far been weak and inconsistent. Using the well-studied Val158Met polymorphism of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene as an example, we demonstrate that using theoretical models to guide phenotype definition and measuring the phenotypes of interest with a high degree of specificity reveals strong gene-behavior associations that are consistent with prior work and that would have otherwise gone unnoticed. Only after statistically controlling for irrelevant portions of phenotype variance did we observe strong (Cohen's d = 0.33-0.70) and significant associations between COMT Val158Met and both cognitive and affective traits in a healthy male sample (N = 201) in Study 1: Carriers of the Met allele scored higher in fluid intelligence (reasoning) but lower in both crystallized intelligence (general knowledge) and the agency facet of extraversion. In Study 2, we conceptually replicated the association of COMT Val158Met with the agency facet of extraversion after partialing irrelevant phenotype variance in a female sample (N = 565). Finally, through reanalysis of a large published data set we showed that Met allele carriers also scored higher in indicators of fluid intelligence after partialing verbal fluency. Because the Met allele codes for a less efficient variant of the enzyme COMT, resulting in higher levels of extrasynaptic prefrontal dopamine, these observations provide further support for a role for dopamine in both intelligence and extraversion. More importantly, the present findings have important implications for the definition of psychological phenotypes in neurogenetic research.

  20. Count on dopamine: influences of COMT polymorphisms on numerical cognition.

    PubMed

    Júlio-Costa, Annelise; Antunes, Andressa M; Lopes-Silva, Júlia B; Moreira, Bárbara C; Vianna, Gabrielle S; Wood, Guilherme; Carvalho, Maria R S; Haase, Vitor G

    2013-01-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is an enzyme that is particularly important for the metabolism of dopamine. Functional polymorphisms of COMT have been implicated in working memory and numerical cognition. This is an exploratory study that aims at investigating associations between COMT polymorphisms, working memory, and numerical cognition. Elementary school children from 2th to 6th grades were divided into two groups according to their COMT val158met polymorphism [homozygous for valine allele (n = 61) vs. heterozygous plus methionine homozygous children or met+ group (n = 94)]. Both groups were matched for age and intelligence. Working memory was assessed through digit span and Corsi blocks. Symbolic numerical processing was assessed through transcoding and single-digit word problem tasks. Non-symbolic magnitude comparison and estimation tasks were used to assess number sense. Between-group differences were found in symbolic and non-symbolic numerical tasks, but not in working memory tasks. Children in the met+ group showed better performance in all numerical tasks while val homozygous children presented slower development of non-symbolic magnitude representations. These results suggest COMT-related dopaminergic modulation may be related not only to working memory, as found in previous studies, but also to the development of magnitude processing and magnitude representations. PMID:23966969

  1. Count on dopamine: influences of COMT polymorphisms on numerical cognition

    PubMed Central

    Júlio-Costa, Annelise; Antunes, Andressa M.; Lopes-Silva, Júlia B.; Moreira, Bárbara C.; Vianna, Gabrielle S.; Wood, Guilherme; Carvalho, Maria R. S.; Haase, Vitor G.

    2013-01-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is an enzyme that is particularly important for the metabolism of dopamine. Functional polymorphisms of COMT have been implicated in working memory and numerical cognition. This is an exploratory study that aims at investigating associations between COMT polymorphisms, working memory, and numerical cognition. Elementary school children from 2th to 6th grades were divided into two groups according to their COMT val158met polymorphism [homozygous for valine allele (n = 61) vs. heterozygous plus methionine homozygous children or met+ group (n = 94)]. Both groups were matched for age and intelligence. Working memory was assessed through digit span and Corsi blocks. Symbolic numerical processing was assessed through transcoding and single-digit word problem tasks. Non-symbolic magnitude comparison and estimation tasks were used to assess number sense. Between-group differences were found in symbolic and non-symbolic numerical tasks, but not in working memory tasks. Children in the met+ group showed better performance in all numerical tasks while val homozygous children presented slower development of non-symbolic magnitude representations. These results suggest COMT-related dopaminergic modulation may be related not only to working memory, as found in previous studies, but also to the development of magnitude processing and magnitude representations. PMID:23966969

  2. The Role of the Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) Gene in Personality and Related Psychopathological Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Montag, Christian; Jurkiewicz, Magdalena; Reuter, Martin

    2015-01-01

    This review provides a short overview of the most significant biologically oriented theories of human personality. Personality concepts of Eysenck, Gray and McNaughton, Cloninger and Panksepp will be introduced and the focal evidence for the heritability of personality will be summarized. In this context, a synopsis of a large number of COMT genetic association studies (with a focus on the COMT Val158Met polymorphism) in the framework of the introduced biologically oriented personality theories will be given. In line with the theory of a continuum model between healthy anxious behavior and related psychopathological behavior, the role of the COMT gene in anxiety disorders will be discussed. A final outlook considers new research strategies such as genetic imaging and epigenetics for a better understanding of human personality. PMID:22483293

  3. Association of functional COMT Val108/Met polymorphism with smoking cessation in a nicotine replacement therapy.

    PubMed

    Sun, Hongqiang; Guo, Song; Chen, Dafang; Yang, Fude; Zou, Yizhuang; Di, Xiaolan; Cao, Yanjun; Kosten, Thomas; Lu, Lin; Zhang, Xiang Yang

    2012-12-01

    Nicotine replacement treatment (NRT) can be efficacious for smoking cessation, but used by only a minority of smokers in China. Pharmacogenetic matching may improve treatment outcomes for NRT in subgroups of smokers. We evaluated the efficacy and safety of sublingual nicotine tablets (SNT) for smoking cessation and the association of catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) genotype with efficacy in this smoking cessation trial among Chinese smokers. We conducted a double-blind, placebo-controlled, 8-week trial of SNT with a follow-up at week 12 among 250 Chinese smokers. Efficacy and safety were evaluated at day 4 and weeks 2, 4, 6, 8, and 12. Abstinence was biochemically verified by exhaled carbon monoxide (CO) and urine cotinine. The COMT Val108Met genotype was determined as a restriction fragment length polymorphism. Our results showed that the success rates for complete abstinence were greater for active versus placebo treatments at 8 weeks (48 vs. 17 %) and 12 weeks (52 vs. 19 %) (both p < 0.0001). Craving was significantly reduced from week 2 on active treatment compared to placebo. Adverse events were mild and tolerable. We found a genotype by treatment interaction at 12 weeks with greater abstinence rates in the COMT Val/Val (50 vs. 15 %) than the Met/Val + Met/Met genotypes (46 vs. 25 %). We found that SNT significantly increased smoking abstinence, reduced craving and was well tolerated, and the COMT Val/Val genotype was associated with a greater improvement in smoking cessation.

  4. Emotional Symptoms in Children: The Effect of Maternal Depression, Life Events, and COMT Genotype

    PubMed Central

    Evans, Jonathan; Xu, Ke; Heron, Jon; Enoch, Mary-Anne; Araya, Ricardo; Lewis, Glyn; Timpson, Nic; Davies, Simon; Nutt, David; Goldman, David

    2009-01-01

    Early adversity predicts anxiety and depression but variation in response to adversity is not understood. We investigated whether association between early adversity and emotional symptoms in young children differs according to variation of the COMT gene. The main outcome measure was the emotionality subscale of the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) completed by mothers for 8,431 children aged 6–7 years old in the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children. Adversity measures included exposure to maternal postpartum depressive symptoms and adverse life events for children. DNA from the children was genotyped for five COMT polymorphisms including the COMT Val158Met locus. Maternal depression increased the odds of high emotionality in the children, (OR 1.99, 95% CI 1.73–2.29, P<0.001) as did life events score, (OR 1.21 for each s.d. increase in life event score, 95% CI 1.15–1.27, P<0.001). There was no main effect of Val158Met genotype on emotional symptoms (OR for effect of each copy of the methionine allele was 1.04, 95% CI 0.97–1.10, P = 0.284). The relationship between adversity and emotional symptoms did not vary by genotype (G × E for maternal depression χ2 = 3.17, P = 0.205; G × E for life events χ2 = 1.69, P = 0.430). There was no main effect of COMT haplotype, nor was there an interaction with adversity. Early adversity predicts emotional symptoms in children aged 6–7 years. Although some studies indicate a role for COMT in emotionality, anxiety, and depression in adults, no direct effect or interaction of COMT genotype was observed in this large sample of young children. PMID:18535998

  5. Child exposure to serious life events, COMT, and aggression: Testing differential susceptibility theory.

    PubMed

    Hygen, Beate Wold; Belsky, Jay; Stenseng, Frode; Lydersen, Stian; Guzey, Ismail Cuneyt; Wichstrøm, Lars

    2015-08-01

    Both genetic and environmental factors contribute to individual differences in aggression. Catechol-O-methyltransferase Val158Met (COMT), a common, functional polymorphism, has been implicated in aggression and aggression traits, as have childhood experiences of adversity. It is unknown whether these effects are additive or interactional and, in the case of interaction, whether they conform to a diathesis-stress or differential susceptibility model. We examined Gene × Environment interactions between COMT and serious life events on measures of childhood aggression and contrasted these 2 models. The sample was composed of community children (N = 704); 355 were boys, and the mean age was 54.8 months (SD = 3.0). The children were genotyped for COMT rs4680 and assessed for serious life events and by teacher-rated aggression. Regression analysis showed no main effects of COMT and serious life events on aggression. However, a significant interactive effect of childhood serious life events and COMT genotype was observed: Children who had faced many serious life events and were Val homozygotes exhibited more aggression (p = .02) than did their Met-carrying counterparts. Notably, in the absence of serious life events, Val homozygotes displayed significantly lower aggression scores than did Met carriers (p = .03). When tested, this constellation of findings conformed to the differential susceptibility hypothesis: In this case, Val homozygotes are more malleable to the effect of serious life events on aggression and not simply more vulnerable to the negative effect of having experienced many serious life events.

  6. Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) genotype moderates the effects of childhood trauma on cognition and symptoms in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Green, Melissa J; Chia, T-Yunn; Cairns, Murray J; Wu, Jingqin; Tooney, Paul A; Scott, Rodney J; Carr, Vaughan J

    2014-02-01

    The interaction of genetic and environmental factors may affect the course and development of psychotic disorders. We examined whether the effects of childhood trauma on cognition and symptoms in schizophrenia were moderated by the Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val(158)Met polymorphism, a common genetic variant known to affect cognition and prefrontal dopamine levels. Participants were 429 schizophrenia/schizoaffective cases from the Australian Schizophrenia Research Bank (ASRB). Cognitive performance was assessed using the Repeatable Battery for Assessment of Neuropsychological Status (RBANS), Controlled Oral Word Association Test (COWAT), Letter Number Sequencing (LNS) test, and the Wechsler Test of Adult Reading (WTAR). Hierarchical regression was used to test the main effects and additive interaction effects of genotype and childhood trauma in the domains of physical abuse, emotional abuse, and emotional neglect, on cognition and symptom profiles of clinical cases. Consistent with previous findings, COMT Val homozygotes performed worse on cognitive measures in the absence of childhood adversity. In addition, a significant interaction between COMT genotype and physical abuse was associated with better executive function in Val homozygotes, relative to those of the same genotype with no history of abuse. Finally, the severity of positive symptoms was greater in Met carriers who had experienced physical abuse, and the severity of negative symptoms in Met carriers was greater in the presence of emotional neglect. These results suggest that the possible epigenetic modulation of the expression of the COMT Val(158)Met polymorphism and consequent effects on cognition and symptoms in schizophrenia, with worse outcomes associated with adverse childhood experiences in Met carriers.

  7. Effect of COMT Val108/158Met genotype on risk for polydipsia in chronic patients with schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Yamada, Kenji; Shinkai, Takahiro; Chen, Hsin-I; Utsunomiya, Kensuke; Nakamura, Jun

    2014-06-01

    Polydipsia is a serious condition often seen among patients with schizophrenia (SCZ). The cause of polydipsia is unknown; hence, it is hard to treat or manage. Animal studies showed that the drinking behavior is regulated by central dopaminergic neurotransmission at the hypothalamus. Meanwhile, the existence of a genetic predisposition to polydipsia in patients with SCZ has been suggested. The purpose of this study was to assess whether a functional polymorphism, Val(108/158)Met in the gene for catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), is associated with susceptibility to polydipsia using a Japanese sample of SCZ. Our sample includes 330 chronic patients with SCZ (83 polydipsic patients and 247 non-polydipsic controls). The common COMT Val(108/158)Met polymorphism was genotyped, and the differences in genotype distribution and allele frequency between cases and controls were evaluated using the χ(2) test. A significant association between the COMT Val(108/158)Met polymorphism and polydipsia was found (genotype distribution: χ(2) = 13.0, df = 2, p = 0.001; allele frequency: χ(2) = 7.50, df = 1, p = 0.006). The high-COMT activity group (Val/Val) was more frequent among patients with polydipsia compared with the low-COMT activity group (Val/Met + Met/Met) [odds ratio (OR) = 2.46]. The association survived after controlling for other possible confounding factors, including gender, age, age of onset, current antipsychotic dose, and smoking status. Our results suggest that the COMT Val(108/158)Met genotype may confer susceptibility to polydipsia in SCZ. To our knowledge, this is the first association study between the COMT gene and polydipsia in SCZ. Further studies with larger sample sizes are warranted to confirm present findings. PMID:24443099

  8. Genetic Variation in the Catechol-O-Methyl Transferase Val108/158Met Is Linked to the Caudate and Posterior Cingulate Cortex Volume in Healthy Subjects: Voxel-Based Morphometry Analysis of Brain Magnetic Resonance Imaging.

    PubMed

    Watanabe, Keita; Kakeda, Shingo; Yoshimura, Reiji; Ide, Satoru; Hayashi, Kenji; Katsuki, Asuka; Umene-Nakano, Wakako; Watanabe, Rieko; Abe, Osamu; Korogi, Yukunori

    2015-01-01

    The effect of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphism on brain morphology has been investigated but remains controversial. We hypothesized that a comparison between Val/Val and Val/Met individuals, which may represent the most different combinations concerning the effects of the COMT genotype, may reveal new findings. We investigated the brain morphology using 3-Tesla magnetic resonance imaging in 27 Val/Val and 22 Val/Met individuals. Voxel-based morphometry revealed that the volumes of the bilateral caudate and posterior cingulate cortex were significantly smaller in Val/Val individuals than in Val/Met individuals [right caudate: false discovery rate (FDR)-corrected p = 0.048; left caudate: FDR-corrected p = 0.048; and bilateral posterior cingulate cortex: FDR-corrected p = 0.048]. This study demonstrates that interacting functional variants of COMT affect gray matter regional volumes in healthy subjects.

  9. Genetic Variation in the Catechol-O-Methyl Transferase Val108/158Met Is Linked to the Caudate and Posterior Cingulate Cortex Volume in Healthy Subjects: Voxel-Based Morphometry Analysis of Brain Magnetic Resonance Imaging

    PubMed Central

    Watanabe, Keita; Kakeda, Shingo; Yoshimura, Reiji; Ide, Satoru; Hayashi, Kenji; Katsuki, Asuka; Umene-Nakano, Wakako; Watanabe, Rieko; Abe, Osamu; Korogi, Yukunori

    2015-01-01

    The effect of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphism on brain morphology has been investigated but remains controversial. We hypothesized that a comparison between Val/Val and Val/Met individuals, which may represent the most different combinations concerning the effects of the COMT genotype, may reveal new findings. We investigated the brain morphology using 3-Tesla magnetic resonance imaging in 27 Val/Val and 22 Val/Met individuals. Voxel-based morphometry revealed that the volumes of the bilateral caudate and posterior cingulate cortex were significantly smaller in Val/Val individuals than in Val/Met individuals [right caudate: false discovery rate (FDR)-corrected p = 0.048; left caudate: FDR-corrected p = 0.048; and bilateral posterior cingulate cortex: FDR-corrected p = 0.048]. This study demonstrates that interacting functional variants of COMT affect gray matter regional volumes in healthy subjects. PMID:26566126

  10. Association of COMT and PRODH gene variants with intelligence quotient (IQ) and executive functions in 22q11.2DS subjects.

    PubMed

    Carmel, Miri; Zarchi, Omer; Michaelovsky, Elena; Frisch, Amos; Patya, Miriam; Green, Tamar; Gothelf, Doron; Weizman, Abraham

    2014-09-01

    The 22q11.2 deletion syndrome (22q11.2DS) carries the highest genetic risk factor for the development of schizophrenia. We investigated the association of genetic variants in two schizophrenia candidate genes with executive function (EF) and IQ in 22q11.2DS individuals. Ninety two individuals with 22q11.2 deletion were studied for the genetic association between COMT and PRODH variants and EF and IQ. Subjects were divided into children (under 12 years old), adolescents (between 12 and 18 years old) and adults (older than 18 years), and genotyped for the COMT Val158Met (rs4680) and PRODH Arg185Trp (rs4819756) polymorphisms. The participants underwent psychiatric evaluation and EF assessment. Our main finding is a significant influence of the COMT Val158Met polymorphism on both IQ and EF performance. Specifically, 22q11.2DS subjects with Met allele displayed higher IQ scores in all age groups compared to Val carriers, reaching significance in both adolescents and adults. The Met allele carriers performed better than Val carriers in EF tasks, being statistically significant in the adult group. PRODH Arg185Trp variant did not affect IQ or EF in our 22q11.2DS cohort. In conclusion, functional COMT variant, but not PRODH, affects IQ and EF in 22q11.2DS subjects during neurodevelopment with a maximal effect at adulthood. Future studies should monitor the cognitive performance of the same individuals from childhood to old age. PMID:24853458

  11. Association of COMT and PRODH gene variants with intelligence quotient (IQ) and executive functions in 22q11.2DS subjects.

    PubMed

    Carmel, Miri; Zarchi, Omer; Michaelovsky, Elena; Frisch, Amos; Patya, Miriam; Green, Tamar; Gothelf, Doron; Weizman, Abraham

    2014-09-01

    The 22q11.2 deletion syndrome (22q11.2DS) carries the highest genetic risk factor for the development of schizophrenia. We investigated the association of genetic variants in two schizophrenia candidate genes with executive function (EF) and IQ in 22q11.2DS individuals. Ninety two individuals with 22q11.2 deletion were studied for the genetic association between COMT and PRODH variants and EF and IQ. Subjects were divided into children (under 12 years old), adolescents (between 12 and 18 years old) and adults (older than 18 years), and genotyped for the COMT Val158Met (rs4680) and PRODH Arg185Trp (rs4819756) polymorphisms. The participants underwent psychiatric evaluation and EF assessment. Our main finding is a significant influence of the COMT Val158Met polymorphism on both IQ and EF performance. Specifically, 22q11.2DS subjects with Met allele displayed higher IQ scores in all age groups compared to Val carriers, reaching significance in both adolescents and adults. The Met allele carriers performed better than Val carriers in EF tasks, being statistically significant in the adult group. PRODH Arg185Trp variant did not affect IQ or EF in our 22q11.2DS cohort. In conclusion, functional COMT variant, but not PRODH, affects IQ and EF in 22q11.2DS subjects during neurodevelopment with a maximal effect at adulthood. Future studies should monitor the cognitive performance of the same individuals from childhood to old age.

  12. Disorganization, COMT, and Children's Social Behavior: The Norwegian Hypothesis of Legacy of Disorganized Attachment

    PubMed Central

    Li, Zhi; Hygen, Beate W.; Widaman, Keith F.; Berg-Nielsen, Turid S.; Wichstrøm, Lars; Belsky, Jay

    2016-01-01

    Why is disorganized attachment associated with punitive-controlling behavior in some, but caregiving-controlling in others? Hygen et al. (2014) proposed that variation in the Catechol-O-methyl transferase(COMT) Val158Met genotype explains this variation, providing preliminary data to this effect. We offer a conceptual replication, analyzing data on 560 children (males: 275) drawn from the NICHD Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development. As predicted, competitive model-fitting indicated that disorganized infants carrying Met alleles engage in more positive behavior and less negative behavior than other children at age 5 and 11, with the reverse true of Val/Val homozygotes, seemingly consistent with caregiving-controlling and punitive-controlling styles, respectively, but only in the case of maternal and not teacher reports, thereby confirmating a relationship-specific hypothesis. PMID:27462283

  13. COMT and ALDH2 polymorphisms moderate associations of implicit drinking motives with alcohol use

    PubMed Central

    Hendershot, Christian S.; Lindgren, Kristen P.; Liang, Tiebing; Hutchison, Kent. E.

    2010-01-01

    Dual process models of addiction emphasize the importance of implicit (automatic) cognitive processes in the development and maintenance of substance use behavior. Although genetic influences are presumed to be relevant for dual process models, few studies have evaluated this possibility. The current study examined two polymorphsims with functional significance for alcohol use behavior (COMT Val158Met and ALDH2*2) in relation to automatic alcohol cognitions and tested additive and interactive effects of genotype and implicit cognitions on drinking behavior. Participants were college students (n = 69) who completed Implicit Association Tasks (IATs) designed to assess two classes of automatic drinking motives (enhancement motives and coping motives). Genetic factors did not show direct associations with IAT measures, however, COMT and ALDH2 moderated associations of implicit coping motives with drinking outcomes. Interaction effects indicated that associations of implicit motives with drinking outcomes were strongest in the context of genetic variants associated with relatively higher risk for alcohol use (COMT Met and ALDH2*1). Associations of genotype with drinking behavior were observed for ALDH2 but not COMT. These findings are consistent with the possibility that genetic risk or protective factors could potentiate or mitigate the influence of reflexive cognitive processes on drinking behavior, providing support for the evaluation of genetic influences in the context of dual process models of addiction. PMID:21309949

  14. Modification of Depression by COMT val[superscript 158]Met Polymorphism in Children Exposed to Early Severe Psychosocial Deprivation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Drury, Stacy S.; Theall, Katherine P.; Smyke, Anna T.; Keats, Bronya J. B.; Egger, Helen L.; Nelson, Charles A.; Fox, Nathan A.; Marshall, Peter J.; Zeanah, Charles H.

    2010-01-01

    Objective: To examine the impact of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) val[superscript 158]met allele on depressive symptoms in young children exposed to early severe social deprivation as a result of being raised in institutions. Methods: One hundred thirty six children from the Bucharest Early Intervention Project (BEIP) were randomized…

  15. Modifying effect of COMT gene polymorphism and a predictive role for proteomics analysis in children's intelligence in endemic fluorosis area in Tianjin, China.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Shun; Zhang, Xiaofei; Liu, Hongliang; Qu, Weidong; Guan, Zhizhong; Zeng, Qiang; Jiang, Chunyang; Gao, Hui; Zhang, Cheng; Lei, Rongrong; Xia, Tao; Wang, Zhenglun; Yang, Lu; Chen, Yihu; Wu, Xue; Cui, Yushan; Yu, Linyu; Wang, Aiguo

    2015-04-01

    Cumulative fluoride exposure has adverse influences on children's intelligence quotient (IQ). In addition, catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene Val158Met polymorphism (rs4680) is associated with cognitive performance. This study aimed to evaluate the associations of COMT polymorphism and alterations of protein profiles with children's intelligence in endemic fluorosis area. We recruited 180 schoolchildren (10-12 years old) from high fluoride exposure (1.40 mg/l) and control areas (0.63 mg/l) in Tianjin City, China. The children's IQ, fluoride contents in drinking water (W-F), serum (S-F), and urine (U-F); serum thyroid hormone levels, COMT Val158Met polymorphism, and plasma proteomic profiling were determined. Significant high levels of W-F, S-F, U-F, along with poor IQ scores were observed in the high fluoride exposure group compared with those in control (all P < 0.05). S-F and U-F were inversely related with IQ (r(s) = -0.47, P < 0.01; r(s) = -0.45, P = 0.002). Importantly, higher fluoride exposure was associated with steeper cognitive decline among children with the reference allele Val compared with those homozygous or heterozygous for the variant allele Met (95% CI, -16.80 to 2.55; P interaction < 0.01). Additionally, 5 up-regulated protein spots related to cell immunity and metabolism were detected in children with high fluoride exposure compared with the control. In conclusion, fluoride exposure was adversely associated with children's intelligence, whereas the COMT polymorphism may increase the susceptibility to the deficits in IQ due to fluoride exposure. Moreover, the proteomic analysis can provide certain basis for identifying the early biological markers of fluorosis among children.

  16. Sex Differences in COMT Polymorphism Effects on Prefrontal Inhibitory Control in Adolescence

    PubMed Central

    White, Thomas P; Loth, Eva; Rubia, Katya; Krabbendam, Lydia; Whelan, Robert; Banaschewski, Tobias; Barker, Gareth J; Bokde, Arun LW; Büchel, Christian; Conrod, Patricia; Fauth-Bühler, Mira; Flor, Herta; Frouin, Vincent; Gallinat, Jürgen; Garavan, Hugh; Gowland, Penny; Heinz, Andreas; Ittermann, Bernd; Lawrence, Claire; Mann, Karl; Paillère, Marie-Laure; Nees, Frauke; Paus, Tomas; Pausova, Zdenka; Rietschel, Marcella; Robbins, Trevor; Smolka, Michael N; Shergill, Sukhwinder S; Schumann, Gunter

    2014-01-01

    Catecholamine-0-methyl-transferase (COMT) gene variation effects on prefrontal blood oxygenation-level-dependent (BOLD) activation are robust; however, despite observations that COMT is estrogenically catabolized, sex differences in its prefrontal repercussions remain unclear. Here, in a large sample of healthy adolescents stratified by sex and Val158Met genotype (n=1133), we examine BOLD responses during performance of the stop-signal task in right-hemispheric prefrontal regions fundamental to inhibitory control. A significant sex-by-genotype interaction was observed in pre-SMA during successful-inhibition trials and in both pre-SMA and inferior frontal cortex during failed-inhibition trials with Val homozygotes displaying elevated activation compared with other genotypes in males but not in females. BOLD activation in the same regions significantly mediated the relationship between COMT genotype and inhibitory proficiency as indexed by stop-signal reaction time in males alone. These sexually dimorphic effects of COMT on inhibitory brain activation have important implications for our understanding of the contrasting patterns of prefrontally governed psychopathology observed in males and females. PMID:24820538

  17. Dopamine Inactivation Efficacy Related to Functional DAT1 and COMT Variants Influences Motor Response Evaluation

    PubMed Central

    Bender, Stephan; Rellum, Thomas; Freitag, Christine; Resch, Franz; Rietschel, Marcella; Treutlein, Jens; Jennen-Steinmetz, Christine; Brandeis, Daniel; Banaschewski, Tobias; Laucht, Manfred

    2012-01-01

    Background Dopamine plays an important role in orienting, response anticipation and movement evaluation. Thus, we examined the influence of functional variants related to dopamine inactivation in the dopamine transporter (DAT1) and catechol-O-methyltransferase genes (COMT) on the time-course of motor processing in a contingent negative variation (CNV) task. Methods 64-channel EEG recordings were obtained from 195 healthy adolescents of a community-based sample during a continuous performance task (A-X version). Early and late CNV as well as motor postimperative negative variation were assessed. Adolescents were genotyped for the COMT Val158Met and two DAT1 polymorphisms (variable number tandem repeats in the 3′-untranslated region and in intron 8). Results The results revealed a significant interaction between COMT and DAT1, indicating that COMT exerted stronger effects on lateralized motor post-processing (centro-parietal motor postimperative negative variation) in homozygous carriers of a DAT1 haplotype increasing DAT1 expression. Source analysis showed that the time interval 500–1000 ms after the motor response was specifically affected in contrast to preceding movement anticipation and programming stages, which were not altered. Conclusions Motor slow negative waves allow the genomic imaging of dopamine inactivation effects on cortical motor post-processing during response evaluation. This is the first report to point towards epistatic effects in the motor system during response evaluation, i.e. during the post-processing of an already executed movement rather than during movement programming. PMID:22649558

  18. Impact of Interacting Functional Variants in COMT on Regional Gray Matter Volume in Human Brain

    PubMed Central

    Honea, Robyn; Verchinski, Beth A.; Pezawas, Lukas; Kolachana, Bhaskar S.; Callicott, Joseph H.; Mattay, Venkata S.; Weinberger, Daniel R.; Meyer-Lindenberg, Andreas

    2009-01-01

    Background Functional variants in the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene have been shown to impact cognitive function, cortical physiology and risk for schizophrenia. A recent study showed that previously reported effects of the functional val158met SNP (rs4680) on brain function are modified by other functional SNPs and haplotypes in the gene, though it was unknown if these effects are also seen in brain structure. Methods We used voxel-based morphometry to investigate the impact of multiple functional variants in COMT on gray matter volume in a large group of 151 healthy volunteers from the CBDB/NIMH Genetic Study of Schizophrenia. Results We found that the previously described rs4680 val risk variant affects hippocampal and dorsolateral prefrontal (DLPFC) gray matter volume. In addition, we found that this SNP interacts with a variant in the P2 promoter region (rs2097603) in predicting changes in hippocampal gray matter volume consistent with a nonlinear effect of extracellular dopamine. Conclusions We report evidence that interacting functional variants in COMT affect gray matter regional volume in hippocampus and DLPFC, providing further in vivo validation of the biological impact of complex genetic variation in COMT on neural systems relevant for the pathophysiology of schizophrenia and extending observations of nonlinear dependence of prefrontal neurons on extracellular dopamine to the domain of human brain structure. PMID:19071221

  19. COMT polymorphism modulates the resting-state EEG alpha oscillatory response to acute nicotine in male non-smokers.

    PubMed

    Bowers, H; Smith, D; de la Salle, S; Choueiry, J; Impey, D; Philippe, T; Dort, H; Millar, A; Daigle, M; Albert, P R; Beaudoin, A; Knott, V

    2015-07-01

    Performance improvements in cognitive tasks requiring executive functions are evident with nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) agonists, and activation of the underlying neural circuitry supporting these cognitive effects is thought to involve dopamine neurotransmission. As individual difference in response to nicotine may be related to a functional polymorphism in the gene encoding catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), an enzyme that strongly influences cortical dopamine metabolism, this study examined the modulatory effects of the COMT Val158Met polymorphism on the neural response to acute nicotine as measured with resting-state electroencephalographic (EEG) oscillations. In a sample of 62 healthy non-smoking adult males, a single dose (6 mg) of nicotine gum administered in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled design was shown to affect α oscillatory activity, increasing power of upper α oscillations in frontocentral regions of Met/Met homozygotes and in parietal/occipital regions of Val/Met heterozygotes. Peak α frequency was also found to be faster with nicotine (vs. placebo) treatment in Val/Met heterozygotes, who exhibited a slower α frequency compared to Val/Val homozygotes. The data tentatively suggest that interindividual differences in brain α oscillations and their response to nicotinic agonist treatment are influenced by genetic mechanisms involving COMT. PMID:26096691

  20. COMT polymorphism modulates the resting-state EEG alpha oscillatory response to acute nicotine in male non-smokers

    PubMed Central

    Bowers, H.; Smith, D.; de la Salle, S.; Choueiry, J.; Impey, D.; Philippe, T.; Dort, H.; Millar, A.; Daigle, M.; Albert, P. R.; Beaudoin, A.; Knott, V.

    2015-01-01

    Performance improvements in cognitive tasks requiring executive functions are evident with nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) agonists, and activation of the underlying neural circuitry supporting these cognitive effects is thought to involve dopamine neurotransmission. As individual difference in response to nicotine may be related to a functional polymorphism in the gene encoding catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), an enzyme that strongly influences cortical dopamine metabolism, this study examined the modulatory effects of the COMT Val158Met polymorphism on the neural response to acute nicotine as measured with resting-state electroencephalographic (EEG) oscillations. In a sample of 62 healthy non-smoking adult males, a single dose (6 mg) of nicotine gum administered in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled design was shown to affect α oscillatory activity, increasing power of upper α oscillations in frontocentral regions of Met/Met homozygotes and in parietal/occipital regions of Val/Met heterozygotes. Peak α frequency was also found to be faster with nicotine (vs. placebo) treatment in Val/Met heterozygotes, who exhibited a slower α frequency compared to Val/Val homozygotes. The data tentatively suggest that interindividual differences in brain α oscillations and their response to nicotinic agonist treatment are influenced by genetic mechanisms involving COMT. PMID:26096691

  1. Evidence that COMT genotype and proline interact on negative-symptom outcomes in schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

    PubMed

    Clelland, C L; Drouet, V; Rilett, K C; Smeed, J A; Nadrich, R H; Rajparia, A; Read, L L; Clelland, J D

    2016-01-01

    Elevated peripheral proline is associated with psychiatric disorders, and there is evidence that proline is a neuromodulator. The proline dehydrogenase (PRODH) gene, which encodes the enzyme that catalyzes proline catabolism, maps to human chromosome 22q11.2, a region conferring risk of schizophrenia. In the Prodh-null mouse, an interaction between elevated peripheral proline and another 22q11.2 gene, catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), on neurotransmission and behavior has been reported. We explored the relationship between fasting plasma proline levels and COMT Val(158)Met genotype on symptoms (positive, negative and total) in schizophrenia patients. In an exploratory study we also examined symptom change in patients with bipolar disorder. There was a significant interaction between peripheral proline and COMT on negative symptoms in schizophrenia (P<0.0001, n=95). In COMT Val/Val patients, high proline was associated with low Scale for the Assessment of Negative Symptom (SANS) scores. In contrast, high proline was associated with high SANS scores in patients carrying a Met allele. The relationship between proline and COMT also appears to modify negative symptoms across psychiatric illness. In bipolar disorder, a significant interaction was also observed on negative-symptom change (P=0.007, n=43). Negative symptoms are intractable and largely unaddressed by current medications. These data indicate a significant interaction between peripheral proline and COMT genotype, influencing negative symptoms in schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. That high proline has converse effects on symptoms by COMT genotype, may have implications for therapeutic decisions. PMID:27622935

  2. Evidence that COMT genotype and proline interact on negative-symptom outcomes in schizophrenia and bipolar disorder

    PubMed Central

    Clelland, C L; Drouet, V; Rilett, K C; Smeed, J A; Nadrich, R H; Rajparia, A; Read, L L; Clelland, J D

    2016-01-01

    Elevated peripheral proline is associated with psychiatric disorders, and there is evidence that proline is a neuromodulator. The proline dehydrogenase (PRODH) gene, which encodes the enzyme that catalyzes proline catabolism, maps to human chromosome 22q11.2, a region conferring risk of schizophrenia. In the Prodh-null mouse, an interaction between elevated peripheral proline and another 22q11.2 gene, catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), on neurotransmission and behavior has been reported. We explored the relationship between fasting plasma proline levels and COMT Val158Met genotype on symptoms (positive, negative and total) in schizophrenia patients. In an exploratory study we also examined symptom change in patients with bipolar disorder. There was a significant interaction between peripheral proline and COMT on negative symptoms in schizophrenia (P<0.0001, n=95). In COMT Val/Val patients, high proline was associated with low Scale for the Assessment of Negative Symptom (SANS) scores. In contrast, high proline was associated with high SANS scores in patients carrying a Met allele. The relationship between proline and COMT also appears to modify negative symptoms across psychiatric illness. In bipolar disorder, a significant interaction was also observed on negative-symptom change (P=0.007, n=43). Negative symptoms are intractable and largely unaddressed by current medications. These data indicate a significant interaction between peripheral proline and COMT genotype, influencing negative symptoms in schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. That high proline has converse effects on symptoms by COMT genotype, may have implications for therapeutic decisions. PMID:27622935

  3. Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder comorbid oppositional defiant disorder and its predominately inattentive type: evidence for an association with COMT but not MAOA in a Chinese sample

    PubMed Central

    Qian, Qiu-Jin; Liu, Jin; Wang, Yu-Feng; Yang, Li; Guan, Li-Li; Faraone, Stephen V

    2009-01-01

    Background There are three childhood disruptive behavior disorders (DBDs), attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), oppositional defiant disorder (ODD), and conduct disorder (CD). The most common comorbid disorder in ADHD is ODD. DSM-IV describes three ADHD subtypes: predominantly inattentive type (ADHD-IA), predominantly hyperactive-impulsive type (ADHD-HI), and combined type (ADHD-C). Prior work suggests that specific candidate genes are associated with specific subtypes of ADHD in China. Our previous association studies between ADHD and functional polymorphisms of COMT and MAOA, consistently showed the low transcriptional activity alleles were preferentially transmitted to ADHD-IA boys. Thus, the goal of the present study is to test the hypothesis that COMT Val158Met and MAOA-uVNTR jointly contribute to the ODD phenotype among Chinese ADHD boys. Methods 171 Chinese boys between 6 and 17.5 years old (mean = 10.3, SD = 2.6) with complete COMT val158met and MAOA-uVNTR genotyping information were studied. We used logistic regression with genotypes as independent variables and the binary phenotype as the dependent variable. We used p < 0.05 as the level of nominal statistical significance. Bonferroni correction procedures were used to adjust for multiple comparisons. Results Our results highlight the potential etiologic role of COMT in the ADHD with comorbid ODD and its predominately inattentive type in male Chinese subjects. ADHD with comorbid ODD was associated with homozygosity of the high-activity Val allele, while the predominantly inattentive ADHD subtype was associated with the low-activity Met allele. We found no evidence of association between the MAOA-uVNTR variant and ADHD with comorbid ODD or the ADHD-IA subtype. Conclusion Our study of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder comorbid oppositional defiant disorder and its predominately inattentive type highlights the potential etiologic role of COMT for ADHD children in China. But we failed to

  4. Magnified effects of the COMT gene on white-matter microstructure in very old age.

    PubMed

    Papenberg, Goran; Lövdén, Martin; Laukka, Erika J; Kalpouzos, Grégoria; Keller, Lina; Graff, Caroline; Köhncke, Ylva; Li, Tie-Qiang; Fratiglioni, Laura; Bäckman, Lars

    2015-09-01

    Genetic factors may partly account for between-person differences in brain integrity in old age. Evidence from human and animal studies suggests that the dopaminergic system is implicated in the modulation of white-matter integrity. We investigated whether a genetic variation in the Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphism, which influences dopamine availability in prefrontal cortex, contributes to interindividual differences in white-matter microstructure, as measured with diffusion-tensor imaging. In a sample of older adults from a population-based study (60-87 years; n = 238), we found that the COMT polymorphism affects white-matter microstructure, indexed by fractional anisotropy and mean diffusivity, of several white-matter tracts in the oldest age group (81-87 years), although there were no reliable associations between COMT and white-matter microstructure in the two younger age groups (60-66 and 72-78 years). These findings extend previous observations of magnified genetic effects on cognition in old age to white-matter integrity.

  5. Different Roles of COMT and HTR2A Genotypes in Working Memory Subprocesses

    PubMed Central

    Kondo, Hirohito M.; Nomura, Michio; Kashino, Makio

    2015-01-01

    Working memory is linked to the functions of the frontal areas, in which neural activity is mediated by dopaminergic and serotonergic tones. However, there is no consensus regarding how the dopaminergic and serotonergic systems influence working memory subprocesses. The present study used an imaging genetics approach to examine the interaction between neurochemical functions and working memory performance. We focused on functional polymorphisms of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met and serotonin 2A receptor (HTR2A) -1438G/A genes, and devised a delayed recognition task to isolate the encoding, retention, and retrieval processes for visual information. The COMT genotypes affected recognition accuracy, whereas the HTR2A genotypes were associated with recognition response times. Activations specifically related to working memory were found in the right frontal and parietal areas, such as the middle frontal gyrus (MFG), inferior frontal gyrus (IFG), anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), and inferior parietal lobule (IPL). MFG and ACC/IPL activations were sensitive to differences between the COMT genotypes and between the HTR2A genotypes, respectively. Structural equation modeling demonstrated that stronger connectivity in the ACC-MFG and ACC-IFG networks is related to better task performance. The behavioral and fMRI results suggest that the dopaminergic and serotonergic systems play different roles in the working memory subprocesses and modulate closer cooperation between lateral and medial frontal activations. PMID:25974269

  6. The COMT Val/Met polymorphism is associated with reading-related skills and consistent patterns of functional neural activation.

    PubMed

    Landi, Nicole; Frost, Stephen J; Mencl, W Einar; Preston, Jonathan L; Jacobsen, Leslie K; Lee, Maria; Yrigollen, Carolyn; Pugh, Kenneth R; Grigorenko, Elena L

    2013-01-01

    In both children and adults there is large variability in reading skill, with approximately 5-10% of individuals characterized as having reading disability; these individuals struggle to learn to read despite adequate intelligence and opportunity. Although it is well established that a substantial portion of this variability is attributed to the genetic differences between individuals, specifics of the connections between reading and the genome are not understood. This article presents data that suggest that variation in the COMT gene, which has previously been associated with variation in higher-order cognition, is associated with reading and reading-related skills, at the level of both brain and behavior. In particular, we found that the COMT Val/Met polymorphism at rs4680, which results in the substitution of the ancestral Valine (Val) by Methionine (Met), was associated with better performance on a number of critical reading measures and with patterns of functional neural activation that have been linked to better readers. We argue that this polymorphism, known for its broad effects on cognition, may modulate (likely through frontal lobe function) reading skill.

  7. COMT and prenatal maternal smoking in associations with conduct problems and crime: the Pelotas 1993 birth cohort study

    PubMed Central

    Salatino-Oliveira, Angélica; Murray, Joseph; Kieling, Christian; Genro, Júlia Pasqualini; Polanczyk, Guilherme; Anselmi, Luciana; Wehrmeister, Fernando; de Barros, Fernando C.; Menezes, Ana Maria Baptista; Rohde, Luis Augusto; Hutz, Mara Helena

    2016-01-01

    Conduct problems in childhood and adolescence are significant precursors of crime and violence in young adulthood. The purpose of the current study is to test the interaction between prenatal maternal smoking and COMT Val158Met in conduct problems and crime in the 1993 Pelotas Birth Cohort Study. Conduct problems were assessed through the parent version of the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire at ages 11 and 15 years. A translated version of a confidential self-report questionnaire was used to collect criminal data at 18 years of age. Negative binomial regression analyses showed an association between prenatal maternal smoking and SDQ conduct problem scores (IRR = 1.24; 95% CI: 1.14–1.34; p < 0.001) at 11 years of age. However, no evidence was found for an association between COMT genotypes and conduct scores or for an interaction between maternal smoking and this gene in predicting conduct problems. Very similar results were obtained using the 15 years conduct scores and crime measure at age 18. Prenatal maternal smoking was associated with crime (IRR = 1.28; 95% CI: 1.09–1.48; p = 0.002) but neither COMT genotypes nor the possible interaction between gene and maternal smoking were significantly associated with crime. Replications of GxE findings across different social contexts are critical for testing the robustness of findings. PMID:27426045

  8. Inhibition of catechol-O-methyl transferase (COMT) by tolcapone restores reductions in microtubule-associated protein 2 (MAP2) and synaptophysin (SYP) following exposure of neuronal cells to neurotropic HIV.

    PubMed

    Lee, Ting Ting; Chana, Gursharan; Gorry, Paul R; Ellett, Anne; Bousman, Chad A; Churchill, Melissa J; Gray, Lachlan R; Everall, Ian P

    2015-10-01

    This investigation aimed to assess whether inhibition of cathecol-O-methyl transferase (COMT) by tolcapone could provide neuroprotection against HIV-associated neurodegenerative effects. This study was conducted based on a previous work, which showed that a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) at position 158 (val158met) in COMT, resulted in 40 % lower COMT activity. Importantly, this reduction confers a protective effect against HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND), which have been linked to HIV-associated brain changes. SH-SY5Y-differentiated neurons were exposed to macrophage-propagated HIV (neurotropic MACS2-Br strain) in the presence or absence of tolcapone for 6 days. RNA was extracted, and qPCR was performed using Qiagen RT2 custom array consisting of genes for neuronal and synaptic integrity, COMT and pro-inflammatory markers. Immunofluorescence was conducted to validate the gene expression changes at the protein level. Our findings demonstrated that HIV significantly increased the messenger RNA (mRNA) expression of COMT while reducing the expression of microtubule-associated protein 2 (MAP2) (p = 0.0015) and synaptophysin (SYP) (p = 0.012) compared to control. A concomitant exposure of tolcapone ameliorated the perturbed expression of MAP2 (p = 0.009) and COMT (p = 0.024) associated with HIV. Immunofluorescence revealed a trend reduction of SYP and MAP2 with exposure to HIV and that concomitant exposure of tolcapone increased SYP (p = 0.016) compared to HIV alone. Our findings demonstrated in vitro that inhibition of COMT can ameliorate HIV-associated neurodegenerative changes that resulted in the decreased expression of the structural and synaptic components MAP2 and SYP. As HIV-associated dendritic and synaptic damage are contributors to HAND, inhibition of COMT may represent a potential strategy for attenuating or preventing some of the symptoms of HAND.

  9. Personality in Relation to Genetic Liability for Schizophrenia and Bipolar Disorder: Differential Associations with the COMT Val108/158Met Polymorphism

    PubMed Central

    Silberschmidt, Amy L.; Sponheim, Scott R.

    2009-01-01

    Schizophrenia and bipolar disorder may share aspects of genetic etiology. Evidence supports the Val108/158Met polymorphism of the Catechol-o-Methyltransferase (COMT) gene as potentially contributing to the etiology of both disorders. To determine whether the COMT gene is associated with personality traits related to genetic risk for either schizophrenia or bipolar disorder, we examined dimensions of personality psychopathology in biological relatives of individuals with the disorders. Specifically, we contrasted personality characteristics of first-degree relatives of people with schizophrenia, first-degree relatives of people with bipolar-I disorder, and nonpsychiatric control participants using scores from the Dimensional Assessment of Personality Pathology – Brief Questionnaire (DAPP-BQ). We also characterized the COMT Val108/158Met polymorphism of subjects. Compared to controls, relatives of schizophrenia patients scored lower on stimulus seeking and higher on restrictive expression and social avoidance. Compared to relatives of bipolar patients, relatives of schizophrenia patients had lower scores on narcissism, rejectionality (i.e., rejection of ideas of others), stimulus seeking, passive-aggressive oppositionality, and self-harm. The subset of relatives of schizophrenia patients who were COMT val homozygotes exhibited lower scores on narcissism, rejectionality, and stimulus seeking than met homozygote relatives of schizophrenia patients and control participants. Although relatives of bipolar patients showed scale elevations consistent with emotional dysregulation, the scores failed to be associated with the Val108/158Met polymorphism. Abnormally low narcissism and rejectionality in val homozygote relatives of schizophrenia patients suggests that the val allele of the COMT polymorphism may be associated with an underdeveloped self-concept phenomenologically similar to made volition and passivity experiences comprising first-rank symptoms of schizophrenia

  10. Evidence for a common biological basis of the Absorption trait, hallucinogen effects, and positive symptoms: epistasis between 5-HT2a and COMT polymorphisms.

    PubMed

    Ott, Ulrich; Reuter, Martin; Hennig, Juergen; Vaitl, Dieter

    2005-08-01

    Absorption represents a disposition to experience altered states of consciousness characterized by intensively focused attention. It is correlated with hypnotic susceptibility and includes phenomena ranging from vivid perceptions and imaginations to mystical experiences. Based on the assumption that drug-induced and naturally occurring mystical experiences share common neural mechanisms, we hypothesized that Absorption is influenced by the T102C polymorphism affecting the 5-HT2a receptor, which is known to be an important target site of hallucinogens like LSD. Based on the pivotal role ascribed to the prefrontal executive control network for absorbed attention and positive symptoms in schizophrenia, it was further hypothesized that Absorption is associated with the VAL158MET polymorphism of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene affecting the dopaminergic neurotransmitter system. The Tellegen Absorption Scale was administered to 336 subjects (95 male, 241 female). Statistical analysis revealed that the group with the T/T genotype of the T102C polymorphism, implying a stronger binding potential of the 5-HT2a receptor, indeed had significantly higher Absorption scores (F = 10.00, P = 0.002), while no main effect was found for the COMT polymorphism. However, the interaction between T102C and COMT genotypes yielded significance (F = 3.89; P = 0.049), underlining the known functional interaction between the 5-HT and the dopaminergic system. These findings point to biological foundations of the personality trait of Absorption.

  11. Monoamine Oxidase A (MAOA) and Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) Gene Polymorphisms Interact with Maternal Parenting in Association with Adolescent Reactive Aggression but not Proactive Aggression: Evidence of Differential Susceptibility.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Wenxin; Cao, Cong; Wang, Meiping; Ji, Linqin; Cao, Yanmiao

    2016-04-01

    To date, whether and how gene-environment (G × E) interactions operate differently across distinct subtypes of aggression remains untested. More recently, in contrast with the diathesis-stress hypothesis, an alternative hypothesis of differential susceptibility proposes that individuals could be differentially susceptible to environments depending on their genotypes in a "for better and for worse" manner. The current study examined interactions between monoamine oxidase A (MAOA) T941G and catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphisms with maternal parenting on two types of aggression: reactive and proactive. Moreover, whether these potential G × E interactions would be consistent with the diathesis-stress versus the differential susceptibility hypothesis was tested. Within the sample of 1399 Chinese Han adolescents (47.2 % girls, M age = 12.32 years, SD = 0.50), MAOA and COMT genes both interacted with positive parenting in their associations with reactive but not proactive aggression. Adolescents with T alleles/TT homozygotes of MAOA gene or Met alleles of COMT gene exhibited more reactive aggression when exposed to low positive parenting, but less reactive aggression when exposed to high positive parenting. These findings provide the first evidence for distinct G × E interaction effects on reactive versus proactive aggression and lend further support for the differential susceptibility hypothesis.

  12. Monoamine Oxidase A (MAOA) and Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) Gene Polymorphisms Interact with Maternal Parenting in Association with Adolescent Reactive Aggression but not Proactive Aggression: Evidence of Differential Susceptibility.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Wenxin; Cao, Cong; Wang, Meiping; Ji, Linqin; Cao, Yanmiao

    2016-04-01

    To date, whether and how gene-environment (G × E) interactions operate differently across distinct subtypes of aggression remains untested. More recently, in contrast with the diathesis-stress hypothesis, an alternative hypothesis of differential susceptibility proposes that individuals could be differentially susceptible to environments depending on their genotypes in a "for better and for worse" manner. The current study examined interactions between monoamine oxidase A (MAOA) T941G and catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphisms with maternal parenting on two types of aggression: reactive and proactive. Moreover, whether these potential G × E interactions would be consistent with the diathesis-stress versus the differential susceptibility hypothesis was tested. Within the sample of 1399 Chinese Han adolescents (47.2 % girls, M age = 12.32 years, SD = 0.50), MAOA and COMT genes both interacted with positive parenting in their associations with reactive but not proactive aggression. Adolescents with T alleles/TT homozygotes of MAOA gene or Met alleles of COMT gene exhibited more reactive aggression when exposed to low positive parenting, but less reactive aggression when exposed to high positive parenting. These findings provide the first evidence for distinct G × E interaction effects on reactive versus proactive aggression and lend further support for the differential susceptibility hypothesis. PMID:26932718

  13. The brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) val66met polymorphism differentially affects performance on subscales of the Wechsler Memory Scale - Third Edition (WMS-III).

    PubMed

    Lamb, Yvette N; Thompson, Christopher S; McKay, Nicole S; Waldie, Karen E; Kirk, Ian J

    2015-01-01

    Single nucleotide polymorphisms in the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) gene and the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene influence brain structure and function, as well as cognitive abilities. They are most influential in the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex (PFC), respectively. Recall and recognition are forms of memory proposed to have different neural substrates, with recall having a greater dependence on the PFC and hippocampus. This study aimed to determine whether the BDNF val(66)met or COMT val(158)met polymorphisms differentially affect recall and recognition, and whether these polymorphisms interact. A sample of 100 healthy adults was assessed on recall and familiarity-based recognition using the Faces and Family Pictures subscales of the Wechsler Memory Scale - Third Edition (WMS-III). COMT genotype did not affect performance on either task. The BDNF polymorphism (i.e., met carriers relative to val homozygotes) was associated with poorer recall ability, while not influencing recognition. Combining subscale scores in memory tests such as the WMS might obscure gene effects. Our results demonstrate the importance of distinguishing between recall and familiarity-based recognition in neurogenetics research.

  14. Dopamine metabolism in adults with 22q11 deletion syndrome, with and without schizophrenia--relationship with COMT Val¹⁰⁸/¹⁵⁸Met polymorphism, gender and symptomatology.

    PubMed

    Boot, Erik; Booij, Jan; Abeling, Nico; Meijer, Julia; da Silva Alves, Fabiana; Zinkstok, Janneke; Baas, Frank; Linszen, Don; van Amelsvoort, Thérèse

    2011-07-01

    22q11 Deletion syndrome (22q11DS) is a major risk factor for schizophrenia. In addition, both conditions are associated with alterations of the dopaminergic system. The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene, located within the deleted region, encodes for the enzyme COMT that is important for degradation of catecholamines, including dopamine (DA). COMT activity is sexually dimorphic and its gene contains a functional polymorphism, Val¹⁰⁸/¹⁵⁸ Met; the Met allele is associated with lower enzyme activity. We report the first controlled catecholamine study in 22q11DS-related schizophrenia. Twelve adults with 22q11DS with schizophrenia (SCZ+) and 22 adults with 22q11DS without schizophrenia (SCZ-) were genotyped for the COMT Val¹⁰⁸/¹⁵⁸ Met genotype. We assessed dopaminergic markers in urine and plasma. We also correlated these markers with scores on the Positive and Negative Symptom Scale (PANSS). Contrary to our expectations, we found SCZ+ subjects to be more often Val hemizygous and SCZ- subjects more often Met hemizygous. Significant COMT cross gender interactions were found on dopaminergic markers. In SCZ+ subjects there was a negative correlation between prolactin levels and scores on the general psychopathology subscale of the PANSS scores. These findings suggest intriguing, but complex, interactions of the COMT Val¹⁰⁸/¹⁵⁸ Met polymorphism, gender and additional factors on DA metabolism, and its relationship with schizophrenia.

  15. Analysis of functional polymorphisms in three synaptic plasticity-related genes (BDNF, COMT AND UCHL1) in Alzheimer's disease in Colombia.

    PubMed

    Forero, Diego A; Benítez, Bruno; Arboleda, Gonzalo; Yunis, Juan J; Pardo, Rodrigo; Arboleda, Humberto

    2006-07-01

    In recent years, it has been proposed that synaptic dysfunction may be an important etiological factor for Alzheimer's disease (AD). This hypothesis has important implications for the analysis of AD genetic risk in case-control studies. In the present work, we analyzed common functional polymorphisms in three synaptic plasticity-related genes (brain-derived neurotrophic factor, BDNF Val66Met; catechol-O-methyl transferase, COMT Val158; ubiquitin carboxyl-terminal hydroxylase, UCHL1 S18Y) in a sample of 102 AD cases and 168 age and sex matched controls living in Bogotá, Colombia. There was not association between UCHL1 polymorphism and AD in our sample. We have found an initial association with BDNF polymorphism in familial cases and with COMT polymorphism in male and sporadic patients. These initial associations were lost after Bonferroni correction for multiple testing. Unadjusted results may be compatible with the expected functional effect of variations in these genes on pathological memory and cognitive dysfunction, as has been implicated in animal and cell models and also from neuropsychological analysis of normal subjects carriers of the AD associated genotypes. An exploration of functional variants in these and in other synaptic plasticity-related genes (a synaptogenomics approach) in independent larger samples will be important to discover new genes associated with AD.

  16. COMT Val[superscript 108/158] Met Gene Variant, Birth Weight, and Conduct Disorder in Children with ADHD

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sengupta, Sarojini M.; Grizenko, Natalie; Schmitz, Norbert; Schwartz, George; Amor, Leila Ben; Bellingham, Johanne; de Guzman, Rosherrie; Polotskaia, Anna; Stepanian, Marina Ter; Thakur, Geeta; Joober, Ridha

    2006-01-01

    Objective: In a recent study, Thapar and colleagues reported that COMT "gene variant and birth weight predict early-onset antisocial behavior in children" with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. We have attempted to replicate these findings in a group of ADHD children using a similar research design. Method: Children (n = 191) between 6 and…

  17. The Flexible Mind Is Associated with the Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) Val[superscript 158]Met Polymorphism: Evidence for a Role of Dopamine in the Control of Task-Switching

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Colzato, Lorenza S.; Waszak, Florian; Nieuwenhuis, Sander; Posthuma, Danielle; Hommel, Bernhard

    2010-01-01

    Genetic variability related to the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene Val[superscript 128]Met polymorphism) has received increasing attention as a possible modulator of cognitive control functions. Recent evidence suggests that the Val[superscript 128]Met genotype may differentially affect cognitive stability and flexibility, in such a way…

  18. Impact of aerobic exercise training on cognitive functions and affect associated to the COMT polymorphism in young adults.

    PubMed

    Stroth, Sanna; Reinhardt, Ralf K; Thöne, Jan; Hille, Katrin; Schneider, Matthias; Härtel, Sascha; Weidemann, Wolfgang; Bös, Klaus; Spitzer, Manfred

    2010-10-01

    Physical fitness can serve as a means to enhance cognitive functioning by modulating particular aspects of brain functioning. However, mechanisms underlying this modulating effect remain widely unresolved. To examine the impact and to clarify the mechanisms of physical fitness training in a young and healthy population, it was investigated whether an increase in fitness would result in improvements in executive control processes and positive and negative affect. Moreover, genotype of the Val158Met polymorphism in catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) as an index of relative central dopamine bioavailability was determined to elucidate dopamine tuning efficiency and its association with performance in the applied cognitive tasks. Seventy-five individuals participated and underwent an incremental fitness test to assess physical fitness. An exercising group subsequently engaged in a 17 weeks running training consisting of three running sessions at moderate to high, individually adjusted intensities. Associated with increased fitness improved cognitive flexibility and cognitive control were observed, whereas working memory remained unaffected. In runners, Val/Val participants improved cognitive performance to a greater extent compared to individuals carrying a Met allele. From the present results it is concluded that an increase in physical fitness provides a means to improve cognitive functioning via dopaminergic modulation.

  19. No Association of BDNF, COMT, MAOA, SLC6A3, and SLC6A4 Genes and Depressive Symptoms in a Sample of Healthy Colombian Subjects

    PubMed Central

    González-Giraldo, Yeimy; Camargo, Andrés; López-León, Sandra; Forero, Diego A.

    2015-01-01

    Background. Major depressive disorder (MDD) is the second cause of years lived with disability around the world. A large number of studies have been carried out to identify genetic risk factors for MDD and related endophenotypes, mainly in populations of European and Asian descent, with conflicting results. The main aim of the current study was to analyze the possible association of five candidate genes and depressive symptoms in a Colombian sample of healthy subjects. Methods and Materials. The Spanish adaptation of the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) was applied to one hundred eighty-eight healthy Colombian subjects. Five functional polymorphisms were genotyped using PCR-based assays: BDNF-Val66Met (rs6265), COMT-Val158Met (rs4680), SLC6A4-HTTLPR (rs4795541), MAOA-uVNTR, and SLC6A3-VNTR (rs28363170). Result. We did not find significant associations with scores of depressive symptoms, derived from the HADS, for any of the five candidate genes (nominal p values >0.05). In addition, we did not find evidence of significant gene-gene interactions. Conclusion. This work is one of the first studies of candidate genes for depressive symptoms in a Latin American sample. Study of additional genetic and epigenetic variants, taking into account other pathophysiological theories, will help to identify novel candidates for MDD in populations around the world. PMID:26557993

  20. Interaction effects of the COMT and DRD4 genes with anxiety-related traits on selective attention.

    PubMed

    Alfimova, Margarita; Korovaitseva, Galina; Lezheiko, Tatiana; Golimbet, Vera

    2014-01-01

    The study investigated whether the DRD4 and COMT genes can modify relations between trait anxiety and selective attention. Two hundreds and sixty-six subjects performed a visual search task in which they had to find words looking through a sheet with rows of letters. After finishing the first sheet the subject was presented the second one, this time with an instruction to perform the task as quickly and accurate as possible. To study top-down attention, the number of correctly identified words (accuracy) and the time for completion of each trial were analyzed. To study bottom-up attention, the letters 'o' and 'n' were written in green, whilst the others were in black, and subjects were asked whether they had noticed that 2-3 minutes after the task completion. Genotypes for the COMT Val158Met and DRD4 VNTR-48 polymorphisms and TCI Harm Avoidance and MMPI Depression scales' scores were obtained as well. High anxious individuals showed a more pronounced increase in accuracy in the second trial and more profound processing of irrelevant stimuli (colored letters). There was a significant interaction effect of DRD4 and Harm avoidance on the accuracy dynamics F(1, 210), = 7.65, p = .006, η2 = .04. Among DRD4 long allele carriers, high anxious subjects significantly improved accuracy (p = .013) and tended to slow speed, while those with lower Harm avoidance demonstrated the opposite trend. These effects were more robust in less educated individuals. It was concluded that the DRD4 polymorphism may modify the influence of trait anxiety on the speed-accuracy tradeoff.

  1. Brooding rumination and heart rate variability in women at high and low risk for depression: group differences and moderation by COMT genotype.

    PubMed

    Woody, Mary L; McGeary, John E; Gibb, Brandon E

    2014-02-01

    There is growing evidence that rumination, perhaps specifically brooding rumination, is a core feature of depression and that it contributes to the development and maintenance of the disorder. A separate line of research has highlighted the role played by heart rate variability (HRV). Both brooding rumination and HRV appear to be driven by disruption in the same neural circuit, heightened amygdala reactivity combined with decreased prefrontal control, and both are highlighted in different units of analysis as reflecting the Research Domain Criteria (RDoC) construct of Loss. However, little is known about the relation among these variables. In the current study, we predicted that higher levels of brooding rumination would be associated with lower levels of HRV and that women at high risk for future depression (i.e., those with a history of past major depressive disorder [MDD]) would exhibit higher levels of brooding and lower levels of HRV. We also examined genetic influences on the variables in this model. We predicted that COMT Val158Met genotype, which has been linked to heightened amygdala reactivity and deficits in prefrontal functioning, would be associated with brooding rumination and HRV, particularly among women with a history of past MDD. The results largely supported our hypotheses, providing additional support for relations among the different units of analysis for the Loss construct.

  2. Association between Val66Met Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) Gene Polymorphism and Post-Treatment Relapse in Alcohol Dependence

    PubMed Central

    Wojnar, Marcin; Brower, Kirk J.; Strobbe, Stephen; Ilgen, Mark; Matsumoto, Halina; Nowosad, Izabela; Sliwerska, Elzbieta; Burmeister, Margit

    2009-01-01

    Background The purpose of this study was to examine relationships between genetic markers of central serotonin and dopamine function, and risk for post-treatment relapse, in a sample of alcohol-dependent patients. Methods The study included 154 patients from addiction treatment programs in Poland, who met DSM-IV criteria for alcohol dependence. After assessing demographics, severity of alcohol use, suicidality, impulsivity, depression, hopelessness, and severity of alcohol use at baseline, patients were followed for approximately one year to evaluate treatment outcomes. Genetic polymorphisms in several genes (TPH2, SLC6A4, HTR1A, HTR2A, COMT, BDNF) were tested as predictors of relapse (defined as any drinking during follow-up) while controlling for baseline measures. Results Of 154 eligible patients, 123 (80%) completed follow-up and 48% (n = 59) of these individuals relapsed. Patients with the Val allele in the Val66Met BDNF polymorphism and the Met allele in the Val158Met COMT polymorphism were more likely to relapse. Only the BDNF Val/Val genotype predicted post-treatment relapse (OR = 2.62; p = 0.019), and time to relapse (OR = 2.57; p = 0.002), after adjusting for baseline measures and other significant genetic markers. When the analysis was restricted to patients with a family history of alcohol dependence (n = 73), the associations between the BDNF Val/Val genotype and relapse (OR = 5.76, p = 0.0045) and time to relapse (HR = 4.93, p = 0.001) were even stronger. Conclusions The Val66Met BDNF gene polymorphism was associated with a higher risk and earlier occurrence of relapse among patients treated for alcohol dependence. The study suggests a relationship between genetic markers and treatment outcomes in alcohol dependence. Because a large number of statistical tests were conducted for this study and the literature on genetics and relapse is so novel, the results should be considered as hypothesis generating and need to be replicated in independent studies

  3. Genetic influences on the acquisition and inhibition of fear.

    PubMed

    Wendt, Julia; Neubert, Jörg; Lindner, Katja; Ernst, Florian D; Homuth, Georg; Weike, Almut I; Hamm, Alfons O

    2015-12-01

    As a variant of the Pavlovian fear conditioning paradigm the conditional discrimination design allows for a detailed investigation of fear acquisition and fear inhibition. Measuring fear-potentiated startle responses, we investigated the influence of two genetic polymorphisms (5-HTTLPR and COMT Val(158)Met) on fear acquisition and fear inhibition which are considered to be critical mechanisms for the etiology and maintenance of anxiety disorders. 5-HTTLPR s-allele carriers showed a more stable potentiation of the startle response during fear acquisition. Homozygous COMT Met-allele carriers, which had demonstrated delayed extinction in previous investigations, show deficient fear inhibition in presence of a learned safety signal. Thus, our results provide further evidence that 5-HTTLPR and COMT Val(158)Met genotypes influence the vulnerability for the development of anxiety disorders via different mechanisms.

  4. COMT gene locus: new functional variants.

    PubMed

    Meloto, Carolina B; Segall, Samantha K; Smith, Shad; Parisien, Marc; Shabalina, Svetlana A; Rizzatti-Barbosa, Célia M; Gauthier, Josée; Tsao, Douglas; Convertino, Marino; Piltonen, Marjo H; Slade, Gary Dmitri; Fillingim, Roger B; Greenspan, Joel D; Ohrbach, Richard; Knott, Charles; Maixner, William; Zaykin, Dmitri; Dokholyan, Nikolay V; Reenilä, Ilkka; Männistö, Pekka T; Diatchenko, Luda

    2015-10-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) metabolizes catecholaminergic neurotransmitters. Numerous studies have linked COMT to pivotal brain functions such as mood, cognition, response to stress, and pain. Both nociception and risk of clinical pain have been associated with COMT genetic variants, and this association was shown to be mediated through adrenergic pathways. Here, we show that association studies between COMT polymorphic markers and pain phenotypes in 2 independent cohorts identified a functional marker, rs165774, situated in the 3' untranslated region of a newfound splice variant, (a)-COMT. Sequence comparisons showed that the (a)-COMT transcript is highly conserved in primates, and deep sequencing data demonstrated that (a)-COMT is expressed across several human tissues, including the brain. In silico analyses showed that the (a)-COMT enzyme features a distinct C-terminus structure, capable of stabilizing substrates in its active site. In vitro experiments demonstrated not only that (a)-COMT is catalytically active but also that it displays unique substrate specificity, exhibiting enzymatic activity with dopamine but not epinephrine. They also established that the pain-protective A allele of rs165774 coincides with lower COMT activity, suggesting contribution to decreased pain sensitivity through increased dopaminergic rather than decreased adrenergic tone, characteristic of reference isoforms. Our results provide evidence for an essential role of the (a)-COMT isoform in nociceptive signaling and suggest that genetic variations in (a)-COMT isoforms may contribute to individual variability in pain phenotypes. PMID:26207649

  5. COMT gene locus: new functional variants

    PubMed Central

    Meloto, Carolina B.; Segall, Samantha K.; Smith, Shad; Parisien, Marc; Shabalina, Svetlana A.; Rizzatti-Barbosa, Célia M.; Gauthier, Josée; Tsao, Douglas; Convertino, Marino; Piltonen, Marjo H.; Slade, Gary Dmitri; Fillingim, Roger B.; Greenspan, Joel D.; Ohrbach, Richard; Knott, Charles; Maixner, William; Zaykin, Dmitri; Dokholyan, Nikolay V.; Reenilä, Ilkka; Männistö, Pekka T.; Diatchenko, Luda

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) metabolizes catecholaminergic neurotransmitters. Numerous studies have linked COMT to pivotal brain functions such as mood, cognition, response to stress, and pain. Both nociception and risk of clinical pain have been associated with COMT genetic variants, and this association was shown to be mediated through adrenergic pathways. Here, we show that association studies between COMT polymorphic markers and pain phenotypes in 2 independent cohorts identified a functional marker, rs165774, situated in the 3′ untranslated region of a newfound splice variant, (a)-COMT. Sequence comparisons showed that the (a)-COMT transcript is highly conserved in primates, and deep sequencing data demonstrated that (a)-COMT is expressed across several human tissues, including the brain. In silico analyses showed that the (a)-COMT enzyme features a distinct C-terminus structure, capable of stabilizing substrates in its active site. In vitro experiments demonstrated not only that (a)-COMT is catalytically active but also that it displays unique substrate specificity, exhibiting enzymatic activity with dopamine but not epinephrine. They also established that the pain-protective A allele of rs165774 coincides with lower COMT activity, suggesting contribution to decreased pain sensitivity through increased dopaminergic rather than decreased adrenergic tone, characteristic of reference isoforms. Our results provide evidence for an essential role of the (a)-COMT isoform in nociceptive signaling and suggest that genetic variations in (a)-COMT isoforms may contribute to individual variability in pain phenotypes. PMID:26207649

  6. Age modulates the effect of COMT genotype on delay discounting behavior

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Christopher T.; Boettiger, Charlotte A.

    2012-01-01

    Rationale and objective A form of impulsivity, the tendency to choose immediate over delayed rewards (delay-discounting) has been associated with a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene (COMTval158met; rs4680). However, existing data regarding the nature of this association conflicts. We have previously reported that adults homozygous for valine (val) at the COMTval158met SNP demonstrate greater delay-discounting than do methionine (met) allele carriers (Boettiger et al. 2007). In contrast, a recent study of adolescent males found that those with the met/met genotype demonstrate greater delay-discounting than do val-allele carriers (Paloyelis et al. 2010). Based on reported age-related changes in frontal dopamine function and COMT expression, we hypothesized that the association of COMT genotype with delay-discounting behavior is modulated by age from late adolescence to young adulthood. Methods To test this hypothesis, we genotyped late adolescents (18–21 years; n=72) and adults (22–40 years; n=70) for the COMTval158met polymorphism, measured their delay-discounting behavior, and tested for an interaction between age group and COMT genotype. Results This cross-sectional study found that age modulates COMTval158met genotype effects on delay-discounting behavior. Among met-carriers, delay-discounting was negatively correlated with age from late adolescence to adulthood, while among val/val individuals delay-discounting was positively correlated with age across this range. Conclusions These results confirm our previous finding of enhanced delay-discounting among val/val adults relative to met-allele carriers, and help reconcile existing literature. We propose a single U-shaped model of the relationship between frontal DA levels and impulsive choice that accounts for both adolescent and adult data. PMID:22349272

  7. Sex-dichotomous effects of functional COMT genetic variations on cognitive functions disappear after menopause in both health and schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Papaleo, Francesco; Sannino, Sara; Piras, Fabrizio; Spalletta, Gianfranco

    2015-12-01

    Different genetic variations in the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene have been indicated to functionally regulate the encoded enzyme. Despite the vast literature on the single nucleotide COMT ValMet polymorphism, the impact of complex haplotypes on cognitive functions has been overlooked. Here we contrasted the effects of complex COMT haplotypes with the ValMet polymorphism on cognitive functions and their interaction with menopause, in healthy subjects and patients with schizophrenia. Healthy adults (N=229) as well as patients with schizophrenia (N=172) underwent a comprehensive cognitive assessment taking into account the menopausal state. Functional COMT variations selectively modulated working memory and executive functions. Strikingly, these effects were present only in adult men but not in women before menopause, in both healthy subjects and patients with schizophrenia. Importantly, the same pattern of COMT-dependent effects present in men reappeared in women after menopause. Thus, functional COMT mutations seem to modulate cognitive functions depending on the hormonal status. These data clarify the importance of taking into account the combined effect of sex, hormonal status and genetics.

  8. Differential Genetic and Epigenetic Regulation of catechol-O-methyltransferase is Associated with Impaired Fear Inhibition in Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Norrholm, Seth Davin; Jovanovic, Tanja; Smith, Alicia K.; Binder, Elisabeth; Klengel, Torsten; Conneely, Karen; Mercer, Kristina B.; Davis, Jennifer S.; Kerley, Kimberly; Winkler, Jennifer; Gillespie, Charles F.; Bradley, Bekh; Ressler, Kerry J.

    2013-01-01

    The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) enzyme is critical for the catabolic regulation of synaptic dopamine, resulting in altered cortical functioning. The COMT Val158Met polymorphism has been implicated in human mental illness, with Met/Met homozygotes associated with increased susceptibility to posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Our primary objective was to examine the intermediate phenotype of fear inhibition in PTSD stratified by COMT genotype (Met/Met, Val/Met, and Val/Val) and differential gene regulation via methylation status at CpG sites in the COMT promoter region. More specifically, we examined the potential interaction of COMT genotype and PTSD diagnosis on fear-potentiated startle during fear conditioning and extinction and COMT DNA methylation levels (as determined using genomic DNA isolated from whole blood). Participants were recruited from medical and gynecological clinics of an urban hospital in Atlanta, GA, USA. We found that individuals with the Met/Met genotype demonstrated higher fear-potentiated startle to the CS− (safety signal) and during extinction of the CS+ (danger signal) compared to Val/Met and Val/Val genotypes. The PTSD+ Met/Met genotype group had the greatest impairment in fear inhibition to the CS− (p = 0.006), compared to Val carriers. In addition, the Met/Met genotype was associated with DNA methylation at four CpG sites, two of which were associated with impaired fear inhibition to the safety signal. These results suggest that multiple differential mechanisms for regulating COMT function – at the level of protein structure via the Val158Met genotype and at the level of gene regulation via differential methylation – are associated with impaired fear inhibition in PTSD. PMID:23596403

  9. Epistatic interaction between COMT and DTNBP1 modulates prefrontal function in mice and in humans.

    PubMed

    Papaleo, F; Burdick, M C; Callicott, J H; Weinberger, D R

    2014-03-01

    Cognitive functions are highly heritable and the impact of complex genetic interactions, though undoubtedly important, has received little investigation. Here we show in an animal model and in a human neuroimaging experiment a consistent non-linear interaction between two genes--catechol-O-methyl transferase (COMT) and dysbindin (dys; dystrobrevin-binding protein 1 (DTNBP1))--implicated through different mechanisms in cortical dopamine signaling and prefrontal cognitive function. In mice, we found that a single genetic mutation reducing expression of either COMT or DTNBP1 alone produced working memory advantages, while, in dramatic contrast, genetic reduction of both in the same mouse produced working memory deficits. We found evidence of the same non-linear genetic interaction in prefrontal cortical function in humans. In healthy volunteers (N=176) studied with functional magnetic resonance imaging during a working memory paradigm, individuals homozygous for the COMT rs4680 Met allele that reduces COMT enzyme activity showed a relatively more efficient prefrontal engagement. In contrast, we found that the same genotype was less efficient on the background of a dys haplotype associated with decreased DTNBP1 expression. These results illustrate that epistasis can be functionally multi-directional and non-linear and that a putatively beneficial allele in one epistastic context is a relatively deleterious one in another. These data also have important implications for single-locus association analyses of complex traits.

  10. Influence of SLC6A3 and COMT Variation on Neural Activation During Response Inhibition

    PubMed Central

    Congdon, Eliza; Constable, R. Todd; Lesch, Klaus Peter; Canli, Turhan

    2009-01-01

    There is evidence concerning the neural and genetic correlates of inhibitory control, but there have been limited attempts to combine this information. This study tested the hypothesis that two dopaminergic polymorphisms, SLC6A3 and COMT, influence neural activation during response inhibition. Healthy adults were genotyped for these polymorphisms and performed a measure of response inhibition while undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Results support the role of key frontostriatal regions underlying response inhibition. Furthermore, results support a significant influence of SLC6A3 and COMT variants on neural activity during inhibition, with greater activation during inhibition in carriers of the SLC6A3 9-allele or the COMT met-allele as compared to carriers of the SLC6A3 10/10 genotype or the COMT val/val genotype. These results add to a growing literature suggesting that inhibitory control is sensitive to variation in dopamine function, and suggest that this variation may be detectable at the level of individuals’ genotypes. PMID:19482231

  11. Association of catechol-O-methyltransferase Val(108/158) Met genetic polymorphism with schizophrenia, P50 sensory gating, and negative symptoms in a Chinese population.

    PubMed

    Mao, Qiao; Tan, Yun-Long; Luo, Xing-Guang; Tian, Li; Wang, Zhi-Ren; Tan, Shu-Ping; Chen, Song; Yang, Gui-Gang; An, Hui-Mei; Yang, Fu-De; Zhang, Xiang-Yang

    2016-08-30

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), an enzyme involved in the degradation and inactivation of the neurotransmitter dopamine, is associated with the sensory gating phenomenon, protecting the cerebral cortex from information overload. The COMT Val(108/158)Met polymorphism is essential for prefrontal cortex processing capacity and efficiency. The current study was designed to investigate the role of COMT Val(108/158)Met polymorphism in development, sensory gating deficit, and symptoms of schizophrenia in Han Chinese population. P50 gating was determined in 139 schizophrenic patients and 165 healthy controls. Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS) was used to assess the clinical symptomatology in 370 schizophrenic subjects. COMT Val(108/158)Met polymorphism was genotyped by PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP). No significant differences in COMT allele and genotype distributions were observed between schizophrenic patients and control groups. Although P50 deficits were present in patients, there was no evidence for an association between COMT Val(108/158)Met polymorphism and the P50 biomarker. Moreover, PANSS negative subscore was significantly higher in Val allele carriers than in Met/Met individuals. The present findings suggest that COMT Val(108/158)Met polymorphism may not contribute to the risk of schizophrenia and to the P50 deficits, but may contribute to the negative symptoms of schizophrenia among Han Chinese. PMID:27315458

  12. Childhood Trauma and COMT Genotype Interact to Increase Hippocampal Activation in Resilient Individuals

    PubMed Central

    van Rooij, Sanne J. H.; Stevens, Jennifer S.; Ely, Timothy D.; Fani, Negar; Smith, Alicia K.; Kerley, Kimberly A.; Lori, Adriana; Ressler, Kerry J.; Jovanovic, Tanja

    2016-01-01

    Both childhood trauma and a functional catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) genetic polymorphism have been associated with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression; however, it is still unclear whether the two interact and how this interaction relates to long-term risk or resilience. Imaging and genotype data were collected on 73 highly traumatized women. DNA extracted from saliva was used to determine COMT genotype (Val/Val, n = 38, Met carriers, n = 35). Functional MRI data were collected during a Go/NoGo task to investigate the neurocircuitry underlying response inhibition. Self-report measures of adult and childhood trauma exposure, PTSD and depression symptom severity, and resilience were collected. Childhood trauma was found to interact with COMT genotype to impact inhibition-related hippocampal activation. In Met carriers, more childhood trauma was associated with decreased hippocampal activation, whereas in the Val/Val group childhood trauma was related to increased hippocampal activation. Second, hippocampal activation correlated negatively with PTSD and depression symptoms and positively with trait resilience. Moreover, hippocampal activation mediated the relationship between childhood trauma and psychiatric risk or resilience in the Val/Val, but not in the Met carrier group. These data reveal a potential mechanism by which childhood trauma and COMT genotype interact to increase risk for trauma-related psychopathology or resilience. Hippocampal recruitment during inhibition may improve the ability to use contextual information to guide behavior, thereby enhancing resilience in trauma-exposed individuals. This finding may contribute to early identification of individuals at risk and suggests a mechanism that can be targeted in future studies aiming to prevent or limit negative outcomes. PMID:27683563

  13. Childhood Trauma and COMT Genotype Interact to Increase Hippocampal Activation in Resilient Individuals.

    PubMed

    van Rooij, Sanne J H; Stevens, Jennifer S; Ely, Timothy D; Fani, Negar; Smith, Alicia K; Kerley, Kimberly A; Lori, Adriana; Ressler, Kerry J; Jovanovic, Tanja

    2016-01-01

    Both childhood trauma and a functional catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) genetic polymorphism have been associated with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression; however, it is still unclear whether the two interact and how this interaction relates to long-term risk or resilience. Imaging and genotype data were collected on 73 highly traumatized women. DNA extracted from saliva was used to determine COMT genotype (Val/Val, n = 38, Met carriers, n = 35). Functional MRI data were collected during a Go/NoGo task to investigate the neurocircuitry underlying response inhibition. Self-report measures of adult and childhood trauma exposure, PTSD and depression symptom severity, and resilience were collected. Childhood trauma was found to interact with COMT genotype to impact inhibition-related hippocampal activation. In Met carriers, more childhood trauma was associated with decreased hippocampal activation, whereas in the Val/Val group childhood trauma was related to increased hippocampal activation. Second, hippocampal activation correlated negatively with PTSD and depression symptoms and positively with trait resilience. Moreover, hippocampal activation mediated the relationship between childhood trauma and psychiatric risk or resilience in the Val/Val, but not in the Met carrier group. These data reveal a potential mechanism by which childhood trauma and COMT genotype interact to increase risk for trauma-related psychopathology or resilience. Hippocampal recruitment during inhibition may improve the ability to use contextual information to guide behavior, thereby enhancing resilience in trauma-exposed individuals. This finding may contribute to early identification of individuals at risk and suggests a mechanism that can be targeted in future studies aiming to prevent or limit negative outcomes.

  14. Childhood Trauma and COMT Genotype Interact to Increase Hippocampal Activation in Resilient Individuals.

    PubMed

    van Rooij, Sanne J H; Stevens, Jennifer S; Ely, Timothy D; Fani, Negar; Smith, Alicia K; Kerley, Kimberly A; Lori, Adriana; Ressler, Kerry J; Jovanovic, Tanja

    2016-01-01

    Both childhood trauma and a functional catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) genetic polymorphism have been associated with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression; however, it is still unclear whether the two interact and how this interaction relates to long-term risk or resilience. Imaging and genotype data were collected on 73 highly traumatized women. DNA extracted from saliva was used to determine COMT genotype (Val/Val, n = 38, Met carriers, n = 35). Functional MRI data were collected during a Go/NoGo task to investigate the neurocircuitry underlying response inhibition. Self-report measures of adult and childhood trauma exposure, PTSD and depression symptom severity, and resilience were collected. Childhood trauma was found to interact with COMT genotype to impact inhibition-related hippocampal activation. In Met carriers, more childhood trauma was associated with decreased hippocampal activation, whereas in the Val/Val group childhood trauma was related to increased hippocampal activation. Second, hippocampal activation correlated negatively with PTSD and depression symptoms and positively with trait resilience. Moreover, hippocampal activation mediated the relationship between childhood trauma and psychiatric risk or resilience in the Val/Val, but not in the Met carrier group. These data reveal a potential mechanism by which childhood trauma and COMT genotype interact to increase risk for trauma-related psychopathology or resilience. Hippocampal recruitment during inhibition may improve the ability to use contextual information to guide behavior, thereby enhancing resilience in trauma-exposed individuals. This finding may contribute to early identification of individuals at risk and suggests a mechanism that can be targeted in future studies aiming to prevent or limit negative outcomes. PMID:27683563

  15. Childhood Trauma and COMT Genotype Interact to Increase Hippocampal Activation in Resilient Individuals

    PubMed Central

    van Rooij, Sanne J. H.; Stevens, Jennifer S.; Ely, Timothy D.; Fani, Negar; Smith, Alicia K.; Kerley, Kimberly A.; Lori, Adriana; Ressler, Kerry J.; Jovanovic, Tanja

    2016-01-01

    Both childhood trauma and a functional catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) genetic polymorphism have been associated with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression; however, it is still unclear whether the two interact and how this interaction relates to long-term risk or resilience. Imaging and genotype data were collected on 73 highly traumatized women. DNA extracted from saliva was used to determine COMT genotype (Val/Val, n = 38, Met carriers, n = 35). Functional MRI data were collected during a Go/NoGo task to investigate the neurocircuitry underlying response inhibition. Self-report measures of adult and childhood trauma exposure, PTSD and depression symptom severity, and resilience were collected. Childhood trauma was found to interact with COMT genotype to impact inhibition-related hippocampal activation. In Met carriers, more childhood trauma was associated with decreased hippocampal activation, whereas in the Val/Val group childhood trauma was related to increased hippocampal activation. Second, hippocampal activation correlated negatively with PTSD and depression symptoms and positively with trait resilience. Moreover, hippocampal activation mediated the relationship between childhood trauma and psychiatric risk or resilience in the Val/Val, but not in the Met carrier group. These data reveal a potential mechanism by which childhood trauma and COMT genotype interact to increase risk for trauma-related psychopathology or resilience. Hippocampal recruitment during inhibition may improve the ability to use contextual information to guide behavior, thereby enhancing resilience in trauma-exposed individuals. This finding may contribute to early identification of individuals at risk and suggests a mechanism that can be targeted in future studies aiming to prevent or limit negative outcomes.

  16. The Impact of Goal Disturbance after Cancer on Cortisol Levels over Time and the Moderating Role of COMT.

    PubMed

    Janse, Moniek; Faassen, Martijn van; Kema, Ido; Smink, Ans; Ranchor, Adelita V; Fleer, Joke; Sprangers, Mirjam A G

    2015-01-01

    Due to physical hindrance and time spent in hospital, a cancer diagnosis can lead to disturbance of personally important goals. Goal disturbance in cancer patients has been related to poorer psychological well-being. However, the relation with physiological measures is yet unknown. The purpose of the current study is to examine the impact of goal disturbance on cortisol as a measure of response to stress over time, and a possibly moderating role of a DNA genotype associated with HPA-axis functioning, Catechol-O-Methyl transferase (COMT). We examined the predictive value of goal disturbance on Cortisol Awakening Response (CAR) and Diurnal Cortisol Slope (DCS) over two periods: 1-7 and 7-18 months post-diagnosis, and the moderating role of COMT during these periods. Hierarchical regression analyses showed that goal disturbance 7 months post-diagnosis significantly predicted a steeper CAR a year later. During that period, the slow COMT variant moderated the relation, in that patients reporting high goal disturbance and had the Met/Met variant, had a more flattened CAR. No other significant effects were found. As steeper CARs have been related to adverse health outcomes, and COMT genotype may modify this risk, these results indicate that goal disturbance and genotype may be important factors to consider in maintaining better psychological and physical health in the already vulnerable population of cancer patients. PMID:26313260

  17. Influences of COMT and 5-HTTLPR polymorphisms on cognitive flexibility in healthy women: inhibition of prepotent responses and memory updating.

    PubMed

    Weiss, Elisabeth M; Schulter, Günter; Fink, Andreas; Reiser, Eva M; Mittenecker, Erich; Niederstätter, Harald; Nagl, Simone; Parson, Walther; Papousek, Ilona

    2014-01-01

    Understanding genetic factors that affect monoamine neurotransmitters flux in prefrontal cortex may help to further specify the complex neurobiological processes that underlie cognitive function and dysfunction in health and illness. The current study examined the associations between the polymorphisms of dopaminergic (COMT Met158Val) and serotoninergic (5-HTTLPR) genes and the sequential pattern of responses in a motor random generation task providing well-established indexes for executive functioning in a large sample of 255 healthy women. Participants homozygous for the Met allele of the COMT polymorphism showed impaired inhibition of prepotent responses, whereas individuals homozygous for the s-allele of the 5-HTTLPR showed a restricted ability to update information in working memory. Taken together the results indicate differentiated influences of dopaminergic and serotonergic genes on important and definite executive sub-processes related to cognitive flexibility.

  18. Brain white matter structure and COMT gene are linked to second-language learning in adults.

    PubMed

    Mamiya, Ping C; Richards, Todd L; Coe, Bradley P; Eichler, Evan E; Kuhl, Patricia K

    2016-06-28

    Adult human brains retain the capacity to undergo tissue reorganization during second-language learning. Brain-imaging studies show a relationship between neuroanatomical properties and learning for adults exposed to a second language. However, the role of genetic factors in this relationship has not been investigated. The goal of the current study was twofold: (i) to characterize the relationship between brain white matter fiber-tract properties and second-language immersion using diffusion tensor imaging, and (ii) to determine whether polymorphisms in the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene affect the relationship. We recruited incoming Chinese students enrolled in the University of Washington and scanned their brains one time. We measured the diffusion properties of the white matter fiber tracts and correlated them with the number of days each student had been in the immersion program at the time of the brain scan. We found that higher numbers of days in the English immersion program correlated with higher fractional anisotropy and lower radial diffusivity in the right superior longitudinal fasciculus. We show that fractional anisotropy declined once the subjects finished the immersion program. The relationship between brain white matter fiber-tract properties and immersion varied in subjects with different COMT genotypes. Subjects with the Methionine (Met)/Valine (Val) and Val/Val genotypes showed higher fractional anisotropy and lower radial diffusivity during immersion, which reversed immediately after immersion ended, whereas those with the Met/Met genotype did not show these relationships. Statistical modeling revealed that subjects' grades in the language immersion program were best predicted by fractional anisotropy and COMT genotype. PMID:27298360

  19. Brain white matter structure and COMT gene are linked to second-language learning in adults.

    PubMed

    Mamiya, Ping C; Richards, Todd L; Coe, Bradley P; Eichler, Evan E; Kuhl, Patricia K

    2016-06-28

    Adult human brains retain the capacity to undergo tissue reorganization during second-language learning. Brain-imaging studies show a relationship between neuroanatomical properties and learning for adults exposed to a second language. However, the role of genetic factors in this relationship has not been investigated. The goal of the current study was twofold: (i) to characterize the relationship between brain white matter fiber-tract properties and second-language immersion using diffusion tensor imaging, and (ii) to determine whether polymorphisms in the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene affect the relationship. We recruited incoming Chinese students enrolled in the University of Washington and scanned their brains one time. We measured the diffusion properties of the white matter fiber tracts and correlated them with the number of days each student had been in the immersion program at the time of the brain scan. We found that higher numbers of days in the English immersion program correlated with higher fractional anisotropy and lower radial diffusivity in the right superior longitudinal fasciculus. We show that fractional anisotropy declined once the subjects finished the immersion program. The relationship between brain white matter fiber-tract properties and immersion varied in subjects with different COMT genotypes. Subjects with the Methionine (Met)/Valine (Val) and Val/Val genotypes showed higher fractional anisotropy and lower radial diffusivity during immersion, which reversed immediately after immersion ended, whereas those with the Met/Met genotype did not show these relationships. Statistical modeling revealed that subjects' grades in the language immersion program were best predicted by fractional anisotropy and COMT genotype.

  20. Brain white matter structure and COMT gene are linked to second-language learning in adults

    PubMed Central

    Mamiya, Ping C.; Richards, Todd L.; Coe, Bradley P.; Eichler, Evan E.; Kuhl, Patricia K.

    2016-01-01

    Adult human brains retain the capacity to undergo tissue reorganization during second-language learning. Brain-imaging studies show a relationship between neuroanatomical properties and learning for adults exposed to a second language. However, the role of genetic factors in this relationship has not been investigated. The goal of the current study was twofold: (i) to characterize the relationship between brain white matter fiber-tract properties and second-language immersion using diffusion tensor imaging, and (ii) to determine whether polymorphisms in the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene affect the relationship. We recruited incoming Chinese students enrolled in the University of Washington and scanned their brains one time. We measured the diffusion properties of the white matter fiber tracts and correlated them with the number of days each student had been in the immersion program at the time of the brain scan. We found that higher numbers of days in the English immersion program correlated with higher fractional anisotropy and lower radial diffusivity in the right superior longitudinal fasciculus. We show that fractional anisotropy declined once the subjects finished the immersion program. The relationship between brain white matter fiber-tract properties and immersion varied in subjects with different COMT genotypes. Subjects with the Methionine (Met)/Valine (Val) and Val/Val genotypes showed higher fractional anisotropy and lower radial diffusivity during immersion, which reversed immediately after immersion ended, whereas those with the Met/Met genotype did not show these relationships. Statistical modeling revealed that subjects’ grades in the language immersion program were best predicted by fractional anisotropy and COMT genotype. PMID:27298360

  1. Catechol-O-Methyltransferase Gene Polymorphisms in Specific Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder Patients' Subgroups.

    PubMed

    Melo-Felippe, Fernanda Brito; de Salles Andrade, Juliana Braga; Giori, Isabele Gomes; Vieira-Fonseca, Tamiris; Fontenelle, Leonardo Franklin; Kohlrausch, Fabiana Barzotti

    2016-01-01

    Pharmacological data and animal models support the hypothesis that the dopaminergic (DA) system is implicated in obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Therefore, this case-control study assessed whether genetics variations in catechol-O-methyltransferase gene (COMT) could influence susceptibility to OCD and OCD features in a Brazilian sample. A sample of 199 patients with OCD and 200 healthy individuals was genotyped for -287A > G (rs2075507) and Val158Met (rs4680) single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) by TaqMan(®) or restriction mapping. We observed a statistically significant predominance of the Met low-activity allele in the male patient group as compared to the male healthy control group. The -287A > G polymorphism's genotypes and alleles were significantly overrepresented among male individuals with ordering and female subjects with washing symptoms. We also found female hoarders to exhibit a significant higher frequency of the low activity Met/Met genotype of Val158Met polymorphism compared to female patients who did not express this dimension. Our data suggest an influence of COMT polymorphisms on OCD and OCD patients' features, such as gender, and ordering, washing, and hoarding symptom dimensions. Further studies to confirm the clinical importance of COMT SNPs in OCD are warranted.

  2. Subtle gene-environment interactions driving paranoia in daily life.

    PubMed

    Simons, C J P; Wichers, M; Derom, C; Thiery, E; Myin-Germeys, I; Krabbendam, L; van Os, J

    2009-02-01

    It has been suggested that genes impact on the degree to which minor daily stressors cause variation in the intensity of subtle paranoid experiences. The objective of the present study was to test the hypothesis that catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val(158)Met and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) Val(66)Met in part mediate genetic effects on paranoid reactivity to minor stressors. In a general population sample of 579 young adult female twins, on the one hand, appraisals of (1) event-related stress and (2) social stress and, on the other hand, feelings of paranoia in the flow of daily life were assessed using momentary assessment technology for five consecutive days. Multilevel regression analyses were used to examine moderation of daily life stress-induced paranoia by COMT Val(158)Met and BDNF Val(66)Met genotypes. Catechol-O-methyltransferase Val carriers displayed more feelings of paranoia in response to event stress compared with Met carriers. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor Met carriers showed more social-stress-induced paranoia than individuals with the Val/Val genotype. Thus, paranoia in the flow of daily life may be the result of gene-environment interactions that can be traced to different types of stress being moderated by different types of genetic variation.

  3. Catechol-O-methyl Transferase and Expression of Schizophrenia in 73 Adults with 22q11 Deletion Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Bassett, Anne S.; Caluseriu, Oana; Weksberg, Rosanna; Young, Donald A.; Chow, Eva W.C.

    2011-01-01

    Background Catechol-O-methyl transferase (COMT) is a candidate gene for schizophrenia with a role in dopamine metabolism, particularly in frontal cortex. COMT is within the region commonly deleted in 22q11 deletion syndrome (22q11DS), a syndrome with high prevalence of schizophrenia. We examined the role of COMT in schizophrenia-related expression in 22q11DS. Methods We genotyped the COMT functional Val158/108Met allele in 73 Caucasian adults with 22q11DS (36 men, 37 women; aged 33.8, SD 10.1 years; 37 Met, 36 Val hemizygosity) blind to clinical data and assessed effects on symptoms and frontal functioning. Results The lower activity Met allele was not significantly more prevalent than the Val allele in 33 subjects with schizophrenia. Excitement symptoms were more severe, however, and three frontal cognitive tests (theory of mind, Trails B, and olfactory identification), communication, and social functioning measures showed significantly worse performance with Met allele hemizygosity, even after accounting for effects of schizophrenia. Conclusions The results suggest that hemizygosity of the COMT functional allele exerts an effect on some measures of frontal functioning in 22q11DS. Elevated levels of tonic dopamine activation associated with the COMT Met allele may underlie these aspects of expression. We must look elsewhere for causes of the high prevalence of schizophrenia in 22q11DS, however. PMID:17217925

  4. Molecular genetics support Gray's personality theory: the interaction of COMT and DRD2 polymorphisms predicts the behavioural approach system.

    PubMed

    Reuter, Martin; Schmitz, Anja; Corr, Philip; Hennig, Juergen

    2006-04-01

    The present study provides the first direct molecular genetics support for Gray's Reinforcement Sensitivity Theory (RST), which is one of the most influential biologically oriented personality theories. It was investigated whether the DRD2 TaqIA and the COMT polymorphisms were related to the dimensions of Gray's personality theory, as measured by the Carver and White BIS/BAS scales. In a sample of 295 healthy subjects results revealed significant DRD2xCOMT interactions (i.e. epistasis) for the total BAS scale (related to positive emotionality) and for the subscales Drive (D) and Fun Seeking (FS). High BAS scores were observed if the catabolic enzyme activity and the D2 receptor density as indicated by the two polymorphisms were in disequilibrium, i.e. in the presence of the Val-/A1- (low enzyme activity/high receptor density) or the Val+/A1+ (high enzyme activity/low receptor density) alleles. In a random subsample (n=48), it could be demonstrated that those allele combinations of COMT and DRD2 associated with high BAS scores also had significantly lower prolactin levels under resting conditions, indicating high dopamine activity, compared to those allele combinations with low BAS scores. Furthermore, two-way interactions of DRD2 TaqIAxsmoking status and of the Met allele of COMTxsmoking status on FS and Metxgender on BIS could be shown.

  5. Effects of Catechol-O-Methyltransferase on Normal Variation in the Cognitive Function of Children

    PubMed Central

    Barnett, Jennifer H.; Heron, Jon; Goldman, David; Jones, Peter B.; Xu, Ke

    2009-01-01

    Objective Genetic variants that contribute to the risk of psychiatric disorders may also affect normal variation in psychological function. Indeed, the behavioral effects of many genetic variants may be better understood as process-specific rather than disease-specific. A functional valine-to-methionine (Val158Met) polymorphism in the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene has been associated with cognitive function and brain metabolic activity accompanying such tasks. Not all studies are consistent, and less is known about the effect of this polymorphism during development. The authors tested the hypothesis that a more informative COMT haplotype predicts normal cognitive development in a large population-based cohort of children enrolled in the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and children. Method Effects on verbal and performance IQ as well as verbal inhibition were assessed at age 8, and effects onworking memory were assessed at age 10. From the five COMT single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) genotyped, the effect of a functional three-SNP haplotype consisting of Val158Met and two synonymous SNPs (rs6269 and rs4818), which together exert a major influence on the level of COMT expression and enzyme activity, was evaluated. Results This three-SNP haplotype predicted both verbal inhibition and working memory, and there was a genotype-by-sex interaction on verbal IQ. The effect of COMT genotype (diplotype) on cognition was curvilinear, which is consistent with the “inverted U” model of dopamine effect on frontal cortical efficiency. In addition, the SNP rs2075507 (previously rs2097603) was independently associatedwith verbal inhibition, while rs165599 showed no main cognitive effects. However, rs165599 showed a genotype-by-sex interaction with working memory. Conclusions Genetic variation at several loci in the COMT gene affects normal cognitive function in children. PMID:19605537

  6. Additive gene-environment effects on hippocampal structure in healthy humans.

    PubMed

    Rabl, Ulrich; Meyer, Bernhard M; Diers, Kersten; Bartova, Lucie; Berger, Andreas; Mandorfer, Dominik; Popovic, Ana; Scharinger, Christian; Huemer, Julia; Kalcher, Klaudius; Pail, Gerald; Haslacher, Helmuth; Perkmann, Thomas; Windischberger, Christian; Brocke, Burkhard; Sitte, Harald H; Pollak, Daniela D; Dreher, Jean-Claude; Kasper, Siegfried; Praschak-Rieder, Nicole; Moser, Ewald; Esterbauer, Harald; Pezawas, Lukas

    2014-07-23

    Hippocampal volume loss has been related to chronic stress as well as genetic factors. Although genetic and environmental variables affecting hippocampal volume have extensively been studied and related to mental illness, limited evidence is available with respect to G × E interactions on hippocampal volume. The present MRI study investigated interaction effects on hippocampal volume between three well-studied functional genetic variants (COMT Val158Met, BDNF Val66Met, 5-HTTLPR) associated with hippocampal volume and a measure of environmental adversity (life events questionnaire) in a large sample of healthy humans (n = 153). All three variants showed significant interactions with environmental adversity with respect to hippocampal volume. Observed effects were additive by nature and driven by both recent as well as early life events. A consecutive analysis of hippocampal subfields revealed a spatially distinct profile for each genetic variant suggesting a specific role of 5-HTTLPR for the subiculum, BDNF Val66Met for CA4/dentate gyrus, and COMT Val158Met for CA2/3 volume changes. The present study underscores the importance of G × E interactions as determinants of hippocampal volume, which is crucial for the neurobiological understanding of stress-related conditions, such as mood disorders or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). PMID:25057194

  7. Additive Gene–Environment Effects on Hippocampal Structure in Healthy Humans

    PubMed Central

    Rabl, Ulrich; Meyer, Bernhard M.; Diers, Kersten; Bartova, Lucie; Berger, Andreas; Mandorfer, Dominik; Popovic, Ana; Scharinger, Christian; Huemer, Julia; Kalcher, Klaudius; Pail, Gerald; Haslacher, Helmuth; Perkmann, Thomas; Windischberger, Christian; Brocke, Burkhard; Sitte, Harald H.; Pollak, Daniela D.; Dreher, Jean-Claude; Kasper, Siegfried; Praschak-Rieder, Nicole; Moser, Ewald; Esterbauer, Harald

    2014-01-01

    Hippocampal volume loss has been related to chronic stress as well as genetic factors. Although genetic and environmental variables affecting hippocampal volume have extensively been studied and related to mental illness, limited evidence is available with respect to G × E interactions on hippocampal volume. The present MRI study investigated interaction effects on hippocampal volume between three well-studied functional genetic variants (COMT Val158Met, BDNF Val66Met, 5-HTTLPR) associated with hippocampal volume and a measure of environmental adversity (life events questionnaire) in a large sample of healthy humans (n = 153). All three variants showed significant interactions with environmental adversity with respect to hippocampal volume. Observed effects were additive by nature and driven by both recent as well as early life events. A consecutive analysis of hippocampal subfields revealed a spatially distinct profile for each genetic variant suggesting a specific role of 5-HTTLPR for the subiculum, BDNF Val66Met for CA4/dentate gyrus, and COMT Val158Met for CA2/3 volume changes. The present study underscores the importance of G × E interactions as determinants of hippocampal volume, which is crucial for the neurobiological understanding of stress-related conditions, such as mood disorders or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). PMID:25057194

  8. Additive gene-environment effects on hippocampal structure in healthy humans.

    PubMed

    Rabl, Ulrich; Meyer, Bernhard M; Diers, Kersten; Bartova, Lucie; Berger, Andreas; Mandorfer, Dominik; Popovic, Ana; Scharinger, Christian; Huemer, Julia; Kalcher, Klaudius; Pail, Gerald; Haslacher, Helmuth; Perkmann, Thomas; Windischberger, Christian; Brocke, Burkhard; Sitte, Harald H; Pollak, Daniela D; Dreher, Jean-Claude; Kasper, Siegfried; Praschak-Rieder, Nicole; Moser, Ewald; Esterbauer, Harald; Pezawas, Lukas

    2014-07-23

    Hippocampal volume loss has been related to chronic stress as well as genetic factors. Although genetic and environmental variables affecting hippocampal volume have extensively been studied and related to mental illness, limited evidence is available with respect to G × E interactions on hippocampal volume. The present MRI study investigated interaction effects on hippocampal volume between three well-studied functional genetic variants (COMT Val158Met, BDNF Val66Met, 5-HTTLPR) associated with hippocampal volume and a measure of environmental adversity (life events questionnaire) in a large sample of healthy humans (n = 153). All three variants showed significant interactions with environmental adversity with respect to hippocampal volume. Observed effects were additive by nature and driven by both recent as well as early life events. A consecutive analysis of hippocampal subfields revealed a spatially distinct profile for each genetic variant suggesting a specific role of 5-HTTLPR for the subiculum, BDNF Val66Met for CA4/dentate gyrus, and COMT Val158Met for CA2/3 volume changes. The present study underscores the importance of G × E interactions as determinants of hippocampal volume, which is crucial for the neurobiological understanding of stress-related conditions, such as mood disorders or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

  9. Genetic Variation in COMT Activity Impacts Learning and Dopamine Release Capacity in the Striatum

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Simpson, Eleanor H.; Morud, Julia; Winiger, Vanessa; Biezonski, Dominik; Zhu, Judy P.; Bach, Mary Elizabeth; Malleret, Gael; Polan, H. Jonathan; Ng-Evans, Scott; Phillips, Paul E. M.; Kellendonk, Christoph; Krandel, Eric R.

    2014-01-01

    A common genetic polymorphism that results in increased activity of the dopamine regulating enzyme COMT (the "COMT Val" [superscript 158] allele) has been found to associate with poorer cognitive performance and increased susceptibility to develop psychiatric disorders. It is generally assumed that this increase in COMT activity…

  10. Contributions of COMT Val[superscript 158]Met to Cognitive Stability and Flexibility in Infancy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Markant, Julie; Cicchetti, Dante; Hetzel, Susan; Thomas, Kathleen M.

    2014-01-01

    Adaptive behavior requires focusing on relevant tasks while remaining sensitive to novel information. In adult studies of cognitive control, cognitive stability involves maintaining robust cognitive representations while cognitive flexibility involves updating of representations in response to novel information. Previous adult research has shown…

  11. Sleep and COMT Polymorphism in ADHD Children: Preliminary Actigraphic Data

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gruber, Reut; Grizenko, Natalie; Schwartz, George; Amor, Leila Ben; Gauthier, Julie; de Guzman, Rosherrie; Joober, Ridha

    2006-01-01

    Objective: To examine whether COMT (catechol-O-methyltransferase) polymorphism modulates aspects of sleep in children diagnosed with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Method: Nightly sleep actigraphic recordings during a double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover clinical study (1 week of 0.5 mg/kg MPH; 1 week of placebo) were…

  12. Dopamine system genes are associated with orienting bias among healthy individuals.

    PubMed

    Zozulinsky, Polina; Greenbaum, Lior; Brande-Eilat, Noa; Braun, Yair; Shalev, Idan; Tomer, Rachel

    2014-09-01

    Healthy individuals display subtle orienting bias, manifested as a tendency to direct greater attention toward one hemispace, and evidence suggests that this bias reflects an individual trait, which may be modulated by asymmetric dopamine signaling in striatal and frontal regions. The current study examined the hypothesis that functional genetic variants within dopaminergic genes (DAT1 3' VNTR, dopamine D2 receptor Taq1A (rs1800497) and COMT Val158Met (rs4680)) contribute to individual differences in orienting bias, as measured by the greyscales paradigm, in a sample of 197 young healthy Israeli Jewish participants. For the Taq1A variant, homozygous carriers of the A2 allele displayed significantly increased leftward orienting bias compared to the carriers of the A1 allele. Additionally, and as previously reported by others, we found that bias towards leftward orienting of attention was significantly greater among carriers of the 9-repeat allele of the DAT1 3' VNTR as compared to the individuals who were homozygous for the 10-repeat allele. No significant effect of the COMT Val158Met on orienting bias was found. Taken together, our findings support the potential influence of genetic variants on inter-individual differences in orienting bias, a phenotype relevant to both normal and impaired cognitive processes.

  13. Comt1 genotype and expression predicts anxiety and nociceptive sensitivity in inbred strains of mice.

    PubMed

    Segall, S K; Nackley, A G; Diatchenko, L; Lariviere, W R; Lu, X; Marron, J S; Grabowski-Boase, L; Walker, J R; Slade, G; Gauthier, J; Bailey, J S; Steffy, B M; Maynard, T M; Tarantino, L M; Wiltshire, T

    2010-11-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is a ubiquitously expressed enzyme that maintains basic biologic functions by inactivating catechol substrates. In humans, polymorphic variance at the COMT locus has been associated with modulation of pain sensitivity and risk for developing psychiatric disorders. A functional haplotype associated with increased pain sensitivity was shown to result in decreased COMT activity by altering mRNA secondary structure-dependent protein translation. However, the exact mechanisms whereby COMT modulates pain sensitivity and behavior remain unclear and can be further studied in animal models. We have assessed Comt1 gene expression levels in multiple brain regions in inbred strains of mice and have discovered that Comt1 is differentially expressed among the strains, and this differential expression is cis-regulated. A B2 short interspersed nuclear element (SINE) was inserted in the 3'-untranslated region (3'-UTR) of Comt1 in 14 strains generating a common haplotype that correlates with gene expression. Experiments using mammalian expression vectors of full-length cDNA clones with and without the SINE element show that strains with the SINE haplotype (+SINE) have greater Comt1 enzymatic activity. +SINE mice also exhibit behavioral differences in anxiety assays and decreased pain sensitivity. These results suggest that a haplotype, defined by a 3'-UTR B2 SINE element, regulates Comt1 expression and some mouse behaviors. PMID:20659173

  14. Genetic predictor of working memory and prefrontal function in women with HIV.

    PubMed

    Sundermann, Erin E; Bishop, Jeffrey R; Rubin, Leah H; Little, Deborah M; Meyer, Vanessa J; Martin, Eileen; Weber, Kathleen; Cohen, Mardge; Maki, Pauline M

    2015-02-01

    The Val158Met (rs4680) single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) of the catechol-O-methyltransferase gene (COMT) influences executive function and prefrontal function through its effect on dopamine (DA) metabolism. Both HIV and the Val allele of the Val158Met SNP are associated with compromised executive function and inefficient prefrontal function. The present study used behavioral and neuroimaging techniques to determine independent and interactive associations between HIV serostatus and COMT genotype on working memory and prefrontal function in women. For the behavioral study, 54 HIV-infected and 33 HIV-uninfected women completed the 0-, 1-, and 2-back conditions of the verbal N-back, a working memory test. For the imaging study, 36 women (23 HIV-infected, 13 HIV-uninfected) underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) assessments while completing the N-back task. HIV-infected women demonstrated significantly worse N-back performance compared with HIV-uninfected women (p < 0.05). A significant serostatus by genotype interaction (p < 0.01) revealed that, among Val/Val, but not Met allele carriers, HIV-infected women performed significantly worse than HIV-uninfected controls across N-back conditions (p < 0.01). Analogous to behavioral findings, a serostatus by genotype interaction revealed that HIV-infected Val/Val carriers showed significantly greater prefrontal activation compared with HIV-uninfected Val/Val carriers (p < 0.01). Conversely, HIV-uninfected Met allele carriers demonstrated significantly greater prefrontal activation compared with HIV-infected Met allele carriers. Findings suggest that the combination of HIV infection and the Val/Val COMT genotype leads to working memory deficits and altered prefrontal function in HIV-infected individuals. PMID:25515329

  15. Catechol-O-Methyltransferase "Val[superscript 158]Met" Genotype, Parenting Practices and Adolescent Alcohol Use: Testing the Differential Susceptibility Hypothesis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Laucht, Manfred; Blomeyer, Dorothea; Buchmann, Arlette F.; Treutlein, Jens; Schmidt, Martin H.; Esser, Gunter; Jennen-Steinmetz, Christine; Rietschel, Marcella; Zimmermann, Ulrich S.; Banaschewski, Tobias

    2012-01-01

    Background: Recently, first evidence has been reported for a gene-parenting interaction (G x E) with regard to adolescent alcohol use. The present investigation set out to extend this research using the catechol-O-methyltransferase ("COMT") "Val[superscript 158]Met" polymorphism as a genetic susceptibility factor. Moreover, the current study…

  16. Pain modality- and sex-specific effects of COMT genetic functional variants.

    PubMed

    Belfer, Inna; Segall, Samantha K; Lariviere, William R; Smith, Shad B; Dai, Feng; Slade, Gary D; Rashid, Naim U; Mogil, Jeffrey S; Campbell, Claudia M; Edwards, Robert R; Liu, Qian; Bair, Eric; Maixner, William; Diatchenko, Luda

    2013-08-01

    The enzyme catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) metabolizes catecholamine neurotransmitters involved in a number of physiological functions, including pain perception. Both human and mouse COMT genes possess functional polymorphisms contributing to interindividual variability in pain phenotypes such as sensitivity to noxious stimuli, severity of clinical pain, and response to pain treatment. In this study, we found that the effects of Comt functional variation in mice are modality specific. Spontaneous inflammatory nociception and thermal nociception behaviors were correlated the most with the presence of the B2 SINE transposon insertion residing in the 3'UTR mRNA region. Similarly, in humans, COMT functional haplotypes were associated with thermal pain perception and with capsaicin-induced pain. Furthermore, COMT genetic variations contributed to pain behaviors in mice and pain ratings in humans in a sex-specific manner. The ancestral Comt variant, without a B2 SINE insertion, was more strongly associated with sensitivity to capsaicin in female vs male mice. In humans, the haplotype coding for low COMT activity increased capsaicin-induced pain perception in women, but not men. These findings reemphasize the fundamental contribution of COMT to pain processes, and provide a fine-grained resolution of this contribution at the genetic level that can be used to guide future studies in the area of pain genetics.

  17. Association of Catechol-O-methyltransferase val/met polymorphism with cognitive function in Gilles de la Tourette syndrome patients.

    PubMed

    Ji, Weidong; Li, Ning; Ju, Kang; Zheng, Hong; Yang, Chuang; Xu, Ping; Chen, Silu; Cao, Aiai; Chen, Xue; Guo, Lanting

    2015-04-01

    Gilles de la Tourette syndrome (GTS) is a kind of neuropsychiatric disorder with childhood onset. The cognitive dysfunction caused by GTS could affect the growth and learning of children and adolescents. The mechanism of cognitive functions was associated with dopaminergic system, thus we access the associations between polymorphism of some dopaminergic system-related genes including Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) met/val, Dopamine receptor D4 (DRD4) exon III 48 bp VNTR (variable number of tandem repeats), Interleukin 1 (IL-1) Ra 86 bp and IL-1β exon 5, and cognitive functions in GTS patients. Genotyping analysis was performed through polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Test for cognitive functions of GTS patients included modified wisconsin card sorting test (WCST), trail making test, visual reproduction test, stroop test and verbal fluency test. The patients with COMT met/met genotype showed less perseverative errors in modified WCST test compared with patients with COMT val/val genotype (P < 0.05). Meanwhile, patients without allele val had better delayed memory in visual reproduction test, less errors in the stroop test and less perseverative errors in modified WCST test compared with patients with allele val (P < 0.05). However, no significant difference was found in cognitive functions among patients with different genotypes or alleles of polymorphisms of DRD4 exon III 48 bp VNTR, IL-1 Ra 86 bp and IL-1β exon 5 (P > 0.05). Polymorphism of COMT met/val was correlated with cognitive functions in GTS patients. This study provided basis for the analysis of molecular genetic pathology of cognitive dysfunctions in GTS. PMID:25367405

  18. Synthesis and Evaluation of Heterocyclic Catechol Mimics as Inhibitors of Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT)

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    3-Hydroxy-4-pyridinones and 5-hydroxy-4-pyrimidinones were identified as inhibitors of catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) in a high-throughput screen. These heterocyclic catechol mimics exhibit potent inhibition of the enzyme and an improved toxicity profile versus the marketed nitrocatechol inhibitors tolcapone and entacapone. Optimization of the series was aided by X-ray cocrystal structures of the novel inhibitors in complex with COMT and cofactors SAM and Mg2+. The crystal structures suggest a mechanism of inhibition for these heterocyclic inhibitors distinct from previously disclosed COMT inhibitors. PMID:25815153

  19. MET ONE 831

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Met One 831 sensor measures particulate matter (PM) by counting and sizing individual particles using scattered laser light. The unit then converts the count data to mass measurements in micrograms per cubic meter (µg/m3). The Met One 831 counts particles in four different PM...

  20. Sequential processing deficits in schizophrenia: relationship to neuropsychology and genetics.

    PubMed

    Hill, S Kristian; Bjorkquist, Olivia; Carrathers, Tarra; Roseberry, Jarett E; Hochberger, William C; Bishop, Jeffrey R

    2013-12-01

    Utilizing a combination of neuropsychological and cognitive neuroscience approaches may be essential for characterizing cognitive deficits in schizophrenia and eventually assessing cognitive outcomes. This study was designed to compare the stability of select exemplars for these approaches and their correlations in schizophrenia patients with stable treatment and clinical profiles. Reliability estimates for serial order processing were comparable to neuropsychological measures and indicate that experimental serial order processing measures may be less susceptible to practice effects than traditional neuropsychological measures. Correlations were moderate and consistent with a global cognitive factor. Exploratory analyses indicated a potentially critical role of the Met allele of the Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphism in externally paced sequential recall. Experimental measures of serial order processing may reflect frontostriatal dysfunction and be a useful supplement to large neuropsychological batteries.

  1. [Franche Comté hospitals between conquest and revolution. Apogee and architectural refinement].

    PubMed

    Vichard, Philippe

    2008-01-01

    In the architecture of hospitals, Franche Comté has a particular part: sumptuous 'baroque' structures from the XVIo and XVIIo centuries are specifically captivating by some historical, political, geographical and human reasons. PMID:19230434

  2. Joint Effects of Smoking and Gene Variants Involved in Sex Steroid Metabolism on Hot Flashes in Late Reproductive-Age Women

    PubMed Central

    Freeman, Ellen W.; Sammel, Mary D.; Queen, Kaila; Lin, Hui; Rebbeck, Timothy R.

    2012-01-01

    Background: Although smoking has a known association with hot flashes, the factors distinguishing smokers at greatest risk for menopausal symptoms have not been well delineated. Recent evidence supports a relationship between menopausal symptoms and variants in several genes encoding enzymes that metabolize substrates such as sex steriods, xenobiotics, and catechols. It is currently not known whether the impact of smoking on hot flashes is modified by the presence of such variants. Objective: The objective of the study was to investigate the relationship between smoking and hot flash occurrence as a function of genetic variation in sex steroid-metabolizing enzymes. Methods: A cross-sectional analysis of data from the Penn Ovarian Aging study, an ongoing population-based cohort of late reproductive-aged women, was performed. Smoking behavior was characterized. Single-nucleotide polymorphisms in five genes were investigated: COMT Val158Met (rs4680), CYP1A2*1F (rs762551), CYP1B1*4 (Asn452Ser, rs1800440), CYP1B1*3 (Leu432Val, rs1056836), and CYP3A4*1B (rs2740574). Results: Compared with nonsmokers, European-American COMT Val158Met double-variant carriers who smoked had increased odds of hot flashes [adjusted odds ratio (AOR) 6.15, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.32–28.78)]; European-American COMT Val158Met double-variant carriers who smoked heavily had more frequent moderate or severe hot flashes than nonsmokers (AOR 13.7, 95% CI 1.2–154.9). European-American CYP 1B1*3 double-variant carriers who smoked described more frequent moderate or severe hot flashes than nonsmoking (AOR 20.6, 95% CI 1.64–257.93) and never-smoking (AOR 20.59, 95% CI 1.39–304.68) carriers, respectively. African-American single-variant CYP 1A2 carriers who smoked were more likely to report hot flashes than the nonsmoking carriers (AOR 6.16, 95% CI 1.11–33.91). Conclusion: This is the first report demonstrating the effects of smoking within the strata of gene variants involved in sex

  3. Genetic vs. pharmacological inactivation of COMT influences cannabinoid-induced expression of schizophrenia-related phenotypes.

    PubMed

    O'Tuathaigh, Colm M P; Clarke, Gerard; Walsh, Jeremy; Desbonnet, Lieve; Petit, Emilie; O'Leary, Claire; Tighe, Orna; Clarke, Niamh; Karayiorgou, Maria; Gogos, Joseph A; Dinan, Ted G; Cryan, John F; Waddington, John L

    2012-10-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is an important enzyme in the metabolism of dopamine and disturbance in dopamine function is proposed to be central to the pathogenesis of schizophrenia. Clinical epidemiological studies have indicated cannabis use to confer a 2-fold increase in risk for subsequent onset of psychosis, with adolescent-onset use conveying even higher risk. There is evidence that a high activity COMT polymorphism moderates the effects of adolescent exposure to cannabis on risk for adult psychosis. In this paper we compared the effect of chronic adolescent exposure to the cannabinoid WIN 55212 on sensorimotor gating, behaviours related to the negative symptoms of schizophrenia, anxiety- and stress-related behaviours, as well as ex-vivo brain dopamine and serotonin levels, in COMT KO vs. wild-type (WT) mice. Additionally, we examined the effect of pretreatment with the COMT inhibitor tolcapone on acute effects of this cannabinoid on sensorimotor gating in C57BL/6 mice. COMT KO mice were shown to be more vulnerable than WT to the disruptive effects of adolescent cannabinoid treatment on prepulse inhibition (PPI). Acute pharmacological inhibition of COMT in C57BL/6 mice also modified acute cannabinoid effects on startle reactivity, as well as PPI, indicating that chronic and acute loss of COMT can produce dissociable effects on the behavioural effects of cannabinoids. COMT KO mice also demonstrated differential effects of adolescent cannabinoid administration on sociability and anxiety-related behaviour, both confirming and extending earlier reports of COMT×cannabinoid effects on the expression of schizophrenia-related endophenotypes. PMID:22074909

  4. Genetic vs. pharmacological inactivation of COMT influences cannabinoid-induced expression of schizophrenia-related phenotypes.

    PubMed

    O'Tuathaigh, Colm M P; Clarke, Gerard; Walsh, Jeremy; Desbonnet, Lieve; Petit, Emilie; O'Leary, Claire; Tighe, Orna; Clarke, Niamh; Karayiorgou, Maria; Gogos, Joseph A; Dinan, Ted G; Cryan, John F; Waddington, John L

    2012-10-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is an important enzyme in the metabolism of dopamine and disturbance in dopamine function is proposed to be central to the pathogenesis of schizophrenia. Clinical epidemiological studies have indicated cannabis use to confer a 2-fold increase in risk for subsequent onset of psychosis, with adolescent-onset use conveying even higher risk. There is evidence that a high activity COMT polymorphism moderates the effects of adolescent exposure to cannabis on risk for adult psychosis. In this paper we compared the effect of chronic adolescent exposure to the cannabinoid WIN 55212 on sensorimotor gating, behaviours related to the negative symptoms of schizophrenia, anxiety- and stress-related behaviours, as well as ex-vivo brain dopamine and serotonin levels, in COMT KO vs. wild-type (WT) mice. Additionally, we examined the effect of pretreatment with the COMT inhibitor tolcapone on acute effects of this cannabinoid on sensorimotor gating in C57BL/6 mice. COMT KO mice were shown to be more vulnerable than WT to the disruptive effects of adolescent cannabinoid treatment on prepulse inhibition (PPI). Acute pharmacological inhibition of COMT in C57BL/6 mice also modified acute cannabinoid effects on startle reactivity, as well as PPI, indicating that chronic and acute loss of COMT can produce dissociable effects on the behavioural effects of cannabinoids. COMT KO mice also demonstrated differential effects of adolescent cannabinoid administration on sociability and anxiety-related behaviour, both confirming and extending earlier reports of COMT×cannabinoid effects on the expression of schizophrenia-related endophenotypes.

  5. Catechol-O-methyltransferase and pain.

    PubMed

    Kambur, Oleg; Männistö, Pekka T

    2010-01-01

    In animals, different types of COMT inhibitors, irrespective of their brain penetration, are pro-nociceptive in several models of acute and inflammatory pain. Similarly, COMT knock-out mice are more sensitive to nociceptive stimuli, whereas in mice over-expressing a high activity COMT variant nociceptive sensitivity is decreased. COMT knock-out mice also show altered response to opioids and stress-induced analgesia. In different rat models of neuropathic pain, the action of nitecapone is opposite: it is antinociceptive and antiallodynic. Complex actions of low COMT activity may be caused by enhanced adrenergic and dopaminergic activities that play different and even contrasting roles at different parts of the nociceptive system. Also compensatory changes in other neurotransmitters may occur. Pro-nociceptive effects seem to be caused by increased activation of peripheral adrenergic β(2)- and β(3) -receptors. Other properties of COMT inhibitors, like scavenging of oxygen and nitrogen radicals, may be important in antiallodynic effects found in neuropathic pain models. Increased number of µ-opioid receptors in certain brain areas may be responsible of enhanced opioid effects associated with a low COMT activity. In human pain studies, a low COMT activity is often associated with increased pain sensitivity in experimental pain models and with increased pre- and postoperative pain in acute clinical situations. As a rule, a simultaneous occurrence of several SNPs within the haplotype, causing low COMT activity, is more often associated with pain than any single SNP alone. In experimental pain studies, all negative findings resulted from concentrating solely on SNP rs4680 (Val158Met). Virtually all studies assessing haplotypes were able to confirm an association of a low COMT and increased pain. In chronic clinical pain, the effect of COMT polymorphisms depends on the pain conditions. Hence, in neuropathic and cancer pains, COMT activity is meaningless but in some

  6. The impact of Val108/158Met polymorphism of catechol-O-methyltransferase on brain oscillations during working memory.

    PubMed

    Altamura, Mario; Elvevåg, Brita; Goldberg, Terry E; Carver, Frederick W; Weinberger, Daniel R; Coppola, Richard

    2016-01-01

    This study investigated whether catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val/Met polymorphism was associated with variation in event-related desynchronization/synchronization (ERD/ERS) of responses during working memory (WM). 11 Val/Val and 11 Met/Met homozygous participants underwent magnetoencephalography (MEG) while performing a WM task. In contrast to small effects behaviourally, during the delay period Val/Val individuals showed lower ERS in the gamma band (Hz 30-50) in frontal regions, increased ERS in the alpha band (Hz 8-12) in the right frontal and parietal regions and increased ERD in the beta band (Hz 14-30) in the left fronto-temporal regions as compared with Met/Met homozygous individuals. During the response period Val/Val participants showed greater beta ERD in the prefrontal and parietotemporal regions. These results demonstrate that COMT genotype has a strong impact on brain responses (oscillatory activity) during WM performance likely a consequence of compensatory activity during the delay and response periods. PMID:26536074

  7. Auguste Comte's blunder: an account of the first century of stellar spectroscopy and how it took one hundred years to prove that Comte was wrong!

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hearnshaw, John

    2010-07-01

    In 1835 the French philosopher Auguste Comte predicted that we would never know anything about the chemical composition of stars. This paper gives a broad overview of the development of stellar spectroscopy, especially from about 1860. Developments in stellar spectroscopy segregated quite clearly into three main fields of endeavour: spectral classification, radial velocities and spectral analysis. This paper concentrates mainly on spectral analysis, or how stellar spectroscopy one hundred years after Comte showed that quantitative information on the composition of stars was possible. The journey was quite arduous, as it required numerous developments in theoretical physics and in laboratory spectroscopy, which in turn allowed stellar spectral analysis successfully to be undertaken by the mid-twentieth century. The key developments in physics that first had to be understood were in quantum and atomic theory, ionization theory, the concept of the Planck function, local thermodynamic equilibrium, the first stellar model atmospheres, line formation theory, turbulence, collisional broadening of spectral lines and the theory of radiative transfer and of the curve of growth. The close links between stellar spectroscopy and theoretical physics will be emphasized. In addition laboratory physics, to measure line wavelengths and oscillator strengths, was also an essential precursor to quantitative data on the chemical composition of stars. Comte may have been an influential philosopher of science in his time. Perhaps his one small transgression was not to have read the works of Joseph Fraunhofer, which in the early nineteenth century already contained the first small clues that Comte's assertion might be wrong.

  8. Auguste Comte's Blunder: An Account of the First Century of Stellar Spectroscopy and How It Took One Hundred Years to Prove That Comte was Wrong!

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hearnshaw, John B.

    2010-01-01

    In 1835 the French philosopher Auguste Comte predicted that we would never know anything about the chemical composition of stars. I will give a broad overview of the development of stellar spectroscopy, especially from about 1860. Developments in stellar spectroscopy segregated quite clearly into three main fields of endeavour: spectral classification, radial velocities and spectral analysis. After introducing the main players, I will concentrate mainly on spectral analysis, or how stellar spectroscopy one hundred years after Comte showed that quantitative information on the composition of stars was possible. The journey was quite arduous, as it required numerous developments in theoretical physics and in laboratory spectroscopy, which in turn allowed stellar spectral analysis successfully to be undertaken by the mid-20th century. The key developments in physics that first had to be understood were in quantum and atomic theory, ionization theory, the concept of the Planck function, local thermodynamic equilibrium, the first stellar model atmospheres, line formation theory, turbulence, collisional broadening of spectral lines and the theory of radiative transfer and of the curve of growth. My talk will emphasize these close links between stellar spectroscopy and theoretical physics. In addition laboratory physics was also an essential precursor, to measure line wavelengths and oscillator strengths. Comte may have been an influential philosopher of science in his time. Perhaps his one small transgression was not to have read the works of Joseph Fraunhofer, which in the early 19th century already contained the first small clues that Comte's assertion might be wrong.

  9. Genetic Associations with Performance on a Behavioral Measure of Distress Intolerance

    PubMed Central

    Amstadter, Ananda B.; Daughters, Stacey B.; MacPherson, Laura; Reynolds, Elizabeth K.; Danielson, Carla Kmett; Wang, Frances; Potenza, Marc N.; Gelernter, Joel; Lejuez, C. W.

    2013-01-01

    Both theory and empirical evidence support possible associations between two candidate genetic polymorphisms (SLC6A4 5-HTTLPR l/s and COMT Val158Met – rs4680 variants) and emotion-regulation difficulties. One particular form of emotion-regulation difficulty, distress intolerance, has been measured using a behavioral assessment in youth; data indicate a relationship with poor psychological functioning. No prior study has investigated genetic influences on emotion-regulation difficulties in youth. As part of a larger longitudinal study on adolescent risk behaviors, 218 10-14 year-old youths from the metropolitan Washington, D.C., area completed a measure of distress intolerance, the Behavioral Indicator of Resilience to Distress (BIRD), and provided saliva samples for DNA extraction and genotyping. Results indicate that those with one or two copies of the s allele of the 5-HTTLPR polymorphism were more likely to perform poorly on the task (i.e., choose to quit) than were those homozygous for the l allele. Participants who were Val allele carriers of the COMT Val158Met polymorphism were also more likely to quit the task compared to Met homozygotes. A summative risk allele score was created to combine the two polymorphisms, and each risk allele was associated with a 1.75 fold increased likelihood of quitting the task. Exploratory analyses revealed that emotional abuse moderated the relationship between the 5-HTTLPR and BIRD performance, as well as the genetic risk allele and the BIRD. This is the first investigation of genetic predictors of a behavioral measure of tolerance to distress. Results suggest that distress tolerance is at least partially regulated by specific genetic variants. Implications are discussed. PMID:22024485

  10. Genetic associations with performance on a behavioral measure of distress intolerance.

    PubMed

    Amstadter, Ananda B; Daughters, Stacey B; Macpherson, Laura; Reynolds, Elizabeth K; Danielson, Carla Kmett; Wang, Frances; Potenza, Marc N; Gelernter, Joel; Lejuez, C W

    2012-01-01

    Both theory and empirical evidence support possible associations between two candidate genetic polymorphisms (SLC6A4 5-HTTLPR l/s and COMT Val(158)Met--rs4680 variants) and emotion-regulation difficulties. One particular form of emotion-regulation difficulty, distress intolerance, has been measured using a behavioral assessment in youth; data indicate a relationship with poor psychological functioning. No prior study has investigated genetic influences on emotion-regulation difficulties in youth. As part of a larger longitudinal study on adolescent risk behaviors, 218 10-14 year-old youths from the metropolitan Washington, D.C., area completed a measure of distress intolerance, the Behavioral Indicator of Resilience to Distress (BIRD), and provided saliva samples for DNA extraction and genotyping. Results indicate that those with one or two copies of the s allele of the 5-HTTLPR polymorphism were more likely to perform poorly on the task (i.e., choose to quit) than were those homozygous for the l allele. Participants who were Val allele carriers of the COMT Val(158)Met polymorphism were also more likely to quit the task compared to Met homozygotes. A summative risk allele score was created to combine the two polymorphisms, and each risk allele was associated with a 1.75 fold increased likelihood of quitting the task. Exploratory analyses revealed that emotional abuse moderated the relationship between the 5-HTTLPR and BIRD performance, as well as the genetic risk allele and the BIRD. This is the first investigation of genetic predictors of a behavioral measure of tolerance to distress. Results suggest that distress tolerance is at least partially regulated by specific genetic variants. Implications are discussed. PMID:22024485

  11. Relating Dopaminergic and Cholinergic Polymorphisms to Spatial Attention in Infancy

    PubMed Central

    Markant, Julie; Cicchetti, Dante; Hetzel, Susan; Thomas, Kathleen M.

    2014-01-01

    Early selective attention skills are a crucial building block for cognitive development, as attention orienting serves as a primary means by which infants interact with and learn from the environment. Although several studies have examined infants’ attention orienting using the spatial cueing task, relatively few studies have examined neurodevelopmental factors associated with attention orienting during infancy. The present study examined the relationship between normative genetic polymorphisms affecting dopamine and acetylcholine signaling and attention orienting in 7-month-old infants during a spatial cueing task. We focused on 3 genes, including the CHRNA4 C1545T SNP (rs10344946), DAT1 3′ UTR VNTR, and COMT Val158Met SNP (rs4680), as previous adult research has linked spatial attention skills to these polymorphisms. Behavioral measures included both facilitation of orienting at the cued location as well as inhibition of return (IOR), in which attention orienting is suppressed at the cued location. Results indicated that COMT Val carriers showed robust IOR relative to infants with the Met/Met genotype. However, COMT was unrelated to infants’ facilitation responses, and there were no effects of CHRNA4 or DAT1 on either facilitation or IOR. Overall, this study suggests that variations in dopamine signaling, likely in prefrontal cortex, contribute to individual differences in orienting during early development. PMID:23731290

  12. Epistatic Interaction of CYP1A1 and COMT Polymorphisms in Cervical Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Castelão, Cindy; Pereira da Silva, Alda; Alho, Irina; Bicho, Manuel; Medeiros, Rui; Clara Bicho, Maria

    2016-01-01

    There is a clear association between the excessive and cumulative exposure to estrogens and the development of cancer in hormone-sensitive tissues, such as the cervix. We studied the association of CYP1A1 M1 (rs4646903) and COMT (rs4680) polymorphisms in 130 cervical cancer cases (c-cancer) and 179 controls. The CYP1A1 TT genotype was associated with a lower risk for c-cancer (OR = 0.39, p = 0.002). The allele C of CYP1A1 was a risk for c-cancer (OR = 2.29, p = 0.002). Women with COMT LL genotype had a higher risk of developing c-cancer (OR = 4.83, p < 0.001). For the interaction of the CYP1A1&COMT, we observed that TC&HL genotypes had a greater risk for c-cancer (OR = 6.07, p = 0.006) and TT&HL genotypes had a protection effect (OR = 0.24, p < 0.001). The CYP1A1 TT and COMT LL genotypes had higher estradiol levels in c-cancer (p < 0.001 and p = 0.037, resp.). C-cancer is associated with less production of 2-methoxy-estradiol resultant of functional polymorphisms of CYP1A1 and COMT, separately. CYP1A1 and COMT work in a metabolic sequence and their interaction could lead to an alternative pathway of estrogen metabolism with production of 16-OH-estrone that is more proliferative. PMID:26798414

  13. Variants in maternal COMT and MTHFR genes and risk of neural tube defects in offspring.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jufen; Zhang, Yali; Jin, Lei; Li, Guoxing; Wang, Linlin; Bao, Yanping; Fu, Yunting; Li, Zhiwen; Zhang, Le; Ye, Rongwei; Ren, Aiguo

    2015-04-01

    Methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) C677T and catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) G158A are associated with a risk of neural tube defects (NTDs) in offspring. This study examined the effect of a MTHFR × COMT interaction on the risk of NTDs in a Chinese population with a high prevalence of NTDs. A total of 576 fetuses or newborns with NTDs and 594 controls were genotyped for MTHFRrs1801133, MTHFRrs1801131, and COMTrs4680 and COMTrs737865. Information on maternal sociodemographic characteristics, reproductive history, and related behavior was collected through face-to-face interviews. Possible interactions between genetic variants of MTHFR and COMT were examined. MTHFR C677T homozygous TT was associated with an elevated risk of total NTDs (odds ratio [OR] = 1.37, 95 % confidence interval [CI] = 0.93-2.03) and of anencephaly (OR = 1.67, 95 % CI = 0.98-2.84) compared with the CC genotype. There was a COMT rs737865 CC × MTHFR rs1801133 TT interaction for total NTDs (OR = 3.02, 95 % CI = 1.00-9.14) and for anencephaly (OR = 3.39, 95 % CI = 0.94-12.18). No interaction was found between COMT rs4680 AA/AG and MTHFR CT/TT genotypes for total NTDs or any subtype of NTD. The interaction of COMT rs737865 and MTHFR C677T was associated with an increased risk of NTDs, especially anencephaly, in a Chinese population with a high prevalence of NTDs. PMID:24990354

  14. Variation in the dopamine D2 receptor gene plays a key role in human pain and its modulation by transcranial magnetic stimulation.

    PubMed

    Jääskeläinen, Satu K; Lindholm, Pauliina; Valmunen, Tanja; Pesonen, Ullamari; Taiminen, Tero; Virtanen, Arja; Lamusuo, Salla; Forssell, Heli; Hagelberg, Nora; Hietala, Jarmo; Pertovaara, Antti

    2014-10-01

    We tested whether variation of the dopamine D2 receptor (DRD2) gene contributes to individual differences in thermal pain sensitivity and analgesic efficacy of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) in healthy subjects (n=29) or susceptibility to neuropathic pain in patients with neurophysiologically confirmed diagnosis (n=16). Thermal sensitivity of healthy subjects was assessed before and after navigated rTMS provided to the S1/M1 cortex. All subjects were genotyped for the DRD2 gene 957C>T and catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) protein Val158Met polymorphisms. In healthy subjects, 957C>T influenced both innocuous and noxious thermal detection thresholds that were lowest in 957TT homozygotes (P values from .0277 to .0462). rTMS to S1 cortex had analgesic effect only in 957TT homozygote genotype (P=.0086). In patients, prevalence of 957TT homozygote genotype was higher than in a healthy Finnish population (50% vs 27%; P=.0191). Patients with 957TT genotype reported more severe pain than patients with other genotypes (P=.0351). COMT Val158Met polymorphism was not independently associated with the studied variables. Genetic regulation of DRD2 function by 957C>T polymorphism thus seems to influence thermal and pain sensitivity, its modulation by rTMS, and susceptibility to neuropathic pain. This indicates a central role for the dopamine system and DRD2 in pain and analgesia. This may have clinical implications regarding individualized selection of patients for rTMS treatment and assessment of risks for neuropathic pain.

  15. Placebo analgesia and reward processing: Integrating genetics, personality, and intrinsic brain activity

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Rongjun; Gollub, Randy L; Vangel, Mark; Kaptchuk, Ted; Smoller, Jordan W.; Kong, Jian

    2014-01-01

    Our expectations about an event can strongly shape our subjective evaluation and actual experience of events. This ability, applied to the modulation of pain, has the potential to affect therapeutic analgesia substantially and constitutes a foundation for non-pharmacological pain relief. A typical example of such modulation is the placebo effect. Studies indicate that placebo may be regarded as a reward, and brain activity in the reward system is involved in this modulation process. In the present study, we combined resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) measures, genotype at a functional COMT polymorphism (Val158Met), and personality measures in a model to predict the magnitude of placebo conditioning effect indicated by subjective pain rating reduction to calibrated noxious stimuli. We found that the regional homogeneity (ReHo), an index of local neural coherence, in the ventral striatum, was significantly associated with conditioning effects on pain rating changes. We also found that the number of Met alleles at the COMT polymorphism was linearly correlated to the suppression of pain. In a fitted regression model, we found the ReHo in the ventral striatum, COMT genotype, and Openness scores accounted for 59% of the variance in the change in pain ratings. The model was further tested using a separate data set from the same study. Our findings demonstrate the potential of combining resting state connectivity, genetic information and personality to predict placebo effect. PMID:24578196

  16. Genetic influences on insight problem solving: the role of catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene polymorphisms

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Weili; Shang, Siyuan; Su, Yanjie

    2015-01-01

    People may experience an “aha” moment, when suddenly realizing a solution of a puzzling problem. This experience is called insight problem solving. Several findings suggest that catecholamine-related genes may contribute to insight problem solving, among which the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene is the most promising candidate. The current study examined 753 healthy individuals to determine the associations between 7 candidate single nucleotide polymorphisms on the COMT gene and insight problem-solving performance, while considering gender differences. The results showed that individuals carrying A allele of rs4680 or T allele of rs4633 scored significantly higher on insight problem-solving tasks, and the COMT gene rs5993883 combined with gender interacted with correct solutions of insight problems, specifically showing that this gene only influenced insight problem-solving performance in males. This study presents the first investigation of the genetic impact on insight problem solving and provides evidence that highlights the role that the COMT gene plays in insight problem solving. PMID:26528222

  17. Hybridization of downregulated-COMT transgenic switchgrass lines with field selected switchgrass for improved biomass traits

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Transgenic switchgrass (Panicum virgatum L.) has been produced for improved cell walls for biofuels. Downregulated caffeic acid 3-O-methyltransferase (COMT) switchgrass produced significantly more biomass and biofuel than the non-transgenic progenitor line. In the present study we sought to further...

  18. Genetic influences on insight problem solving: the role of catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene polymorphisms.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Weili; Shang, Siyuan; Su, Yanjie

    2015-01-01

    People may experience an "aha" moment, when suddenly realizing a solution of a puzzling problem. This experience is called insight problem solving. Several findings suggest that catecholamine-related genes may contribute to insight problem solving, among which the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene is the most promising candidate. The current study examined 753 healthy individuals to determine the associations between 7 candidate single nucleotide polymorphisms on the COMT gene and insight problem-solving performance, while considering gender differences. The results showed that individuals carrying A allele of rs4680 or T allele of rs4633 scored significantly higher on insight problem-solving tasks, and the COMT gene rs5993883 combined with gender interacted with correct solutions of insight problems, specifically showing that this gene only influenced insight problem-solving performance in males. This study presents the first investigation of the genetic impact on insight problem solving and provides evidence that highlights the role that the COMT gene plays in insight problem solving.

  19. β2- and β3-adrenergic receptors drive COMT-dependent pain by increasing production of nitric oxide and cytokines.

    PubMed

    Hartung, Jane E; Ciszek, Brittney P; Nackley, Andrea G

    2014-07-01

    Decreased activity of catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), an enzyme that metabolizes catecholamines, contributes to pain in humans and animals. Previously, we demonstrated that development of COMT-dependent pain is mediated by both β2- and β3-adrenergic receptors (β2ARs and β3ARs). Here we investigated molecules downstream of β2- and β3ARs driving pain in animals with decreased COMT activity. Based on evidence linking their role in pain and synthesis downstream of β2- and β3AR stimulation, we hypothesized that nitric oxide (NO) and proinflammatory cytokines drive COMT-dependent pain. To test this, we measured plasma NO derivatives and cytokines in rats receiving the COMT inhibitor OR486 in the presence or absence of the β2AR antagonist ICI118,551+β3AR antagonist SR59320A. We also assessed whether the NO synthase inhibitor L-N(G)-nitroarginine methyl ester (L-NAME) and cytokine-neutralizing antibodies block the development of COMT-dependent pain. Results showed that animals receiving OR486 exhibited higher levels of NO derivatives, tumor necrosis factor α (TNFα), interleukin-1β (IL-1β), interleukin-6 (IL-6), and chemokine (C-C motif) ligand 2 (CCL2) in a β2- and β3AR-dependent manner. Additionally, inhibition of NO synthases and neutralization of the innate immunity cytokines TNFα, IL-1β, and IL-6 blocked the development of COMT-dependent pain. Finally, we found that NO influences TNFα, IL-1β, IL-6, and CCL2 levels, whereas TNFα and IL-6 influence NO levels. Altogether, these results demonstrate that β2- and β3ARs contribute to COMT-dependent pain, at least partly, by increasing NO and cytokines. Furthermore, they identify β2- and β3ARs, NO, and proinflammatory cytokines as potential therapeutic targets for pain patients with abnormalities in COMT physiology.

  20. β2- and β3-adrenergic receptors drive COMT-dependent pain by increasing production of nitric oxide and cytokines

    PubMed Central

    E., Hartung Jane; P., Ciszek, Brittney; G., Nackley, Andrea

    2014-01-01

    Decreased activity of catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), an enzyme that metabolizes catecholamines, contributes to pain in humans and animals. Previously, we demonstrated that development of COMT-dependent pain is mediated by both β2- and β3-adrenergic receptors (β2-and β3ARs). Here, we investigated molecules downstream of β2-and β3ARs driving pain in animals with decreased COMT activity. Based on evidence linking their role in pain and synthesis downstream of β2- and β3AR stimulation, we hypothesized that nitric oxide (NO) and pro-inflammatory cytokines drive COMT-dependent pain. To test this, we measured plasma NO derivatives and cytokines in rats receiving the COMT inhibitor OR486 in the presence or absence of the β2AR antagonist ICI118,551 + β3AR antagonist SR59320A. We also assessed if the NO synthase inhibitor L-NG-nitroarginine methyl ester (L-NAME) and cytokine neutralizing antibodies block the development of COMT-dependent pain. Results showed that animals receiving OR486 exhibited higher levels of NO derivatives, tumor necrosis factor α (TNFα), interleukin-1β (IL-1β), interleukin-6 (IL-6), and chemokine (C-C motif) ligand 2 (CCL2) in a β2-and β3AR-dependent manner. Additionally, inhibition of NO synthases and neutralization of the innate immunity cytokines TNFα, IL-1β, and IL-6 blocked the development of COMT-dependent pain. Finally, we found that NO influences TNFα, IL-1β, IL-6 and CCL2 levels, while TNFα and IL-6 influence NO levels. Altogether, these results demonstrate that β2- and β3ARs contribute to COMT-dependent pain, at least partly, by increasing NO and cytokines. Furthermore, they identify β2- and β3ARs, NO, and pro-inflammatory cytokines as potential therapeutic targets for pain patients with abnormalities in COMT physiology. PMID:24727346

  1. COMT Diplotype Amplifies Effect of Stress on Risk of Temporomandibular Pain

    PubMed Central

    Sanders, A.E.; Ohrbach, R.; Bair, E.; Maixner, W.; Greenspan, J.D.; Fillingim, R.B.; Smith, S.; Diatchenko, L.

    2015-01-01

    When measured once, psychological stress predicts development of painful temporomandibular disorder (TMD). However, a single measurement fails to characterize the dynamic nature of stress over time. Moreover, effects of stress on pain likely vary according to biological susceptibility. We hypothesized that temporal escalation in stress exacerbates risk for TMD, and the effect is amplified by allelic variants in a gene, catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), regulating catechol neurotransmitter catabolism. We used data from the Orofacial Pain: Prospective Evaluation and Risk Assessment prospective cohort study of 2,707 community-dwelling adults with no lifetime history of TMD on enrollment. At baseline and quarterly periods thereafter, the Perceived Stress Scale (PSS) measured psychological stress. Genotyped DNA from blood samples determined COMT diplotypes. During follow-up of 0.25 to 5.2 y, 248 adults developed examiner-verified incident TMD. PSS scores at baseline were 20% greater (P < 0.001) in adults who developed incident TMD compared with TMD-free controls. Baseline PSS scores increased by 9% (P = 0.003) during follow-up in cases but remained stable in controls. This stress escalation was limited to incident cases with COMT diplotypes coding for low-activity COMT, signifying impaired catabolism of catecholamines. Cox regression models confirmed significant effects on TMD hazard of both baseline PSS (P < 0.001), modeled as a time-constant covariate, and change in PSS (P < 0.001), modeled as a time-varying covariate. Furthermore, a significant (P = 0.04) interaction of COMT diplotype and time-varying stress showed that a postbaseline increase of 1.0 standard deviation in PSS more than doubled risk of TMD incidence in subjects with low-activity COMT diplotypes (hazard ratio = 2.35; 95% confidence limits: 1.66, 3.32), an effect not found in subjects with high-activity COMT diplotypes (hazard ratio = 1.42; 95% confidence limits: 0.96, 2.09). Findings provide novel

  2. Effects of COMT inhibitors on striatal dopamine metabolism: A microdialysis study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kaakkola, S.; Wurtman, R. J.

    1992-01-01

    In vivo microdialysis was used to examine the effect of two new catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) inhibitors, Ro 40-7592 and OR-611, on extracellular levels of dopamine, dihydroxyphenylacetic acid (DOPAC), homovanillic acid (HVA), and 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid (5-HIAA) in rat striatum. The interactions of the COMT inhibitors with nomifensine, clorgyline, and deprenyl were also studied. Ro 40-7592 (3-30 mg/kg. i.p.) decreased dose-dependently the efflux of HVA, increased that of DOPAC, and tended to increase that of dopamine. Higher doses of OR-611 (30-100 mg/kg, i.p.) also decreased the dialysate level of HVA, increased that of DOPAC, and tended to increase that of dopamine. Ro 40-7592 was about ten-fold as potent as OR-611. Neither of the COMT inhibitors changed dialysate levels of 6-HIAA. An OR-611 dose of 10 mg/kg i.p. had no significant effect, in contrast to Ro 40-7592, on any of the parameters studied; this dose was thus used to differentiate between the effects of central and peripheral COMT inhibition. Both nomifensine (15 mg/kg, i.p.) and clorgyline (4 mg/kg, i.p.) alone elevated extracellular dopamine levels, and lowered those of DOPAC and HVA, though there were quantitative and temporal differences between the drugs. L-deprenyl (1 mg/kg, i.p.) alone had no significant effect on any of the compounds measured. Ro 40-7592 (10 mg/kg, i.p.) potentiated the effect of nomifensine on dopamine efflux, and it tended to increase clorgyline-induced dopamine efflux. DOPAC levels in dialysates were significantly increased by combinations of Ro 40-7592 and nomifensine or clorgyline, whereas HVA remained about as low as they were after Ro 40-7592 alone. Ro 40-7592 had no significant interactions with L-deprenyl. OR-611 (10 mg/kg, i.p.) did not modify the effects on dopamine metabolism of nomifensine, clorgyline, or L-deprenyl. These data show that Ro 40-7592 is a potent centrally active COMT inhibitor, whereas OR-611 is principally a peripherally active inhibitor

  3. A preliminary study suggests that nicotine and prefrontal dopamine affect cortico-striatal areas in smokers with performance feedback

    PubMed Central

    Lee, M. R.; Gallen, C.L.; Ross, T.J.; Kurup, P.; Salmeron, B.J.; Hodgkinson, C.A.; Goldman, D.; Stein, E. A.; Enoch, M.A.

    2014-01-01

    Nicotine and tonic DA levels (as inferred by COMT Val158Met genotype) interact to affect prefrontal processing. Prefrontal cortical areas are involved in response to performance feedback, which is impaired in smokers. We investigated whether there is a nicotine × COMT genotype interaction in brain circuitry during performance feedback of a reward task. We scanned 23 healthy smokers (10 Val/Val homozygotes, 13 Met allele carriers) during two fMRI sessions while subjects were wearing a nicotine or placebo patch. A significant nicotine × COMT genotype interaction for BOLD signal during performance feedback in corticostriatal areas was seen. Activation in these areas during the nicotine patch condition was greater in Val/Val homozygotes and reduced in Met allele carriers. During negative performance feedback, the change in activation in error detection areas such as anterior cingulate cortex (ACC)/superior frontal gyrus on nicotine compared to placebo was greater in Val/Val homozygotes compared to Met allele carriers. With transdermal nicotine administration, Val/Val homozygotes showed greater activation with performance feedback in the dorsal striatum, areas associated with habitual responding. In response to negative feedback, Val/Val homozygotes had greater activation in error detection areas, including the ACC, suggesting increased sensitivity to loss with nicotine exposure. Although these results are preliminary due to small sample size, nevertheless, they suggest a possible neurobiological mechanism underlying the clinical observation that Val/Val homozygotes, presumably with elevated COMT activity compared to Met allele carriers and therefore reduced prefrontal DA levels, have poorer outcomes with nicotine replacement therapy. PMID:23433232

  4. Nuclear factor-kappa B regulates pain and COMT expression in a rodent model of inflammation

    PubMed Central

    Hartung, Jane E.; Eskew, Olivia; Wong, Terrence; Tchivileva, Inna E.; Oladosu, Folabomi A.; O’Buckley, Sandra C.; Nackley, Andrea G.

    2015-01-01

    Nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-κB) is a ubiquitously expressed protein complex regulating the transcription of genes involved in inflammation and pain. Increased NF-κB activity in immune and nervous system cells is linked to several chronic pain conditions in humans as well as inflammation- and nerve injury-evoked pain in animals. A recent in vitro study further demonstrates that increased NF-κB activity in astrocytes decreases transcription of catechol-o-methyltransferase (COMT), an enzyme that inactivates catecholamines that cause pain. The purpose of the present study was to examine the relationship between systemic and astrocytic NF-κB activity, pain, and COMT expression in an animal model of inflammation. Results demonstrated that administration of the inflammatory stimulant complete Freund’s adjuvant (CFA) led to increased pain and decreased COMT protein expression in an NF-κB-dependent manner. Specifically, we found that rats and mice receiving intraplantar CFA exhibited increased behavioral responses to mechanical and thermal heat stimuli. CFA-evoked pain was blocked in rats receiving a pre-emptive systemic dose of the NF-κB inhibitor MG132 and exacerbated in IKKca mice with constitutive NF-κB activity in astrocytes. Furthermore, we observed NF-κB-linked reductions in COMT expression in midbrain at 6h and 1d following CFA in rats and at 1h and 1d in forebrain and midbrain following CFA in IKKca mice. Collectively, these results demonstrate that systemic and astrocytic NF-κB activity drive inflammatory pain and regulate the expression of COMT in forebrain and midbrain structures. PMID:26187567

  5. Impaired executive control is associated with a variation in the promoter region of the tryptophan hydroxylase 2 gene.

    PubMed

    Reuter, Martin; Ott, Ulrich; Vaitl, Dieter; Hennig, Jürgen

    2007-03-01

    Current models of attention describe attention not as a homogenous entity but as a set of neural networks whose measurement yields a set of three endophenotypes-alerting, orienting, and executive control. Previous findings revealed different neuroanatomical regions for these subsystems, and data from twin studies indicate differences in their heritability. The present study investigated the molecular genetic basis of attention in a sample of 100 healthy subjects. Attention performance was assessed with the attention network test that distinguishes alerting, orienting, and executive control (conflict) using a simple reaction time paradigm with different cues and congruent and incongruent flankers. Two gene loci on candidate genes for cognitive functioning, the functional catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) VAL158MET and the tryptophan hydroxylase 2 (TPH2) -703 G/T promoter polymorphism, were tested for possible associations with attention. COMT is involved in the catabolism of dopamine, and TPH is the rate-limiting enzyme for serotonin synthesis. Results showed no effect of the COMT polymorphism on attention performance. However, the TT genotype of TPH2 -03 G/T was significantly associated with more errors (a possible indicator of impaired impulse control; p = .001) and with decreased performance in executive control (p = .001). This single-nucleotide polymorphism on the TPH2 gene explained more than 10% of the variance in both indicators of attention stressing the role of the serotonergic system for cognitive functions.

  6. Differential expression of calcium transport genes caused by COMT inhibition in the duodenum, kidney and placenta of pregnant mice.

    PubMed

    Yang, Hyun; Ahn, Changhwan; Jeung, Eui-Bae

    2015-02-01

    Preeclampsia is a pregnancy-specific disease characterized by concurrent development of hypertension, proteinuria, and oxidative stress in the placenta. Preeclampsia-like genetic models were also developed by modification of preeclampsia-related genes, such as catechol-O-methyltranferase (COMT). In this study, we induced COMT inhibition in mice during pregnancy in order to reproduce physiological conditions associated with preeclampsia. Expression of the gene known as hypoxia biomarker, HIF-1α, was highly induced in the placenta of this model. The over-expression of HIF-1α demonstrates that our experimental conditions were similar to those of preeclampsia. We measured the expression of several calcium transport genes (CTGs; TRPV5, TRPV6, PMCA1 and CaBP-9k) in the placenta, duodenum and kidney after COMT inhibition on gestation day 17.5 (GD 17.5). In addition, we evaluated the calcium transporters in the kidney, duodenum of non-pregnant female mice. Placental TRPV5, TRPV6 and PMCA1 expressions were down-regulated by COMT inhibitor (ro41-0960). In addition, the reduced PMCA1 expression in the placenta was reversed by calcium supplementation. Duodenal expressions of TRPV5, TRPV6, and PMCA1 were decreased in COMT-inhibited mice, and recovered slightly after calcium supplementation. Renal expression of TRPV5, TRPV6, and PMCA1 was also decreased by COMT inhibition, while it was reversed by calcium supplementation to the level of control. Duodenal- and renal calcium transporting genes, TRPV5, TPRV6, PMCA1 and CaBP-9k, were down-regulated by COMT treatment in female mice. Taken together, these results indicate that physiological changes observed in COMT inhibition were similar to symptoms of preeclampsia, which may be related to disturbance of calcium metabolism during pregnancy.

  7. MET deregulation in breast cancer

    PubMed Central

    Landi, Lorenza

    2015-01-01

    Background Mesenchymal-epithelial transition (MET) is an oncogene encoding for a trans-membrane tyrosine kinase receptor activated by the hepatocyte growth factor (HGF). MET has a normal function in organ development during embryogenesis and in tissue homeostasis during adult life. Deregulation of HGF/MET signaling pathway is frequently observed in many cancer types, conferring invasive growth and tendency to progression. MET deregulation is due to gene amplification or increased copy number, gene mutation, receptor over-expression or ligand autocrine loops activation. These events lead to migration, invasion, proliferation, metastatic spread and neo-angiogenesis of cancer cells, suggesting that anti-HGF/MET agents may represent a potential antitumor strategy. In breast cancer (BC), preclinical and clinical data demonstrated the role of HGF/MET signalling pathway in carcinogenesis, disease progression and resistance features. Methods For this review article, all published data on HGF/MET in BC were collected and analyzed. Results Several evidences underline that, in early BC, MET over-expression has an independent negative prognostic significance, regardless of method used for evaluation and BC subtypes. Available data suggest that MET is a relevant target particularly in basal-like (BL) and in triple negative BC. Moreover, preclinical and retrospective data support the critical role of MET deregulation in the development of resistance to target-agents, such as anti-HER2 strategies. Conclusions MET is a promising new target in BC. Several anti-MET agents are under investigation and ongoing clinical trials will clarify its relevance in BC treatment. PMID:26366398

  8. Perinatal asphyxia alters neuregulin-1 and COMT gene expression in the medial prefrontal cortex in rats.

    PubMed

    Wakuda, Tomoyasu; Iwata, Keiko; Iwata, Yasuhide; Anitha, Ayyappan; Takahashi, Taro; Yamada, Kohei; Vasu, Mahesh Mundalil; Matsuzaki, Hideo; Suzuki, Katsuaki; Mori, Norio

    2015-01-01

    Epidemiological studies suggest that perinatal complications, particularly hypoxia-related ones, increase the risk of schizophrenia. Recent genetic studies of the disorder have identified several putative susceptibility genes, some of which are known to be regulated by hypoxia. It can be postulated therefore that birth complications that cause hypoxia in the fetal brain may be associated with a dysregulation in the expression of some of the schizophrenia candidate genes. To test this, we used an animal model of perinatal asphyxia, in which rat pups were exposed to 15 min of intrauterine anoxia during Caesarean section birth, and examined the expression of mRNA of five of the putative susceptibility genes (NRG1, ErbB4, AKT1, COMT and BDNF) by real-time quantitative PCR in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) and the hippocampus at 6 and 12 weeks after birth. The expression of NRG1 mRNA was significantly decreased in the mPFC, but not in the hippocampus, at 6 and 12 weeks after birth. In addition, a significant increase in COMT mRNA expression was observed in the mPFC at 12 weeks. The alteration in mRNA levels of NRG1 and COMT was not associated with a change in their protein levels. These results suggest that perinatal asphyxia may lead to disturbances in the PFC, which in turn may exert a long-lasting influence on the expression of specific genes, such as NRG1 and COMT. Our results also suggest that translational interruption may occur in this model of perinatal asphyxia. PMID:25194460

  9. Association Between Polymorphisms of DRD2, COMT, DBH, and MAO-A Genes and Migraine Susceptibility

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Hu; Ji, Chun-Xue; Zhao, Lian-Li; Kong, Xiang-Jun; Zeng, Xian-Tao

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Some epidemiological studies have investigated the relationship between genetic polymorphisms of DRD2, COMT, DBH, and MAO-A and migraine susceptibility, but the results are still inconsistent. Thus, our aim was to further assess the association through a meta-analysis. We examined 5 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in 4 genes, including DRD2 rs1799732 and rs6275, DBH rs7239728, MAI-A-VNTR, and COMT rs4680, and performed a meta-analysis of 11 published case–control studies including 3138 cases and 4126 controls. Odd ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs) were used to evaluate the association between the 5 genetic polymorphisms and migraine susceptibility. There was no significant relationship between migraine susceptibility and 4 genetic polymorphisms of DRD2 rs1799732 and rs6275, DBH rs7239728, and MAO-A-VNTR. Nevertheless, decreased risk of migraine was observed to be in association with COMT rs4680 polymorphism in overall analysis (AA vs. GG + GA: OR = 0.76, 95% CI = 0.60–0.97, PHet > 0.642, I2 = 0), and in Caucasian group after subgroup analysis (AA vs. GG + GA: OR = 0.75, 95% CI = 0.58–0.96, PHet > 0.433, I2 = 0). Studied polymorphisms of DRD2, DBH, and MAO-A genes may not be associated with migraine susceptibility. However, COMT rs4680 polymorphism may decrease the risk of migraine, especially in Caucasians. The failure to evaluate environmental influence and provide adjusted effect size estimates highlights the need for additional studies in a large number to take these factors into consideration, thus better elucidating the role of the genes tested in migraine. PMID:26632697

  10. Comte, Mach, Planck, and Eddington: a study of influence across generations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Batten, Alan H.

    2016-04-01

    Auguste Comte is frequently ridiculed by astronomers for saying that human beings would never be able to know the physical nature and constitution of the stars. His philosophy, however, influenced scientists throughout his lifetime and for over a century after his death. That influence is traced here in the work of three outstanding scientists who spanned, roughly speaking, three successive generations after his own, namely, Ernst Mach, Max Planck and Arthur Stanley Eddington.

  11. Influence of catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene polymorphisms in pain sensibility of Brazilian fibromialgia patients.

    PubMed

    Barbosa, Flávia Regina; Matsuda, Josie Budag; Mazucato, Mendelson; de Castro França, Suzelei; Zingaretti, Sônia Marli; da Silva, Lucienir Maria; Martinez-Rossi, Nilce Maria; Júnior, Milton Faria; Marins, Mozart; Fachin, Ana Lúcia

    2012-02-01

    Fibromyalgia syndrome (FS) is a rheumatic syndrome affecting to 2-3% of individuals of productive age, mainly women. Neuroendocrine and genetic factors may play a significant role in development of the disease which is characterized by diffuse chronic pain and presence of tender points. Several studies have suggested an association between FS, especially pain sensitivity, and polymorphism of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene. The aim of the present study was to characterize the SNPs rs4680 and rs4818 of the COMT gene and assess its influence in pain sensitivity of patients with fibromyalgia screened by the Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire (FIQ). DNA was extracted from peripheral blood of 112 patients with fibromyalgia and 110 healthy individuals and was used as template in PCR for amplification of a 185-bp fragment of the COMT gene. The amplified fragment was sequenced for analyses of the SNPs rs4680 and rs4818. The frequency of mutant genotype AA of SNP rs6860 was 77.67% in patients with FS and 28.18% for the control group. For the SNP rs4818, the frequency of mutant genotype CC was 73.21 and 39.09% for patients with FS and controls, respectively. Moreover, the FIQ score was higher in patients with the homozygous mutant genotype for SNPs rs4680 (87.92 points) and rs4818 (86.14 points). These results suggest that SNPs rs4680 and rs4818 of the COMT gene may be associated with fibromyalgia and pain sensitivity in FS Brazilian patients.

  12. Fragmentation Chemistry of [Met-Gly]•+, [Gly-Met]•+, and [Met-Met]•+ Radical Cations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lau, Justin Kai-Chi; Lo, Seydina; Zhao, Junfang; Siu, K. W. Michael; Hopkinson, Alan C.

    2013-04-01

    Radical cations [Met-Gly]•+, [Gly-Met]•+, and [Met-Met]•+ have been generated through collision-induced dissociation (CID) of [CuII(CH3CN)2(peptide)]•2+ complexes. Their fragmentation patterns and dissociation mechanisms have been studied both experimentally and theoretically using density functional theory at the UB3LYP/6-311++G(d,p) level. The captodative structure, in which the radical is located at the α-carbon of the N-terminal residue and the proton is on the amide oxygen, is the lowest energy structure on each potential energy surface. The canonical structure, with the charge and spin both located on the sulfur, and the distonic ion with the proton on the terminal amino group, and the radical on the α-carbon of the C-terminal residue have similar energies. Interconversion between the canonical structures and the captodative isomers is facile and occurs prior to fragmentation. However, isomerization to produce the distonic structure is energetically less favorable and cannot compete with dissociation except in the case of [Gly-Met]•+. Charge-driven dissociations result in formation of [ b n - H]•+ and a 1 ions. Radical-driven dissociation leads to the loss of the side chain of methionine as CH3-S-CH = CH2 producing α-glycyl radicals from both [Gly-Met]•+ and [Met-Met]•+. For [Met-Met]•+, loss of the side chain occurs at the C-terminal as shown by both labeling experiments and computations. The product, the distonic ion of [Met-Gly]•+, NH3 +CH(CH2CH2SCH3)CONHCH•COOH dissociates by loss of CH3S•. The isomeric distonic ion NH3 +CH2CONHC•(CH2CH2SCH3)COOH is accessible directly from the canonical [Gly-Met]•+ ion. A fragmentation pathway that characterizes this ion (and the distonic ion of [Met-Met]•+) is homolytic fission of the Cβ-Cγ bond to lose CH3SCH2 •.

  13. Factors affecting cognitive remediation response in schizophrenia: the role of COMT gene and antipsychotic treatment.

    PubMed

    Bosia, Marta; Zanoletti, Andrea; Spangaro, Marco; Buonocore, Mariachiara; Bechi, Margherita; Cocchi, Federica; Pirovano, Adele; Lorenzi, Cristina; Bramanti, Placido; Smeraldi, Enrico; Cavallaro, Roberto

    2014-06-30

    Cognitive remediation is the best available tool to treat cognitive deficits in schizophrenia and has evidence of biological validity; however results are still heterogeneous and significant predictors are lacking. Previous studies showed that cognitive remediation is able to induce changes in PFC function and dopaminergic transmission and thus the study of possible sources of variability at these levels (i.e. antipsychotic treatments and genetic variability) might help to gain a deeper understanding of neurobiological correlates and translate into optimization and personalization of interventions. In the present study, we analyzed the interaction between pharmacological treatment (clozapine vs typical/atypical D2 blockers) and COMT rs4680 polymorphism on cognitive changes after cognitive remediation therapy, in a sample of 98 clinically stabilized patients with schizophrenia. The General Linear Model showed a significant interaction of pharmacological treatment and COMT polymorphism on the improvement in "Symbol Coding" subtest, a global measure of speed of processing. Post-hoc analysis revealed a significant difference between COMT genotypes, when treated with D2 blockers, with worse results among Val/Val patients. These preliminary results suggest that genetic variability, influencing prefrontal dopamine, might affect individual capacity to improve with different patterns, depending on antipsychotic treatment. PMID:24656901

  14. Factors affecting cognitive remediation response in schizophrenia: the role of COMT gene and antipsychotic treatment.

    PubMed

    Bosia, Marta; Zanoletti, Andrea; Spangaro, Marco; Buonocore, Mariachiara; Bechi, Margherita; Cocchi, Federica; Pirovano, Adele; Lorenzi, Cristina; Bramanti, Placido; Smeraldi, Enrico; Cavallaro, Roberto

    2014-06-30

    Cognitive remediation is the best available tool to treat cognitive deficits in schizophrenia and has evidence of biological validity; however results are still heterogeneous and significant predictors are lacking. Previous studies showed that cognitive remediation is able to induce changes in PFC function and dopaminergic transmission and thus the study of possible sources of variability at these levels (i.e. antipsychotic treatments and genetic variability) might help to gain a deeper understanding of neurobiological correlates and translate into optimization and personalization of interventions. In the present study, we analyzed the interaction between pharmacological treatment (clozapine vs typical/atypical D2 blockers) and COMT rs4680 polymorphism on cognitive changes after cognitive remediation therapy, in a sample of 98 clinically stabilized patients with schizophrenia. The General Linear Model showed a significant interaction of pharmacological treatment and COMT polymorphism on the improvement in "Symbol Coding" subtest, a global measure of speed of processing. Post-hoc analysis revealed a significant difference between COMT genotypes, when treated with D2 blockers, with worse results among Val/Val patients. These preliminary results suggest that genetic variability, influencing prefrontal dopamine, might affect individual capacity to improve with different patterns, depending on antipsychotic treatment.

  15. Extensive genetic diversity and low linkage disequilibrium within the COMT locus in maize exotic populations.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yongsheng; Blanco, Michael; Ji, Qing; Frei, Ursula Karoline; Lübberstedt, Thomas

    2014-05-01

    The caffeic acid 3-O-methytransferase (COMT) gene is a prime candidate for cell wall digestibility improvement based on the characterization of brown midrib-3 mutants. We compared the genetic diversity and linkage disequilibrium at this locus between exotic populations sampled within the Germplasm Enhancement of Maize (GEM) project and 70 inbred lines. In total, we investigated 55 exotic COMT alleles and discovered more than 400 polymorphisms in a 2.2 kb region with pairwise nucleotide diversity (π) up to 0.017, much higher than reported π values of various genes in inbred lines. The ratio of non-synonymous to synonymous SNPs was 3:1 in exotic populations, and significantly higher than the 1:1 ratio for inbred lines. Selection tests detected selection signature in this gene in both pools, but with different evolution patterns. The linkage disequilibrium decay in exotic populations was at least four times more rapid than for inbred lines with r²>0.1 persisting only up to 100 bp. In conclusion, the alleles sampled in the GEM Project offer a valuable genetic resource to broaden genetic variation for the COMT gene, and likely other genes, in inbred background. Moreover, the low linkage disequilibrium makes this material suitable for high resolution association analyses.

  16. Network-Dependent Modulation of COMT and DRD2 Polymorphisms in Healthy Young Adults

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Fangshi; Zhang, Xuejun; Qin, Wen; Liu, Feng; Wang, Qiuhui; Xu, Qiang; Wang, Junping; Yu, Chunshui

    2015-01-01

    Nonlinear modulation of the dopamine signaling on brain functions can be estimated by the interaction effects of dopamine-related genetic variations. We aimed to explore the interaction effects of COMT rs4680 and DRD2 rs1076560 on intra-network connectivity using independent component analysis. In 250 young healthy adults, we identified 11 meaningful resting-state networks (RSNs), including the salience, visual, auditory, default-mode, sensorimotor, attention and frontoparietal networks. A two-way analysis of covariance was used to investigate COMT×DRD2 interactions on intra-network connectivity in each network, controlling for age, gender and education. Significant COMT×DRD2 interaction was found in intra-network connectivity in the left medial prefrontal cortex of the anterior default-mode network, in the right dorsolateral frontal cortex of the right dorsal attention network, and in the left dorsal anterior cingulate cortex of the salience network. Post hoc tests revealed that these interactions were driven by the differential effects of DRD2 genotypes on intra-network connectivity in different COMT genotypic subgroups. Moreover, even in the same COMT subgroup, the modulation effects of DRD2 on intra-network connectivity were different across RSNs. These findings suggest a network-dependent modulation of the DA-related genetic variations on intra-network connectivity. PMID:26642826

  17. Effects of Acute Dopamine Precusor Depletion on Immediate Reward Selection Bias and Working Memory Depend on Catechol-O-methyltransferase Genotype

    PubMed Central

    Kelm, Mary Katherine; Boettiger, Charlotte A.

    2013-01-01

    Little agreement exists as to acute dopamine (DA) manipulation effects on intertemporal choice in humans. We previously found that catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met genotype predicts individual differences in immediate reward selection bias among adults. Moreover, we and others have shown that the relationship between COMT genotype and immediate reward bias is inverted in adolescents. No previous pharmacology studies testing DA manipulation effects on intertemporal choice have accounted for COMT genotype, and many have included participants in the adolescent age range (18–21) as adults. Moreover, many studies have included female subjects without strict cycle phase control, although recent evidence demonstrates that cyclic estradiol elevations interact with COMT genotype to affect DA-dependent cognition. These factors may have interacted with DA manipulations in past studies, potentially occluding detection of effects. Therefore, we predicted that among healthy adult males (ages 22–40), frontal DA tone, as indexed by COMT genotype, would interact with acute changes in DA signaling to affect intertemporal choice. In a double-blind, placebo-controlled design, we decreased central DA via administration of an amino acid beverage deficient in the DA precursors, phenylalanine and tyrosine (P/T[−]), and tested effects on immediate reward bias in a delay-discounting (DD) task and working memory (WM) in an n-back task. We found no main effect of beverage on DD or WM performance, but did find significant beverage*genotype effects. These results suggest that the effect of DA manipulations on DD depends on individual differences in frontal DA tone, which may have impeded some past efforts to characterize DA’s role in immediate reward bias in humans. PMID:23937688

  18. Genetic and Disorder-Specific Aspects of Resting State EEG Abnormalities in Schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Venables, Noah C.; Bernat, Edward M.; Sponheim, Scott R.

    2009-01-01

    We evaluated whether abnormal frequency composition of the resting state electroencephalogram (EEG) in schizophrenia was associated with genetic liability for the disorder by studying first-degree biological relatives of schizophrenia patients. The study included a data-driven method for defining EEG frequency components and determined the specificity of resting state EEG frequency abnormalities by assessing schizophrenia patients, bipolar disorder patients, and relatives of both patient groups. Schizophrenia patients and their relatives, but not bipolar patients or their relatives, exhibited increased high-frequency activity (beta) providing evidence for disturbances in resting state brain activity being specific to genetic liability for schizophrenia. Schizophrenia patients exhibited augmented low-frequency EEG activity (delta, theta), while bipolar disorder patients and the 2 groups of relatives generally failed to manifest similar low-frequency EEG abnormalities. The Val158Met polymorphism for the catechol-O-methyl transferase (COMT) gene was most strongly associated with delta and theta activity in schizophrenia patients. Met homozygote schizophrenia patients exhibited augmented activity for the 2 low-frequency bands compared with control subjects. Excessive high-frequency EEG activity over frontal brain regions may serve as an endophenotype that reflects cortical expression of genetic vulnerability for schizophrenia. Low-frequency resting state EEG anomalies in schizophrenia may relate to disorder-specific pathophysiology in schizophrenia and the influence of the COMT gene on tonic dopamanergic function. PMID:18381357

  19. Dopaminergic Genetic Polymorphisms Predict Rule-Based Category Learning

    PubMed Central

    Byrne, Kaileigh A.; Davis, Tyler; Worthy, Darrell A.

    2016-01-01

    Dopaminergic genes play an important role in cognitive function. DRD2 and DARPP-32 dopamine receptor gene polymorphisms affect striatal dopamine binding potential, while the Val158Met single nucleotide polymorphism of the COMT gene moderates dopamine availability in the prefrontal cortex. Our study assesses the role of these gene polymorphisms on performance in two rule-based category learning tasks. Participants completed unidimensional and conjunctive rule-based tasks. In the unidimensional task, a rule along a single stimulus dimension can be used to distinguish category members. In contrast, a conjunctive rule utilizes a combination of two dimensions to distinguish category members. DRD2 C957T TT homozygotes outperformed C allele carriers on both tasks, and DARPP-32 AA homozygotes outperformed G allele carriers on both tasks. However, we found an interaction between COMT and task-type where Met allele carriers outperformed Val homozygotes in the conjunctive rule task, but both groups performed equally well in the unidimensional task. Thus, striatal dopamine binding may play a critical role in both types of rule-based tasks, while prefrontal dopamine binding is important for learning more complex conjunctive rule tasks. Modeling results suggest that striatal dopaminergic genes influence selective attention processes while cortical genes mediate the ability to update complex rule-representations. PMID:26918585

  20. Overlapping dopaminergic pathway genetic susceptibility to heroin and cocaine addictions in African Americans.

    PubMed

    Levran, Orna; Randesi, Matthew; da Rosa, Joel Correa; Ott, Jurg; Rotrosen, John; Adelson, Miriam; Kreek, Mary Jeanne

    2015-05-01

    Drugs of abuse activate the mesolimbic dopaminergic pathway. Genetic variations in the dopaminergic system may contribute to drug addiction. Several processes are shared between cocaine and heroin addictions but some neurobiological mechanisms may be specific. This study examined the association of 98 single nucleotide polymorphisms in 13 dopamine-related genes with heroin addiction (OD) and/or cocaine addiction (CD) in a sample of 801 African Americans (315 subjects with OD ± CD, 279 subjects with CD, and 207 controls). Single-marker analyses provided nominally significant evidence for associations of 24 SNPs) in DRD1, ANKK1/DRD2, DRD3, DRD5, DBH, DDC, COMT and CSNK1E. A DRD2 7-SNPs haplotype that includes SNPs rs1075650 and rs2283265, which were shown to alter D2S/D2L splicing, was indicated in both addictions. The Met allele of the functional COMT Val158Met was associated with protection from OD. None of the signals remained significant after correction for multiple testing. The study results are in accordance with the results of previous studies, including our report of association of DRD1 SNP rs5326 with OD. The findings suggest the presence of an overlap in genetic susceptibility for OD and CD, as well as shared and distinct susceptibility for OD in subjects of African and European descent. PMID:25875614

  1. Dopaminergic, Serotonergic, and Oxytonergic Candidate Genes Associated with Infant Attachment Security and Disorganization? In Search of Main and Interaction Effects

    PubMed Central

    Luijk, Maartje P. C. M.; Roisman, Glenn I.; Haltigan, John D.; Tiemeier, Henning; Booth-LaForce, Cathryn; van IJzendoorn, Marinus H.; Belsky, Jay; Uitterlinden, Andre G.; Jaddoe, Vincent W.V.; Hofman, Albert; Verhulst, Frank C.; Tharner, Anne; Bakermans-Kranenburg, Marian J.

    2011-01-01

    Background and methods In two birth cohort studies with genetic, sensitive parenting, and attachment data of more than 1,000 infants in total, we tested main and interaction effects of candidate genes involved in the dopamine, serotonin, and oxytocin systems (DRD4, DRD2, COMT, 5-HTT, OXTR) on attachment security and disorganization. Parenting was assessed using observational rating scales for parental sensitivity (Ainsworth, Bell, & Stayton, 1974), and infant attachment was assessed with the Strange Situation Procedure. Results We found no consistent additive genetic associations for attachment security and attachment disorganization. However, specific tests revealed evidence for a co-dominant risk model for COMT Val158Met, consistent across both samples. Children with the Val/Met genotype showed higher disorganization scores (combined effect size d = 0.22, CI = 0.10; 0.34, p < .001). Gene-by-environment interaction effects were not replicable across the two samples. Conclusions This unexpected finding might be explained by a broader range of plasticity in heterozygotes, which may increase susceptibility to environmental influences or to dysregulation of emotional arousal. This study is unique in combining the two largest attachment cohorts with molecular genetic and observed rearing environment data to date. PMID:21749372

  2. LCLS Heavy Met Outgassing Tests

    SciTech Connect

    Kishiyama, K. I.

    2010-12-01

    A Heavy Met that is 95% tungsten, 3% nickel and 2% iron and sintered to 100% density and is Ultra High Vacuum (UHV) compatible is proposed for use as the X-ray slit in the Front End Enclosure and the Fixed Mask for the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS). The Heavy Met was tested in the LLNL Vacuum Sciences and Engineering Lab (VSEL) to determine its outgassing rate and its overall compatibility with the vacuum requirements for LCLS.

  3. Antisense-overexpression of the MsCOMT gene induces changes in lignin and total phenol contents in transgenic tobacco plants.

    PubMed

    Seong, Eun Soo; Yoo, Ji Hye; Lee, Jae Geun; Kim, Hee Young; Hwang, In Seong; Heo, Kweon; Kim, Jae Kwang; Lim, Jung Dae; Sacks, Erik J; Yu, Chang Yeon

    2013-02-01

    Initially, we isolated the caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene from Miscanthus sinensis (accession number HM062766.1). Next, we produced transgenic tobacco plants with down-regulated COMT gene expression to study its control of total phenol and lignin content and to perform morphological analysis. These transgenic plants were found to have reduced PAL and ascorbate peroxidases expression, which are related to the phenylpropanoid pathway and antioxidant activity. The MsCOMT-down-regulated plants had decreased total lignin in the leaves and stem compared with control plants. Reduced flavonol concentrations were confirmed in MsCOMT-down-regulated transgenic plants. We also observed a morphological difference, with reduced plant cell number in transgenic plants harboring antisense MsCOMT. The transgenic tobacco plants with down-regulated COMT gene expression demonstrate that COMT plays a crucial role related to controlling lignin and phenol content in plants. Also, COMT activity may be related to flavonoid production in the plant lignin pathway.

  4. Association of single nucleotide polymorphisms of ABCB1, OPRM1 and COMT with pain perception in cancer patients.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xu-shi; Song, Hai-bin; Chen, Si; Zhang, Wei; Liu, Jia-qi; Huang, Chao; Wang, Hao-ran; Chen, Yuan; Chu, Qian

    2015-10-01

    Pain perception is influenced by multiple factors. The single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) of some genes were found associated with pain perception. This study aimed to examine the association of the genotypes of ABCB1 C3435T, OPRM1 A118G and COMT V108/158M (valine 108/158 methionine) with pain perception in cancer patients. We genotyped 146 cancer pain patients and 139 cancer patients without pain for ABCB1 C3435T (rs1045642), OPRM1 A118G (rs1799971) and COMT V108/158M (rs4680) by the fluorescent dye-terminator cycle sequencing method, and compared the genotype distribution between groups with different pain intensities by chi-square test and pain scores between groups with different genotypes by non-parametric test. The results showed that in these cancer patients, the frequency of variant T allele of ABCB1 C3435T was 40.5%; that of G allele of OPRM1 A118G was 38.5% and that of A allele of COMT V108/158M was 23.3%. No significant difference in the genotype distribution of ABCB1 C3435T (rs1045642) and OPRM1 A118G (rs1799971) was observed between cancer pain group and control group (P=0.364 and 0.578); however, significant difference occurred in the genotype distribution of COMT V108/158M (rs4680) between the two groups (P=0.001). And the difference could not be explained by any other confounding factors. Moreover, we found that the genotypes of COMT V108/158M and ABCB1 C3435T were associated with the intensities of pain in cancer patients. In conclusion, our results indicate that the SNPs of COMT V108/158M and ABCB1 C3435T significantly influence the pain perception in Chinese cancer patients.

  5. COMT and MAO-A Polymorphisms and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder: A Family-Based Association Study

    PubMed Central

    Sampaio, Aline Santos; Hounie, Ana Gabriela; Petribú, Kátia; Cappi, Carolina; Morais, Ivanil; Vallada, Homero; do Rosário, Maria Conceição; Stewart, S. Evelyn; Fargeness, Jesen; Mathews, Carol; Arnold, Paul; Hanna, Gregory L.; Richter, Margaret; Kennedy, James; Fontenelle, Leonardo; de Bragança Pereira, Carlos Alberto; Pauls, David L.; Miguel, Eurípedes Constantino

    2015-01-01

    Objective Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a common and debilitating psychiatric illness. Although a genetic component contributes to its etiology, no single gene or mechanism has been identified to the OCD susceptibility. The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) and monoamine oxidase A (MAO-A) genes have been investigated in previous OCD studies, but the results are still unclear. More recently, Taylor (2013) in a comprehensive meta-analysis of genetic association studies has identified COMT and MAO-A polymorphisms involved with OCD. In an effort to clarify the role of these two genes in OCD vulnerability, a family-based association investigation was performed as an alternative strategy to the classical case-control design. Methods Transmission disequilibrium analyses were performed after genotyping 13 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (eight in COMT and five in MAO-A) in 783 OCD trios (probands and their parents). Four different OCD phenotypes (from narrow to broad OCD definitions) and a SNP x SNP epistasis were also analyzed. Results OCD, broad and narrow phenotypes,were not associated with any of the investigated COMT and MAO-A polymorphisms. In addition, the analyses of gene-gene interaction did not show significant epistatic influences on phenotype between COMT and MAO-A. Conclusions The findings do not support an association between DSM-IV OCD and the variants of COMT or MAO-A. However, results from this study cannot exclude the contribution of these genes in the manifestation of OCD. The evaluation of broader spectrum phenotypes could help to understand the role of these and other genes in the pathophysiology of OCD and its spectrum disorders. PMID:25793616

  6. A genetic contribution to cooperation: dopamine-relevant genes are associated with social facilitation.

    PubMed

    Walter, Nora T; Markett, Sebastian A; Montag, Christian; Reuter, Martin

    2011-01-01

    Social loafing and social facilitation are stable behavioral effects that describe increased or decreased motivation, as well as effort and cooperation in teamwork as opposed to individual working situations. Recent twin studies demonstrate the heritability of cooperative behavior. Brain imaging studies have shown that reciprocity, cooperativeness, and social rewards activate reward processing areas with strong dopaminergic input, such as the ventral striatum. Thus, candidate genes for social behavior are hypothesized to affect dopaminergic neurotransmission. In the present study, we investigated the dopaminergic genetic contribution to social cooperation, especially to social loafing and social facilitation. N = 106 healthy, Caucasian subjects participated in the study and were genotyped for three polymorphisms relevant to the dopaminergic system (COMTval158met, DRD2 c957t, DRD2 rs#2283265). In addition to a main effect indicating an increased performance in teamwork situations, we found a significant interaction between a haplotype block covering both DRD2 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) (rs#6277 and rs#2283265), henceforth referred to as the DRD2-haplotype block, and the COMT val158met polymorphism (rs#4680) with social facilitation. Carriers of the DRD2 CT-haplotype block and at least one Val-allele showed a greater increase in performance in teamwork settings when compared with carriers of the CT-haplotype block and the Met/Met-genotype. Our results suggest that epistasis between COMTval158met and the two DRD2 SNPs contributes to individual differences in cooperativeness in teamwork settings. PMID:21061227

  7. Janus Molecule I: Dichotomous Effects of COMT in Neuropathic vs Nociceptive Pain Modalities

    PubMed Central

    Segall, S.K.; Maixner, W.; Belfer, I.; Wiltshire, T.; Seltzer, Z.; Diatchenko, L.

    2013-01-01

    The enzyme catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) has been shown to play a critical role in pain perception by regulating levels of epinephrine (Epi) and norepinephrine (NE). Although the key contribution of catecholamines to the perception of pain has been recognized for a long time, there is a clear dichotomy of observations. More than a century of research has demonstrated that increasing adrenergic transmission in the spinal cord decreases pain sensitivity in animals. Equally abundant evidence demonstrates the opposite effect of adrenergic signaling in the peripheral nervous system, where adrenergic signaling increases pain sensitivity. Viewing pain processing within spinal and peripheral compartments and determining the directionality of adrenergic signaling helps clarify the seemingly contradictory findings of the pain modulatory properties of adrenergic receptor agonists and antagonists presented in other reviews. Available evidence suggests that adrenergic signaling contributes to pain phenotypes through α 1/2 and β 2/3 receptors. While stimulation of α 2 adrenergic receptors seems to uniformly produce analgesia, stimulation of α 1 or β receptors produces either analgesic or hyperalgesic effects. Establishing the directionality of adrenergic receptor modulation of pain processing, and related COMT activity in different pain models are needed to bring meaning to recent human molecular genetic findings. This will enable the translation of current findings into meaningful clinical applications such as diagnostic markers and novel therapeutic targets for complex human pain conditions. PMID:22483297

  8. [A study of some genes related to serotoninergic and dopaminergic systems and auditory evoked-potentials (P300) in patients with schizophrenia and spectrum disorders and their first-degree relatives].

    PubMed

    Golimbet, V E; Lebedeva, I S; Gritsenko, I K; Korovaĭtseva, G I; Alfimova, M V; Lezheĭko, T V; Abramova, L I; Kaleda, V G; Ebshteĭn, R P; Rogaev, E I

    2005-01-01

    The changes of P300 parameters (lower amplitude and increased latency) are thought to be the most prominent phenomena of schizophrenia. A role of gene polymorphism in P300 generation was supported by several associative studies in psychiatrically well subjects and patients with mental disorders. We studied P300 parameters and the following polymorphisms: T102C for the serotonin receptor type 2A (5-HTR2A) gene, the 5-HTTLPR for the serotonin transporter gene, -809G/A, -616G/C N -52C/T SNPs in the promoter region of the dopamine D4 receptor (DRD4) gene and the Val158Met polymorphism of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) in 74 patients with schizophrenia and spectrum disorders and 71 their first-degree relatives. No association was found between serotonergic system genes and P300. The -809G/A DRD4 gene polymorphism was related to amplitude in all frontal leads (p=0,01) in patients. In relatives, an association was observed between -521C/T DRD4 variants and latency (p=0,005) as well as between the COMT gene polymorphism and P300 amplitude (p=0,004) at the central lead. Thus, the genes involved in dopaminergic system play a role in P300 generation both in patients with schizophrenia and spectrum disorders and their relatives.

  9. The Role of Inherited TPMT and COMT Genetic Variation in Cisplatin-induced Ototoxicity in Children with Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Jun J.; Lim, Joshua Yew-Suang; Huang, Jie; Bass, Johnnie; Wu, Jianrong; Wang, Chong; Fang, Jie; Stewart, Elizabeth; Harstead, Elaine H.; Shuyu, E; Robinson, Giles W.; Evans, William E.; Pappo, Alberto; Zuo, Jian; Relling, Mary V.; Onar-Thomas, Arzu; Gajjar, Amar; Stewart, Clinton F.

    2013-01-01

    Ototoxicity is a debilitating side effect of platinating agents with substantial inter-patient variability. We sought to evaluate the association of TPMT and COMT genetic variations with cisplatin-related hearing damage in the context of frontline pediatric cancer treatment protocols. In 213 children from St. Jude Medulloblastoma-96 and -03 protocols, hearing loss was related to younger age (P=0.013) and craniospinal irradiation (P=0.001), but did not differ by TPMT or COMT variants. Results were similar in an independent cohort of 41 children from solid tumor frontline protocols. Functional hearing loss or hair cell damage was not different in TPMT knockout vs. wildtype mice following cisplatin treatment, and neither TPMT nor COMT variant was associated with cisplatin cytotoxicity in lymphoblastoid cell lines. In conclusion, our results indicated that TPMT or COMT genetic variation was not related to cisplatin ototoxicity in children with cancer and did not influence cisplatin-induced hearing damage in laboratory models. PMID:23820299

  10. Molecular cloning, characterization and expression of the caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) ortholog from kenaf (Hibiscus cannabinus)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We cloned the full-length of the gene putatively encoding caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) from kenaf (Hibiscus cannabinus L.) using degenerate primers and the RACE (rapid amplification of cDNA ends) method. Kenaf is an herbaceous and rapidly growing dicotyledonous plant with great potential ...

  11. Who gets afraid in the MRI-scanner? Neurogenetics of state-anxiety changes during an fMRI experiment.

    PubMed

    Mutschler, Isabella; Wieckhorst, Birgit; Meyer, Andrea H; Schweizer, Tina; Klarhöfer, Markus; Wilhelm, Frank H; Seifritz, Erich; Ball, Tonio

    2014-11-01

    Experiments using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) play a fundamental role in affective neuroscience. When placed in an MR scanner, some volunteers feel safe and relaxed in this situation, while others experience uneasiness and fear. Little is known about the basis and consequences of such inter-individually different responses to the general experimental fMRI setting. In this study emotional stimuli were presented during fMRI and subjects' state-anxiety was assessed at the onset and end of the experiment while they were within the scanner. We show that Val/Val but neither Met/Met nor Val/Met carriers of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val(158)Met polymorphism-a prime candidate for anxiety vulnerability-became significantly more anxious during the fMRI experiment (N=97 females: 24 Val/Val, 51 Val/Met, and 22 Met/Met). Met carriers demonstrated brain responses with increased stability over time in the right parietal cortex and significantly better cognitive performances likely mediated by lower levels of anxiety. Val/Val, Val/Met and Met/Met did not significantly differ in state-anxiety at the beginning of the experiment. The exposure of a control group (N=56 females) to the same experiment outside the scanner did not cause a significant increase in state-anxiety, suggesting that the increase we observe in the fMRI experiment may be specific to the fMRI setting. Our findings reveal that genetics may play an important role in shaping inter-individual different emotional, cognitive and neuronal responses during fMRI experiments.

  12. MET expression during prostate cancer progression

    PubMed Central

    Verhoef, Esther I.; van der Steen, Berdine; Hoogland, A. Marije; Sleddens, Hein F.B.M.; Looijenga, Leendert H.J.; van Leenders, Geert J.L.H.

    2016-01-01

    Tyrosine-kinase inhibitors of the hepatocyte growth factor receptor MET are under investigation for the treatment of hormone-refractory prostate cancer (HRPC) metastasis. Analysis of MET protein expression and genetic alterations might contribute to therapeutic stratification of prostate cancer patients. Our objective was to investigate MET on protein, DNA and RNA level in clinical prostate cancer at various stages of progression. Expression of MET was analyzed in hormone-naive primary prostate cancers (N=481), lymph node (N=40) and bone (N=8) metastases, as well as HRPC (N=54) and bone metastases (N=15). MET protein expression was analyzed by immunohistochemistry (D1C2 C-terminal antibody). MET mRNA levels and MET DNA copy numbers were determined by in situ hybridization. None of the hormone-naive primary prostate cancer or lymph node metastases demonstrated MET protein or mRNA expression. In contrast, MET protein was expressed in 12/52 (23%) evaluable HRPC resections. RNA in situ demonstrated cytoplasmic signals in 14/54 (26%) of the HRPC patients, and was associated with MET protein expression (p=0.025, χ2), in absence of MET amplification or polysomy. MET protein expression was present in 7/8 (88%) hormone-naive and 10/15 (67%) HRPC bone metastases, without association of HRPC (p=0.37; χ2), with MET polysomy in 8/13 (61%) evaluable cases. In conclusion, MET was almost exclusively expressed in HRPC and prostate cancer bone metastasis, but was not related to MET amplification or polysomy. Evaluation of MET status could be relevant for therapeutic stratification of late stage prostate cancer. PMID:27105539

  13. Association Between Polymorphisms of DRD2, COMT, DBH, and MAO-A Genes and Migraine Susceptibility: A Meta-Analysis.

    PubMed

    Chen, Hu; Ji, Chun-Xue; Zhao, Lian-Li; Kong, Xiang-Jun; Zeng, Xian-Tao

    2015-11-01

    Some epidemiological studies have investigated the relationship between genetic polymorphisms of DRD2, COMT, DBH, and MAO-A and migraine susceptibility, but the results are still inconsistent. Thus, our aim was to further assess the association through a meta-analysis.We examined 5 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in 4 genes, including DRD2 rs1799732 and rs6275, DBH rs7239728, MAI-A-VNTR, and COMT rs4680, and performed a meta-analysis of 11 published case-control studies including 3138 cases and 4126 controls. Odd ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs) were used to evaluate the association between the 5 genetic polymorphisms and migraine susceptibility.There was no significant relationship between migraine susceptibility and 4 genetic polymorphisms of DRD2 rs1799732 and rs6275, DBH rs7239728, and MAO-A-VNTR. Nevertheless, decreased risk of migraine was observed to be in association with COMT rs4680 polymorphism in overall analysis (AA vs. GG + GA: OR = 0.76, 95% CI = 0.60-0.97, PHet > 0.642, I = 0), and in Caucasian group after subgroup analysis (AA vs. GG + GA: OR = 0.75, 95% CI = 0.58-0.96, PHet > 0.433, I = 0).Studied polymorphisms of DRD2, DBH, and MAO-A genes may not be associated with migraine susceptibility. However, COMT rs4680 polymorphism may decrease the risk of migraine, especially in Caucasians. The failure to evaluate environmental influence and provide adjusted effect size estimates highlights the need for additional studies in a large number to take these factors into consideration, thus better elucidating the role of the genes tested in migraine. PMID:26632697

  14. Association study of two steroid biosynthesis genes (COMT and CYP17) with Alzheimer's disease in the Italian population.

    PubMed

    Corbo, Rosa Maria; Gambina, Giuseppe; Broggio, Elisabetta; Scarabino, Daniela; Scacchi, Renato

    2014-09-15

    The greater predisposition of women to Alzheimer's disease (AD), owing to the decrease in postmenopausal estrogen, may be influenced by polymorphic variation in genes regulating estrogen metabolism (e.g., COMT) and estrogen biosynthesis (e.g., CYP17). In order to better understand how the estrogen pathway genetic variation might affect AD onset, we conducted a case-control study of two single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) of these two genes (COMT rs4680 and CYP17 rs743572) in a sample of AD patients of Italian origin. The COMT allele and genotype were found associated neither with AD onset nor with parameters of AD severity, such as cognitive impairment, age at onset, or disease duration. In contrast, CYP17 was found to affect the age at disease onset mainly in males and, as compared with noncarriers, people carrying the A2 (C) allele had a 2.2-fold increased risk for AD. These findings suggest that the CYP17 A2 allele influences AD susceptibility in a sex-specific way by acting not only on AD risk but also on the age at disease onset, an important parameter of AD severity.

  15. Polymorphisms of Serotonin Receptor 2A and 2C Genes and COMT in Relation to Obesity and Type 2 Diabetes

    PubMed Central

    Kring, Sofia I. I.; Werge, Thomas; Holst, Claus; Toubro, Søren; Astrup, Arne; Hansen, Torben; Pedersen, Oluf; Sørensen, Thorkild I. A.

    2009-01-01

    Background Candidate genes of psychological importance include 5HT2A, 5HT2C, and COMT, implicated in the serotonin, noradrenaline and dopamine pathways, which also may be involved in regulation of energy balance. We investigated the associations of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) of these genes with obesity and metabolic traits. Methodology/Principal Findings In a population of 166 200 young men examined at the draft boards, obese men (n = 726, BMI≥31.0 kg/m2) and a randomly selected group (n = 831) were re-examined at two surveys at mean ages 46 and 49 years (S-46, S-49). Anthropometric, physiological and biochemical measures were available. Logistic regression analyses were used to assess age-adjusted odds ratios. No significant associations were observed of 5HT2A rs6311, 5HT2C rs3813929 and COMT rs4680 with obesity, except that COMT rs4680 GG-genotype was associated with fat-BMI (OR = 1.08, CI = 1.01–1.16). The SNPs were associated with a number of physiological variables; most importantly 5HT2C rs3813929 T-allele was associated with glucose (OR = 4.56, CI = 1.13–18.4) and acute insulin response (OR = 0.65, CI = 0.44–0.94) in S-49. COMT rs4680 GG-genotype was associated with glucose (OR = 1.04, CI = 1.00–1.09). Except for an association between 5HT2A rs6311 and total-cholesterol at both surveys, significant in S-46 (OR = 2.66, CI = 1.11–6.40), no significant associations were observed for the other phenotypes. Significant associations were obtained when combined genotype of 5HT2C rs3813929 and COMT rs4680 were examined in relation to BMI (OR = 1.12, CI = 1.03–1.21), fat-BMI (OR = 1.22, CI = 1.08–1.38), waist (OR = 1.13, CI = 1.04–1.22), and cholesterol (OR = 5.60, CI = 0.99–31.4). Analyses of impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) and type 2 diabetes (T2D) revealed, a 12.3% increased frequency of 5HT2C rs3813929 T-allele and an 11.6% increased frequency of COMT

  16. Acute antidepressant response to sleep deprivation combined with light therapy is influenced by the catechol-O-methyltransferase Val(108/158)Met polymorphism.

    PubMed

    Benedetti, Francesco; Barbini, Barbara; Bernasconi, Alessandro; Fulgosi, Mara Cigala; Dallaspezia, Sara; Gavinelli, Chiara; Locatelli, Clara; Lorenzi, Cristina; Pirovano, Adele; Radaelli, Daniele; Smeraldi, Enrico; Colombo, Cristina

    2010-02-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) inactivates norepinephrine and dopamine via methyl conjugation, and a G-A transition in the COMT gene (rs4680) influences the enzyme activity. It is a current area of debate whether rs4680 can influence antidepressant response in major depressive disorder, and whether this influence extends to bipolar depression. Chronotherapeutic interventions, such as sleep deprivation and light therapy, are multi-target in nature and are effective in bipolar depression. Here we studied the effect of rs4680 on response to sleep deprivation combined with light therapy (36 h awake followed by a night of undisturbed sleep, with 10,000 lx light administered for 30 min during the night awake and upon awakening) in 87 bipolar depressed inpatients. Patients who were homozygotic for the Val/Val variant showed a significantly less efficient antidepressant effect after the night awake than those who were heterozygotic and homozygotic for the Met variant. This effect of rs4680 is similar to its observed influence on response to serotonergic and noradrenergic drug treatments in major depressive disorder. This is the first study reporting an influence of rs4680 on antidepressant response in bipolar depression. This finding supports the hypothesis of a major role for catecholamines in the mechanism of action of chronotherapeutics, and for rs4680 in modulating this effect.

  17. Interactive effects of age and multi-gene profile on motor learning and sensorimotor adaptation.

    PubMed

    Noohi, Fatemeh; Boyden, Nate B; Kwak, Youngbin; Humfleet, Jennifer; Müller, Martijn L T M; Bohnen, Nicolaas I; Seidler, Rachael D

    2016-04-01

    The interactive association of age and dopaminergic polymorphisms on cognitive function has been studied extensively. However, there is limited research on whether age interacts with the association between genetic polymorphisms and motor learning. We examined a group of young and older adults' performance in three motor tasks: explicit sequence learning, visuomotor adaptation, and grooved pegboard. We assessed whether individuals' motor learning and performance were associated with their age and genotypes. We selected three genetic polymorphisms: Catechol-O-Methyl Transferase (COMT val158met) and Dopamine D2 Receptor (DRD2 G>T), which are involved with dopaminergic regulation, and Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF val66met) that modulates neuroplasticity and has been shown to interact with dopaminergic genes. Although the underlying mechanisms of the function of these three genotypes are different, the high performance alleles of each have been linked to better learning and performance. We created a composite polygene score based on the Number of High Performance Alleles (NHPA) that each individual carried. We found several associations between genetic profile, motor performance, and sensorimotor adaptation. More importantly, we found that this association varies with age, task type, and engagement of implicit versus explicit learning processes. PMID:26926580

  18. Genetic variants in TPMT and COMT are associated with hearing loss in children receiving cisplatin chemotherapy.

    PubMed

    Ross, Colin J D; Katzov-Eckert, Hagit; Dubé, Marie-Pierre; Brooks, Beth; Rassekh, S Rod; Barhdadi, Amina; Feroz-Zada, Yassamin; Visscher, Henk; Brown, Andrew M K; Rieder, Michael J; Rogers, Paul C; Phillips, Michael S; Carleton, Bruce C; Hayden, Michael R

    2009-12-01

    Cisplatin is a widely used and effective chemotherapeutic agent, although its use is restricted by the high incidence of irreversible ototoxicity associated with it. In children, cisplatin ototoxicity is a serious and pervasive problem, affecting more than 60% of those receiving cisplatin and compromising language and cognitive development. Candidate gene studies have previously reported associations of cisplatin ototoxicity with genetic variants in the genes encoding glutathione S-transferases and megalin. We report association analyses for 220 drug-metabolism genes in genetic susceptibility to cisplatin-induced hearing loss in children. We genotyped 1,949 SNPs in these candidate genes in an initial cohort of 54 children treated in pediatric oncology units, with replication in a second cohort of 112 children recruited through a national surveillance network for adverse drug reactions in Canada. We identified genetic variants in TPMT (rs12201199, P value = 0.00022, OR = 17.0, 95% CI 2.3-125.9) and COMT (rs9332377, P value = 0.00018, OR = 5.5, 95% CI 1.9-15.9) associated with cisplatin-induced hearing loss in children.

  19. 75 FR 1007 - MetLife, Inc. and MetLife Capital Trust V; Notice of Application

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-01-07

    ... COMMISSION MetLife, Inc. and MetLife Capital Trust V; Notice of Application December 30, 2009. AGENCY.... Summary of Application: MetLife Capital Trust V (the ``Trust'') and MetLife, Inc. (``MetLife'') request an... and pursuant to a Declaration of Trust that MetLife signed as sponsor. As sponsor, MetLife...

  20. Clinical significance of MET in gastric cancer

    PubMed Central

    Inokuchi, Mikito; Otsuki, Sho; Fujimori, Yoshitaka; Sato, Yuya; Nakagawa, Masatoshi; Kojima, Kazuyuki

    2015-01-01

    Chemotherapy has become the global standard treatment for patients with metastatic or unresectable gastric cancer (GC), although outcomes remain unfavorable. Many molecular-targeted therapies inhibiting signaling pathways of various tyrosine kinase receptors have been developed, and monoclonal antibodies targeting human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 or vascular endothelial growth factor receptor 2 have become standard therapy for GC. Hepatocyte growth factor and its receptor, c-MET (MET), play key roles in tumor growth through activated signaling pathways from receptor in GC cells. Genomic amplification of MET leads to the aberrant activation found in GC tumors and is related to survival in patients with GC. This review discusses the clinical significance of MET in GC and examines MET as a potential therapeutic target in patients with GC. Preclinical studies in animal models have shown that MET antibodies or small-molecule MET inhibitors suppress tumor-cell proliferation and tumor progression in MET-amplified GC cells. These drugs are now being evaluated in clinical trials as treatments for metastatic or unresectable GC. PMID:26600931

  1. Allelic variation of the COMT gene in a despotic primate society: A haplotype is related to cortisol excretion in Macaca fuscata.

    PubMed

    Pflüger, Lena S; Gutleb, Daria R; Hofer, Martin; Fieder, Martin; Wallner, Bernard; Steinborn, Ralf

    2016-02-01

    Sequence variations in genes of the monoamine neurotransmitter system and their common function in human and non-human primate species are an ongoing issue of investigation. However, the COMT gene, coding for the catechol-O-methyltransferase, has not yet attracted much scientific attention regarding its functional role in non-human primates. Considering that a polymorphism of the human COMT gene affects the enzyme activity and cortisol level in response to a social stressor, this study investigated the impact of COMT on endocrine stress and behavioural parameters in Japanese macaques (Macaca fuscata). The species exemplifies a despotic hierarchy in which males' social rank positions require an adaptation of behaviour strategies. During the mating period steroid secretion and the frequency of aggressive encounters between males increase. We addressed i) whether this species exhibits potential functional COMT variants, ii) whether these variants are associated with faecal cortisol excretion of males, iii) how they are distributed among different social rank positions and iv) whether they are associated with behavioural strategies during times of mate competition. By genotyping 26 males we identified three COMT haplotypes (HT), including a putative splice mutant (HT3). This variant was associated with increased cortisol excretion. Given the observed inverse correlation between cortisol and physical aggression, we assume that different COMT haplotypes may predispose individuals to pursue more or less aggressive strategies. How these gene-stress effects might favour a specific social role is discussed. Our study of non-invasive genotyping in combination with behavioural and endocrine parameters represents an important step towards the understanding of gene-stress effects in a hierarchically organised primate society.

  2. Effect of Catechol-O-methyltransferase-gene (COMT) Variants on Experimental and Acute Postoperative Pain in 1,000 Women undergoing Surgery for Breast Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Kambur, Oleg; Kaunisto, Mari A.; Tikkanen, Emmi; Leal, Suzanne M.; Ripatti, Samuli; Kalso, Eija A.

    2016-01-01

    Background Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) metabolizes catecholamines in different tissues. Polymorphisms in COMT gene can attenuate COMT activity and increase sensitivity to pain. Human studies exploring the effect of COMT polymorphisms on pain sensitivity have mostly included small, heterogeneous samples and have ignored several important single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). This study examines the effect of COMT polymorphisms on experimental and postoperative pain phenotypes in a large ethnically homogeneous female patient cohort. Methods Intensity of cold (+2–4°C) and heat (+48°C) pain and tolerance to cold pain were assessed in 1,000 patients scheduled for breast cancer surgery. Acute postoperative pain and oxycodone requirements were recorded. Twenty-two COMT SNPs were genotyped and their association with six pain phenotypes analyzed with linear regression. Results There was no association between any of the tested pain phenotypes and SNP rs4680. The strongest association signals were seen between rs165774 and heat pain intensity as well as rs887200 and cold pain intensity. In both cases, minor allele carriers reported less pain. Neither of these results remained significant after strict multiple testing corrections. When analyzed further, the effect of rs887200 was, however, shown to be significant and consistent throughout the cold pressure test. No evidence of association between the SNPs and postoperative oxycodone consumption was found. Conclusions SNPs rs887200 and rs165774 located in the untranslated regions of the gene had the strongest effects on pain sensitivity. Their effect on pain is described here for the first time. These results should be confirmed in further studies and the potential functional mechanisms of the variants studied. PMID:24343288

  3. Time-Resolved Influences of Functional DAT1 and COMT Variants on Visual Perception and Post-Processing

    PubMed Central

    Bender, Stephan; Rellum, Thomas; Freitag, Christine; Resch, Franz; Rietschel, Marcella; Treutlein, Jens; Jennen-Steinmetz, Christine; Brandeis, Daniel; Banaschewski, Tobias; Laucht, Manfred

    2012-01-01

    Background Dopamine plays an important role in orienting and the regulation of selective attention to relevant stimulus characteristics. Thus, we examined the influences of functional variants related to dopamine inactivation in the dopamine transporter (DAT1) and catechol-O-methyltransferase genes (COMT) on the time-course of visual processing in a contingent negative variation (CNV) task. Methods 64-channel EEG recordings were obtained from 195 healthy adolescents of a community-based sample during a continuous performance task (A-X version). Early and late CNV as well as preceding visual evoked potential components were assessed. Results Significant additive main effects of DAT1 and COMT on the occipito-temporal early CNV were observed. In addition, there was a trend towards an interaction between the two polymorphisms. Source analysis showed early CNV generators in the ventral visual stream and in frontal regions. There was a strong negative correlation between occipito-temporal visual post-processing and the frontal early CNV component. The early CNV time interval 500–1000 ms after the visual cue was specifically affected while the preceding visual perception stages were not influenced. Conclusions Late visual potentials allow the genomic imaging of dopamine inactivation effects on visual post-processing. The same specific time-interval has been found to be affected by DAT1 and COMT during motor post-processing but not motor preparation. We propose the hypothesis that similar dopaminergic mechanisms modulate working memory encoding in both the visual and motor and perhaps other systems. PMID:22844499

  4. Met1-linked ubiquitination in immune signalling

    PubMed Central

    Fiil, Berthe K; Gyrd-Hansen, Mads

    2014-01-01

    N-terminal methionine-linked ubiquitin (Met1-Ub), or linear ubiquitin, has emerged as a central post-translational modification in innate immune signalling. The molecular machinery that assembles, senses and, more recently, disassembles Met1-Ub has been identified, and technical advances have enabled the identification of physiological substrates for Met1-Ub in response to activation of innate immune receptors. These discoveries have significantly advanced our understanding of how nondegradative ubiquitin modifications control proinflammatory responses mediated by nuclear factor-κB and mitogen-activated protein kinases. In this review, we discuss the current data on Met1-Ub function and regulation, and point to some of the questions that still remain unanswered. PMID:25060092

  5. Mars MetNet Mission Status

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harri, A.-M.; Aleksashkin, S.; Arruego, I.; Schmidt, W.; Genzer, M.; Vazquez, L.; Haukka, H.; Palin, M.; Nikkanen, T.

    2015-10-01

    New kind of planetary exploration mission for Mars is under development in collaboration between the Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI), Lavochkin Association (LA), Space Research Institute (IKI) and Institutio Nacional de Tecnica Aerospacial (INTA). The Mars MetNet mission is based on a new semihard landing vehicle called MetNet Lander (MNL). The scientific payload of the Mars MetNet Precursor [1] mission is divided into three categories: Atmospheric instruments, Optical devices and Composition and structure devices. Each of the payload instruments will provide significant insights in to the Martian atmospheric behavior. The key technologies of the MetNet Lander have been qualified and the electrical qualification model (EQM) of the payload bay has been built and successfully tested.

  6. Playing nice: a multi-methodological study on the effects of social conformity on memory

    PubMed Central

    Deuker, Lorena; Müller, Anna R.; Montag, Christian; Markett, Sebastian; Reuter, Martin; Fell, Juergen; Trautner, Peter; Axmacher, Nikolai

    2013-01-01

    Conformity is an important aspect of social behavior. Two main motives have been identified: people may adapt their behavior to “play nice” despite knowing better (normative conformity) or they may accept the others' opinion as a valid source of information (informative conformity). Neuroimaging studies can help to distinguish between these two possibilities. Here, we present a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study on memory conformity in a real group situation. We investigated the effects of group pressure on activity in hippocampus and anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) which likely support informative and normative memory conformity, respectively. Furthermore, we related the single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) rs4680 [called Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met] on the gene coding for COMT to both behavior and fMRI activation. Homozygous Met-allele carriers (Val−) behaved more conformist than carriers of at least one Val-allele (Val+). In the neuroimaging data, we compared trials in which subjects were confronted with a majority of incorrect group responses to trials in which they were confronted with a majority of correct group responses. We found increased hippocampal activity when the majority of the group was correct, possibly indicating retrieval processes. Moreover, we observed enhanced activity in the ACC when the majority of the group was incorrect, suggesting that conformity was mostly normative. Most interestingly, this latter effect was more pronounced for Val− as compared to Val+ participants. This offers a speculative explanation for the higher behavioral levels of social conformity in Val− allele carriers, because their subjectively perceived conflict in the presence of an incorrect group majority may have been higher. Overall, this study demonstrates how the mechanisms leading to complex social behavior such as conformity can be studied by combining genetic analyses and fMRI in social neuroscience paradigms. PMID

  7. Playing nice: a multi-methodological study on the effects of social conformity on memory.

    PubMed

    Deuker, Lorena; Müller, Anna R; Montag, Christian; Markett, Sebastian; Reuter, Martin; Fell, Juergen; Trautner, Peter; Axmacher, Nikolai

    2013-01-01

    Conformity is an important aspect of social behavior. Two main motives have been identified: people may adapt their behavior to "play nice" despite knowing better (normative conformity) or they may accept the others' opinion as a valid source of information (informative conformity). Neuroimaging studies can help to distinguish between these two possibilities. Here, we present a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study on memory conformity in a real group situation. We investigated the effects of group pressure on activity in hippocampus and anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) which likely support informative and normative memory conformity, respectively. Furthermore, we related the single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) rs4680 [called Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met] on the gene coding for COMT to both behavior and fMRI activation. Homozygous Met-allele carriers (Val-) behaved more conformist than carriers of at least one Val-allele (Val+). In the neuroimaging data, we compared trials in which subjects were confronted with a majority of incorrect group responses to trials in which they were confronted with a majority of correct group responses. We found increased hippocampal activity when the majority of the group was correct, possibly indicating retrieval processes. Moreover, we observed enhanced activity in the ACC when the majority of the group was incorrect, suggesting that conformity was mostly normative. Most interestingly, this latter effect was more pronounced for Val- as compared to Val+ participants. This offers a speculative explanation for the higher behavioral levels of social conformity in Val- allele carriers, because their subjectively perceived conflict in the presence of an incorrect group majority may have been higher. Overall, this study demonstrates how the mechanisms leading to complex social behavior such as conformity can be studied by combining genetic analyses and fMRI in social neuroscience paradigms.

  8. Overlapping Dopaminergic Pathway Genetic Susceptibility for Heroin and Cocaine Addictions in African Americans

    PubMed Central

    Levran, Orna; Randesi, Matthew; da Rosa, Joel Correa; Ott, Jurg; Rotrosen, John; Adelson, Miriam; Kreek, Mary Jeanne

    2015-01-01

    Summary Drugs of abuse activate the mesolimbic dopaminergic pathway. Genetic variations in the dopaminergic system may contribute to vulnerability to drug addiction. Several processes are shared between cocaine and heroin addictions but some neurobiological mechanisms and environmental influence may be specific. This study examined the association of 98 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in 13 dopamine pathway-related genes with heroin and/or cocaine addiction in a sample of 801 African Americans (315 subjects with heroin addiction (OD), with or without cocaine (CD) or alcohol addiction (AD), 279 subjects with CD, with or without AD, and 207 controls). Single-marker analyses provided nominally significant evidence for associations of 24 SNPs in DRD1, ANKK1/DRD2, DRD3, DRD5, DBH, DDC, COMT and CSNK1E with OD and/or CD. A DRD2 7-SNPs haplotype block that includes SNPs rs1075650 and rs2283265, which were shown to alter D2S/D2L splicing, was indicated in both addictions. The Met allele of the COMT Val158Met functional variant was associated with protection from OD. None of the signals remained significant after correction for multiple testing. The study results are in accordance with the results of several previous studies, including our report of association of DRD1 SNP rs5326 with OD in a smaller sample from this cohort. The findings suggest the presence of an overlap in the genetic liability for heroin and cocaine addictions, as well as shared and distinct liability for OD in subjects of African and European descent. PMID:25875614

  9. Perceived stress during pregnancy and the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) rs165599 polymorphism impacts on childhood IQ.

    PubMed

    Lamb, Yvette N; Thompson, John M D; Murphy, Rinki; Wall, Clare; Kirk, Ian J; Morgan, Angharad R; Ferguson, Lynnette R; Mitchell, Edwin A; Waldie, Karen E

    2014-09-01

    Maternal stress during pregnancy has been associated with a range of adverse outcomes in offspring and the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene has been linked to differential susceptibility to the consequences of antenatal stress. This study examined two functional polymorphisms of the COMT gene (rs4680 and rs165599) in relation to maternal perceived stress and childhood cognitive performance. Data from the longitudinal Auckland Birthweight Collaborative (ABC) study was used. Maternal perceived stress over the prior month was measured at birth, 3.5 and 7years. Full-Scale IQ (FSIQ) was measured at ages 7 and 11. At age 11, a total of 546 DNA samples were collected from the child participants. Data were subjected to a series of split-plot ANCOVAs with birthweight for gestational age and maternal school leaving age as covariates. There were direct effects of maternal stress during the last month of pregnancy on offspring FSIQ at ages 7 and 11years. A significant interaction revealed that children exposed to high maternal antenatal stress had significantly lower FSIQ scores at both 7 and 11years of age than those exposed to low stress, only when they were carriers of the rs165599 G allele. At each age, this difference was of approximately 5 IQ points. The G allele of the rs165599 polymorphism may confer genetic susceptibility to negative cognitive outcomes arising from exposure to antenatal stress. This finding highlights the need to consider gene-environment interactions when investigating the outcomes of antenatal stress exposure. PMID:24955500

  10. Mars MetNet Mission Status

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harri, Ari-Matti; Aleksashkin, Sergei; Arruego, Ignacio; Schmidt, Walter; Genzer, Maria; Vazquez, Luis; Haukka, Harri

    2015-04-01

    New kind of planetary exploration mission for Mars is under development in collaboration between the Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI), Lavochkin Association (LA), Space Research Institute (IKI) and Institutio Nacional de Tecnica Aerospacial (INTA). The Mars MetNet mission is based on a new semi-hard landing vehicle called MetNet Lander (MNL). The scientific payload of the Mars MetNet Precursor [1] mission is divided into three categories: Atmospheric instruments, Optical devices and Composition and structure devices. Each of the payload instruments will provide significant insights in to the Martian atmospheric behavior. The key technologies of the MetNet Lander have been qualified and the electrical qualification model (EQM) of the payload bay has been built and successfully tested. 1. MetNet Lander The MetNet landing vehicles are using an inflatable entry and descent system instead of rigid heat shields and parachutes as earlier semi-hard landing devices have used. This way the ratio of the payload mass to the overall mass is optimized. The landing impact will burrow the payload container into the Martian soil providing a more favorable thermal environment for the electronics and a suitable orientation of the telescopic boom with external sensors and the radio link antenna. It is planned to deploy several tens of MNLs on the Martian surface operating at least partly at the same time to allow meteorological network science. 2. Scientific Payload The payload of the two MNL precursor models includes the following instruments: Atmospheric instruments: 1. MetBaro Pressure device 2. MetHumi Humidity device 3. MetTemp Temperature sensors Optical devices: 1. PanCam Panoramic 2. MetSIS Solar irradiance sensor with OWLS optical wireless system for data transfer 3. DS Dust sensor The descent processes dynamic properties are monitored by a special 3-axis accelerometer combined with a 3-axis gyrometer. The data will be sent via auxiliary beacon antenna throughout the

  11. Serotonin Transporter Genotype (5-HTTLPR) and Electrocortical Responses Indicating the Sensitivity to Negative Emotional Cues

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Growing literature indicates that emotional reactivity and regulation are strongly linked to genetic modulation of serotonergic neurotransmission. However, until now, most studies have focused on the relationship between genotypic markers, in particular the serotonin transporter-linked polymorphic region (5-HTTLPR), and neural structures using MRI. The current study aimed to bridge the gap between the relevant MRI literature on the effects of the 5-HTTLPR genotype and the research tradition focusing on transient lateralized changes of electrocortical activity in the prefrontal cortex using electroencephalography (EEG). Lateral shifts of EEG alpha asymmetry in response to an aversive film consisting of scenes of real injury and death were assessed in healthy participants (n = 165). To evaluate the specificity of the 5-HTTLPR effect, participants were also tested for the COMT Val158Met polymorphism which is linked to dopamine inactivation. While viewing the film, individuals homozygous for the 5-HTTLPR short allele displayed a clear lateral shift of dorsolateral frontal activity to the right, which was virtually absent in participants carrying the long allele. The heightened electrocortical response to the aversive stimulation and its direction indicates a greater propensity of s/s homozygotes to experience withdrawal oriented affect in response to negative emotion cues in the environment. Moreover, together with previous research the findings support the notion of a link between the serotonergic system and self-regulation related to avoidance motivation, and a link between the dopaminergic system and self-regulation related to approach motivation. PMID:24040881

  12. Linking unfounded beliefs to genetic dopamine availability

    PubMed Central

    Schmack, Katharina; Rössler, Hannes; Sekutowicz, Maria; Brandl, Eva J.; Müller, Daniel J.; Petrovic, Predrag; Sterzer, Philipp

    2015-01-01

    Unfounded convictions involving beliefs in the paranormal, grandiosity ideas or suspicious thoughts are endorsed at varying degrees among the general population. Here, we investigated the neurobiopsychological basis of the observed inter-individual variability in the propensity toward unfounded beliefs. One hundred two healthy individuals were genotyped for four polymorphisms in the COMT gene (rs6269, rs4633, rs4818, and rs4680, also known as val158met) that define common functional haplotypes with substantial impact on synaptic dopamine degradation, completed a questionnaire measuring unfounded beliefs, and took part in a behavioral experiment assessing perceptual inference. We found that greater dopamine availability was associated with a stronger propensity toward unfounded beliefs, and that this effect was statistically mediated by an enhanced influence of expectations on perceptual inference. Our results indicate that genetic differences in dopaminergic neurotransmission account for inter-individual differences in perceptual inference linked to the formation and maintenance of unfounded beliefs. Thus, dopamine might be critically involved in the processes underlying one's interpretation of the relationship between the self and the world. PMID:26483654

  13. Genetic variation in AKT1 is linked to dopamine-associated prefrontal cortical structure and function in humans

    PubMed Central

    Tan, Hao-Yang; Nicodemus, Kristin K.; Chen, Qiang; Li, Zhen; Brooke, Jennifer K.; Honea, Robyn; Kolachana, Bhaskar S.; Straub, Richard E.; Meyer-Lindenberg, Andreas; Sei, Yoshitasu; Mattay, Venkata S.; Callicott, Joseph H.; Weinberger, Daniel R.

    2008-01-01

    AKT1-dependent molecular pathways control diverse aspects of cellular development and adaptation, including interactions with neuronal dopaminergic signaling. If AKT1 has an impact on dopaminergic signaling, then genetic variation in AKT1 would be associated with brain phenotypes related to cortical dopaminergic function. Here, we provide evidence that a coding variation in AKT1 that affects protein expression in human B lymphoblasts influenced several brain measures related to dopaminergic function. Cognitive performance linked to frontostriatal circuitry, prefrontal physiology during executive function, and frontostriatal gray-matter volume on MRI were altered in subjects with the AKT1 variation. Moreover, on neuroimaging measures with a main effect of the AKT1 genotype, there was significant epistasis with a functional polymorphism (Val158Met) in catechol-O-methyltransferase [COMT], a gene that indexes cortical synaptic dopamine. This genetic interaction was consistent with the putative role of AKT1 in dopaminergic signaling. Supportive of an earlier tentative association of AKT1 with schizophrenia, we also found that this AKT1 variant was associated with risk for schizophrenia. These data implicate AKT1 in modulating human prefrontal-striatal structure and function and suggest that the mechanism of this effect may be coupled to dopaminergic signaling and relevant to the expression of psychosis. PMID:18497887

  14. Mars MetNet Mission Payload Overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haukka, H.; Harri, A.-M.; Alexashkin, S.; Guerrero, H.; Schmidt, W.; Genzer, M.; Vazquez, L.

    2012-04-01

    A new kind of planetary exploration mission for Mars is being developed in collaboration between the Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI), Lavochkin Association (LA), Space Research Institute (IKI) and Institutio Nacional de Tecnica Aerospacial (INTA). The Mars MetNet mission is based on a new semi-hard landing vehicle called MetNet Lander (MNL). The main idea behind the MetNet landing vehicles is to use a state-of-the-art inflatable entry and descent system instead of rigid heat shields and parachutes as earlier semi-hard landing devices have used. This way the ratio of the payload mass to the overall mass is optimized and more mass and volume resources are spared for the science payload. The vehicle decelerates its entry speed using the inflatable structure and final landing sequence includes a cone headed body penetrating the Martian soil. It is planned to deploy several tens of MNLs on the Martian surface operating at least partly at the same time to allow meteorological network science. The payload of the two MNL precursor models includes the following instruments: Atmospheric instruments: - Pressure device (MetBaro): mass 100g, measurement range 0..1015 hPa. - Humidity device (MetHumi): mass 15g, measurement range 0..100%RH. - Temperature sensors (MetTemp): mass 2g each, measurement range -110C..+30C. Optical devices: - Panoramic camera (PanCam): mass 100g, FOV 4 lenses mounted at 90 deg - Solar irradiance sensor (MetSIS) with optical wireless system (OWLS) for data transfer: mass 115g (MetSIS) and 7g (OWLS module), wavelength range 190..1100nm. MetSIS equipped with 28 optical detectors, two temperature sensors and two solar incidence angle detectors. - Dust sensor (DS): mass 42g, resolution: 10 particles / cm3. Composition and structure device: - Magnetometer (MOURA): mass 80g, measurement range: ±30uT. MetNet Mission payload instruments are specially designed to operate in very low power conditions. MNL flexible solar panels provides a total of

  15. Inhibition of human catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT)-mediated O-methylation of catechol estrogens by major polyphenolic components present in coffee.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Bao Ting; Wang, Pan; Nagai, Mime; Wen, Yujing; Bai, Hyoung-Woo

    2009-01-01

    In the present study, we investigated the inhibitory effect of three catechol-containing coffee polyphenols, chlorogenic acid, caffeic acid and caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE), on the O-methylation of 2- and 4-hydroxyestradiol (2-OH-E(2) and 4-OH-E(2), respectively) catalyzed by the cytosolic catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) isolated from human liver and placenta. When human liver COMT was used as the enzyme, chlorogenic acid and caffeic acid each inhibited the O-methylation of 2-OH-E(2) in a concentration-dependent manner, with IC(50) values of 1.3-1.4 and 6.3-12.5 microM, respectively, and they also inhibited the O-methylation of 4-OH-E(2), with IC(50) values of 0.7-0.8 and 1.3-3.1 microM, respectively. Similar inhibition pattern was seen with human placental COMT preparation. CAPE had a comparable effect as caffeic acid for inhibiting the O-methylation of 2-OH-E(2), but it exerted a weaker inhibition of the O-methylation of 4-OH-E(2). Enzyme kinetic analyses showed that chlorogenic acid and caffeic acid inhibited the human liver and placental COMT-mediated O-methylation of catechol estrogens with a mixed mechanism of inhibition (competitive plus noncompetitive). Computational molecular modeling analysis showed that chlorogenic acid and caffeic acid can bind to human soluble COMT at the active site in a similar manner as the catechol estrogen substrates. Moreover, the binding energy values of these two coffee polyphenols are lower than that of catechol estrogens, which means that coffee polyphenols have higher binding affinity for the enzyme than the natural substrates. This computational finding agreed perfectly with our biochemical data.

  16. COMT and DAT1 genes are associated with hyperactivity and inattention traits in the 1993 Pelotas Birth Cohort: evidence of sex-specific combined effect

    PubMed Central

    Akutagava-Martins, Glaucia C.; Salatino-Oliveira, Angelica; Kieling, Christian; Genro, Julia P.; Polanczyk, Guilherme V.; Anselmi, Luciana; Menezes, Ana M.B.; Gonçalves, Helen; Wehrmeister, Fernando C.; Barros, Fernando C.; Callegari-Jacques, Sidia M.; Rohde, Luis A.; Hutz, Mara H.

    2016-01-01

    Background Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) symptoms are dimensionally distributed in the population. This study aimed to assess the role of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) and of the dopamine transporter (DAT1) genes on ADHD symptoms in the general population. Methods We investigated 4101 individuals from the 1993 Pelotas Birth Cohort Study using the parent version of the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) at ages 11 and 15 years. The SDQ hyperactivity/inattention scores were the main outcomes. Results Linear regression analyses demonstrated that the increasing number of COMT158Val and DAT1 10R alleles significantly predicted increasing SDQ hyperactivity/inattention scores in boys at both 11 and 15 years of age (β coefficient = 0.049, t = 2.189, p = 0.029, R2 = 0.012, and β coefficient = 0.064, t = 2.832, p = 0.005, R2 = 0.008, respectively). The presence of both COMT158Val and DAT1 10R alleles was also associated with full categorical ADHD diagnosis at 18 years of age in boys (χ2 = 4.561, p = 0.033, odds ratio 2.473, 95% confidence interval 1.048–5.838) from this cohort. We did not observe these associations in girls. Limitations Our analyses of SDQ hyperactivity/inattention scores were not corrected for SDQ scores of conduct problems because these variables were highly correlated. Conclusion This study demonstrates a role for COMT and DAT1 genes on hyperactivity/inattention symptoms and provides further support for ADHD as the extreme of traits that vary in the population. It also confirms previous evidence for sexual dimorphism on COMT and DAT1 gene expression. PMID:27327562

  17. MetBaro - Pressure Instrument for Mars MetNet Lander

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Polkko, J.; Haukka, H.; Harri, A.-M.; Schmidt, W.; Leinonen, J.; Mäkinen, T.

    2009-04-01

    THE METNET MISSION FOCUSED ON THE Martian atmospheric science is based on a new semihard landing vehicle called the MetNet Lander (MNL). The MNL will have a versatile science payload focused on the atmospheric science of Mars. The scientific payload of the MetNet Mission encompasses separate instrument packages for the atmospheric entry and descent phase and for the surface operation phase. MetBaro is the pressure instrument of MetNet Lander designed to work on Martian surface. It is based on Barocap® technology developed by Vaisala, Inc. MetBaro is a capacitic type of sensing device where capasitor plates are moved by ambient pressure. MetBaro device consists of two pressure transducers including a total of 6 Barocap® sensor heads of high-stability and high-resolution types. The long-term stability of MetBaro is in order of 20…50 µBar and resolution a few µBar. MetBaro is small, lightweighed and has low power consumption. It weighs about 50g without wires and controlling FPGA, and consumes 15 mW of power. A similar device has successfully flown in Phoenix mission, where it performed months of measurements on Martian ground. Another device is also part of the Mars Science Laboratory REMS instrument (to be launched in 2011).

  18. MetHumi - Humidity Instrument for Mars MetNet Lander

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Polkko, J.; Genzer, M.; Harri, A.-M.; Schmidt, W.; Leinonen, J.; Mäkinen, T.

    2009-04-01

    THE METNET MISSION FOCUSED ON THE Martian atmospheric science is based on a new semihard landing vehicle called the MetNet Lander (MNL). The MNL will have a versatile science payload focused on the atmospheric science of Mars. The scientific payload of the MetNet Mission encompasses separate instrument packages for the atmospheric entry and descent phase and for the surface operation phase. MetHumi is the humidity instrument of MetNet Lander designed to work on Martian surface. It is based on Humicap® technology developed by Vaisala, Inc. MetHumi is a capacitic type of sensing device where an active polymer film changes capacitance as function of relative humidity. One MetHumi device package consists of one humidity transducer including three Humicap® sensor heads, an accurate temperature sensor head (Thermocap® by Vaisala, Inc.) and constant reference channels. MetHumi is very small, lightweighed and has low power consumption. It weighs only about 15 g without wires, and consumes 15 mW of power. MetHumi can make meaningful relative humidity measurements in range of 0 - 100%RH down to -70°C ambient temperature, but it survives even -135°C ambient temperature. Similar device is part of the Mars Science Laboratory REMS -instrument (to be launched 2011).

  19. Weldability of AerMet 100

    SciTech Connect

    Kautz, D.D.; Hoffman, D.E.; Westrich, C.N.

    1991-01-01

    Several test welds were made on AerMet 100 alloy. Both electron beam and pulsed Nd:YAG laser beam welding processes were used to make the welds. All welds were satisfactory, with no cracking or porosity noted in weld cross-sections. 2 refs., 6 figs.

  20. Estradiol replacement enhances fear memory formation, impairs extinction and reduces COMT expression levels in the hippocampus of ovariectomized female mice.

    PubMed

    McDermott, Carmel M; Liu, Dan; Ade, Catherine; Schrader, Laura A

    2015-02-01

    Females experience depression, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and anxiety disorders at approximately twice the rate of males, but the mechanisms underlying this difference remain undefined. The effect of sex hormones on neural substrates presents a possible mechanism. We investigated the effect of ovariectomy at two ages, before puberty and in adulthood, and 17β-estradiol (E2) replacement administered chronically in drinking water on anxiety level, fear memory formation, and extinction. Based on previous studies, we hypothesized that estradiol replacement would impair fear memory formation and enhance extinction rate. Females, age 4 weeks and 10 weeks, were divided randomly into 4 groups; sham surgery, OVX, OVX+low E2 (200nM), and OVX+high E2 (1000nM). Chronic treatment with high levels of E2 significantly increased anxiety levels measured in the elevated plus maze. In both age groups, high levels of E2 significantly increased contextual fear memory but had no effect on cued fear memory. In addition, high E2 decreased the rate of extinction in both ages. Finally, catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is important for regulation of catecholamine levels, which play a role in fear memory formation and extinction. COMT expression in the hippocampus was significantly reduced by high E2 replacement, implying increased catecholamine levels in the hippocampus of high E2 mice. These results suggest that estradiol enhanced fear memory formation, and inhibited fear memory extinction, possibly stabilizing the fear memory in female mice. This study has implications for a neurobiological mechanism for PTSD and anxiety disorders. PMID:25555360

  1. Estradiol replacement enhances fear memory formation, impairs extinction and reduces COMT expression levels in the hippocampus of ovariectomized female mice.

    PubMed

    McDermott, Carmel M; Liu, Dan; Ade, Catherine; Schrader, Laura A

    2015-02-01

    Females experience depression, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and anxiety disorders at approximately twice the rate of males, but the mechanisms underlying this difference remain undefined. The effect of sex hormones on neural substrates presents a possible mechanism. We investigated the effect of ovariectomy at two ages, before puberty and in adulthood, and 17β-estradiol (E2) replacement administered chronically in drinking water on anxiety level, fear memory formation, and extinction. Based on previous studies, we hypothesized that estradiol replacement would impair fear memory formation and enhance extinction rate. Females, age 4 weeks and 10 weeks, were divided randomly into 4 groups; sham surgery, OVX, OVX+low E2 (200nM), and OVX+high E2 (1000nM). Chronic treatment with high levels of E2 significantly increased anxiety levels measured in the elevated plus maze. In both age groups, high levels of E2 significantly increased contextual fear memory but had no effect on cued fear memory. In addition, high E2 decreased the rate of extinction in both ages. Finally, catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is important for regulation of catecholamine levels, which play a role in fear memory formation and extinction. COMT expression in the hippocampus was significantly reduced by high E2 replacement, implying increased catecholamine levels in the hippocampus of high E2 mice. These results suggest that estradiol enhanced fear memory formation, and inhibited fear memory extinction, possibly stabilizing the fear memory in female mice. This study has implications for a neurobiological mechanism for PTSD and anxiety disorders.

  2. A family-based investigation of cold pain tolerance.

    PubMed

    Birklein, F; Depmeier, C; Rolke, R; Hansen, C; Rautenstrauss, B; Prawitt, D; Magerl, W

    2008-08-15

    In the present study the question was addressed whether sensitivity to experimental pain stimuli differs between families, which are previously characterized by the degree of cold tolerance (very insensitive or very sensitive) of one family member. A total of 232 healthy medical students were screened for cold pain tolerance employing a cold pressor test. Subsequently 50 of them were investigated in detail under laboratory conditions. The water temperature was 1 degrees C, the maximum time in water 3 min, cold pain was rated on a 101 step numerical rating scale every 10s. Two of the most cold pain sensitive (shortest time in ice water) and insensitive (lowest ratings) students were selected and as many as possible of their family members were recruited. In all of them cold pressor test, pinprick pain threshold, pressure pain threshold, skin temperature, hospital anxiety and depression scale and COMT val158met polymorphism (with the exception of three individuals) were assessed. Analysis (ANOVA) revealed that the cold pressor results of the students predicted the mean ratings (p<0.04) and the time in ice water (p<0.03) of their own families. Furthermore, pinprick pain threshold (p<0.002) and to a lesser extent pressure pain thresholds (p<0.03) were significantly related to cold pain tolerance. The other variables, including the COMT polymorphism, were not related to cold pain tolerance in our study. In conclusion our results suggest that cold pain tolerance may be at least partially inherited. Genetic or environmental factors might explain family clustering of cold pain sensitivity.

  3. Differential effect of age on posterior and anterior hippocampal functional connectivity.

    PubMed

    Damoiseaux, Jessica S; Viviano, Raymond P; Yuan, Peng; Raz, Naftali

    2016-06-01

    Aging is associated with declines in cognitive performance and multiple changes in the brain, including reduced default mode functional connectivity (FC). However, conflicting results have been reported regarding age differences in FC between hippocampal and default mode regions. This discrepancy may stem from the variation in selection of hippocampal regions. We therefore examined the effect of age on resting state FC of anterior and posterior hippocampal regions in an adult life-span sample. Advanced age was associated with lower FC between the posterior hippocampus and three regions: the posterior cingulate cortex, medial prefrontal cortex, and lateral parietal cortex. In addition, age-related reductions of FC between the left and right posterior hippocampus, and bilaterally along the posterior to anterior hippocampal axis were noted. Age differences in medial prefrontal and inter-hemispheric FC significantly differed between anterior and posterior hippocampus. Older age was associated with lower performance in all cognitive domains, but we observed no associations between FC and cognitive performance after controlling for age. We observed a significant effect of gender and a linear effect of COMT val158met polymorphism on hippocampal FC. Females showed higher FC of anterior and posterior hippocampus and medial prefrontal cortex than males, and the dose of val allele was associated with lower posterior hippocampus - posterior cingulate FC, independent of age. Vascular and metabolic factors showed no significant effects on FC. These results suggest differential age-related reduction in the posterior hippocampal FC compared to the anterior hippocampus, and an age-independent effect of gender and COMT on hippocampal FC.

  4. Synthesis of [{sup 18}F]Ro41-0960, a potent COMT inhibitor, for use in vivo mapping with PET

    SciTech Connect

    Ding, Y.S.; Sugano, Y.; Gatley, S.J.

    1995-05-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMPT; EC 2.1.1.6) is one of the two major enzymes which metabolize the catecholamine neurotransmitters. It is distributed throughout the body and brain and is elevated in breast cancer tissue when it plays a role in estrogen metabolism. It is also an important molecular target in the development of drugs to treat Parkinson`s disease (PD). Because COMT regulates the concentration of important neurotransmitter amines such as dopamine, there is speculation that abnormalities in its activity may be associated with neurological, and psychiatric disorders. Ro41-9060(3,4-dihydroxy-5-nitro-2{prime}-fluorobenzophenone) is a potent, fluorine containing COMT inhibitor which has been reported to cross the blood brain barrier. It is structurally similar to Ro40-7592 which is currently undergoing clinical trials in PD. We report the synthesis of [{sup 18}F]Ro41-0960, for investigation for mapping COMT and for studies of COMT drugs. [{sup 18}F]Ro41-0960 was synthesized by the nucleophilic aromatic substitution reaction with NCA [{sup 18}F] fluoride on a protected precursor (prepared via a five-step synthesis) followed by hydrolysis with HBr (synthesis time of 100 min; radiochemical yield of 5-7% (EOB)). Though Ro41-0960 has been reported to cross the blood brain barrier, PET studies in baboon demonstrated that an almost complete absence of the drug from the brain both at tracer doses and with the addition of unlabeled drug (1.5 mg/kg) at all times through a 90 min experimental interval. The plasma to brain ratios of F-18 average about 40:1. However, high uptake was observed in the kidneys and in other organs which are known to have high COMT. Studies in mice showed that at 30 min after injection of tracer, F-18 in kidneys was largely as [{sup 18}F]Ro-41-0960 and that it could be displaced with unlabeled Ro41-0960. These studies provide the first example of a positron emitter labeled COMT radiotracer.

  5. Rebound Effects Caused by Withdrawal of MET Kinase Inhibitor Are Quenched by a MET Therapeutic Antibody.

    PubMed

    Pupo, Emanuela; Ducano, Nadia; Lupo, Barbara; Vigna, Elisa; Avanzato, Daniele; Perera, Timothy; Trusolino, Livio; Lanzetti, Letizia; Comoglio, Paolo M

    2016-09-01

    MET oncogene amplification is emerging as a major mechanism of acquired resistance to EGFR-directed therapy in lung and colorectal cancers. Furthermore, MET amplification predicts responsiveness to MET inhibitors currently in clinical trials. Among the anti-MET drugs available, ATP-competitive small-molecule kinase inhibitors abrogate receptor autophosphorylation and downstream activation of ERK1/2 and AKT, resulting in cell-cycle arrest. However, this antiproliferative effect allows persistence of a pool of cancer cells that are quiescent but alive. Once the inhibition is removed, rebound activation of MET-driven cell proliferative pathways and tumor growth may occur, an adverse event observed frequently in clinical settings after drug discontinuation. Here we show that inhibitor withdrawal prompts receptor phosphorylation to levels higher than those displayed at steady-state and generates a rebound effect pushing quiescent cancer cells back into the cell cycle, both in vitro and in experimental tumor models in vivo Mechanistically, we found that inhibitor treatment blocks MET endocytosis, causing a local increase in the number of receptors at the plasma membrane. Upon inhibitor washout, the receptor is readily rephosphorylated. The initial phosphorylation is not only increased but also prolonged in duration due to downmodulation of a phosphatase-mediated MET-negative feedback loop, which accompanies receptor internalization. Notably, treatment with a MET therapeutic antibody that induces proteolytic cleavage of the receptor at the cell surface substantially prevents this rebound effect, providing a rationale to combine or alternate these mechanistically different types of MET-targeted therapy. Cancer Res; 76(17); 5019-29. ©2016 AACR. PMID:27364553

  6. Smart Polymeric Nanocarriers of Met-enkephalin.

    PubMed

    Szweda, Roza; Trzebicka, Barbara; Dworak, Andrzej; Otulakowski, Lukasz; Kosowski, Dominik; Hertlein, Justyna; Haladjova, Emi; Rangelov, Stanislav; Szweda, Dawid

    2016-08-01

    This study describes a novel approach to polymeric nanocarriers of the therapeutic peptide met-enkephalin based on the aggregation of thermoresponsive polymers. Thermoresponsive bioconjugate poly((di(ethylene glycol) monomethyl ether methacrylate)-ran-(oligo(ethylene glycol) monomethyl ether methacrylate) is synthesized by AGET ATRP using modified met-enkephalin as a macroinitiator. The abrupt heating of bioconjugate water solution leads to the self-assembly of bioconjugate chains and the formation of mesoglobules of controlled sizes. Mesoglobules formed by bioconjugates are stabilized by coating with cross-linked two-layer shell via nucleated radical polymerization of N-isopropylacrylamide using a degradable cross-linker. The targeting peptide RGD, containing the fluorescence marker carboxyfluorescein, is linked to a nanocarrier during the formation of the outer shell layer. In the presence of glutathione, the whole shell is completely degradable and the met-enkephalin conjugate is released. It is anticipated that precisely engineered nanoparticles protecting their cargo will emerge as the next-generation platform for cancer therapy and many other biomedical applications. PMID:27409457

  7. Truncated RAF kinases drive resistance to MET inhibition in MET-addicted cancer cells

    PubMed Central

    Petti, Consalvo; Picco, Gabriele; Martelli, Maria Luisa; Trisolini, Elena; Bucci, Enrico; Perera, Timothy; Isella, Claudio; Medico, Enzo

    2015-01-01

    Constitutively active receptor tyrosine kinases (RTKs) are known oncogenic drivers and provide valuable therapeutic targets in many cancer types. However, clinical efficacy of RTK inhibitors is limited by intrinsic and acquired resistance. To identify genes conferring resistance to inhibition of the MET RTK, we conducted a forward genetics screen in the GTL-16 gastric cancer cell line, carrying MET amplification and exquisitely sensitive to MET inhibition. Cells were transduced with three different retroviral cDNA expression libraries and selected for growth in the presence of the MET inhibitor PHA-665752. Selected cells displayed robust and reproducible enrichment of library-derived cDNAs encoding truncated forms of RAF1 and BRAF proteins, whose silencing reversed the resistant phenotype. Transduction of naïve GTL-16 cells with truncated, but not full length, RAF1 and BRAF conferred in vitro and in vivo resistance to MET inhibitors, which could be reversed by MEK inhibition. Induction of resistance by truncated RAFs was confirmed in other MET-addicted cell lines, and further extended to EGFR-addicted cells. These data show that truncated RAF1 and BRAF proteins, recently described as products of genomic rearrangements in gastric cancer and other malignancies, have the ability to render neoplastic cells resistant to RTK-targeted therapy. PMID:25473895

  8. The seasonal activity and the effect of mechanical bending and wounding on the PtCOMT promoter in Betula pendula Roth.

    PubMed

    Tiimonen, Heidi; Häggman, Hely; Tsai, Chung-Jui; Chiang, Vincent; Aronen, Tuija

    2007-08-01

    In this study, 900-bp (signed as p including nucleotides -1 to -886) and partly deleted (signed as dp including nucleotides -1 to -414) COMT (caffeate/5-hydroxyferulate O-methyltransferase) promoters from Populus tremuloides Michx. were fused to the GUS reporter gene, and the tissue-specific expression patterns of the promoters were determined in Betula pendula Roth along the growing season, and as a response to mechanical bending and wounding. The main activity of the PtCOMTp- and PtCOMTdp-promoters, determined by the histochemical GUS assay, was found in the developing xylem of stems during the 8th-13th week and in the developing xylem of roots in the 13th week of the growing season. The GUS expression patterns did not differ among the xylem cell types. The PtCOMT promoter-induced GUS expression observed in phloem fibres suggests a need for PtCOMT expression and thus syringyl (S) lignin synthesis in fibre lignification. However, the PtCOMTdp-promoter induced GUS expression in stem trichomes, which may contribute to the biosynthesis of phenylpropanoid pathway-derived compounds other than lignin. Finally, a strong GUS expression was induced by the PtCOMT promoters in response to mechanical stem bending but not to wounding. The lack of major differences between the PtCOMTp- and PtCOMTdp-promoters suggests that the deleted promoter sequence (including nucleotides -415 to -886) did not contain a significant regulatory element contributing to the GUS expression in young B. pendula trees.

  9. Determination of Methylated CpG Sites in the Promoter Region of Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) and their Involvement in the Etiology of Tobacco Smoking.

    PubMed

    Xu, Qing; Ma, Jennie Z; Payne, Thomas J; Li, Ming D

    2010-01-01

    We previously reported that catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is significantly associated with nicotine dependence (ND) in humans. In this study, we examined whether there exists any difference in the extent of methylation of CpG dinucleotides in the promoter region of COMT in smokers and non-smokers by analyzing the methylation status of cytosines at 33 CpG sites through direct sequencing of bisulfite-treated DNA (N = 50 per group). The cytosine was methylated at 13 of 33 CpG sites, and two of these sites showed significant differences between smokers and matched non-smoker controls. Specifically, in the -193 CpG site, the degree of methylation was 19.1% in smokers and 13.2% in non-smokers (P < 0.01). This finding was confirmed by methylation-specific PCR using an additional 100 smoker and 100 non-smoker control samples, which showed the degree of methylation to be 22.2% in smokers and 18.3% in non-smokers (P < 0.01). For the -39 CpG site, the degree of methylation was 9.2% in smokers, whereas no methylation was found in non-smoker controls. Together, our findings provide the first molecular explanation at the epigenetic level for the association of ND with methylation of the COMT promoter, implying that methylation plays a role in smoking dependence. PMID:21423427

  10. Action of Halowax 1051 on Enzymes of Phase I (CYP1A1) and Phase II (SULT1A and COMT) Metabolism in the Pig Ovary

    PubMed Central

    Barć, Justyna; Karpeta, Anna; Gregoraszczuk, Ewa Łucja

    2013-01-01

    Polychlorinated naphthalenes (PCNs) are a group of organochlorinated compounds exhibiting dioxin-like properties. Previously published data showed the direct action of PCN-rich Halowax 1051 on ovarian follicular steroidogenesis. Taking into consideration that the observed biological effects of PCNs may be frequently side effects of metabolites generated by their detoxification, the aim of this study was to determine the activity and expression of enzymes involved in phase I (cytochrome P450, family 1 (CYP1A1)) and phase II (sulfotransferase (SULT1A) and catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT)) detoxification metabolism. Cocultures of granulosa and theca interna cells collected from sexually mature pigs were exposed to 1 pg/mL to 10 ng/mL of Halowax 1051 for 1 to 48 hours, after which levels and activities of CYP1A1, SULT1A, and COMT were measured. Dose-dependent increases of CYP1A1 activity and expression were observed. High doses of Halowax 1051 were inhibitory to COMT and SULT1A activity and reduced their protein levels. In conclusion, fast activation of phase I enzymes with simultaneous inhibition of phase II enzymes indicates that the previously observed effect of Halowax 1051 on follicular steroidogenesis may partially result from metabolite action occurring locally in ovarian follicles. PMID:23653643

  11. Phoenix `07 MET Pressure sensor: Instrument

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Polkko, J.; Kahanpää, H.; Harri, A.-M.; Schmidt, W.; Genzer, M.; Mäkelä, M.; Savijarvi, H.; Kauhanen, J.

    2008-09-01

    Abstract The Phoenix '07 Lander landed successfully on the Martian northern polar region 25.5.2008. The mission is part of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA's) Scout program. The seminal questions for the Phoenix mission are: (1) can the Martian arctic support life, (2) what is the history of water at the landing site, and (3) how is the Martian climate affected by polar dynamics. These translate into practical science goals and tasks of characterizing the surface, analyzing samples of the soil and ice, and to observing and monitoring the atmospheric conditions and phenomena. Meteorology experiment (MET) onboard the Phoenix '07 lander will provide the first surface based observations of atmospheric pressure, temperature and wind in the Martian polar region above the polar circle. The MET instrument also includes a lidar for detecting dust and ice particles in the air column above the lander. Pressure observations are crucial for the success of the MET experiment. The Martian atmosphere goes through a large scale atmospheric pressure cycle due to the annual condensation and sublimation of the atmospheric carbon dioxide. Pressure also exhibits short period variations associated with dust storms, tides and other atmospheric events. A series of pressure measurements can hence tell us about the large scale state and dynamics of the atmosphere. The shorter time scale phenomena are also important in contributing to our understanding of mixing and transport of heat, dust and water vapour. The pressure observations are performed by a FMI (Finnish Meteorological Institute) instrument, based on micro machined Barocap capacitic pressure sensor heads manufactured by Vaisala Inc. Similar instruments have been used in several earlier missions (Mars-96, Mars Polar Lander, Beagle-2 and Huygens), Phoenix being the first successful landing on Mars. A similar instrument is included also in the Mars Science Laboratory '09 rover. Pressure sensor technology

  12. Met-enkephalin levels during PTCA-induced myocardial ischemia.

    PubMed

    Parlapiano, C; Borgia, M C; Tonnarini, G; Giancaspro, G; Pizzuto, F; Campana, E; Giovanniello, T; Pantone, P; Vincentelli, G M; Alegiani, F; Negri, M

    2001-07-01

    Met-enkephalin (Met-enk) has been demonstrated to modulate myocardial-ischemia mechanisms via the opioid receptors, but no studies are now available on Met-enk levels in the coronary circulation. In this experience Met-enk levels were evaluated in aortic root and in coronary sinus at baseline (T0), during PTCA induced transient ischemia (T1) and during reperfusion (T2). No significant differences were found at any time. Thus, it appears that there is no Met-enk extraction from the coronary circulation during provoked myocardial ischemia and no Met-enk release from the ischemic heart. PMID:11445249

  13. ARM mobile facility surface meteorology (MET) handbook.

    SciTech Connect

    Ritsche, M. T.; Environmental Science Division

    2006-04-01

    The Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Mobile Facility Surface Meteorology station (MET) uses mainly conventional in situ sensors to obtain 1-min statistics of surface wind speed, wind direction, air temperature, relative humidity (RH), barometric pressure, and rainrate. Additional sensors may be added to or removed from the base set of sensors depending upon the deployment location, climate regime, or programmatic needs. In addition, sensor types may change depending upon the climate regime of the deployment. These changes/additions are noted in Section 3.

  14. The Met-allele of the BDNF Val66Met polymorphism enhances task switching in elderly.

    PubMed

    Gajewski, Patrick D; Hengstler, Jan G; Golka, Klaus; Falkenstein, Michael; Beste, Christian

    2011-12-01

    In this study we examined the relevance of the functional brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) Val66Met polymorphism as a modulator of task-switching performance in healthy elderly by using behavioral and event-related potential (ERP) measures. Task switching was examined in a cue-based and a memory-based paradigm. Val/Val carriers were generally slower, showed enhanced reaction time variability and higher error rates, particularly during memory-based task switching than the Met-allele individuals. On a neurophysiological level these dissociative effects were reflected by variations in the N2 and P3 ERP components. The task switch-related N2 was increased while the P3 was decreased in Met-allele carriers, while the Val/Val genotype group revealed the opposite pattern of results. In cue-based task-switching no behavioral and ERP differences were seen between the genotypes. These data suggest that superior memory-based task-switching performance in elderly Met-allele carriers may emerge due to more efficient response selection processes. The results implicate that under special circumstances the Met-allele renders cognitive processes more efficient than the Val/Val genotype in healthy elderly, corroborating recent findings in young subjects.

  15. Commonly-occurring polymorphisms in the COMT, DRD1 and DRD2 genes influence different aspects of motor sequence learning in humans.

    PubMed

    Baetu, Irina; Burns, Nicholas R; Urry, Kristi; Barbante, Girolamo Giovanni; Pitcher, Julia B

    2015-11-01

    Performing sequences of movements is a ubiquitous skill that involves dopamine transmission. However, it is unclear which components of the dopamine system contribute to which aspects of motor sequence learning. Here we used a genetic approach to investigate the relationship between different components of the dopamine system and specific aspects of sequence learning in humans. In particular, we investigated variations in genes that code for the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) enzyme, the dopamine transporter (DAT) and dopamine D1 and D2 receptors (DRD1 and DRD2). COMT and the DAT regulate dopamine availability in the prefrontal cortex and the striatum, respectively, two key regions recruited during learning, whereas dopamine D1 and D2 receptors are thought to be involved in long-term potentiation and depression, respectively. We show that polymorphisms in the COMT, DRD1 and DRD2 genes differentially affect behavioral performance on a sequence learning task in 161 Caucasian participants. The DRD1 polymorphism predicted the ability to learn new sequences, the DRD2 polymorphism predicted the ability to perform a previously learnt sequence after performing interfering random movements, whereas the COMT polymorphism predicted the ability to switch flexibly between two sequences. We used computer simulations to explore potential mechanisms underlying these effects, which revealed that the DRD1 and DRD2 effects are possibly related to neuroplasticity. Our prediction-error algorithm estimated faster rates of connection strengthening in genotype groups with presumably higher D1 receptor densities, and faster rates of connection weakening in genotype groups with presumably higher D2 receptor densities. Consistent with current dopamine theories, these simulations suggest that D1-mediated neuroplasticity contributes to learning to select appropriate actions, whereas D2-mediated neuroplasticity is involved in learning to inhibit incorrect action plans. However, the

  16. Mars MetNet Precursor Mission Status

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harri, Ari-Matti; Aleksashkin, Sergey; Guerrero, Héctor; Schmidt, Walter; Genzer, Maria; Vazquez, Luis; Haukka, Harri

    2013-04-01

    A new kind of planetary exploration mission for Mars is being developed in collaboration between the Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI), Lavochkin Association (LA), Space Research Institute (IKI) and Institutio Nacional de Tecnica Aerospacial (INTA). The Mars MetNet mission is based on a new semi-hard landing vehicle called MetNet Lander (MNL), using an inflatable entry and descent system instead of rigid heat shields and parachutes as earlier semi-hard landing devices have used. This way the ratio of the payload mass to the overall mass is optimized. The landing impact will burrow the payload container into the Martian soil providing a more favorable thermal environment for the electronics and a suitable orientation of the telescopic boom with external sensors and the radio link antenna. It is planned to deploy several tens of MNLs on the Martian surface operating at least partly at the same time to allow meteorological network science. For the precursor mission (MMPM) intended to verify the landing concept and key technology during a real Mars mission all qualification activities are completed and the payload and system flight model components are being manufactured. The descent processes dynamic properties are monitored by a special 3-axis accelerometer combined with a 3-axis gyrometer. The data will be sent via auxiliary beacon antenna throughout the descent phase starting shortly after separation from the spacecraft. Details of the current MMPM system and payload configuration and their performance parameters will be shown.

  17. Revolutionising landscapes: Hydroelectricity and the heavy industrialisation of society and environment in the Comte de Beauharnois, 1927--1948

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pelletier, Louis-Raphael

    This dissertation analyses the rapid industrialisation of the rural Comte de Beauharnois and the adjacent stretch of the Fleuve Saint-Laurent owing to the construction, between 1929 and 1948, of a gigantic canal for hydroelectricity production and navigation by an electricity corporation called the Beauharnois Light Heat and Power (BLH&P). Using principally the archives of the BLH&P---especially its complaints files and its rich photographic record---this thesis argues that this process exemplifies the finance capitalist reorganisation of the society and ecosystems of the Canadian province of Quebec from the 19th century to the Great Depression. In keeping with recent work in environmental history, the transformation of rural landscapes and a river for heavy industry is described as an important dimension of a revolution in modes of production. More specifically, I argue that, in the case under study, the finance-capitalist reorganisation of Quebec revolved around two central and explicit projects, one social and the other environmental: the grouping of most individuals in an industrial working class without control over the means of production and the reorganisation of rural landscapes into reservoirs of modern energy and industrial natural resources.

  18. Dopamine receptor D2 and catechol-O-methyltransferase gene polymorphisms associated with anorexia nervosa in Chinese Han population: DRD2 and COMT gene polymorphisms were associated with AN.

    PubMed

    Peng, Sufang; Yu, Shunying; Wang, Qian; Kang, Qing; Zhang, Yanxia; Zhang, Ran; Jiang, Wenhui; Qian, Yiping; Zhang, Haiyin; Zhang, Mingdao; Xiao, Zeping; Chen, Jue

    2016-03-11

    Dopamine receptor D2 (DRD2) and catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) are important in dopamine system which is proved to be associated with food-anticipatory behavior, food restriction, reward and motivation. This has made them good candidates for anorexia nervosa (AN). The aim of this work is to explore the roles of DRD2 (rs1800497) and COMT (rs4680, rs4633, rs4818) gene polymorphisms in the susceptibility of AN within the Chinese Han population. We recruited 260AN patients with DSM-IV diagnosis criteria, and 247 unrelated, normal weight controls. DRD2 (rs1800497) and COMT (rs4680, rs4633, rs4818) were genotyped in all subjects. We found rs1800497 and rs4633 were associated with the susceptibility of AN within the Chinese Han sample, and allele C of rs1800497 was a protective factor. There was a gene-gene interaction between rs1800497 of DRD2 gene and rs4633 of COMT gene. We concluded that rs1800497 and rs4633 play important roles in the AN susceptibility with respect to the Chinese Han population. The gene-gene interaction between DRD2 and COMT contributes to the risk of AN. PMID:26808641

  19. NARSTO EPA SS ATLANTA 1999 CHEM PM MET DATA

    Atmospheric Science Data Center

    2014-04-25

    NARSTO EPA SS ATLANTA 1999 CHEM PM MET DATA Note: The negative sign is ... the longitude in the following data files: NARSTO_EPA_SS_ATLANTA_GAS_GAS_DATA_1_KB_V1.csv and NARSTO_EPA_SS_ATLANTA_MET_MET_DATA_1_KB_V1.csv Project Title:  NARSTO ...

  20. Tidal analysis of Met rocket wind data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bedinger, J. F.; Constantinides, E.

    1976-01-01

    A method of analyzing Met Rocket wind data is described. Modern tidal theory and specialized analytical techniques were used to resolve specific tidal modes and prevailing components in observed wind data. A representation of the wind which is continuous in both space and time was formulated. Such a representation allows direct comparison with theory, allows the derivation of other quantities such as temperature and pressure which in turn may be compared with observed values, and allows the formation of a wind model which extends over a broader range of space and time. Significant diurnal tidal modes with wavelengths of 10 and 7 km were present in the data and were resolved by the analytical technique.

  1. Protein synthesis in rabbit reticulocytes. A study of Met-tRNA f Met binding factor(s) and Met-tRNA f Met binding to ribosomes and AUG codon.

    PubMed

    Gupta, N K; Chatterjee, B; Chen, Y C; Majumdar, A

    1975-02-10

    The effects of additions of Mg-2+, ribosomes, and AUG codon on the Met-tRNAf Met-initiation factor-GTP complex were studied using a Millipore filtration method (J. Biol. Chem. 248, 4500 (1973)). Upon addition of increasing concentration of Mg-2+, the Met-tRNAf Met-initiation factor-GTP complex dissociates into free Met-tRNAf Met and initiation factor (GTP), with an infection around 1.5 to 2 mM Mg-2+. The Mg-2+-induced dissociation of Met-tRNAf Met-initiation factor-GTP complex was enhanced at ice bath temperature. At 37 degrees and in the presence of 1.5 to 2mM Mg-2+, the Met-tRNAf Met-initiation factor-GTP complex catalyzes the transfer of Met-tRNAf Met to ribosomes and AUG codon. Ribosome bound Met-tRNAf Met is stable to Mg-2+ and low temperature. A Millipore filtration assay for studies of (35S)Met-tRNAf Met binding to ribosomes and Aug codon has been developed. The assay procedure is carried out in three stages. In Stage I, the Met-tRNAf Met is bound to initiation factor in the presence of GTP, AUG codon (required for Stage II reaction), and 3.7 times 10-5 M aurintricarboxylic acid. The incubation is carried out at 37 degrees for 5 min. In Stage II, ribosomes and Mg-2+ (1.5 to 2mM final concentration) are added and the incubation is continued at 37 degrees for 10 min. In Stage III, more Mg-2+ is added to make the final Mg-2+ concentration of the incubation mixture 5 mM, and the reactions are further incubated at ice bath temperature for 10 min. The reactions are then terminated by addition of excess cold wash buffer and filtered through Millipore filters. Under the standard assay conditions, the radioactivity bound to Millipore filters in the absence of ribosomes and AUG codon is markedly reduced. Addition of ribosomes alone gave a significant increase in the radioactivity bound to Millipore filters. A further 2- to 3-fold stimulation of binding of (35S)Met-tRNAf Met to Millipore filters was observed when both ribosomes and AUG codon were added. The Met

  2. The modified obstetric metabolic equivalent (MET): finding a MET that fits in pregnancy.

    PubMed

    Campbell, C G; Foster, R C; Lanningham-Foster, L M; Smith, K M

    2012-06-01

    The Compendium of Physical Activities (CPA) provides the energy expenditure (EE) for hundreds of daily activities reported in metabolic equivalents (MET). It remains to be determined if the metabolic changes of pregnancy alter the use of the CPA MET (METCPA) in this population. The energy cost of rest, activities of daily living (ADL; typing, folding laundry and sweeping) and treadmill walking [2.0, 2.5, 3.0 mph (0% incline), 3.0 mph (3% incline)] were compared with the METCPA from the 2000 and 2011 CPA in 30 pregnant women (10-14 weeks gestation) using indirect calorimetry (IC). The METCPA for each activity was compared against two measured IC values: METabsolute (3.5 ml O2/kg/min) and METratio (EEactivity/EErest). Means for both comparisons were tested by one-sample t-test. Measured MET correlated with the 2011 METCPA: METabsolute v. METCPA R 2 = 0.906, P < 0.0001; METratio v. METCPA R 2 = 0.861, P < 0.0001. Differences between measured MET values and the 2011 METCPA ranged from 16% underestimation to 48% overestimation. Using the absolute definition, the METCPA significantly overestimated the ADL (P < 0.0005); yet, no significant differences were found between walking at 0% grade and METCPA. Conversely, only folding laundry was significantly different with the ratio definition, whereas walking at a level grade was significantly underestimated (P < 0.0001). Similar observations were found using the 2000 CPA. The use of the METCPA to estimate EE in pregnant women can result in significant over- or underestimation, depending on the activity and the definition of the MET that is used.

  3. Polymorphisms in Phase I and Phase II genes and breast cancer risk and relations to persistent organic pollutant exposure: a case–control study in Inuit women

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background We have previously reported that chemicals belonging to the persistent organic pollutants (POPs) such as perfluorinated compounds (PFAS) and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are risk factors in Breast Cancer (BC) development in Greenlandic Inuit women. The present case–control study aimed to investigate the main effect of polymorphisms in genes involved in xenobiotic metabolism and estrogen biosynthesis, CYP1A1, CYP1B1, COMT and CYP17, CYP19 and the BRCA1 founder mutation in relation to BC risk and to explore possible interactions between the gene polymorphisms and serum POP levels on BC risk in Greenlandic Inuit women. Methods The study population consisted of 31 BC cases and 115 matched controls, with information on serum levels of POPs. Genotyping was conducted for CYP1A1 (Ile462Val; rs1048943), CYP1B1 (Leu432Val; rs1056836), COMT (Val158Met; rs4680), CYP17A1 (A1> A2; rs743572); CYP19A1 (C> T; rs10046) and CYP19A1 ((TTTA)n repeats) polymorphisms and BRCA1 founder mutation using TaqMan allelic discrimination method and polymerase chain reaction based restriction fragment length polymorphism. The χ2 –test was used to compare categorical variables between cases and controls and the odds ratios were estimated by unconditional logistic regression models. Results We found an independent association of CYP1A1 (Val) and CYP17 (A1) with BC risk. Furthermore, an increased BC risk was observed for women with high serum levels of perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and carriers of at least: one CYP1A1 variant Val allele; one variant COMT Met allele; or the common CYP17 A1 allele. No combined effects were seen between PFAS exposure and CYP1B1 and CYP19 polymorphisms. The risk of BC was not found significantly associated with exposure to PCBs and OCPs, regardless of genotype for all investigated SNPs. The frequency of the Greenlandic founder mutation in BRCA1 was as expected higher in cases than in controls. Conclusions The

  4. Absence of tpr-met and expression of c-met in human gastric mucosa and carcinoma.

    PubMed

    Heideman, D A; Snijders, P J; Bloemena, E; Meijer, C J; Offerhaus, G J; Meuwissen, S G; Gerritsen, W R; Craanen, M E

    2001-08-01

    The c-met proto-oncogene, encoding the hepatocyte growth factor receptor, can be activated by various mechanisms. These include, among others, gene amplification with concomitant overexpression and the tpr-met oncogenic rearrangement. In the case of gastric cancer, contradictory results on the presence of the tpr-met oncogenic rearrangement have been published. The current study aimed therefore to assess the prevalence of tpr-met expression in Caucasian gastric adenocarcinomas, to evaluate the importance of this oncogene in their carcinogenesis. In addition, the level of c-met expression was determined, to evaluate the role of this alternative mode of activation of the proto-oncogene. A series of Caucasian gastric adenocarcinomas (n=43) and normal gastric mucosal samples (n=14) was analysed for tpr-met and c-met expression. Expression of tpr-met mRNA in the samples was performed by two reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) assays, with excellent correlation. The specificity of both methods was confirmed by direct sequencing of the PCR products of the MNNG-HOS cell line, which is known to contain the rearrangement. The level of c-met expression was assessed using semi-quantitative RT-PCR assays and immunohistochemistry (IHC). None of the normal gastric mucosal or gastric adenocarcinoma samples expressed tpr-met mRNA, as determined by both RT-PCR assays. Seventy per cent of the adenocarcinomas showed overexpression of c-met, according to elevated c-met mRNA levels, compared with the expression level of normal gastric mucosa. A significant correlation was found between the level of c-met mRNA and protein expression. In conclusion, these results strongly suggest that tpr-met activation does not play a role in Caucasian gastric carcinogenesis, while overexpression of the c-met gene occurs in the majority of Caucasian gastric adenocarcinomas.

  5. An under-met and over-met expectations model of employee reactions to merit raises.

    PubMed

    Schaubroeck, John; Shaw, Jason D; Duffy, Michelle K; Mitra, Atul

    2008-03-01

    The authors developed a model of how raise expectations influence the relationship between merit pay raises and employee reactions and tested it using a sample of hospital employees. Pay-for-performance (PFP) perceptions were consistently related to personal reactions (e.g., pay raise happiness, pay-level satisfaction, and turnover intentions). Merit pay raises were strongly related to reactions only among employees with high raise expectations and high PFP perceptions. The interactive effects of under-met/over-met expectations and PFP perceptions were mediated by the extent to which participants saw the raise as generous and they were happy with the raises they received. The authors discuss the implications of these findings for expectation-fulfillment theories, merit pay research, and the administration of incentives. PMID:18361641

  6. An under-met and over-met expectations model of employee reactions to merit raises.

    PubMed

    Schaubroeck, John; Shaw, Jason D; Duffy, Michelle K; Mitra, Atul

    2008-03-01

    The authors developed a model of how raise expectations influence the relationship between merit pay raises and employee reactions and tested it using a sample of hospital employees. Pay-for-performance (PFP) perceptions were consistently related to personal reactions (e.g., pay raise happiness, pay-level satisfaction, and turnover intentions). Merit pay raises were strongly related to reactions only among employees with high raise expectations and high PFP perceptions. The interactive effects of under-met/over-met expectations and PFP perceptions were mediated by the extent to which participants saw the raise as generous and they were happy with the raises they received. The authors discuss the implications of these findings for expectation-fulfillment theories, merit pay research, and the administration of incentives.

  7. Specific and common genes implicated across major mental disorders: a review of meta-analysis studies.

    PubMed

    Gatt, Justine M; Burton, Karen L O; Williams, Leanne M; Schofield, Peter R

    2015-01-01

    Major efforts have been directed at family-based association and case-control studies to identify the involvement of candidate genes in the major disorders of mental health. What remains unknown is whether candidate genes are associated with multiple disorders via pleiotropic mechanisms, and/or if other genes are specific to susceptibility for individual disorders. Here we undertook a review of genes that have been identified in prior meta-analyses examining specific genes and specific mental disorders that have core disruptions to emotional and cognitive function and contribute most to burden of illness- major depressive disorder (MDD), anxiety disorders (AD, including panic disorder and obsessive compulsive disorder), schizophrenia (SZ) and bipolar disorder (BD) and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). A literature review was conducted up to end-March 2013 which included a total of 1519 meta-analyses across 157 studies reporting multiple genes implicated in one or more of the five disorders studied. A total of 134 genes (206 variants) were identified as significantly associated risk variants for MDD, AD, ADHD, SZ or BD. Null genetic effects were also reported for 195 genes (426 variants). 13 genetic variants were shared in common between two or more disorders (APOE e4, ACE Ins/Del, BDNF Val66Met, COMT Val158Met, DAOA G72/G30 rs3918342, DAT1 40-bp, DRD4 48-bp, SLC6A4 5-HTTLPR, HTR1A C1019G, MTHR C677T, MTHR A1298C, SLC6A4 VNTR and TPH1 218A/C) demonstrating evidence for pleiotrophy. Another 12 meta-analyses of GWAS studies of the same disorders were identified, with no overlap in genetic variants reported. This review highlights the progress that is being made in identifying shared and unique genetic mechanisms that contribute to the risk of developing several major psychiatric disorders, and identifies further steps for progress.

  8. Dopamine and the Creative Mind: Individual Differences in Creativity Are Predicted by Interactions between Dopamine Genes DAT and COMT.

    PubMed

    Zabelina, Darya L; Colzato, Lorenza; Beeman, Mark; Hommel, Bernhard

    2016-01-01

    The dopaminergic (DA) system may be involved in creativity, however results of past studies are mixed. We attempted to clarify this putative relation by considering the mediofrontal and the nigrostriatal DA pathways, uniquely and in combination, and their contribution to two different measures of creativity--an abbreviated version of the Torrance Test of Creative Thinking, assessing divergent thinking, and a real-world creative achievement index. We found that creativity can be predicted from interactions between genetic polymorphisms related to frontal (COMT) and striatal (DAT) DA pathways. Importantly, the Torrance test and the real-world creative achievement index related to different genetic patterns, suggesting that these two measures tap into different aspects of creativity, and depend on distinct, but interacting, DA sub-systems. Specifically, we report that successful performance on the Torrance test is linked with dopaminergic polymorphisms associated with good cognitive flexibility and medium top-down control, or with weak cognitive flexibility and strong top-down control. The latter is particularly true for the originality factor of divergent thinking. High real-world creative achievement, on the other hand, as assessed by the Creative Achievement Questionnaire, is linked with dopaminergic polymorphisms associated with weak cognitive flexibility and weak top-down control. Taken altogether, our findings support the idea that human creativity relies on dopamine, and on the interaction between frontal and striatal dopaminergic pathways in particular. This interaction may help clarify some apparent inconsistencies in the prior literature, especially if the genes and/or creativity measures were analyzed separately.

  9. Dopamine and the Creative Mind: Individual Differences in Creativity Are Predicted by Interactions between Dopamine Genes DAT and COMT

    PubMed Central

    Zabelina, Darya L.; Colzato, Lorenza; Beeman, Mark; Hommel, Bernhard

    2016-01-01

    The dopaminergic (DA) system may be involved in creativity, however results of past studies are mixed. We attempted to clarify this putative relation by considering the mediofrontal and the nigrostriatal DA pathways, uniquely and in combination, and their contribution to two different measures of creativity–an abbreviated version of the Torrance Test of Creative Thinking, assessing divergent thinking, and a real-world creative achievement index. We found that creativity can be predicted from interactions between genetic polymorphisms related to frontal (COMT) and striatal (DAT) DA pathways. Importantly, the Torrance test and the real-world creative achievement index related to different genetic patterns, suggesting that these two measures tap into different aspects of creativity, and depend on distinct, but interacting, DA sub-systems. Specifically, we report that successful performance on the Torrance test is linked with dopaminergic polymorphisms associated with good cognitive flexibility and medium top-down control, or with weak cognitive flexibility and strong top-down control. The latter is particularly true for the originality factor of divergent thinking. High real-world creative achievement, on the other hand, as assessed by the Creative Achievement Questionnaire, is linked with dopaminergic polymorphisms associated with weak cognitive flexibility and weak top-down control. Taken altogether, our findings support the idea that human creativity relies on dopamine, and on the interaction between frontal and striatal dopaminergic pathways in particular. This interaction may help clarify some apparent inconsistencies in the prior literature, especially if the genes and/or creativity measures were analyzed separately. PMID:26783754

  10. Dopamine and the Creative Mind: Individual Differences in Creativity Are Predicted by Interactions between Dopamine Genes DAT and COMT.

    PubMed

    Zabelina, Darya L; Colzato, Lorenza; Beeman, Mark; Hommel, Bernhard

    2016-01-01

    The dopaminergic (DA) system may be involved in creativity, however results of past studies are mixed. We attempted to clarify this putative relation by considering the mediofrontal and the nigrostriatal DA pathways, uniquely and in combination, and their contribution to two different measures of creativity--an abbreviated version of the Torrance Test of Creative Thinking, assessing divergent thinking, and a real-world creative achievement index. We found that creativity can be predicted from interactions between genetic polymorphisms related to frontal (COMT) and striatal (DAT) DA pathways. Importantly, the Torrance test and the real-world creative achievement index related to different genetic patterns, suggesting that these two measures tap into different aspects of creativity, and depend on distinct, but interacting, DA sub-systems. Specifically, we report that successful performance on the Torrance test is linked with dopaminergic polymorphisms associated with good cognitive flexibility and medium top-down control, or with weak cognitive flexibility and strong top-down control. The latter is particularly true for the originality factor of divergent thinking. High real-world creative achievement, on the other hand, as assessed by the Creative Achievement Questionnaire, is linked with dopaminergic polymorphisms associated with weak cognitive flexibility and weak top-down control. Taken altogether, our findings support the idea that human creativity relies on dopamine, and on the interaction between frontal and striatal dopaminergic pathways in particular. This interaction may help clarify some apparent inconsistencies in the prior literature, especially if the genes and/or creativity measures were analyzed separately. PMID:26783754

  11. Estradiol-17β, and its CYP450- and COMT-Derived Metabolites Stimulate Proliferation in Uterine Artery ECs: Role of ER-α vs. ER-β

    PubMed Central

    Jobe, Sheikh O.; Ramadoss, Jayanth; Koch, Jill M.; Jiang, Yizhou; Zheng, Jing; Magness, Ronald R

    2010-01-01

    Estradiol-17β and its metabolites which are sequentially synthesized by cytochrome P450s (CYP450s) and catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) to form 2 and 4-Hydroxyestradiol (2-OHE2 and 4-OHE2) and 2- and 4-Methoxestradiol (2-ME2, and 4-ME2) are elevated during pregnancy. We investigated whether CYP450s and COMT are expressed in uterine artery endothelial cells (UAECs) and if E2β and its metabolites modulate cell proliferation via ER-α and/or ER-β and play roles in physiologic uterine angiogenesis during pregnancy. Cultured ovine UAECs from pregnant (P-UAECs) and nonpregnant (NP-UAECs) ewes were treated with 0.1-100 nmol/L of E2β, 2-OHE2, 4-OHE2, 2-ME2, and 4-ME2. ER-α or ER-β specificity was tested using ICI 182,780, ER-α-specific MPP, ER-β –specific PHTPP antagonists and their respective agonists ER-α-specific PPT and ER-β –specific DPN. Angiogenesis was evaluated using BrdU Proliferation Assay. Utilizing confocal microscopy and Western analyses to determine enzyme location and levels, we observed CYP1A1, CYP1A2, CYP1B1, CYP3A4 and COMT expression in UAECs; however, expressions were similar between NP-UAECs and P-UAECs. E2β, 2-OHE2, 4-OHE2, and 4-ME2 treatments concentration-dependently stimulated proliferation in P-UAECs, but not NP-UAECs; 2-ME2 did not stimulate proliferation in either cell type. Proliferative responses of P-UAECs to E2β were solely mediated by ER-β, whereas responses to E2β metabolites were neither ER-α nor ER-β mediated. We demonstrate an important vascular role for E2β, its CYP450- and COMT-derived metabolites and ER-β in uterine angiogenesis regulation during pregnancy that may be dysfunctional in preeclampsia and other cardiovascular disorders. PMID:20212268

  12. 3D RoboMET Characterization

    SciTech Connect

    Madison, Jonathan D.; Susan, Donald F.; Kilgo, Alice C.

    2015-10-01

    The goal of this project is to generate 3D microstructural data by destructive and non-destructive means and provide accompanying characterization and quantitative analysis of such data. This work is a continuing part of a larger effort to relate material performance variability to microstructural variability. That larger effort is called “Predicting Performance Margins” or PPM. In conjunction with that overarching initiative, the RoboMET.3D™ is a specific asset of Center 1800 and is an automated serialsectioning system for destructive analysis of microstructure, which is called upon to provide direct customer support to 1800 and non-1800 customers. To that end, data collection, 3d reconstruction and analysis of typical and atypical microstructures have been pursued for the purposes of qualitative and quantitative characterization with a goal toward linking microstructural defects and/or microstructural features with mechanical response. Material systems examined in FY15 include precipitation hardened 17-4 steel, laser-welds of 304L stainless steel, thermal spray coatings of 304L and geological samples of sandstone.

  13. MET Inhibition in Clear Cell Renal Cell Carcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Xie, Zuoquan; Lee, Young H.; Boeke, Marta; Jilaveanu, Lucia B.; Liu, Zongzhi; Bottaro, Donald P.; Kluger, Harriet M.; Shuch, Brian

    2016-01-01

    Background: Clear cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC) is the most lethal form of kidney cancer. Small molecule VEGFR inhibitors are widely used but are not curative and various resistance mechanisms such as activation of the MET pathway have been described. Dual MET/VEGFR2 inhibitors have recently shown clinical benefit but limited preclinical data evaluates their effects in ccRCC. Methods: An interrogation of the Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) dataset was performed to evaluate oncogenic alterations in the MET/VEGFR2 pathway. We evaluated the in vitro effects of Cabozantinib, a dual MET/VEGFR2 inhibitor, using a panel of ccRCC cell lines. Drug effects of cell viability and proliferation, migration, cell scatter, anchorage independent growth, and downstream MET/VEGFR2 signaling pathways were assessed. Results: Twelve percent of TCGA cases had possible MET/HGF oncogenic alterations with co-occurrence noted (p<0.001). MET/HGF altered cases had worse overall survival (p=0.044). Cabozantinib was a potent inhibitor of MET and VEGFR2 in vitro in our cell line panel. PI3K, MAPK and mTOR pathways were also suppressed by cabozantinib, however the effects on cell viability in vitro were modest. At nanomolar concentrations of cabozantinib, HGF-stimulated migration, invasion, cellular scattering and soft agar colony formation were inhibited. Conclusions: We provide further preclinical rationale for dual MET/VEGFR2 inhibition in ccRCC. While the MET pathway is implicated in VEGFR resistance, dual inhibitors may have direct anti-tumor effects in a patient subset with evidence of MET pathway involvement. Cabozantinib is a potent dual MET/VEGFR2 inhibitor, significantly inhibits cell migration and invasion in vitro and likely has anti-angiogenic effects similar to other VEGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitors. Future work involving in vivo models will be useful to better define mechanisms of potential anti-tumor activity. PMID:27390595

  14. Salmonella typhimurium metC operator-constitutive mutations.

    PubMed

    Park, Y M; Stauffer, G V

    1989-07-15

    We used an Escherichia coli lac deletion strain lysogenized with a metC-lacZ fusion phage (lambda Clac) to select operator-constitutive mutations in the Salmonella typhimurium metC gene control region. The mutations were located in a region containing 2 tandemly repeated 8 bp palindromes previously proposed to be the MetJ repressor binding site. Lysogens carrying lambda Clac mutant phage exhibit high beta-galactosidase levels that are only partially repressible by methionine. The results suggest that the mutations disrupt the methionine control system mediated by the metJ gene product. PMID:2506106

  15. [Assessment of 10 years of memory consultations in the Franche-Comté: Description and analysis of the RAPID regional database].

    PubMed

    Bereau, M; Sylvestre, G; Mauny, F; Puyraveau, M; Baudier, F; Magnin, E; Berger, E; Vandel, P; Galmiche, J; Chopard, G

    2015-09-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the impact, on a regional scale (Franche-Comté), of 3 National Alzheimer care plans, particularly concerning the development of the offer of care management by clinicians as well as the panel of diagnoses concerned. Data on sociodemographic, neuropsychological and diagnostic characteristics were retrieved from the RAPID regional database between 1st January 2003 and 31st December 2012. These analyses focused exclusively on patients who had an initial consultation (n=12,017) during the same period. The existence of a previously established health network capable of carrying out governmental health plans has produced an effective interface between regional administrative structures responsible for the implementation of these plans and health professionals responsible for carrying out them out. This network study, the use of a battery of tests and a common software database have enabled the development of patient care management throughout the Franche-Comté region. It also showed the diversification of diagnoses mentioned over the past years as well as changes in clinical practices on how to address the issue of cognitive impairment.

  16. Virus-induced silencing of Comt, pAmt and Kas genes results in a reduction of capsaicinoid accumulation in chili pepper fruits.

    PubMed

    del Rosario Abraham-Juárez, Ma; del Carmen Rocha-Granados, Ma; López, Mercedes G; Rivera-Bustamante, Rafael Francisco; Ochoa-Alejo, Neftalí

    2008-02-01

    Capsaicinoids are responsible for the pungent taste of chili pepper fruits of Capsicum species. Capsaicinoids are biosynthesized through both the phenylpropanoid and the branched-fatty acids pathways. Fragments of Comt (encoding a caffeic acid O-methyltransferase), pAmt (a putative aminotransferase), and Kas (a beta-keto-acyl-[acyl-carrier-protein] synthase) genes, that are differentially expressed in placenta tissue of pungent chili pepper, were individually inserted into a Pepper huasteco yellow veins virus (PHYVV)-derived vector to determine, by virus-induced gene silencing, irrespective of whether these genes are involved in the biosynthesis of capsaicinoids. Reduction of the respective mRNA levels as well as the presence of related siRNAs confirmed the silencing of these three genes. Morphological alterations were evident in plants inoculated with PHYVV::Comt and PHYVV::Kas constructs; however, plants inoculated with PHYVV::pAmt showed no evident alterations. On the other hand, fruit setting was normal in all cases. Biochemical analysis of placenta tissues showed that, indeed, independent silencing of all three genes led to a dramatic reduction in capsaicinoid content in the fruits demonstrating the participation of these genes in capsaicinoid biosynthesis. Using this approach it was possible to generate non-pungent chili peppers at high efficiency.

  17. Epistatic interactions involving DRD2, DRD4, and COMT polymorphisms and risk of substance abuse in women with binge-purge eating disturbances.

    PubMed

    Steiger, Howard; Thaler, Lea; Gauvin, Lise; Joober, Ridha; Labbe, Aurelie; Israel, Mimi; Kucer, Audrey

    2016-06-01

    Substance abuse is common in individuals with bulimia-spectrum (binge-purge) eating disturbances, a co-occurrence that has been attributed to shared neurobiological substrates--notably alterations in dopaminergic activity. We examined the implications of variations of selected, dopamine-relevant polymorphisms (DRD2 Taq1A, DRD4 7R, and COMT) for risk of substance abuse in women with binge-purge eating syndromes. We genotyped 183 women (66.1% showing full-threshold BN and 33.9% showing sub-syndromic variants), and assessed lifetime presence of alcohol, cannabis, cocaine, and stimulant abuse or dependence using structured interviews. Tests for main and interaction effects of various allele combinations revealed that individuals who carried high function COMT and low-function DRD4 7R alleles (a combination expected to be associated with higher risk) did indeed show more lifetime substance abuse and, specifically, more cannabis abuse. Our findings suggest that a gene combination that, in theory, codes for low levels of dopaminergic neurotransmission coincides with sensitivity to substance abuse in a sample displaying binge-purge eating-disorder variants. PMID:26950642

  18. Oncogenic activation of the Met receptor tyrosine kinase fusion protein, Tpr-Met, involves exclusion from the endocytic degradative pathway.

    PubMed

    Mak, H H L; Peschard, P; Lin, T; Naujokas, M A; Zuo, D; Park, M

    2007-11-01

    Multiple mechanisms of dysregulation of receptor tyrosine kinases (RTKs) are observed in human cancers. In addition to gain-of-function, loss of negative regulation also contributes to oncogenic activation of RTKs. Negative regulation of many RTKs involves their internalization and degradation in the lysosome, a process regulated through ubiquitination. RTK oncoproteins activated following chromosomal translocation, are no longer transmembrane proteins, and are predicted to escape lysosomal degradation. To test this, we used the Tpr-Met oncogene, generated following chromosomal translocation of the hepatocyte growth factor receptor (Met). Unlike Met, Tpr-Met is localized in the cytoplasm and also lacks the binding site for Cbl ubiquitin ligases. We determined whether subcellular localization of Tpr-Met, and/or loss of its Cbl-binding site, is important for oncogenic activity. Presence of a Cbl-binding site and ubiquitination of cytosolic Tpr-Met oncoproteins does not alter their transforming activity. In contrast, plasma membrane targeting allows Tpr-Met to enter the endocytic pathway, and Tpr-Met transforming activity as well as protein stability are decreased in a Cbl-dependent manner. We show that transformation by Tpr-Met is in part dependent on its ability to escape normal downregulatory mechanisms. This provides a paradigm for many RTK oncoproteins activated following chromosomal translocation.

  19. MET Expression in Primary and Metastatic Clear Cell Renal Cell Carcinoma: Implications of Correlative Biomarker Assessment to MET Pathway Inhibitors

    PubMed Central

    Shuch, Brian; Falbo, Ryan; Parisi, Fabio; Adeniran, Adebowale; Kluger, Yuval; Kluger, Harriet M.; Jilaveanu, Lucia B.

    2015-01-01

    Aims. Inhibitors of the MET pathway hold promise in the treatment for metastatic kidney cancer. Assessment of predictive biomarkers may be necessary for appropriate patient selection. Understanding MET expression in metastases and the correlation to the primary site is important, as distant tissue is not always available. Methods and Results. MET immunofluorescence was performed using automated quantitative analysis and a tissue microarray containing matched nephrectomy and distant metastatic sites from 34 patients with clear cell renal cell carcinoma. Correlations between MET expressions in matched primary and metastatic sites and the extent of heterogeneity were calculated. The mean expression of MET was not significantly different between primary tumors when compared to metastases (P = 0.1). MET expression weakly correlated between primary and matched metastatic sites (R = 0.5) and a number of cases exhibited very high levels of discordance between these tumors. Heterogeneity within nephrectomy specimens compared to the paired metastatic tissues was not significantly different (P = 0.39). Conclusions. We found that MET expression is not significantly different in primary tumors than metastatic sites and only weakly correlates between matched sites. Moderate concordance of MET expression and significant expression heterogeneity may be a barrier to the development of predictive biomarkers using MET targeting agents. PMID:26448928

  20. Solving CASMI 2013 with MetFrag, MetFusion and MOLGEN-MS/MS.

    PubMed

    Schymanski, Emma L; Gerlich, Michael; Ruttkies, Christoph; Neumann, Steffen

    2014-01-01

    The second Critical Assessment of Small Molecule Identification (CASMI) contest took place in 2013. A joint team from the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology (Eawag) and Leibniz Institute of Plant Biochemistry (IPB) participated in CASMI 2013 with an automatic workflow-style entry. MOLGEN-MS/MS was used for Category 1, molecular formula calculation, restricted by the information given for each challenge. MetFrag and MetFusion were used for Category 2, structure identification, retrieving candidates from the compound databases KEGG, PubChem and ChemSpider and joining these lists pre-submission. The results from Category 1 were used to guide whether formula or exact mass searches were performed for Category 2. The Category 2 results were impressive considering the database size and automated regime used, although these could not compete with the manual approach of the contest winner. The Category 1 results were affected by large m/z and ppm values in the challenge data, where strategies beyond pure enumeration from other participants were more successful. However, the combination used for the CASMI 2013 entries was extremely useful for developing decision-making criteria for automatic, high throughput general unknown (non-target) identification and for future contests.

  1. Success, but Slowly, as Met School Redefines Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pearson, George

    2012-01-01

    Seven Oaks Met School, the only high school in Canada that is part of the U.S.-based Big Picture Learning network of innovative schools, graduated its first class this spring. Internships with businesses and institutions in the community are a core element of the Met School experience. Students report on their internship experience, as well as on…

  2. Aptamers Binding to c-Met Inhibiting Tumor Cell Migration.

    PubMed

    Piater, Birgit; Doerner, Achim; Guenther, Ralf; Kolmar, Harald; Hock, Bjoern

    2015-01-01

    The human receptor tyrosine kinase c-Met plays an important role in the control of critical cellular processes. Since c-Met is frequently over expressed or deregulated in human malignancies, blocking its activation is of special interest for therapy. In normal conditions, the c-Met receptor is activated by its bivalent ligand hepatocyte growth factor (HGF). Also bivalent antibodies can activate the receptor by cross linking, limiting therapeutic applications. We report the generation of the RNA aptamer CLN64 containing 2'-fluoro pyrimidine modifications by systematic evolution of ligands by exponential enrichment (SELEX). CLN64 and a previously described single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) aptamer CLN3 exhibited high specificities and affinities to recombinant and cellular expressed c-Met. Both aptamers effectively inhibited HGF-dependent c-Met activation, signaling and cell migration. We showed that these aptamers did not induce c-Met activation, revealing an advantage over bivalent therapeutic molecules. Both aptamers were shown to bind overlapping epitopes but only CLN3 competed with HGF binding to cMet. In addition to their therapeutic and diagnostic potential, CLN3 and CLN64 aptamers exhibit valuable tools to further understand the structural and functional basis for c-Met activation or inhibition by synthetic ligands and their interplay with HGF binding. PMID:26658271

  3. Expression of cell wall related genes in basal and ear internodes of silking brown-midrib-3, caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) down-regulated, and normal maize plants

    PubMed Central

    Guillaumie, Sabine; Goffner, Deborah; Barbier, Odile; Martinant, Jean-Pierre; Pichon, Magalie; Barrière, Yves

    2008-01-01

    Background Silage maize is a major forage and energy resource for cattle feeding, and several studies have shown that lignin content and structure are the determining factors in forage maize feeding value. In maize, four natural brown-midrib mutants have modified lignin content, lignin structure and cell wall digestibility. The greatest lignin reduction and the highest cell wall digestibility were observed in the brown-midrib-3 (bm3) mutant, which is disrupted in the caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene. Results Expression of cell wall related genes was investigated in basal and ear internodes of normal, COMT antisens (AS225), and bm3 maize plants of the INRA F2 line. A cell wall macro-array was developed with 651 gene specific tags of genes specifically involved in cell wall biogenesis. When comparing basal (older lignifying) and ear (younger lignifying) internodes of the normal line, all genes known to be involved in constitutive monolignol biosynthesis had a higher expression in younger ear internodes. The expression of the COMT gene was heavily reduced, especially in the younger lignifying tissues of the ear internode. Despite the fact that AS225 transgene expression was driven only in sclerenchyma tissues, COMT expression was also heavily reduced in AS225 ear and basal internodes. COMT disruption or down-regulation led to differential expressions of a few lignin pathway genes, which were all over-expressed, except for a phenylalanine ammonia-lyase gene. More unexpectedly, several transcription factor genes, cell signaling genes, transport and detoxification genes, genes involved in cell wall carbohydrate metabolism and genes encoding cell wall proteins, were differentially expressed, and mostly over-expressed, in COMT-deficient plants. Conclusion Differential gene expressions in COMT-deficient plants highlighted a probable disturbance in cell wall assembly. In addition, the gene expressions suggested modified chronology of the different events leading

  4. Acute anxiolytic effects of quetiapine during virtual reality exposure--a double-blind placebo-controlled trial in patients with specific phobia.

    PubMed

    Diemer, Julia; Domschke, Katharina; Mühlberger, Andreas; Winter, Bernward; Zavorotnyy, Maxim; Notzon, Swantje; Silling, Karen; Arolt, Volker; Zwanzger, Peter

    2013-11-01

    Anxiety disorders are among the most frequent psychiatric disorders. With regard to pharmacological treatment, antidepressants, the calcium modulator pregabalin and benzodiazepines are recommended according to current treatment guidelines. With regard to acute states of anxiety, so far practically only benzodiazepines provide an immediate anxiolytic effect. However, the risk of tolerance and dependency limits the use of this class of medication. Therefore, there is still a need for alternative pharmacologic strategies. Increasing evidence points towards anxiety-reducing properties of atypical antipsychotics, particularly quetiapine. Therefore, we aimed to evaluate the putative acute anxiolytic effects of this compound, choosing the induction of acute anxiety in patients with specific phobia as a model for the evaluation of ad-hoc anxiolytic properties in a proof-of-concept approach. In a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, 58 patients with arachnophobia were treated with a single dose of quetiapine XR or placebo prior to a virtual reality spider challenge procedure. Treatment effects were monitored using rating scales for acute anxiety as well as measurements of heart rate and skin conductance. Overall, quetiapine showed significant anxiolytic effects compared to placebo. However, effects were not seen on the primary outcome measure (VAS Anxiety), but were limited to somatic anxiety symptoms. Additionally, a significant reduction of skin conductance was observed. Further exploratory analyses hint towards a mediating role of the (COMT) val158met genotype on treatment response. The present results thus suggest a possible suitability of quetiapine in the acute treatment of anxiety, particularly with regard to somatic symptoms. PMID:23375006

  5. Molecular genetics and antisocial behavior: where do we stand?

    PubMed

    Iofrida, Caterina; Palumbo, Sara; Pellegrini, Silvia

    2014-11-01

    Over the last two decades, it has become increasingly evident that control of aggressive behavior is modulated by the individual genetic profile as well. Several candidate genes have been proposed to play a role in the risk to develop antisocial behavior, and distinct brain imaging studies have shown that specific cortical areas may be functionally and/or structurally impaired in impulsive violent subjects on the basis of their genotypes. In this paper, we review the findings regarding four polymorphisms-MAOA (Monoamine oxidase A) uVNTR, SLC6A4 (solute carrier family 6 (neurotransmitter transporter), member 4) 5HTTLPR, COMT (Catechol-O-methyltransferase) Val158Met and DRD4 (dopamine D4 receptor) VNTR 1-11-that all have been found to be associated with an increased vulnerability for antisocial and impulsive behavior in response to aversive environmental conditions. These results, however, have not been replicated by other studies, likely because of crucial methodological discrepancies, including variability in the criteria used to define antisocial behavior and assessment of environmental factors. Finally, it has been recently proposed that these genetic variants may actually increase the individual susceptibility not merely to the negative environmental factors, but to the positive ones as well. In this view, such alleles would play a wider modulatory role, by acting as "plasticity" rather than "vulnerability" genes. Overall, these findings have potential important implications that span well outside of neuroscience and psychiatry, to embrace ethics, philosophy, and the law itself, as they pose new challenges to the very notion of Free Will. Novel properly controlled studies that examine multi-allelic genetic profiles, rather than focusing on distinct single variants, will make it possible to achieve a clearer understanding of the molecular underpinnings of the nature by nurture interaction.

  6. Dopaminergic foundations of schizotypy as measured by the German version of the Oxford-Liverpool Inventory of Feelings and Experiences (O-LIFE)—a suitable endophenotype of schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Grant, Phillip; Kuepper, Yvonne; Mueller, Eva A.; Wielpuetz, Catrin; Mason, Oliver; Hennig, Juergen

    2013-01-01

    The concept of schizotypy or “psychosis proneness” captures individual differences in perceptual, cognitive, and affective experiences that may relate to a range of psychotic disorders. The concept is an important way to assess the contribution of pre-existing psychological and genetically based biological features to the development of illnesses such as schizophrenia (so called endophenotypes). The Oxford-Liverpool Inventory of Feelings and Experiences (O-LIFE) is a widely used multi-dimensional measure of the construct and consists of four scales which mirror several groups of psychotic symptoms: Unusual Experiences (UnEx; positive symptoms), Cognitive Disorganization (CogDis; cognitive symptoms), Introvertive Anhedonia (IntAn; negative symptoms), and Impulsive Nonconformity (ImpNon; impulsive and antisocial symptoms). For the purpose of evaluating the suitability of schizotypy as an endophenotype of schizophrenia the current version of the O-LIFE was translated into German: its psychometric properties (including re-test reliability and construct validity) were examined in a large sample (n > 1200) and compared to those of the English original. The German version was both highly reliable and consistent with the original. The study aimed to show that schizotypy as measured by the O-LIFE can indeed be regarded as an endophenotype of schizophrenia in terms of genetic associations regarding relevant dopamine-related candidate polymorphisms of schizotypy [i.e., Val158Met-polymorphism of the COMT gene, uVNTR of the MAOA gene, Taq1A-polymorphism of the DRD2 gene, VNTR of the SLC6A3 (DAT) gene]. We also wanted to compare the genetic associations of the O-LIFE to those published using other operationalizations of schizotypy. Our results show a large number of significant associations and borderline-significant trends between the O-LIFE sub-scales and a range of genes, thereby supporting using the O-LIFE in the search for endophenotypic markers. PMID:23355817

  7. Imaging the Met Receptor Tyrosine Kinase (Met) and Assessing Tumor Responses to a Met Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitor in Human Xenograft Mouse Models with a [99mTc] (AH-113018) or Cy 5** (AH-112543) Labeled Peptide.

    PubMed

    Jagoda, Elaine M; Bhattacharyya, Sibaprasad; Kalen, Joseph; Riffle, Lisa; Leeder, Avrum; Histed, Stephanie; Williams, Mark; Wong, Karen J; Xu, Biying; Szajek, Lawrence P; Elbuluk, Osama; Cecchi, Fabiola; Raffensperger, Kristen; Golla, Meghana; Bottaro, Donald P; Choyke, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Developing an imaging agent targeting the hepatocyte growth factor receptor protein (Met) status of cancerous lesions would aid in the diagnosis and monitoring of Met-targeted tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs). A peptide targeting Met labeled with [(99m)Tc] had high affinity in vitro (Kd = 3.3 nM) and detected relative changes in Met in human cancer cell lines. In vivo [(99m)Tc]-Met peptide (AH-113018) was retained in Met-expressing tumors, and high-expressing Met tumors (MKN-45) were easily visualized and quantitated using single-photon emission computed tomography or optical imaging. In further studies, MKN-45 mouse xenografts treated with PHA 665752 (Met TKI) or vehicle were monitored weekly for tumor responses by [(99m)Tc]-Met peptide imaging and measurement of tumor volumes. Tumor uptake of [(99m)Tc]-Met peptide was significantly decreased as early as 1 week after PHA 665752 treatment, corresponding to decreases in tumor volumes. These results were comparable to Cy5**-Met peptide (AH-112543) fluorescence imaging using the same treatment model. [(99m)Tc] or Cy5**-Met peptide tumor uptake was further validated by histologic (necrosis, apoptosis) and immunoassay (total Met, p Met, and plasma shed Met) assessments in imaged and nonimaged cohorts. These data suggest that [(99m)Tc] or Cy5**-Met peptide imaging may have clinical diagnostic, prognostic, and therapeutic monitoring applications. PMID:26461980

  8. Regular Expression-Based Learning for METs Value Extraction

    PubMed Central

    Redd, Douglas; Kuang, Jinqiu; Mohanty, April; Bray, Bruce E.; Zeng-Treitler, Qing

    2016-01-01

    Functional status as measured by exercise capacity is an important clinical variable in the care of patients with cardiovascular diseases. Exercise capacity is commonly reported in terms of Metabolic Equivalents (METs). In the medical records, METs can often be found in a variety of clinical notes. To extract METs values, we adapted a machine-learning algorithm called REDEx to automatically generate regular expressions. Trained and tested on a set of 2701 manually annotated text snippets (i.e. short pieces of text), the regular expressions were able to achieve good accuracy and F-measure of 0.89 and 0.86. This extraction tool will allow us to process the notes of millions of cardiovascular patients and extract METs value for use by researchers and clinicians. PMID:27570673

  9. Regular Expression-Based Learning for METs Value Extraction.

    PubMed

    Redd, Douglas; Kuang, Jinqiu; Mohanty, April; Bray, Bruce E; Zeng-Treitler, Qing

    2016-01-01

    Functional status as measured by exercise capacity is an important clinical variable in the care of patients with cardiovascular diseases. Exercise capacity is commonly reported in terms of Metabolic Equivalents (METs). In the medical records, METs can often be found in a variety of clinical notes. To extract METs values, we adapted a machine-learning algorithm called REDEx to automatically generate regular expressions. Trained and tested on a set of 2701 manually annotated text snippets (i.e. short pieces of text), the regular expressions were able to achieve good accuracy and F-measure of 0.89 and 0.86. This extraction tool will allow us to process the notes of millions of cardiovascular patients and extract METs value for use by researchers and clinicians.

  10. Regular Expression-Based Learning for METs Value Extraction.

    PubMed

    Redd, Douglas; Kuang, Jinqiu; Mohanty, April; Bray, Bruce E; Zeng-Treitler, Qing

    2016-01-01

    Functional status as measured by exercise capacity is an important clinical variable in the care of patients with cardiovascular diseases. Exercise capacity is commonly reported in terms of Metabolic Equivalents (METs). In the medical records, METs can often be found in a variety of clinical notes. To extract METs values, we adapted a machine-learning algorithm called REDEx to automatically generate regular expressions. Trained and tested on a set of 2701 manually annotated text snippets (i.e. short pieces of text), the regular expressions were able to achieve good accuracy and F-measure of 0.89 and 0.86. This extraction tool will allow us to process the notes of millions of cardiovascular patients and extract METs value for use by researchers and clinicians. PMID:27570673

  11. MET Receptor Tyrosine Kinase as an Autism Genetic Risk Factor

    PubMed Central

    Peng, Yun; Huentelman, Matthew; Smith, Christopher; Qiu, Shenfeng

    2014-01-01

    In this chapter, we will briefly discuss recent literature on the role of MET receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK) in brain development and how perturbation of MET signaling may alter normal neurodevelopmental outcomes. Recent human genetic studies have established MET as a risk factor for autism, and the molecular and cellular underpinnings of this genetic risk are only beginning to emerge from obscurity. Unlike many autism risk genes that encode synaptic proteins, the spatial and temporal expression pattern of MET RTK indicates this signaling system is ideally situated to regulate neuronal growth, functional maturation, and establishment of functional brain circuits, particularly in those brain structures involved in higher levels of cognition, social skills, and executive functions. PMID:24290385

  12. NARSTO EPA SS NEW YORK AIR CHEM PM MET DATA

    Atmospheric Science Data Center

    2014-04-25

    NARSTO EPA SS NEW YORK AIR CHEM PM MET DATA Project Title:  NARSTO ... Nitrogen Oxides Ozone Surface Winds Air Temperature Humidity Solar Irradiance Particulate Matter Ultraviolet Radiation Surface Pressure Nitric Acid Aerosol Extinction Aerosol Backscatter ...

  13. NARSTO PAC2001 LANGLEY GAS PM MET DATA

    Atmospheric Science Data Center

    2014-04-25

    NARSTO PAC2001 LANGLEY GAS PM MET DATA Project Title:  NARSTO Discipline:  ... Chemiliminescence GC-MS Ion Chromatograph Pressure Sensor Temperature Probe Humidity Sensor Wind Sensor UV Ozone Detector ...

  14. Putative therapeutic targets for symptom subtypes of adult ADHD: D4 receptor agonism and COMT inhibition improve attention and response inhibition in a novel translational animal model.

    PubMed

    Tomlinson, Anneka; Grayson, Ben; Marsh, Samuel; Hayward, Andrew; Marshall, Kay M; Neill, Joanna C

    2015-04-01

    Prefrontal cortical dopamine plays an important role in cognitive control, specifically in attention and response inhibition; the core deficits in ADHD. We have previously shown that methylphenidate and atomoxetine differentially improve these deficits dependent on baseline performance. The present study extends this work to investigate the effects of putative therapeutic targets in our model. A selective dopamine D4 receptor agonist (A-412997) and the catechol-O-methyl-transferase (COMT) inhibitor; tolcapone, were investigated in the combined subtype of adult ADHD (ADHD-C). Adult female rats were trained to criterion in the 5C-CPT (5-Choice Continuous Performance Task) and then separated into subgroups according to baseline levels of sustained attention, vigilance, and response disinhibition. The subgroups included: high-attentive (HA) and low-attentive with high response disinhibition (ADHD-C). The ADHD-C subgroup was selected to represent the combined subtype of adult ADHD. Effects of tolcapone (3.0, 10.0, 15.0mg/kg) and A-412997 (0.1, 0.3, 1.0µmol/kg) were tested by increasing the variable inter-trial-interval (ITI) duration in the 5C-CPT. Tolcapone (15mg/kg) significantly increased sustained attention, vigilance and response inhibition in ADHD-C animals, and impaired attention in HA animals. A-412997 (1.0µmol/kg) significantly increased vigilance and response inhibition in ADHD-C animals only, with no effect in HA animals. This is the first study to use the translational 5C-CPT to model the adult ADHD-C subtype in rats and to study new targets in this model. Both tolcapone and A-412997 increased vigilance and response inhibition in the ADHD-C subgroup. D4 and COMT are emerging as important potential therapeutic targets in adult ADHD that warrant further investigation.

  15. Mars MetNet Mission - Martian Atmospheric Observational Post Network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harri, Ari-Matti; Aleksashkin, Sergey; Arruego, Ignacio; Schmidt, Walter; Ponomarenko, Andrey; Apestigue, Victor; Genzer, Maria; Vazquez, Luis; Uspensky, Mikhail; Haukka, Harri

    2016-04-01

    A new kind of planetary exploration mission for Mars is under development in collaboration between the Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI), Lavochkin Association (LA), Space Research Institute (IKI) and Institutio Nacional de Tecnica Aerospacial (INTA). The Mars MetNet mission is based on a new semi-hard landing vehicle called MetNet Lander (MNL). The scientific payload of the Mars MetNet Precursor [1] mission is divided into three categories: Atmospheric instruments, Optical devices and Composition and structure devices. Each of the payload instruments will provide significant insights in to the Martian atmospheric behavior. The key technologies of the MetNet Lander have been qualified and the electrical qualification model (EQM) of the payload bay has been built and successfully tested. MetNet Lander The MetNet landing vehicles are using an inflatable entry and descent system instead of rigid heat shields and parachutes as earlier semi-hard landing devices have used. This way the ratio of the payload mass to the overall mass is optimized. The landing impact will burrow the payload container into the Martian soil providing a more favorable thermal environment for the electronics and a suitable orientation of the telescopic boom with external sensors and the radio link antenna. It is planned to deploy several tens of MNLs on the Martian surface operating at least partly at the same time to allow meteorological network science. Strawman Scientific Payload The strawman payload of the two MNL precursor models includes the following instruments: Atmospheric instruments: • MetBaro Pressure device • MetHumi Humidity device • MetTemp Temperature sensors Optical devices: • PanCam Panoramic • MetSIS Solar irradiance sensor with OWLS optical wireless system for data transfer • DS Dust sensor Composition and Structure Devices: • Tri-axial magnetometer MOURA • Tri-axial System Accelerometer The descent processes dynamic properties are monitored by a special

  16. Mars MetNet Mission - Martian Atmospheric Observational Post Network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haukka, Harri; Harri, Ari-Matti; Aleksashkin, Sergey; Arruego, Ignacio; Schmidt, Walter; Genzer, Maria; Vazquez, Luis; Siikonen, Timo; Palin, Matti

    2016-10-01

    A new kind of planetary exploration mission for Mars is under development in collaboration between the Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI), Lavochkin Association (LA), Space Research Institute (IKI) and Institutio Nacional de Tecnica Aerospacial (INTA). The Mars MetNet mission is based on a new semi-hard landing vehicle called MetNet Lander (MNL).The scientific payload of the Mars MetNet Precursor mission is divided into three categories: Atmospheric instruments, Optical devices and Composition and structure devices. Each of the payload instruments will provide significant insights in to the Martian atmospheric behavior.The key technologies of the MetNet Lander have been qualified and the electrical qualification model (EQM) of the payload bay has been built and successfully tested.Full Qualification Model (QM) of the MetNet landing unit with the Precursor Mission payload is currently under functional tests. In the near future the QM unit will be exposed to environmental tests with qualification levels including vibrations, thermal balance, thermal cycling and mechanical impact shock. One complete flight unit of the entry, descent and landing systems (EDLS) has been manufactured and tested with acceptance levels. Another flight-like EDLS has been exposed to most of the qualification tests, and hence it may be used for flight after refurbishments. Accordingly two flight-capable EDLS systems exist. The eventual goal is to create a network of atmospheric observational posts around the Martian surface. The next step in the MetNet Precursor Mission is the demonstration of the technical robustness and scientific capabilities of the MetNet type of landing vehicle. Definition of the Precursor Mission and discussions on launch opportunities are currently under way. The baseline program development funding exists for the next five years. Flight unit manufacture of the payload bay takes about 18 months, and it will be commenced after the Precursor Mission has been defined.

  17. Expressions and clinical significances of c-MET, p-MET and E2f-1 in human gastric carcinoma

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background To investigate on the expressions and the clinical significances of hepatocyte growth factor receptor (c-MET), phosphorylated c-MET (p-MET) and e2f-1 transcription factor in primary lesion of gastric adenocarcinoma (GC). Method Tissue samples from the primary lesion of GC in patients who accepted D2/D3 radical gastrectomy with R0/R1 resection were stained by immunohistochemistry of c-MET, p-MET, e2f-1 and Ki-67. The univariate and the multivariate analyses involving in clinicopathological parameters and prognostic factors were evaluated. Results The positivity rates for c-MET (66.12%, 80 cases/121 cases), p-MET (59.50%, 72 cases/121 cases), e2f-1 (38.84%, 47 cases/121 cases) and Ki-67 (72.73%, 88 cases/121 cases) in primary lesion of GC was significantly higher than that in non-cancerous tissue at 5 cm places far from the margin of primary lesion (P < 0.05, respectively). The deeper tumor invasion, the severer lymph node metastasis, the later stage of TNM and the higher expression of Ki-67 was respectively an independent risk factor for the higher expression of c-MET or p-MET, but the younger age and the shorter survival time was an independent risk factor for the higher expression of e2f-1 respectively. Survival analysis showed that the worse prognosis could be observed in the patients with the combination of both c-MET-positive and e2f-1-negative (P = 0.038) or both p-MET-positive and e2f-1-negative (P = 0.042). Cox analysis demonstrated that the severer lymphatic node metastasis and the higher positivity rate of c-MET, p-MET or e2f-1 were an independent prognosis factor respectively. The higher expression of e2f-1 was identified in patients with Stage I-II, which correlated with a shorter survival time. Survival analysis also revealed that the prognosis of patients with positive expression of e2f-1 at Stage I-II was significantly worse than that in patients with negative expression of e2f-1 (χ2 = 13.437, P = 0.001). However, in

  18. MET Gene Amplification and MET Receptor Activation Are Not Sufficient to Predict Efficacy of Combined MET and EGFR Inhibitors in EGFR TKI-Resistant NSCLC Cells.

    PubMed

    Presutti, Dario; Santini, Simonetta; Cardinali, Beatrice; Papoff, Giuliana; Lalli, Cristiana; Samperna, Simone; Fustaino, Valentina; Giannini, Giuseppe; Ruberti, Giovina

    2015-01-01

    Epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), member of the human epidermal growth factor receptor (HER) family, plays a critical role in regulating multiple cellular processes including proliferation, differentiation, cell migration and cell survival. Deregulation of the EGFR signaling has been found to be associated with the development of a variety of human malignancies including lung, breast, and ovarian cancers, making inhibition of EGFR the most promising molecular targeted therapy developed in the past decade against cancer. Human non small cell lung cancers (NSCLC) with activating mutations in the EGFR gene frequently experience significant tumor regression when treated with EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs), although acquired resistance invariably develops. Resistance to TKI treatments has been associated to secondary mutations in the EGFR gene or to activation of additional bypass signaling pathways including the ones mediated by receptor tyrosine kinases, Fas receptor and NF-kB. In more than 30-40% of cases, however, the mechanisms underpinning drug-resistance are still unknown. The establishment of cellular and mouse models can facilitate the unveiling of mechanisms leading to drug-resistance and the development or validation of novel therapeutic strategies aimed at overcoming resistance and enhancing outcomes in NSCLC patients. Here we describe the establishment and characterization of EGFR TKI-resistant NSCLC cell lines and a pilot study on the effects of a combined MET and EGFR inhibitors treatment. The characterization of the erlotinib-resistant cell lines confirmed the association of EGFR TKI resistance with loss of EGFR gene amplification and/or AXL overexpression and/or MET gene amplification and MET receptor activation. These cellular models can be instrumental to further investigate the signaling pathways associated to EGFR TKI-resistance. Finally the drugs combination pilot study shows that MET gene amplification and MET receptor activation

  19. MET Gene Amplification and MET Receptor Activation Are Not Sufficient to Predict Efficacy of Combined MET and EGFR Inhibitors in EGFR TKI-Resistant NSCLC Cells

    PubMed Central

    Presutti, Dario; Santini, Simonetta; Cardinali, Beatrice; Papoff, Giuliana; Lalli, Cristiana; Samperna, Simone; Fustaino, Valentina; Giannini, Giuseppe; Ruberti, Giovina

    2015-01-01

    Epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), member of the human epidermal growth factor receptor (HER) family, plays a critical role in regulating multiple cellular processes including proliferation, differentiation, cell migration and cell survival. Deregulation of the EGFR signaling has been found to be associated with the development of a variety of human malignancies including lung, breast, and ovarian cancers, making inhibition of EGFR the most promising molecular targeted therapy developed in the past decade against cancer. Human non small cell lung cancers (NSCLC) with activating mutations in the EGFR gene frequently experience significant tumor regression when treated with EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs), although acquired resistance invariably develops. Resistance to TKI treatments has been associated to secondary mutations in the EGFR gene or to activation of additional bypass signaling pathways including the ones mediated by receptor tyrosine kinases, Fas receptor and NF-kB. In more than 30–40% of cases, however, the mechanisms underpinning drug-resistance are still unknown. The establishment of cellular and mouse models can facilitate the unveiling of mechanisms leading to drug-resistance and the development or validation of novel therapeutic strategies aimed at overcoming resistance and enhancing outcomes in NSCLC patients. Here we describe the establishment and characterization of EGFR TKI-resistant NSCLC cell lines and a pilot study on the effects of a combined MET and EGFR inhibitors treatment. The characterization of the erlotinib-resistant cell lines confirmed the association of EGFR TKI resistance with loss of EGFR gene amplification and/or AXL overexpression and/or MET gene amplification and MET receptor activation. These cellular models can be instrumental to further investigate the signaling pathways associated to EGFR TKI-resistance. Finally the drugs combination pilot study shows that MET gene amplification and MET receptor activation

  20. Met interacts with EGFR and Ron in canine osteosarcoma.

    PubMed

    McCleese, J K; Bear, M D; Kulp, S K; Mazcko, C; Khanna, C; London, C A

    2013-06-01

    The receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK) Met is known to be over-expressed in canine osteosarcoma (OSA). In human cancers, the RTKs Met, epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and Ron are frequently co-expressed and engage in heterodimerization, altering signal transduction and promoting resistance to targeted therapeutics. We found that EGFR and Ron are expressed in canine OSA cell lines and primary tissues, EGFR and Ron are frequently phosphorylated in OSA tumour samples, and Met is co-associated with EGFR and Ron in canine OSA cell lines. Transforming growth factor alpha (TGFα) and hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) stimulation induced amplification of ERK1/2 and STAT3 phosphorylation in OSA cells and Met was phosphorylated following TGFα stimulation providing evidence for receptor cross-talk. Lastly, treatment of OSA cells with combined gefitinib and crizotinib inhibited cell proliferation in an additive manner. Together, these data support the notion that Met, EGFR and Ron interact in OSA cells and as such, may represent viable targets for therapeutic intervention.

  1. Met interacts with EGFR and Ron in canine osteosarcoma

    PubMed Central

    McCleese, J. K.; Bear, M. D.; Kulp, S. K.; Mazcko, C.; Khanna, C.; London, C. A.

    2014-01-01

    The receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK) Met is known to be over-expressed in canine osteosarcoma (OSA). In human cancers, the RTKs Met, epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and Ron are frequently co-expressed and engage in heterodimerization, altering signal transduction and promoting resistance to targeted therapeutics. We found that EGFR and Ron are expressed in canine OSA cell lines and primary tissues, EGFR and Ron are frequently phosphorylated in OSA tumour samples, and Met is co-associated with EGFR and Ron in canine OSA cell lines. Transforming growth factor alpha (TGFα) and hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) stimulation induced amplification of ERK1/2 and STAT3 phosphorylation in OSA cells and Met was phosphorylated following TGFα stimulation providing evidence for receptor cross-talk. Lastly, treatment of OSA cells with combined gefitinib and crizotinib inhibited cell proliferation in an additive manner. Together, these data support the notion that Met, EGFR and Ron interact in OSA cells and as such, may represent viable targets for therapeutic intervention. PMID:22235915

  2. MetAmyl: A METa-Predictor for AMYLoid Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Emily, Mathieu; Talvas, Anthony; Delamarche, Christian

    2013-01-01

    The aggregation of proteins or peptides in amyloid fibrils is associated with a number of clinical disorders, including Alzheimer's, Huntington's and prion diseases, medullary thyroid cancer, renal and cardiac amyloidosis. Despite extensive studies, the molecular mechanisms underlying the initiation of fibril formation remain largely unknown. Several lines of evidence revealed that short amino-acid segments (hot spots), located in amyloid precursor proteins act as seeds for fibril elongation. Therefore, hot spots are potential targets for diagnostic/therapeutic applications, and a current challenge in bioinformatics is the development of methods to accurately predict hot spots from protein sequences. In this paper, we combined existing methods into a meta-predictor for hot spots prediction, called MetAmyl for METapredictor for AMYLoid proteins. MetAmyl is based on a logistic regression model that aims at weighting predictions from a set of popular algorithms, statistically selected as being the most informative and complementary predictors. We evaluated the performances of MetAmyl through a large scale comparative study based on three independent datasets and thus demonstrated its ability to differentiate between amyloidogenic and non-amyloidogenic polypeptides. Compared to 9 other methods, MetAmyl provides significant improvement in prediction on studied datasets. We further show that MetAmyl is efficient to highlight the effect of point mutations involved in human amyloidosis, so we suggest this program should be a useful complementary tool for the diagnosis of these diseases. PMID:24260292

  3. c-Met as a Target for Personalized Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Garajová, Ingrid; Giovannetti, Elisa; Biasco, Guido; Peters, Godefridus J.

    2015-01-01

    MET and its ligand HGF are involved in many biological processes, both physiological and pathological, making this signaling pathway an attractive therapeutic target in oncology. Downstream signaling effects are transmitted via mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK), PI3K (phosphoinositide 3-kinase protein kinase B)/AKT, signal transducer and activator of transcription proteins (STAT), and nuclear factor-κB. The final output of the terminal effector components of these pathways is activation of cytoplasmic and nuclear processes leading to increases in cell proliferation, survival, mobilization and invasive capacity. In addition to its role as an oncogenic driver, increasing evidence implicates MET as a common mechanism of resistance to targeted therapies including EGFR and VEGFR inhibitors. In the present review, we summarize the current knowledge on the role of the HGF-MET signaling pathway in cancer and its therapeutic targeting (HGF activation inhibitors, HGF inhibitors, MET antagonists and selective/nonselective MET kinase inhibitors). Recent advances in understanding the role of this pathway in the resistance to current anticancer strategies used in lung, kidney and pancreatic cancer are discussed. PMID:26628860

  4. Novel interaction partners of the TPR/MET tyrosine kinase.

    PubMed

    Schaaf, Christian P; Benzing, Jörg; Schmitt, Thomas; Erz, Dorothee H R; Tewes, Magdalena; Bartram, Claus R; Janssen, Johannes W G

    2005-02-01

    A large variety of biological processes is mediated by stimulation of the receptor tyrosine kinase MET. Screening a mouse embryo cDNA library, we were able to identify several novel, putative intracellular TPR/MET-substrates: SNAPIN, DCOHM, VAV-1, Sorting nexin 2, Death associated protein kinase 3, SMC-1, Centromeric protein C, and hTID-1. Interactions as identified by yeast two-hybrid analysis were validated in vitro and in vivo by mammalian two-hybrid studies, a far-western assay and coimmunoprecipitation. Participation in apoptosis-regulating mechanisms through interaction with DAPK-3 and cell cycle control via binding to nuclear proteins such as CENPC and SMC-1 are possible new aspects of intracellular MET signaling.

  5. Remembering the early days of the Met Lab

    SciTech Connect

    Katz, J.J.

    1990-01-01

    The Met Lab was set up by the war-time Manhattan District, US Corp of Engineers to (i) find a system using normal uranium in which a chain reaction would occur; (ii) to show that if such a chain reaction did occur, it would be possible to separate plutonium chemically from the uranium matrix and the fission products formed in the chain reactions; and (iii) to prepare plans for the large-scale production of plutonium. Chemistry Section C-1 of the Met Lab was assigned the responsibility for developing separation methods for plutonium production on the industrial scale. This report describes some aspects of daily life in Section C-1.

  6. Seven Oaks Met School Builds Curriculum around Each Student

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pearson, George

    2009-01-01

    This article features Seven Oaks School Division Met School in Winnipeg, a high school that limits class size to 15, tailors its curriculum to the needs and interests of its individual students, places students in community-based internships two days a week, and keeps the teacher--called an advisor--with the same group of students from Grade 9…

  7. NARSTO PAC2001 CONVAIR PM OZONE MET DATA

    Atmospheric Science Data Center

    2014-04-25

    NARSTO PAC2001 CONVAIR PM OZONE MET DATA Project Title:  NARSTO Discipline:  ... Temperature Probe Humidity Probe Wind Sensor UV Ozone Detector Optical Counter Location:  Lower Fraser ... Air Temperature Humidity Upper Level Winds Ozone Aerosol Particle Properties Order Data:  ASDC Order ...

  8. NARSTO PAC2001 CESSNA VOC PM OZONE MET DATA

    Atmospheric Science Data Center

    2014-04-25

    NARSTO PAC2001 CESSNA VOC PM OZONE MET DATA Project Title:  NARSTO Discipline:  ... Temperature Probe Humidity Probe Wind Sensor UV Ozone Detector Optical Counter GC Location:  Lower Fraser ... Air Temperature Humidity Upper Level Winds Ozone Aerosol Particle Properties Volatile Organic Compounds ...

  9. 19 CFR 10.133 - Conditions required to be met.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... 19 Customs Duties 1 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Conditions required to be met. 10.133 Section 10.133 Customs Duties U.S. CUSTOMS AND BORDER PROTECTION, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY; DEPARTMENT OF... order to qualify for free entry or a lower rate of duty unless the language of the particular...

  10. San Diego Met High School: Personalization as a Foundation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Principal Leadership, 2010

    2010-01-01

    The mission of San Diego Met High School is to prepare students for college and the workforce through active learning, academic rigor, and community involvement in a small school setting. Because personalization is a key component of the school culture, advisories of 20-25 students work with the same teachers for all four years. Advisers, parents,…

  11. NARSTO SOS99NASH SURFACE MET CHEM DATA

    Atmospheric Science Data Center

    2014-04-25

    NARSTO SOS99NASH SURFACE MET CHEM DATA Project Title:  NARSTO Discipline:  Tropospheric Chemistry Field Campaigns Aerosols Level:  L2 ... Sulfur Dioxide Ozone Solar Radiation Humidity Surface Winds Air Temperature Order Data:  ASDC Order Tool: ...

  12. The MET Project: The Wrong 45 Million Dollar Question

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gabriel, Rachael; Allington, Richard

    2012-01-01

    In 2009, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation funded the investigation of a $45 million question: How can we identify and develop effective teaching? Now that the findings from their Measures of Effective Teaching (MET) project have been released, it's clear they asked a simpler question, namely, What other measures match up well with value-added…

  13. NARSTO EPA SS ST LOUIS AIR CHEM PM MET DATA

    Atmospheric Science Data Center

    2014-05-07

    NARSTO EPA SS ST LOUIS AIR CHEM PM MET DATA Project Title:  NARSTO ... Aethaelometer Anemometer Rain Gauge Pressure Sensor Radiometers Temperature Sensor Weighing Balance AA ... Amount Surface Pressure Solar Radiation Surface Air Temperature Particulates Trace Metals Order Data:  ...

  14. Lessons Learned: The MetLife Foundation Awards

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kazis, Richard; Haynes, Leslie; Liebowitz, Martin

    2002-01-01

    This past year, Jobs for the Future studied strategies that community colleges are using to improve the quality and effectiveness of their services to low-income youth and adults. Much of this research was conducted for the MetLife Foundation Community College Excellence Awards Initiative. Across the country, in urban, rural, and suburban…

  15. NARSTO PAC2001 SLOCAN PARK GAS PM MET DATA

    Atmospheric Science Data Center

    2014-04-25

    NARSTO PAC2001 SLOCAN PARK GAS PM MET DATA Project Title:  NARSTO Discipline:  ... Ground Station, Tethered Balloon Instrument:  Temperature Probe Humidity Sensor Wind Sensor UV Ozone Detector Chemiliminescence TEOM GC-MS Ion Chromatograph Pressure Sensor Aethaelometer Fluorescence Spectroscopy IR CO2 ...

  16. The Marshall Engineering Thermosphere (MET) Model. Volume 1; Technical Description

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, R. E.

    1998-01-01

    Volume 1 presents a technical description of the Marshall Engineering Thermosphere (MET) model atmosphere and a summary of its historical development. Various programs developed to augment the original capability of the model are discussed in detail. The report also describes each of the individual subroutines developed to enhance the model. Computer codes for these subroutines are contained in four appendices.

  17. The Met-genotype of the BDNF Val66Met polymorphism is associated with reduced Stroop interference in elderly.

    PubMed

    Gajewski, Patrick D; Hengstler, Jan G; Golka, Klaus; Falkenstein, Michael; Beste, Christian

    2012-12-01

    Aging is accompanied by impairments of executive functions that rely on the functional integrity of fronto-striatal networks. This integrity is modulated by the release of neurotrophins like the brain-derived-neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Here, we investigate effects of the functional BDNF Val66Met polymorphism on interference processing in 131 healthy elderly subjects using event-related potentials (ERPs). In a Stroop task, participants had to indicate the name or the colour of colour-words while colour was either compatible or incompatible with the name. We show that susceptibility to Stroop-interference is affected by the BDNF Val66Met polymorphism: the Met-allele carriers showed better performance and enhanced N450 in interference trials. Other processes necessary to prepare and allocate cognitive resources to a particular task were not affected by BDNF Val66Met polymorphism, underlining the specificity of the observed effects. The observed performance and ERP difference is possibly due to dopamine related effects of BDNF in fronto-striatal networks, where it putatively mediates a shift in the balance of the direct and indirect pathway involved in inhibitory functions.

  18. The EGFR/ErbB3 Pathway Acts as a Compensatory Survival Mechanism upon c-Met Inhibition in Human c-Met+ Hepatocellular Carcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Steinway, Steven N.; Dang, Hien; You, Hanning; Rountree, C. Bart; Ding, Wei

    2015-01-01

    Background c-Met, a high-affinity receptor for Hepatocyte Growth Factor (HGF), plays a critical role in tumor growth, invasion, and metastasis. Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) patients with activated HGF/c-Met signaling have a significantly worse prognosis. Targeted therapies using c-Met tyrosine kinase inhibitors are currently in clinical trials for HCC, although receptor tyrosine kinase inhibition in other cancers has demonstrated early success. Unfortunately, therapeutic effect is frequently not durable due to acquired resistance. Methods We utilized the human MHCC97-H c-Met positive (c-Met+) HCC cell line to explore the compensatory survival mechanisms that are acquired after c-Met inhibition. MHCC97-H cells with stable c-Met knockdown (MHCC97-H c-Met KD cells) were generated using a c-Met shRNA vector with puromycin selection and stably transfected scrambled shRNA as a control. Gene expression profiling was conducted, and protein expression was analyzed to characterize MHCC97-H cells after blockade of the c-Met oncogene. A high-throughput siRNA screen was performed to find putative compensatory survival proteins, which could drive HCC growth in the absence of c-Met. Findings from this screen were validated through subsequent analyses. Results We have previously demonstrated that treatment of MHCC97-H cells with a c-Met inhibitor, PHA665752, results in stasis of tumor growth in vivo. MHCC97-H c-Met KD cells demonstrate slower growth kinetics, similar to c-Met inhibitor treated tumors. Using gene expression profiling and siRNA screening against 873 kinases and phosphatases, we identified ErbB3 and TGF-α as compensatory survival factors that are upregulated after c-Met inhibition. Suppressing these factors in c-Met KD MHCC97-H cells suppresses tumor growth in vitro. In addition, we found that the PI3K/Akt signaling pathway serves as a negative feedback signal responsible for the ErbB3 upregulation after c-Met inhibition. Furthermore, in vitro studies demonstrate

  19. Estimation of METs by Accelerometers while Walking and Running

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kurihara, Yosuke; Watanabe, Kajiro; Yoneyama, Mitsuru

    It is quite important for Japan to maintain or promote the health condition of elderly citizens. Given the circumstances, the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare has established the standards for the activities and exercises for promoting the health, and quantitatively determined the exercise intensity on 107 items of activities. This exercise intensity, however, requires recording the type and the duration of the activity to be calculated. In this paper, the exercise intensities are surmised using 3D accelerometer while the subjects are walking and running. As the result, the exercise intensities were surmised to be within the root mean square error of 1.2[METs] for walking and 3.2[METs] for running respectively.

  20. Testing ATLAS Z+MET excess with LHC Run 2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lu, Xiaochuan; Shirai, Satoshi; Terada, Takahiro

    2016-05-01

    The ATLAS collaboration reported a 3σ excess in the search of events containing on- Z dilepton, jets, and large missing momentum (MET) in the 8 TeV LHC run. Motivated by this excess, many models of new physics have been proposed. Recently, the ATLAS and CMS collaborations reported new results for similar Z+MET channels in the 13 TeV run. In this paper, we comprehensively discuss the consistency between the proposed models and the LHC results of Run 1 and Run 2. We find that in models with heavy gluino production, there is generically some tension between the 8 TeV and 13 TeV results. On the other hand, models with light squark production provide relatively better fitting to both results.

  1. Operational Use of OGC Web Services at the Met Office

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wright, Bruce

    2010-05-01

    The Met Office has adopted the Service-Orientated Architecture paradigm to deliver services to a range of customers through Rich Internet Applications (RIAs). The approach uses standard Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) web services to provide information to web-based applications through a range of generic data services. "Invent", the Met Office beta site, is used to showcase Met Office future plans for presenting web-based weather forecasts, product and information to the public. This currently hosts a freely accessible Weather Map Viewer, written in JavaScript, which accesses a Web Map Service (WMS), to deliver innovative web-based visualizations of weather and its potential impacts to the public. The intention is to engage the public in the development of new web-based services that more accurately meet their needs. As the service is intended for public use within the UK, it has been designed to support a user base of 5 million, the analysed level of UK web traffic reaching the Met Office's public weather information site. The required scalability has been realised through the use of multi-tier tile caching: - WMS requests are made for 256x256 tiles for fixed areas and zoom levels; - a Tile Cache, developed in house, efficiently serves tiles on demand, managing WMS request for the new tiles; - Edge Servers, externally hosted by Akamai, provide a highly scalable (UK-centric) service for pre-cached tiles, passing new requests to the Tile Cache; - the Invent Weather Map Viewer uses the Google Maps API to request tiles from Edge Servers. (We would expect to make use of the Web Map Tiling Service, when it becomes an OGC standard.) The Met Office delivers specialist commercial products to market sectors such as transport, utilities and defence, which exploit a Web Feature Service (WFS) for data relating forecasts and observations to specific geographic features, and a Web Coverage Service (WCS) for sub-selections of gridded data. These are locally rendered as maps or

  2. Remote Sensing of Volcanic ASH at the Met Office

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marenco, F.; Kent, J.; Adam, M.; Buxmann, J.; Francis, P.; Haywood, J.

    2016-06-01

    The eruption of Eyjafjallajökull in 2010 has triggered the rapid development of volcanic ash remote sensing activities at the Met Office. Volcanic ash qualitative and quantitative mapping have been achieved using lidar on board the Facility for Airborne Atmospheric Measurements (FAAM) research aircraft, and using improved satellite retrieval algorithms. After the eruption, a new aircraft facility, the Met Office Civil Contingencies Aircraft (MOCCA), has been set up to enable a rapid response, and a network of ground-based remote sensing sites with lidars and sunphotometers is currently being developed. Thanks to these efforts, the United Kingdom (UK) will be much better equipped to deal with such a crisis, should it happen in the future.

  3. Worldwide distribution of PSEN1 Met146Leu mutation

    PubMed Central

    Bernardi, L.; Colao, R.; Rubino, E.; Smirne, N.; Frangipane, F.; Terni, B.; Curcio, S.A.M.; Mirabelli, M.; Clodomiro, A.; Di Lorenzo, R.; Maletta, R.; Anfossi, M.; Gallo, M.; Geracitano, S.; Tomaino, C.; Muraca, M. G.; Leotta, A.; Lio, S. G.; Pinessi, L.; Rainero, I.; Sorbi, S.; Nee, L.; Milan, G.; Pappatá, S.; Postiglione, A.; Abbamondi, N.; Forloni, G.; St. George Hyslop, P.; Rogaeva, E.; Bugiani, O.; Giaccone, G.; Foncin, J. F.; Spillantini, M. G.; Puccio, G.

    2010-01-01

    Objective: Large kindreds segregating familial Alzheimer disease (FAD) offer the opportunity of studying clinical variability as observed for presenilin 1 (PSEN1) mutations. Two early-onset FAD (EOFAD) Calabrian families with PSEN1 Met146Leu (ATG/CTG) mutation constitute a unique population descending from a remote common ancestor. Recently, several other EOFAD families with the same mutation have been described worldwide. Methods: We searched for a common founder of the PSEN1 Met146Leu mutation in families with different geographic origins by genealogic and molecular analyses. We also investigated the phenotypic variability at onset in a group of 50 patients (mean age at onset 40.0 ± 4.8 years) by clinical, neuropsychological, and molecular methodologies. Results: EOFAD Met146Leu families from around the world resulted to be related and constitute a single kindred originating from Southern Italy before the 17th century. Phenotypic variability at onset is broad: 4 different clinical presentations may be recognized, 2 classic for AD (memory deficits and spatial and temporal disorientation), whereas the others are expressions of frontal impairment. The apathetic and dysexecutive subgroups could be related to orbital-medial prefrontal cortex and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex dysfunction. Conclusions: Genealogic and molecular findings provided evidence that the PSEN1 Met146Leu families from around the world analyzed in this study are related and represent a single kindred originating from Southern Italy. The marked phenotypic variability might reflect early involvement by the pathologic process of different cortical areas. Although the clinical phenotype is quite variable, the neuropathologic and biochemical characteristics of the lesions account for neurodegenerative processes unmistakably of Alzheimer nature. PMID:20164095

  4. Absolute Quantitation of Met Using Mass Spectrometry for Clinical Application: Assay Precision, Stability, and Correlation with MET Gene Amplification in FFPE Tumor Tissue

    PubMed Central

    Catenacci, Daniel V. T.; Liao, Wei-Li; Thyparambil, Sheeno; Henderson, Les; Xu, Peng; Zhao, Lei; Rambo, Brittany; Hart, John; Xiao, Shu-Yuan; Bengali, Kathleen; Uzzell, Jamar; Darfler, Marlene; Krizman, David B.; Cecchi, Fabiola; Bottaro, Donald P.; Karrison, Theodore; Veenstra, Timothy D.; Hembrough, Todd; Burrows, Jon

    2014-01-01

    Background Overexpression of Met tyrosine kinase receptor is associated with poor prognosis. Overexpression, and particularly MET amplification, are predictive of response to Met-specific therapy in preclinical models. Immunohistochemistry (IHC) of formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) tissues is currently used to select for ‘high Met’ expressing tumors for Met inhibitor trials. IHC suffers from antibody non-specificity, lack of quantitative resolution, and, when quantifying multiple proteins, inefficient use of scarce tissue. Methods After describing the development of the Liquid-Tissue-Selected Reaction Monitoring-mass spectrometry (LT-SRM-MS) Met assay, we evaluated the expression level of Met in 130 FFPE gastroesophageal cancer (GEC) tissues. We assessed the correlation of SRM Met expression to IHC and mean MET gene copy number (GCN)/nucleus or MET/CEP7 ratio by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). Results Proteomic mapping of recombinant Met identified 418TEFTTALQR426 as the optimal SRM peptide. Limits of detection (LOD) and quantitation (LOQ) for this peptide were 150 and 200 amol/µg tumor protein, respectively. The assay demonstrated excellent precision and temporal stability of measurements in serial sections analyzed one year apart. Expression levels of 130 GEC tissues ranged (<150 amol/µg to 4669.5 amol/µg. High correlation was observed between SRM Met expression and both MET GCN and MET/CEP7 ratio as determined by FISH (n = 30; R2 = 0.898). IHC did not correlate well with SRM (n = 44; R2 = 0.537) nor FISH GCN (n = 31; R2 = 0.509). A Met SRM level of ≥1500 amol/µg was 100% sensitive (95% CI 0.69–1) and 100% specific (95% CI 0.92–1) for MET amplification. Conclusions The Met SRM assay measured the absolute Met levels in clinical tissues with high precision. Compared to IHC, SRM provided a quantitative and linear measurement of Met expression, reliably distinguishing between non-amplified and amplified MET

  5. LoVo colon cancer cells resistant to oxaliplatin overexpress c-MET and VEGFR-1 and respond to VEGF with dephosphorylation of c-MET.

    PubMed

    Mezquita, Belén; Pineda, Estela; Mezquita, Jovita; Mezquita, Pau; Pau, Montserrat; Codony-Servat, Jordi; Martínez-Balibrea, Eva; Mora, Conchi; Maurel, Joan; Mezquita, Cristóbal

    2016-05-01

    Oxaliplatin-resistant LoVo colon cancer cells overexpressing c-MET and VEGFR-1 were selected to study several signaling pathways involved in chemoresistance, as well as the effect of increasing amounts of VEGF in the regulation of c-MET. In comparison with chemosensitive LoVo colon cancer cells, oxaliplatin-resistant cells (LoVoR) overexpress and phosphorylate c-MET, upregulate the expression of transmembrane and soluble VEGFR-1 and, unexpectedly, downregulate VEGF. In addition, LoVoR cells activate other transduction pathways involved in chemoresistance such as Akt, β-catenin-TCF4 and E-cadherin. While c-MET is phosphorylated in LoVoR cells expressing low levels of VEGF, c-MET phosphorylation decreases when recombinant VEGF is added into the culture medium. Inhibition of c-MET by VEGF is mediated by VEGFR-1, since phosphorylation of c-MET in the presence of VEGF is restored after silencing VEGFR-1. Dephosphorylation of c-MET by VEGF suggests that tumors coexpressing VEGFR-1 and c-MET may activate c-MET as a result of anti-VEGF therapy.

  6. Higher Levels of c-Met Expression and Phosphorylation Identify Cell Lines With Increased Sensitivity to AMG-458, a Novel Selective c-Met Inhibitor With Radiosensitizing Effects

    SciTech Connect

    Li Bo; Torossian, Artour; Sun, Yunguang; Du, Ruihong; Dicker, Adam P.; Lu Bo

    2012-11-15

    Purpose: c-Met is overexpressed in some non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cell lines and tissues. Cell lines with higher levels of c-Met expression and phosphorylation depend on this receptor for survival. We studied the effects of AMG-458 on 2 NSCLC cell lines. Methods and Materials: 3-(4,5-Dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-5-(3-carboxymethoxyphenyl)-2-(4-sulfophenyl) -2H-tetrazolium assays assessed the sensitivities of the cells to AMG-458. Clonogenic survival assays illustrated the radiosensitizing effects of AMG-458. Western blot for cleaved caspase 3 measured apoptosis. Immunoblotting for c-Met, phospho-Met (p-Met), Akt/p-Akt, and Erk/p-Erk was performed to observe downstream signaling. Results: AMG-458 enhanced radiosensitivity in H441 but not in A549. H441 showed constitutive phosphorylation of c-Met. A549 expressed low levels of c-Met, which were phosphorylated only in the presence of exogenous hepatocyte growth factor. The combination of radiation therapy and AMG-458 treatment was found to synergistically increase apoptosis in the H441 cell line but not in A549. Radiation therapy, AMG-458, and combination treatment were found to reduce p-Akt and p-Erk levels in H441 but not in A549. H441 became less sensitive to AMG-458 after small interfering RNA knockdown of c-Met; there was no change in A549. After overexpression of c-Met, A549 became more sensitive, while H441 became less sensitive to AMG-458. Conclusions: AMG-458 was more effective in cells that expressed higher levels of c-Met/p-Met, suggesting that higher levels of c-Met and p-Met in NSCLC tissue may classify a subset of tumors that are more sensitive to molecular therapies against this receptor.

  7. Promise and challenges on the horizon of MET-targeted cancer therapeutics

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yu-Wen

    2015-01-01

    MET (MNNG HOS transforming gene) is one of the receptor tyrosine kinases whose activities are frequently altered in human cancers, and it is a promising therapeutic target. MET is normally activated by its lone ligand, hepatocyte growth factor (HGF), eliciting its diverse biological activities that are crucial for development and physiology. Alteration of the HGF-MET axis results in inappropriate activation of a cascade of intracellular signaling pathways that contributes to hallmark cancer events including deregulated cell proliferation and survival, angiogenesis, invasion, and metastasis. Aberrant MET activation results from autocrine or paracrine mechanisms due to overexpression of HGF and/or MET or from a ligand-independent mechanism caused by activating mutations or amplification of MET. The literature provides compelling evidence for the role of MET signaling in cancer development and progression. The finding that cancer cells often use MET activation to escape therapies targeting other pathways strengthens the argument for MET-targeted therapeutics. Diverse strategies have been explored to deactivate MET signaling, and compounds and biologics targeting the MET pathway are in clinical development. Despite promising results from various clinical trials, we are still waiting for true MET-targeted therapeutics in the clinic. This review will explore recent progress and hurdles in the pursuit of MET-targeted cancer drugs and discuss the challenges in such development. PMID:26009700

  8. Regulation of MET by FOXP2, genes implicated in higher cognitive dysfunction and autism risk.

    PubMed

    Mukamel, Zohar; Konopka, Genevieve; Wexler, Eric; Osborn, Gregory E; Dong, Hongmei; Bergman, Mica Y; Levitt, Pat; Geschwind, Daniel H

    2011-08-10

    Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a highly heritable, behaviorally defined, heterogeneous disorder of unknown pathogenesis. Several genetic risk genes have been identified, including the gene encoding the receptor tyrosine kinase MET, which regulates neuronal differentiation and growth. An ASD-associated polymorphism disrupts MET gene transcription, and there are reduced levels of MET protein expression in the mature temporal cortex of subjects with ASD. To address the possible neurodevelopmental contribution of MET to ASD pathogenesis, we examined the expression and transcriptional regulation of MET by a transcription factor, FOXP2, which is implicated in regulation of cognition and language, two functions altered in ASD. MET mRNA expression in the midgestation human fetal cerebral cortex is strikingly restricted, localized to portions of the temporal and occipital lobes. Within the cortical plate of the temporal lobe, the pattern of MET expression is highly complementary to the expression pattern of FOXP2, suggesting the latter may play a role in repression of gene expression. Consistent with this, MET and FOXP2 also are reciprocally expressed by differentiating normal human neuronal progenitor cells (NHNPs) in vitro, leading us to assess whether FOXP2 transcriptionally regulates MET. Indeed, FOXP2 binds directly to the 5' regulatory region of MET, and overexpression of FOXP2 results in transcriptional repression of MET. The expression of MET in restricted human neocortical regions, and its regulation in part by FOXP2, is consistent with genetic evidence for MET contributing to ASD risk.

  9. MicroRNA and MET in lung cancer

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of small non-protein coding RNAs that modulate important cellular functions via their post-transcriptional regulation of messenger RNAs (mRNAs). Recent evidences from multiple tumor types and model systems implicate miRNA dysregulation as a common mechanism of tumorigenesis, cancer progression and resistance to therapy. Several miRNAs are dysregulated in cancers and a single miRNA can have multiple targets involved in different oncogenic pathways. MET, the tyrosine kinase receptor for hepatocyte growth factor (HGF), has a central role in lung cancer development and in acquired resistance to epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) tyrosine kinase inhibitors; it has been predicted and shown to be the target gene of multiple miRNAs, which play a crucial role in controlling its activity in a stimulatory or inhibitory sense. In this review we will focus on the most important and recent studies about the role of miRNAs in the control of MET expression, reporting also the progress made using miRNAs for therapy of lung cancer. PMID:25992367

  10. Materials Evaluation Test Series (METS) 04, 05, and 06

    SciTech Connect

    Zalk, D; Ingram, C; Simmons, L; Arganbright, R; Lyle, J; Wong, K

    2006-03-23

    The purpose of this work is to examine the environmental, safety, health and operational aspects of detonating a confined explosive test apparatus that has been designed to maximize the dynamics of impact on beryllium metal components for Contained Firing Facility (CFF) applications. A combination of experimental collection and evaluation methods were designed and implemented to provide an evaluation of immediately postdetonation by-products reflecting a potential worst-case scenario beryllium aerosolization explosive event. The collective Material Evaluation Test Series (METS) 04 - 06 provided explosive devices designed to scale for the dedicated METS firing tank that would provide a post-detonation internal environment comparable to the CFF. The experimental results provided appropriate information to develop operational parameters to be considered for conducting full-scale beryllium-containing experimental tests with similar designs within CFF and B801A. These operational procedures include the inclusion of chelating agents in pre-shot CFF cardboard containers with a minimum of 600 gallons content, an extended time period post-test before purging the CFF chamber, and an adaptation of approaches toward applications of the scrubber and HEPA systems during the post-shot sequence for an integrated environmental, safety, and health approach. In addition, re-entry and film retrieval procedures will be adapted, in line with abatement techniques for cleaning the chamber, that will be required for work inside a CFF that will contain an elevated concentration of spherical and highly aerosolizable beryllium particulate.

  11. GOME-2 total ozone columns from MetOp-A/MetOp-B and assimilation in the MACC system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hao, N.; Koukouli, M. E.; Inness, A.; Valks, P.; Loyola, D. G.; Zimmer, W.; Balis, D. S.; Zyrichidou, I.; Van Roozendael, M.; Lerot, C.; Spurr, R. J. D.

    2014-09-01

    The two Global Ozone Monitoring Instrument (GOME-2) sensors operated in tandem are flying onboard EUMETSAT's (European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites) MetOp-A and MetOp-B satellites, launched in October 2006 and September 2012 respectively. This paper presents the operational GOME-2/MetOp-A (GOME-2A) and GOME-2/MetOp-B (GOME-2B) total ozone products provided by the EUMETSAT Satellite Application Facility on Ozone and Atmospheric Chemistry Monitoring (O3M-SAF). These products are generated using the latest version of the GOME Data Processor (GDP version 4.7). The enhancements in GDP 4.7, including the application of Brion-Daumont-Malicet ozone absorption cross sections, are presented here. On a global scale, GOME-2B has the same high accuracy as the corresponding GOME-2A products. There is an excellent agreement between the ozone total columns from the two sensors, with GOME-2B values slightly lower with a mean difference of only 0.55±0.29%. First global validation results for 6 months of GOME-2B total ozone using ground-based measurements show that on average the GOME-2B total ozone data obtained with GDP 4.7 are slightly higher than, both, Dobson observations by about 2.0±1.0% and Brewer observations by about 1.0±0.8%. It is concluded that the total ozone columns (TOCs) provided by GOME-2A and GOME-2B are consistent and may be used simultaneously without introducing systematic effects, which has been illustrated for the Antarctic ozone hole on 18 October 2013. GOME-2A total ozone data have been used operationally in the Copernicus atmospheric service project MACC-II (Monitoring Atmospheric Composition and Climate - Interim Implementation) near-real-time (NRT) system since October 2013. The magnitude of the bias correction needed for assimilating GOME-2A ozone is reduced (to about -6 DU in the global mean) when the GOME-2 ozone retrieval algorithm changed to GDP 4.7.

  12. Biology of MET: a double life between normal tissue repair and tumor progression

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    MNNG HOS transforming gene (MET) is a class IV receptor tyrosine kinase, expressed on the surface of epithelial cells. The interaction with the hepatocyte grow factor (HGF) induces MET dimerization and the activation of multiple intracellular pathways leading to cell proliferation, anti-apoptosis, morphogenic differentiation, motility, invasion, and angiogenesis. Knock out mice have demonstrated that MET is necessary for normal embryogenesis including the formation of striate muscles, liver and trophoblastic structures. The overexpression of MET and HGF are common in solid tumors and contribute to determine their growth. Indeed, MET has been cloned as a transforming gene from a chemically induced human osteosarcoma cell line and therefore is considered a proto-oncogene. Germline MET mutations are characteristic of hereditary papillary kidney cancers and MET amplification is observed in tumors including lung and gastric adenocarcinomas. The inhibition of MET signaling is the target for specific drugs that are raising exciting expectation for medical treatment of cancer. PMID:25992381

  13. Amplification of the MET receptor drives resistance to anti-EGFR therapies in colorectal cancer

    PubMed Central

    Bardelli, Alberto; Corso, Simona; Bertotti, Andrea; Hobor, Sebastijan; Valtorta, Emanuele; Siravegna, Giulia; Sartore-Bianchi, Andrea; Scala, Elisa; Cassingena, Andrea; Zecchin, Davide; Apicella, Maria; Migliardi, Giorgia; Galimi, Francesco; Lauricella, Calogero; Zanon, Carlo; Perera, Timothy; Veronese, Silvio; Corti, Giorgio; Amatu, Alessio; Gambacorta, Marcello; Diaz, Luis A.; Sausen, Mark; Velculescu, Victor E.; Comoglio, Paolo; Trusolino, Livio; Di Nicolantonio, Federica; Giordano, Silvia; Siena, Salvatore

    2014-01-01

    EGFR targeted monoclonal antibodies are effective in a subset of metastatic colorectal tumors (mCRC). Inevitably, all patients develop resistance, which occurs through emergence of KRAS mutations in approximately 50% of the cases. We show that amplification of the MET proto-oncogene is associated with acquired resistance in patients who do not develop KRAS mutations during anti-EGFR therapy. Amplification of the MET locus was present in circulating tumor DNA before relapse was clinically evident. Functional studies demonstrate that MET activation confers resistance to anti-EGFR therapy both in vitro and in vivo. Notably, in patient-derived CRC xenografts, MET amplification correlated with resistance to EGFR blockade which could be overcome by MET kinase inhibitors. These results highlight the role of MET in mediating primary and secondary resistance to anti-EGFR therapies in CRC and encourage the use of MET inhibitors in patients displaying resistance as a result of MET amplification. PMID:23729478

  14. Lack of neural compensatory mechanisms of BDNF val66met met carriers and APOE E4 carriers in healthy aging, mild cognitive impairment, and Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Gomar, Jesus J; Conejero-Goldberg, Concepcion; Huey, Edward D; Davies, Peter; Goldberg, Terry E

    2016-03-01

    Compromises in compensatory neurobiologic mechanisms due to aging and/or genetic factors (i.e., APOE gene) may influence brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) val66met polymorphism effects on temporal lobe morphometry and memory performance. We studied 2 cohorts from Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative: 175 healthy subjects and 222 with prodromal and established Alzheimer's disease. Yearly structural magnetic resonance imaging and cognitive performance assessments were carried out over 3 years of follow-up. Both cohorts had similar BDNF Val/Val and Met allele carriers' (including both Val/Met and Met/Met individuals) distribution. In healthy subjects, a significant trend for thinner posterior cingulate and precuneus cortices was detected in Met carriers compared to Val homozygotes in APOE E4 carriers, with large and medium effect sizes, respectively. The mild cognitive impairment/Alzheimer's disease cohort showed a longitudinal decline in entorhinal thickness in BDNF Met carriers compared to Val/Val in APOE E4 carriers, with effect sizes ranging from medium to large. In addition, an effect of BDNF genotype was found in APOE E4 carriers for episodic memory (logical memory and ADAS-Cog) and semantic fluency measures, with Met carriers performing worse in all cases. These findings suggest a lack of compensatory mechanisms in BDNF Met carriers and APOE E4 carriers in healthy and pathological aging. PMID:26923413

  15. The MetLife Survey of the American Teacher: Preparing Students for College and Careers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    MetLife, Inc., 2011

    2011-01-01

    "The MetLife Survey of the American Teacher: Preparing Students for College and Careers" was conducted by Harris Interactive and is the twenty-seventh in a series sponsored annually by MetLife since 1984 to give voice to those closest to the classroom. This MetLife Survey examines the priority that all students graduate from high school prepared…

  16. The MetLife Survey of the American Teacher: Collaborating for Student Success

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    MetLife, Inc., 2010

    2010-01-01

    "The MetLife Survey of the American Teacher: Collaborating for Student Success (2009)" was conducted by Harris Interactive and is twenty-sixth in a series sponsored by MetLife since 1984 to give voice to those closest to the classroom. This "MetLife Survey" examines the views of teachers, principals and students about respective roles and…

  17. A novel antagonist anti-cMet antibody with antitumor activities targeting both ligand-dependent and ligand-independent c-Met receptors.

    PubMed

    Gonzalez, Alexandra; Broussas, Matthieu; Beau-Larvor, Charlotte; Haeuw, Jean-François; Boute, Nicolas; Robert, Alain; Champion, Thierry; Beck, Alain; Bailly, Christian; Corvaïa, Nathalie; Goetsch, Liliane

    2016-10-15

    c-Met is a prototypic member of a sub-family of RTKs. Inappropriate c-Met activation plays a crucial role in tumor formation, proliferation and metastasis. Using a key c-Met dimerization assay, a set of 12 murine whole IgG1 monoclonal antibodies was selected and a lead candidate, m224G11, was humanized by CDR-grafting and engineered to generate a divalent full antagonist humanized IgG1 antibody, hz224G11. Neither m224G11 nor hz224G11 bind to the murine c-Met receptor. Their antitumor activity was investigated in vitro in a set of experiments consistent with the reported pleiotropic effects mediated by c-Met and, in vivo, using several human tumor xenograft models. Both m224G11 and hz224G11 exhibited nanomolar affinities for the receptor and inhibited HGF binding, c-Met phosphorylation, and receptor dimerization in a similar fashion, resulting in a profound inhibition of all c-Met functions in vitro. These effects were presumably responsible for the inhibition of c-Met's major functions including cell proliferation, migration, invasion scattering, morphogenesis and angiogenesis. In addition to these in vitro properties, hz224G11 dramatically inhibits the growth of autocrine, partially autophosphorylated and c-Met amplified cell lines in vivo. Pharmacological studies performed on Hs746T gastric cancer xenografts demonstrate that hz224G11 strongly downregulates c-Met expression and phosphorylation. It also decreases the tumor mitotic index (Ki67) and induces apoptosis. Taken together, the in vitro and in vivo data suggest that hz224G11 is a promising candidate for the treatment of tumors. This antibody, now known as ABT-700 and currently in Phase I clinical trials, may provide a novel therapeutic approach to c-Met-expressing cancers.

  18. Metallography at the Met Lab -- The first fifty years

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, R.H.

    1995-12-31

    The Met Lab at the University of Chicago was established to build the world`s first nuclear reactor. The object was to see if a pile (CP-1) could be built to create a sustained chain reaction, i.e., controlled nuclear fission. New materials of the very best quality were needed and people of many skills worked together to achieve the goal as quickly as possible. This is the story of a select group of people who were scientific and engineering pioneers in this new field. Research continued at new sites on more advanced reactors and cooling systems. Many problems were encountered in the fabrication of reactor components, and metallography was a crucial method of analyzing the reactions and quality of consolidation. 1996 will be the 50th anniversary of the beginning of the National Laboratories, so it is appropriate to commemorate and recall some pioneering achievements.

  19. MetNH3: Metrology for ammonia in ambient air

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Braban, Christine; Twigg, Marsailidh; Tang, Sim; Leuenberger, Daiana; Ferracci, Valerio; Martin, Nick; Pascale, Celine; Hieta, Tuomas; Pogany, Andrea; Persijn, Stefan; van Wijk, Janneke; Gerwig, Holger; Wirtze, Klaus; Tiebe, Carlo; Balslev-Harder, David; Niederhausen, Bernhardt

    2015-04-01

    Measuring ammonia in ambient air is a sensitive and priority issue due to its harmful effects on human health and ecosystems. The European Directive 2001/81/EC on 'National Emission Ceilings for Certain Atmospheric Pollutants (NEC)' regulates ammonia emissions in the member states. However, there is a lack of regulation to ensure reliable ammonia measurements namely in applicable analytical technology, maximum allowed uncertainty, quality assurance and quality control (QC/QA) procedures as well as in the infrastructure to attain metrological traceability. Validated ammonia measurement data of high quality from air monitoring networks are vitally important for identifying changes due to implementations of environment policies, for understanding where the uncertainties in current emission inventories are derived from and for providing independent verification of atmospheric model predictions. The new EURAMET project MetNH3 aims to develop improved reference gas mixtures by static and dynamic gravimetric generation methods, develop and characterise laser based optical spectrometric standards and establish the transfer from high-accuracy standards to field applicable methods. MetNH3started in June 2014 and in this presentation the first results from the metrological characterisation of a commercially available cavity ring-down spectrometer (CRDS) will be discussed. Also first tests and results from a new design, Controlled Atmosphere Test Facility (CATFAC), which is to be characterised and used to validate the performance of diffusive samplers, denuders and on-line instruments, will be reported. CAFTEC can be used to control test parameters such as ammonia concentration, relative humidity and wind speed. Outline plans for international laboratory and field intercomparisons in 2016 will be presented.

  20. Statin action favors normalization of the plasma lipidome in the atherogenic mixed dyslipidemia of MetS: potential relevance to statin-associated dysglycemia.

    PubMed

    Meikle, Peter J; Wong, Gerard; Tan, Ricardo; Giral, Philippe; Robillard, Paul; Orsoni, Alexina; Hounslow, Neil; Magliano, Dianna J; Shaw, Jonathan E; Curran, Joanne E; Blangero, John; Kingwell, Bronwyn A; Chapman, M John

    2015-12-01

    The impact of statin treatment on the abnormal plasma lipidome of mixed dyslipidemic patients with metabolic syndrome (MetS), a group at increased risk of developing diabetes, was evaluated. Insulin-resistant hypertriglyceridemic hypertensive obese males (n = 12) displaying MetS were treated with pitavastatin (4 mg/day) for 180 days; healthy normolipidemic age-matched nonobese males (n = 12) acted as controls. Statin treatment substantially normalized triglyceride (-41%), remnant cholesterol (-55%), and LDL-cholesterol (-39%), with minor effect on HDL-cholesterol (+4%). Lipidomic analysis, normalized to nonHDL-cholesterol in order to probe statin-induced differences in molecular composition independently of reduction in plasma cholesterol, revealed increment in 132 of 138 lipid species that were subnormal at baseline and significantly shifted toward the control group on statin treatment. Increment in alkyl- and alkenylphospholipids (plasmalogens) was prominent, and consistent with significant statin-induced increase in plasma polyunsaturated fatty acid levels. Comparison of the statin-mediated lipidomic changes in MetS with the abnormal plasma lipidomic profile characteristic of prediabetes and T2D in the Australian Diabetes, Obesity, and Lifestyle Study and San Antonio Family Heart Study cohorts by hypergeometric analysis revealed a significant shift toward the lipid profile of controls, indicative of a marked trend toward a normolipidemic phenotype. Pitavastatin attenuated the abnormal plasma lipidome of MetS patients typical of prediabetes and T2D.

  1. Coordination of platinum therapeutic agents to met-rich motifs of human copper transport protein1.

    PubMed

    Crider, Sarah E; Holbrook, Robert J; Franz, Katherine J

    2010-01-01

    Platinum therapeutic agents are widely used in the treatment of several forms of cancer. Various mechanisms for the transport of the drugs have been proposed including passive diffusion across the cellular membrane and active transport via proteins. The copper transport protein Ctr1 is responsible for high affinity copper uptake but has also been implicated in the transport of cisplatin into cells. Human hCtr1 contains two methionine-rich Mets motifs on its extracellular N-terminus that are potential platinum-binding sites: the first one encompasses residues 7-14 with amino acid sequence Met-Gly-Met-Ser-Tyr-Met-Asp-Ser and the second one spans residues 39-46 with sequence Met-Met-Met-Met-Pro-Met-Thr-Phe. In these studies, we use liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry to compare the binding interactions between cisplatin, carboplatin and oxaliplatin with synthetic peptides corresponding to hCtr1 Mets motifs. The interactions of cisplatin and carboplatin with Met-rich motifs that contain three or more methionines result in removal of the carrier ligands of both platinum complexes. In contrast, oxaliplatin retains its cyclohexyldiamine ligand upon platinum coordination to the peptide.

  2. Total column water vapour measurements from GOME-2 MetOp-A and MetOp-B

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grossi, M.; Valks, P.; Loyola, D.; Aberle, B.; Slijkhuis, S.; Wagner, T.; Beirle, S.; Lang, R.

    2015-03-01

    Knowledge of the total column water vapour (TCWV) global distribution is fundamental for climate analysis and weather monitoring. In this work, we present the retrieval algorithm used to derive the operational TCWV from the GOME-2 sensors aboard EUMETSAT's MetOp-A and MetOp-B satellites and perform an extensive inter-comparison in order to evaluate their consistency and temporal stability. For the analysis, the GOME-2 data sets are generated by DLR in the framework of the EUMETSAT O3M-SAF project using the GOME Data Processor (GDP) version 4.7. The retrieval algorithm is based on a classical Differential Optical Absorption Spectroscopy (DOAS) method and combines a H2O and O2 retrieval for the computation of the trace gas vertical column density. We introduce a further enhancement in the quality of the H2O total column by optimizing the cloud screening and developing an empirical correction in order to eliminate the instrument scan angle dependencies. The overall consistency between measurements from the newer GOME-2 instrument on board of the MetOp-B platform and the GOME-2/MetOp-A data is evaluated in the overlap period (December 2012-June 2014). Furthermore, we compare GOME-2 results with independent TCWV data from the ECMWF ERA-Interim reanalysis, with SSMIS satellite measurements during the full period January 2007-June 2014 and against the combined SSM/I + MERIS satellite data set developed in the framework of the ESA DUE GlobVapour project (January 2007-December 2008). Global mean biases as small as ±0.035 g cm-2 are found between GOME-2A and all other data sets. The combined SSM/I-MERIS sample and the ECMWF ERA-Interim data set are typically drier than the GOME-2 retrievals, while on average GOME-2 data overestimate the SSMIS measurements by only 0.006 g cm-2. However, the size of these biases is seasonally dependent. Monthly average differences can be as large as 0.1 g cm-2, based on the analysis against SSMIS measurements, which include only data over

  3. Quantitative imaging for development of companion diagnostics to drugs targeting HGF/MET

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Fangjin; Ma, Zhaoxuan; Pollan, Sara; Yuan, Xiaopu; Swartwood, Steven; Gertych, Arkadiusz; Rodriguez, Maria; Mallick, Jayati; Bhele, Sanica; Guindi, Maha; Dhall, Deepti; Walts, Ann E; Bose, Shikha; de Peralta Venturina, Mariza; Marchevsky, Alberto M; Luthringer, Daniel J; Feller, Stephan M; Berman, Benjamin; Freeman, Michael R; Alvord, W Gregory; Vande Woude, George; Amin, Mahul B

    2016-01-01

    Abstract The limited clinical success of anti‐HGF/MET drugs can be attributed to the lack of predictive biomarkers that adequately select patients for treatment. We demonstrate here that quantitative digital imaging of formalin fixed paraffin embedded tissues stained by immunohistochemistry can be used to measure signals from weakly staining antibodies and provides new opportunities to develop assays for detection of MET receptor activity. To establish a biomarker panel of MET activation, we employed seven antibodies measuring protein expression in the HGF/MET pathway in 20 cases and up to 80 cores from 18 human cancer types. The antibodies bind to epitopes in the extra (EC)‐ and intracellular (IC) domains of MET (MET4EC, SP44_METIC, D1C2_METIC), to MET‐pY1234/pY1235, a marker of MET kinase activation, as well as to HGF, pSFK or pMAPK. Expression of HGF was determined in tumour cells (T_HGF) as well as in stroma surrounding cancer (St_HGF). Remarkably, MET4EC correlated more strongly with pMET (r = 0.47) than SP44_METIC (r = 0.21) or D1C2_METIC (r = 0.08) across 18 cancer types. In addition, correlation coefficients of pMET and T_HGF (r = 0.38) and pMET and pSFK (r = 0.56) were high. Prediction models of MET activation reveal cancer‐type specific differences in performance of MET4EC, SP44_METIC and anti‐HGF antibodies. Thus, we conclude that assays to predict the response to HGF/MET inhibitors require a cancer‐type specific antibody selection and should be developed in those cancer types in which they are employed clinically. PMID:27785366

  4. MET expression and copy number heterogeneity in nonsquamous non-small cell lung cancer (nsNSCLC)

    PubMed Central

    Taus, Álvaro; Pijuan, Lara; Arumí, Miriam; Lorenzo, Marta; Menéndez, Silvia; Cañadas, Israel; Albanell, Joan; Serrano, Sergio; Espinet, Blanca; Salido, Marta; Arriola, Edurne

    2015-01-01

    Objective We aimed to assess MET intratumoral heterogeneity and its potential impact on biomarker-based patient selection as well as potential surrogate biomarkers of MET activation. Methods Our study included 120 patients with non-squamous Non-small-cell Lung Cancer (nsNSCLC), of which 47 were incorporated in tissue microarrays (TMA). Four morphologically distinct tumor areas were selected to assess MET heterogeneity. MET positivity by immunohistochemistry (IHC) was defined as an above-median H-score and by +2/+3 staining intensity in >50% of tumor cells (Metmab criteria). MET FISH positivity was defined by MET/CEP7 ratio ≥ 2.0 and/or MET ≥ 5.0. MET staining pattern (cytoplasmic vs. membranous) and mesenchymal markers were investigated as surrogates of MET activation. Results Median MET H-score was 140 (range 0–400) and 47.8% of patients were MET positive by Metmab criteria. Eight cases (6.8%) were MET FISH positive and showed higher H-scores (p = 0.021). MET positivity by IHC changed in up to 40% of cases among different tumor areas, and MET amplification in 25–50%. Cytoplasmic MET staining and positivity for vimentin predicted poor survival (p = 0.042 and 0.047, respectively). Conclusions MET status is highly heterogeneous among different nsNSCLC tumor areas, hindering adequate patient selection for MET-targeted therapies. MET cytoplasmic staining and vimentin might represent surrogate markers for MET activation. PMID:26041880

  5. M-COPA, a Golgi Disruptor, Inhibits Cell Surface Expression of MET Protein and Exhibits Antitumor Activity against MET-Addicted Gastric Cancers.

    PubMed

    Ohashi, Yoshimi; Okamura, Mutsumi; Hirosawa, Asaka; Tamaki, Naomi; Akatsuka, Akinobu; Wu, Kuo-Ming; Choi, Hyeong-Wook; Yoshimatsu, Kentaro; Shiina, Isamu; Yamori, Takao; Dan, Shingo

    2016-07-01

    The Golgi apparatus is responsible for transporting, processing, and sorting numerous proteins in the cell, including cell surface-expressed receptor tyrosine kinases (RTK). The small-molecule compound M-COPA [2-methylcoprophilinamide (AMF-26)] disrupts the Golgi apparatus by inhibiting the activation of Arf1, resulting in suppression of tumor growth. Here, we report an evaluation of M-COPA activity against RTK-addicted cancers, focusing specifically on human gastric cancer (GC) cells with or without MET amplification. As expected, the MET-addicted cell line MKN45 exhibited a better response to M-COPA than cell lines without MET amplification. Upon M-COPA treatment, cell surface expression of MET was downregulated with a concurrent accumulation of its precursor form. M-COPA also reduced levels of the phosphorylated form of MET along with the downstream signaling molecules Akt and S6. Similar results were obtained in additional GC cell lines with amplification of MET or the FGF receptor FGFR2 MKN45 murine xenograft experiments demonstrated the antitumor activity of M-COPA in vivo Taken together, our results offer an initial preclinical proof of concept for the use of M-COPA as a candidate treatment option for MET-addicted GC, with broader implications for targeting the Golgi apparatus as a novel cancer therapeutic approach. Cancer Res; 76(13); 3895-903. ©2016 AACR. PMID:27197184

  6. Wild-type p53 controls cell motility and invasion by dual regulation of MET expression

    PubMed Central

    Hwang, Chang-Il; Matoso, Andres; Corney, David C.; Flesken-Nikitin, Andrea; Körner, Stefanie; Wang, Wei; Boccaccio, Carla; Thorgeirsson, Snorri S.; Comoglio, Paolo M.; Hermeking, Heiko; Nikitin, Alexander Yu.

    2011-01-01

    Recent observations suggest that p53 mutations are responsible not only for growth of primary tumors but also for their dissemination. However, mechanisms involved in p53-mediated control of cell motility and invasion remain poorly understood. By using the primary ovarian surface epithelium cell culture, we show that conditional inactivation of p53 or expression of its mutant forms results in overexpression of MET receptor tyrosine kinase, a crucial regulator of invasive growth. At the same time, cells acquire increased MET-dependent motility and invasion. Wild-type p53 negatively regulates MET expression by two mechanisms: (i) transactivation of MET-targeting miR-34, and (ii) inhibition of SP1 binding to MET promoter. Both mechanisms are not functional in p53 absence, but mutant p53 proteins retain partial MET promoter suppression. Accordingly, MET overexpression, cell motility, and invasion are particularly high in p53-null cells. These results identify MET as a critical effector of p53 and suggest that inhibition of MET may be an effective antimetastatic approach to treat cancers with p53 mutations. These results also show that the extent of advanced cancer traits, such as invasion, may be determined by alterations in individual components of p53/MET regulatory network. PMID:21831840

  7. Mutant p53 enhances MET trafficking and signalling to drive cell scattering and invasion.

    PubMed

    Muller, P A J; Trinidad, A G; Timpson, P; Morton, J P; Zanivan, S; van den Berghe, P V E; Nixon, C; Karim, S A; Caswell, P T; Noll, J E; Coffill, C R; Lane, D P; Sansom, O J; Neilsen, P M; Norman, J C; Vousden, K H

    2013-03-01

    Tumour-derived mutant p53 proteins promote invasion, in part, by enhancing Rab coupling protein (RCP)-dependent receptor recycling. Here we identified MET as an RCP-binding protein and showed that mutant p53 promoted MET recycling. Mutant p53-expressing cells were more sensitive to hepatocyte growth factor, the ligand for MET, leading to enhanced MET signalling, invasion and cell scattering that was dependent on both MET and RCP. In cells expressing the p53 family member TAp63, inhibition of TAp63 also lead to cell scattering and MET-dependent invasion. However, in cells that express very low levels of TAp63, the ability of mutant p53 to promote MET-dependent cell scattering was independent of TAp63. Taken together, our data show that mutant p53 can enhance MET signalling to promote cell scattering and invasion through both TAp63-dependent and -independent mechanisms. MET has a predominant role in metastatic progression and the identification of mechanisms through which mutations in p53 can drive MET signalling may help to identify and direct therapy.

  8. Dynamic expression and localization of c-MET isoforms in the developing rat pancreas.

    PubMed

    Wu, Yulong; Cheng, Mei; Shi, Zhen; Feng, Zhenqing; Guan, Xiaohong

    2014-01-01

    Pancreata from Sprague Dawley rats of different developmental stages were studied to determine the expression and cellular localization of different c-MET isoforms in the developing rat pancreas. Pancreatic mRNA and protein expression levels of c-MET at different developmental stages from embryo to adult were detected by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction and by western blotting. To identify the cellular localization of c-MET protein in the developing rat pancreas, double immunofluorescent staining was performed using antibodies for cell type-specific markers and for c-MET. The expression of two isoforms of c-MET (190 kDa and 170 kDa) coincided with the development of the pancreas. The 190 kDa isoform of c-MET is expressed during embryonic stages, and its expression is replaced by the expression of the 170 kDa isoform as the pancreas develops. Only the 170 kDa isoform is expressed in the adult rat pancreas. Throughout all stages of pancreatic development, c-MET is expressed by vimentin-positive cells. In contrast, c-MET staining was stronger in rat pancreata from newborn to adult stages and overlapped with insulin-positive beta-cells. The dynamic expression and localization of different c-MET isoforms in the rat pancreas during different developmental stages indicates that distinct c-MET isoform might be involved in different aspects of pancreatic development.

  9. Mechanistic Support for Combined MET and AR Blockade in Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer.

    PubMed

    Qiao, Yuanyuan; Feng, Felix Y; Wang, Yugang; Cao, Xuhong; Han, Sumin; Wilder-Romans, Kari; Navone, Nora M; Logothetis, Christopher; Taichman, Russell S; Keller, Evan T; Palapattu, Ganesh S; Alva, Ajjai S; Smith, David C; Tomlins, Scott A; Chinnaiyan, Arul M; Morgan, Todd M

    2016-01-01

    A recent phase III trial of the MET kinase inhibitor cabozantinib in men with castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) failed to meet its primary survival end point; however, most men with CRPC have intact androgen receptor (AR) signaling. As previous work supports negative regulation of MET by AR signaling, we hypothesized that intact AR signaling may have limited the efficacy of cabozantinib in some of these patients. To assess the role of AR signaling on MET inhibition, we first performed an in silico analysis of human CRPC tissue samples stratified by AR signaling status ((+) or (-)), which identified MET expression as markedly increased in AR(-) samples. In vitro, AR signaling inhibition in AR(+) CRPC models increased MET expression and resulted in susceptibility to ligand (HGF) activation. Likewise, MET inhibition was only effective in blocking cancer phenotypes in cells with MET overexpression. Using multiple AR(+) CRPC in vitro and in vivo models, we showed that combined cabozantinib and enzalutamide (AR antagonist) treatment was more efficacious than either inhibitor alone. These data provide a compelling rationale to combine AR and MET inhibition in CRPC and may explain the negative results of the phase III cabozantinib study in CRPC. Similarly, the expression of MET in AR(-) disease, whether due to AR inhibition or loss of AR signaling, suggests potential utility for MET inhibition in select patients with AR therapy resistance and in AR(-) prostate cancer.

  10. Tumor and Plasma Met Levels in Non-Metastatic Prostate Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Kaye, Deborah R.; Pinto, Peter A.; Cecchi, Fabiola; Reilly, Joseph; Semerjian, Alice; Rabe, Daniel C.; Gupta, Gopal; Choyke, Peter L.

    2016-01-01

    Objective To measure Met protein content in prostate biopsies guided by fused magnetic resonance and ultrasound imaging, and to measure soluble Met (sMet) protein concentration in plasma samples from patients presenting evidence of prostate cancer. Patients and Methods 345 patients had plasma samples drawn prior to image-guided biopsy of the prostate. Of these, 32% had benign biopsies. Of the 236 that were positive for prostate adenocarcinoma (PCa), 132 treated by total prostatectomy had Gleason scores of 6 (17%), 7, (55%), 8 (16%), or 9–10 (12%). 23% had evidence of local invasion. Plasma samples were also obtained from 80 healthy volunteers. Tissue Met and plasma sMet were measured by two-site immunoassay; values were compared among clinically defined groups using non-parametric statistical tests to determine significant differences or correlations. Results PCa tumor Met correlated significantly with plasma sMet, but median values were similar among benign and malignant groups. Median plasma sMet values were also similar among those groups, although both medians were significantly above normal. Median Met content in primary PCa tumors and sMet concentrations were independent of Gleason score, final pathologic stage and age. Conclusion Plasma sMet is not predictive of PCa or its severity in patients with organ-confined or locally invasive disease. Quantitative analysis of Met protein content and activation state in PCa tumor biopsy samples was highly feasible and may have value in follow-up to genomic and/or transcriptomic-based screens that show evidence of oncogenically relevant MET gene features that occur at relatively low frequency in non-metastatic PCa. PMID:27300295

  11. Cellular and molecular mechanisms of HGF/Met in the cardiovascular system.

    PubMed

    Gallo, Simona; Sala, Valentina; Gatti, Stefano; Crepaldi, Tiziana

    2015-12-01

    Met tyrosine kinase receptor, also known as c-Met, is the HGF (hepatocyte growth factor) receptor. The HGF/Met pathway has a prominent role in cardiovascular remodelling after tissue injury. The present review provides a synopsis of the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying the effects of HGF/Met in the heart and blood vessels. In vivo, HGF/Met function is particularly important for the protection of the heart in response to both acute and chronic insults, including ischaemic injury and doxorubicin-induced cardiotoxicity. Accordingly, conditional deletion of Met in cardiomyocytes results in impaired organ defence against oxidative stress. After ischaemic injury, activation of Met provides strong anti-apoptotic stimuli for cardiomyocytes through PI3K (phosphoinositide 3-kinase)/Akt and MAPK (mitogen-activated protein kinase) cascades. Recently, we found that HGF/Met is also important for autophagy regulation in cardiomyocytes via the mTOR (mammalian target of rapamycin) pathway. HGF/Met induces proliferation and migration of endothelial cells through Rac1 (Ras-related C3 botulinum toxin substrate 1) activation. In fibroblasts, HGF/Met antagonizes the actions of TGFβ1 (transforming growth factor β1) and AngII (angiotensin II), thus preventing fibrosis. Moreover, HGF/Met influences the inflammatory response of macrophages and the immune response of dendritic cells, indicating its protective function against atherosclerotic and autoimmune diseases. The HGF/Met axis also plays an important role in regulating self-renewal and myocardial regeneration through the enhancement of cardiac progenitor cells. HGF/Met has beneficial effects against myocardial infarction and endothelial dysfunction: the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying repair function in the heart and blood vessels are common and include pro-angiogenic, anti-inflammatory and anti-fibrotic actions. Thus administration of HGF or HGF mimetics may represent a promising therapeutic agent for the

  12. MET is required for the recruitment of anti-tumoural neutrophils

    PubMed Central

    Finisguerra, Veronica; Di Conza, Giusy; Di Matteo, Mario; Serneels, Jens; Costa, Sandra; Thompson, A.A. Roger; Wauters, Els; Walmsley, Sarah; Prenen, Hans; Granot, Zvi; Casazza, Andrea; Mazzone, Massimiliano

    2015-01-01

    Mutations or amplification of the MET proto-oncogene are involved in the pathogenesis of several tumours1-4, which rely on the constitutive engagement of this pathway for their growth and survival1,5. However, MET is expressed not only by cancer cells but also by tumour-associated stromal cells although its precise role in this compartment is not well characterized6-11. Here, we show that MET is required for neutrophil chemoattraction and cytotoxicity in response to its ligand HGF. Met deletion in neutrophils enhances tumour growth and metastasis. This phenotype correlates with reduced neutrophil infiltration to both primary tumour and metastatic site. Similarly, Met is necessary for neutrophil transudation during colitis, skin rash or peritonitis. Mechanistically, Met is induced by tumour-derived TNF-α or other inflammatory stimuli in both mouse and human neutrophils. This induction is instrumental for neutrophil transmigration across an activated endothelium and iNOS production upon HGF stimulation. Consequently, HGF/MET-dependent nitric oxide release by neutrophils promotes cancer cell killing, which abates tumour growth and metastasis. Following systemic administration of a MET kinase inhibitor, we prove that the therapeutic benefit of MET targeting in cancer cells is partly countered by the pro-tumoural effect rising from MET blockade in neutrophils. Our work identifies an unprecedented role of MET in neutrophils, suggests a potential “Achilles’ heel” of MET-targeted therapies in cancer, and supports the rationale for evaluating anti-MET drugs in certain inflammatory diseases. PMID:25985180

  13. Effects of met-enkephalin on the mechanical activity and distribution of met-enkephalin-like immunoreactivity in the cat small intestine.

    PubMed

    Radomirov, R; Venkova, K; Davidoff, M; Pencheva, N

    1990-01-01

    Naloxone-dependent effects of Met-enkephalin (10(-8) M) on the spontaneous and electrically induced mechanical activities were studied in longitudinal and circular preparations isolated from the cat duodenum, jejunum and ileum. Met-Enkephalin changed the spontaneous activity of all preparations tested with the exception of the circular preparations from the ileum. Met-Enkephalin-induced responses of the longitudinal preparations from the ileum were abolished by treatment with tetrodotoxin (10(-7) M), while the responses of both longitudinal and circular preparations from the duodenum and jejunum were only partially depressed, being resistant to tetrodotoxin components. The latter were most pronounced in the duodenum. The neurogenic electrically induced (0.5 msec, 5 Hz, 150 pulses) responses of all the preparations consisted mainly of contractile components which were significantly and naloxone-dependently reduced by Met-enkephalin (10(-8) M). The contractile components of the responses, which were reduced by Met-enkephalin, were entirely abolished by atropine (3 x 10(-6) M). Both Met-enkephalin and atropine inhibitory effects on the neurogenic responses were more pronounced in the ileum. Met-Enkephalin was found in nerve fibers of the myenteric plexus distributed mainly among the circular muscle. Single immunoreactive nerve fibers were observed in the longitudinal muscle layer of the duodenum but not in the jejunum and ileum. The distribution of Met-enkephalin-like immunoreactivity along the small intestine did not show significant differences among the three intestinal regions tested. The results obtained suggest that Met-enkephalin can modulate the mechanical activity of the cat small intestine, inhibiting cholinergic transmission and/or activating smooth muscle opioid receptors.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  14. The ABCB1, rs9282564, AG and TT Genotypes and the COMT, rs4680, AA Genotype are Less Frequent in Deceased Patients with Opioid Addiction than in Living Patients with Opioid Addiction.

    PubMed

    Christoffersen, Dorte J; Damkier, Per; Feddersen, Søren; Möller, Sören; Thomsen, Jørgen L; Brasch-Andersen, Charlotte; Brøsen, Kim

    2016-10-01

    Sudden death due to acute intoxication occurs frequently in patients with opioid addiction (OA). To examine whether certain genotypes were associated with this, we examined the frequencies of 29 SNPs located in candidate genes related to opioid pharmacology: ABCB1, OPRM1, UGT2B7, CYP3A5, CYP2B6, CYP2C19, CYP2D6, COMT, KCNJ6 and SCN9A in 274 deceased patients with OA (DOA), 309 living patients with OA (LOA) and in 394 healthy volunteers (HV). The main hypothesis of the study was that subjects homozygous for the variant 3435T in ABCB1 (rs1045642) occur more frequently in DOA than in LOA and HV because morphine and methadone more readily cross the blood barrier in these subjects due to a lower efflux transporter activity of the ABCB1 (p-glycoprotein) transporter. Our results did not support this hypothesis, because no statistically significant difference (p = 0.506) in the frequency of the TT genotype of rs1045642 was observed between the DOA, LOA and HV cohorts. However, for another ABCB1 variant, rs9282564, we found that the frequencies of the AG and TT genotypes were 13, 21 and 25% in DOA, LOA and HV, respectively, and after correcting for age, sex and multiple testing, the differences between DOA and LOA were statistically significantly different (p = 0.027). The COMT rs4680 AA genotype frequencies were 25%, 35% and 31% in DOA, LOA and HV, respectively, and the difference between DOA and LOA was also statistically significant (p = 0.0028). In conclusion, this study generated two hypotheses suggesting possible associations of a reduced risk of death and carrying, respectively, the ABCB1 rs9282564 AG and TT genotypes and the COMT rs4680 AA genotype among patients with OA. These findings should be confirmed in independent cohorts, and if a causal relationship between these variants and fatal poisoning in OA is confirmed, then it may be possible at least in theory to personalize prevention of sudden death in this patient group.

  15. Cloning and characterization of the Pichia pastoris MET2 gene as a selectable marker.

    PubMed

    Thor, Der; Xiong, See; Orazem, Claire C; Kwan, An-Chun; Cregg, James M; Lin-Cereghino, Joan; Lin-Cereghino, Geoff P

    2005-07-01

    We describe the isolation and characterization of a new biosynthetic gene, MET2, from the methylotrophic yeast Pichia pastoris. The predicted product of PpMET2 is significantly similar to its Saccharomyces cerevisiae counterpart, ScMET2, which encodes homoserine-O-transacetylase. The ScMET2 was able to complement the P. pastoris met2 strain; however, the converse was not true. Expression vectors based on PpMET2 for the intracellular and secreted production of foreign proteins and corresponding auxotrophic strains were constructed and tested for use in heterologous expression. The expression vectors and corresponding strains provide greater flexibility when using P. pastoris for recombinant protein expression. PMID:15996626

  16. Fusion Welding of AerMet 100 Alloy

    SciTech Connect

    ENGLEHART, DAVID A.; MICHAEL, JOSEPH R.; NOVOTNY, PAUL M.; ROBINO, CHARLES V.

    1999-08-01

    A database of mechanical properties for weldment fusion and heat-affected zones was established for AerMet{reg_sign}100 alloy, and a study of the welding metallurgy of the alloy was conducted. The properties database was developed for a matrix of weld processes (electron beam and gas-tungsten arc) welding parameters (heat inputs) and post-weld heat treatment (PWHT) conditions. In order to insure commercial utility and acceptance, the matrix was commensurate with commercial welding technology and practice. Second, the mechanical properties were correlated with fundamental understanding of microstructure and microstructural evolution in this alloy. Finally, assessments of optimal weld process/PWHT combinations for cotildent application of the alloy in probable service conditions were made. The database of weldment mechanical properties demonstrated that a wide range of properties can be obtained in welds in this alloy. In addition, it was demonstrated that acceptable welds, some with near base metal properties, could be produced from several different initial heat treatments. This capability provides a means for defining process parameters and PWHT's to achieve appropriate properties for different applications, and provides useful flexibility in design and manufacturing. The database also indicated that an important region in welds is the softened region which develops in the heat-affected zone (HAZ) and analysis within the welding metallurgy studies indicated that the development of this region is governed by a complex interaction of precipitate overaging and austenite formation. Models and experimental data were therefore developed to describe overaging and austenite formation during thermal cycling. These models and experimental data can be applied to essentially any thermal cycle, and provide a basis for predicting the evolution of microstructure and properties during thermal processing.

  17. The role of met-enkephalin in silent myocardial ischemia in diabetic patients.

    PubMed

    Parlapiano, C; Borgia, M C; Tonnarini, G; Campana, E; Giancaspro, G; Pantone, P; Giovanniello, T; Cardarelli, G; Vincentelli, G M; Alegiani, F; Negri, M

    2001-01-01

    Met-enkephalin plasma levels were evaluated in 20 cardioischemic diabetic patients. All the patients had ECG ischemic signs. Ten patients with diabetic autonomic neuropathy, experienced no pain during myocarial ischemia. Met-enkephalin levels in the diabetic patients with silent myiocardial ischemia were significantly lower compared to those in the symptomatic patients. This demonstrates that the absence of myocardial ischemic pain in neuropathic diabetic patients is not accounted for by met-enkephalin action. PMID:11958273

  18. Detection of MET Gene Copy Number in Cancer Samples Using the Droplet Digital PCR Method

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yanni; Tang, En-Tzu; Du, Zhiqiang

    2016-01-01

    Purpose The analysis of MET gene copy number (CN) has been considered to be a potential biomarker to predict the response to MET-targeted therapies in various cancers. However, the current standard methods to determine MET CN are SNP 6.0 in the genomic DNA of cancer cell lines and fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) in tumor models, respectively, which are costly and require advanced technical skills and result in relatively subjective judgments. Therefore, we employed a novel method, droplet digital PCR (ddPCR), to determine the MET gene copy number with high accuracy and precision. Methods The genomic DNA of cancer cell lines or tumor models were tested and compared with the MET gene CN and MET/CEN-7 ratio determined by SNP 6.0 and FISH, respectively. Results In cell lines, the linear association of the MET CN detected by ddPCR and SNP 6.0 is strong (Pearson correlation = 0.867). In tumor models, the MET CN detected by ddPCR was significantly different between the MET gene amplification and non-amplification groups according to FISH (mean: 15.4 vs 2.1; P = 0.044). Given that MET gene amplification is defined as MET CN >5.5 by ddPCR, the concordance rate between ddPCR and FISH was 98.0%, and Cohen's kappa coefficient was 0.760 (95% CI, 0.498–1.000; P <0.001). Conclusions The results demonstrated that the ddPCR method has the potential to quantify the MET gene copy number with high precision and accuracy as compared with the results from SNP 6.0 and FISH in cancer cell lines and tumor samples, respectively. PMID:26765781

  19. Activation of HER family members in gastric carcinoma cells mediates resistance to MET inhibition

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Gastric cancer is the second leading cause of cancer mortality in the world. The receptor tyrosine kinase MET is constitutively activated in many gastric cancers and its expression is strictly required for survival of some gastric cancer cells. Thus, MET is considered a good candidate for targeted therapeutic intervention in this type of tumor, and MET inhibitors recently entered clinical trials. One of the major problems of therapies targeting tyrosine kinases is that many tumors are not responsive to treatment or eventually develop resistance to the drugs. Perspective studies are thus mandatory to identify the molecular mechanisms that could cause resistance to these therapies. Results Our in vitro and in vivo results demonstrate that, in MET-addicted gastric cancer cells, the activation of HER (Human Epidermal Receptor) family members induces resistance to MET silencing or inhibition by PHA-665752 (a selective kinase inhibitor). We provide molecular evidences highlighting the role of EGFR, HER3, and downstream signaling pathways common to MET and HER family in resistance to MET inhibitors. Moreover, we show that an in vitro generated gastric cancer cell line resistant to MET-inhibition displays overexpression of HER family members, whose activation contributes to maintenance of resistance. Conclusions Our findings predict that gastric cancer tumors bearing constitutive activation of HER family members are poorly responsive to MET inhibition, even if this receptor is constitutively active. Moreover, the appearance of these alterations might also be responsible for the onset of resistance in initially responsive tumors. PMID:20500904

  20. Petrography of Lunar Meteorite MET 01210, A New Basaltic Regolith Breccia

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zeigler, R. A.; Korotev, R. L.; Jolliff, B. L.; Haskin, L. A.

    2005-01-01

    Lunar meteorite MET 01210 (hereafter referred to as MET) is a 22.8 g breccia collected during the 2001 field season in the Meteorite Hills, Antarctica. Although initially classified as an anorthositic breccia, MET is a regolith breccia composed predominantly of very-low-Ti (VLT) basaltic material. Four other brecciated lunar meteorites (NWA 773, QUE 94281, EET 87/96, Yamato 79/98) with a significant VLT basaltic component have been identified. We present here the petrography and bulk major element composition of MET and compare it to previously studied basaltic lunar meteorite breccias.

  1. HGF/MET-directed therapeutics in gastroesophageal cancer: a review of clinical and biomarker development.

    PubMed

    Hack, Stephen P; Bruey, Jean-Marie; Koeppen, Hartmut

    2014-05-30

    Aberrant activation of the HGF/MET signaling axis has been strongly implicated in the malignant transformation and progression of gastroesophageal cancer (GEC). MET receptor overexpression in tumor samples from GEC patients has been consistently correlated with an aggressive metastatic phenotype and poor prognosis. In preclinical GEC models, abrogation of HGF/MET signaling has been shown to induce tumor regression as well as inhibition of metastatic dissemination. Promising clinical results in patient subsets in which MET is overexpressed have spurned several randomized studies of HGF/MET-directed agents, including two pivotal global Phase III trials. Available data highlight the need for predictive biomarkers in order to select patients most likely to benefit from HGF/MET inhibition. In this review, we discuss the current knowledge of mechanisms of MET activation in GEC, the current status of the clinical evaluation of MET-targeted therapies in GEC, characteristics of ongoing randomized GEC trials and the associated efforts to identify and validate biomarkers. We also discuss the considerations and challenges for HGF/MET inhibitor drug development in the GEC setting.

  2. Methionine uptake in Corynebacterium glutamicum by MetQNI and by MetPS, a novel methionine and alanine importer of the NSS neurotransmitter transporter family.

    PubMed

    Trötschel, Christian; Follmann, Martin; Nettekoven, Jeannine A; Mohrbach, Tobias; Forrest, Lucy R; Burkovski, Andreas; Marin, Kay; Krämer, Reinhard

    2008-12-01

    The soil bacterium Corynebacterium glutamicum is a model organism in amino acid biotechnology. Here we present the identification of two different L-methionine uptake systems including the first characterization of a bacterial secondary methionine carrier. The primary carrier MetQNI is a high affinity ABC-type transporter specific for l-methionine. Its expression is under the control of the transcription factor McbR, the global regulator of sulfur metabolism in C. glutamicum. Besides MetQNI, a novel secondary methionine uptake system of the NSS (neurotransmitter:sodium symporter) family was identified and named MetP. The MetP system is characterized by a lower affinity for methionine and uses Na(+) ions for energetic coupling. It is also the main alanine transporter in C. glutamicum and is expressed constitutively. These observations are consistent with models of methionine, alanine, and leucine bound to MetP, derived from the X-ray crystal structure of the LeuT transporter from Aquifex aeolicus. Complementation studies show that MetP consists of two components, a large subunit with 12 predicted transmembrane segments and, surprisingly, an additional subunit with one predicted transmembrane segment only. Thus, this new member of the NSS transporter family adds a novel feature to this class of carriers, namely, the functional dependence on an additional small subunit.

  3. Genetic Basis of the Relationship Between Reproduction and Longevity: A Study on Common Variants of Three Genes in Steroid Hormone Metabolism--CYP17, HSD17B1, and COMT.

    PubMed

    Scarabino, Daniela; Scacchi, Renato; Pinto, Alessandro; Corbo, Rosa Maria

    2015-10-01

    Evolutionary theories of aging predict an antagonistic relationship between fertility and life span in humans, but the genetic basis of this phenomenon is not clear. The variation of three genes in steroid hormone metabolism--CYP17 (rs743572), HSD17B1 (rs 605059), and COMT (rs4680)--was examined to elucidate the genetic basis of the relationship between fertility and life span. A sample of 277 individuals (mean age, 82.9 years) was recruited in 2000. On the basis of mortality data collected in 2009, the sample was divided into two groups of subjects surviving to over 90 years (long-lived) or not (controls). Fertility data (number of children) were collected in the same sample. The HSD17B1 AA genotype was found to be significantly associated (p = 0.0085) with longevity only in the females (estimated odds ratio = 3.77). Because the HSD17B1 AA genotype was also associated with a higher number of children (5.3 ± 2.1) than the other genotypes (p = 0.006), we may infer that HSD17B1 genotypes could exert a positive pleiotropic action on longevity and fertility. CYP17 and COMT gene variation did not influence either life span or fertility. We then searched the literature for genes studied in relation to both reproduction and aging. A review of the studies showed a pleiotropic action for six out of 16 genes and revealed that genes may exert positive, or negative, or antagonistic pleiotropic actions. These potential actions may be modified by such environmental factors such as changing reproductive behaviors, which seem to be able to mitigate or enhance a gene's phenotypic effects.

  4. ASI/MET Within Color-Enhanced Panorama

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1997-01-01

    This is a sub-section of the 'geometrically improved, color enhanced' version of the 360-degree panorama heretofore known as the 'Gallery Pan', the first contiguous, uniform panorama taken by the Imager for Mars Pathfinder (IMP) over the course of Sols 8, 9, and 10. Different regions were imaged at different times over the three Martian days to acquire consistent lighting and shadow conditions for all areas of the panorama.

    The IMP is a stereo imaging system that, in its fully deployed configuration, stands 1.8 meters above the Martian surface, and has a resolution of two millimeters at a range of two meters. In this geometrically improved version of the panorama, distortion due to a 2.5 degree tilt in the IMP camera mast has been removed, effectively flattening the horizon.

    The IMP has color capability provided by 24 selectable filters -- twelve filters per 'eye'. Its red, green, and blue filters were used to take this image. The color was digitally balanced according to the color transmittance capability of a high-resolution TV at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), and is dependent on that device. In this color enhanced version of the panorama, detail in surface features are brought out via changes to saturation and intensity, holding the original hue constant. A threshold was applied to avoid changes to the sky.

    At the bottom of the image, two of the Lander petals are visible. At the extreme right of the image, the Atmospheric Structure Instrument and Meteorology package (ASI/MET) mast, with its three windsocks, is visible.

    Mars Pathfinder is the second in NASA's Discovery program of low-cost spacecraft with highly focused science goals. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA, developed and manages the Mars Pathfinder mission for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington, D.C. JPL is a division of the California Institute of Technology (Caltech). The IMP was developed by the University of Arizona Lunar and Planetary Laboratory under contract

  5. Mulstiscale Stochastic Generator of Multivariate Met-Ocean Time Series

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guanche, Yanira; Mínguez, Roberto; Méndez, Fernando J.

    2013-04-01

    The design of maritime structures requires information on sea state conditions that influence its behavior during its life cycle. In the last decades, there has been a increasing development of sea databases (buoys, reanalysis, satellite) that allow an accurate description of the marine climate and its interaction with a given structure in terms of functionality and stability. However, these databases have a limited timelength, and its appliance entails an associated uncertainty. To avoid this limitation, engineers try to sample synthetically generated time series, statistically consistent, which allow the simulation of longer time periods. The present work proposes a hybrid methodology to deal with this issue. It is based in the combination of clustering algorithms (k-means) and an autoregressive logistic regression model (logit). Since the marine climate is directly related to the atmospheric conditions at a synoptic scale, the proposed methodology takes both systems into account; generating simultaneously circulation patterns (weather types) time series and the sea state time series related. The generation of these time series can be summarized in three steps: (1) By applying the clustering technique k-means the atmospheric conditions are classified into a representative number of synoptical patterns (2) Taking into account different covariates involved (such as seasonality, interannual variability, trends or autoregressive term) the autoregressive logistic model is adjusted (3) Once the model is able to simulate weather types time series the last step is to generate multivariate hourly metocean parameters related to these weather types. This is done by an autoregressive model (ARMA) for each variable, including cross-correlation between them. To show the goodness of the proposed method the following data has been used: Sea Level Pressure (SLP) databases from NCEP-NCAR and Global Ocean Wave (GOW) reanalysis from IH Cantabria. The synthetical met-ocean hourly

  6. Structural basis for DNA recognition by the transcription regulator MetR.

    PubMed

    Punekar, Avinash S; Porter, Jonathan; Carr, Stephen B; Phillips, Simon E V

    2016-06-01

    MetR, a LysR-type transcriptional regulator (LTTR), has been extensively studied owing to its role in the control of methionine biosynthesis in proteobacteria. A MetR homodimer binds to a 24-base-pair operator region of the met genes and specifically recognizes the interrupted palindromic sequence 5'-TGAA-N5-TTCA-3'. Mechanistic details underlying the interaction of MetR with its target DNA at the molecular level remain unknown. In this work, the crystal structure of the DNA-binding domain (DBD) of MetR was determined at 2.16 Å resolution. MetR-DBD adopts a winged-helix-turn-helix (wHTH) motif and shares significant fold similarity with the DBD of the LTTR protein BenM. Furthermore, a data-driven macromolecular-docking strategy was used to model the structure of MetR-DBD bound to DNA, which revealed that a bent conformation of DNA is required for the recognition helix α3 and the wing loop of the wHTH motif to interact with the major and minor grooves, respectively. Comparison of the MetR-DBD-DNA complex with the crystal structures of other LTTR-DBD-DNA complexes revealed residues that may confer operator-sequence binding specificity for MetR. Taken together, the results show that MetR-DBD uses a combination of direct base-specific interactions and indirect shape recognition of the promoter to regulate the transcription of met genes. PMID:27303893

  7. Association of Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor Gene Val66Met Polymorphism with Primary Dysmenorrhea

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Li-Fen; Shen, Horng-Der; Chao, Hsiang-Tai; Lin, Ming-Wei; Hsieh, Jen-Chuen

    2014-01-01

    Primary dysmenorrhea (PDM), the most prevalent menstrual cycle-related problem in women of reproductive age, is associated with negative moods. Whether the menstrual pain and negative moods have a genetic basis remains unknown. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) plays a key role in the production of central sensitization and contributes to chronic pain conditions. BDNF has also been implicated in stress-related mood disorders. We screened and genotyped the BDNF Val66Met polymorphism (rs6265) in 99 Taiwanese (Asian) PDMs (20–30 years old) and 101 age-matched healthy female controls. We found that there was a significantly higher frequency of the Met allele of the BDNF Val66Met polymorphism in the PDM group. Furthermore, BDNF Met/Met homozygosity had a significantly stronger association with PDM compared with Val carrier status. Subsequent behavioral/hormonal assessments of sub-groups (PDMs = 78, controls = 81; eligible for longitudinal multimodal neuroimaging battery studies) revealed that the BDNF Met/Met homozygous PDMs exhibited a higher menstrual pain score (sensory dimension) and a more anxious mood than the Val carrier PDMs during the menstrual phase. Although preliminary, our study suggests that the BDNF Val66Met polymorphism is associated with PDM in Taiwanese (Asian) people, and BDNF Met/Met homozygosity may be associated with an increased risk of PDM. Our data also suggest the BDNF Val66Met polymorphism as a possible regulator of menstrual pain and pain-related emotions in PDM. Absence of thermal hypersensitivity may connote an ethnic attribution. The presentation of our findings calls for further genetic and neuroscientific investigations of PDM. PMID:25383981

  8. Future Plans for MetNet Lander Mars Missions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harri, A.-M.; Schmidt, W.; Guerrero, H.; Vázquez, L.

    2012-04-01

    For the next decade several Mars landing missions and the construction of major installations on the Martian surface are planned. To be able to bring separate large landing units safely to the surface in sufficiently close vicinity to one another, the knowledge of the Martian weather patterns, especially dust and wind, is important. The Finnish - Russian - Spanish low-mass meteorological stations are designed to provide the necessary observation data network which can provide the in-situ observations for model verification and weather forecasts. As the requirements for a transfer vehicle are not very extensive, the MetNet Landers (MNLs) [1] could be launched with any mission going to Mars. This could be a piggy-bag solution to a Martian orbiter from ESA, NASA, Russia or China or an add-on to a planned larger Martian Lander like ExoMars. Also a dedicated launch with several units from LEO is under discussion. The data link implementation uses the UHF-band with Proximity-1 protocol as other current and future Mars lander missions which makes any Mars-orbiting satellite a potential candidate for a data relay to Earth. Currently negotiations for possible opportunities with the European and the Chinese space agencies are ongoing aiming at a launch window in the 2015/16 time frame. In case of favorable results the details will be presented at the EGU. During 2011 the Mars MetNet Precursor Mission (MMPM) has completed all flight qualifications for Lander system and payload. At least two units will be ready for launch in the 2013/14 launch window or beyond. With an entry mass of 22.2kg per unit and 4kg payload allocation the MNL(s) can be easily deployed from a wide range of transfer vehicles. The simple structure allows the manufacturing of further units on short notice and to reasonable prices. The autonomous operations concept makes the implementation of complex commanding options unnecessary while offering a flexible adaptation to different operational scenarios. This

  9. Future Plans for MetNet Lander Mars Missions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harri, A.-M.; Schmidt, W.; Guerrero, H.; Vázquez, L.

    2012-04-01

    For the next decade several Mars landing missions and the construction of major installations on the Martian surface are planned. To be able to bring separate large landing units safely to the surface in sufficiently close vicinity to one another, the knowledge of the Martian weather patterns, especially dust and wind, is important. The Finnish - Russian - Spanish low-mass meteorological stations are designed to provide the necessary observation data network which can provide the in-situ observations for model verification and weather forecasts. As the requirements for a transfer vehicle are not very extensive, the MetNet Landers (MNLs) [1] could be launched with any mission going to Mars. This could be a piggy-bag solution to a Martian orbiter from ESA, NASA, Russia or China or an add-on to a planned larger Martian Lander like ExoMars. Also a dedicated launch with several units from LEO is under discussion. The data link implementation uses the UHF-band with Proximity-1 protocol as other current and future Mars lander missions which makes any Mars-orbiting satellite a potential candidate for a data relay to Earth. Currently negotiations for possible opportunities with the European and the Chinese space agencies are ongoing aiming at a launch window in the 2015/16 time frame. In case of favorable results the details will be presented at the EGU. During 2011 the Mars MetNet Precursor Mission (MMPM) has completed all flight qualifications for Lander system and payload. At least two units will be ready for launch in the 2013/14 launch window or beyond. With an entry mass of 22.2kg per unit and 4kg payload allocation the MNL(s) can be easily deployed from a wide range of transfer vehicles. The simple structure allows the manufacturing of further units on short notice and to reasonable prices. The autonomous operations concept makes the implementation of complex commanding options unnecessary while offering a flexible adaptation to different operational scenarios. This

  10. Sport physiology, dopamine and nitric oxide - Some speculations and hypothesis generation.

    PubMed

    Landers, J G; Esch, Tobias

    2015-12-01

    Elite Spanish professional soccer players surprisingly showed a preponderance of an allele coding for nitric oxide synthase (NOS) that resulted in lower nitric oxide (NO) compared with Spanish endurance and power athletes and sedentary men. The present paper attempts a speculative explanation. Soccer is an "externally-paced" (EP) sport and team work dependent, requiring "executive function skills". We accept that time interval estimation skill is, in part, also an executive skill. Dopamine (DA) is prominent among the neurotransmitters with a role in such skills. Polymorphisms affecting dopamine (especially DRD2/ANKK1-Taq1a which leads to lower density of dopamine D2 receptors in the striatum, leading to increased striatal dopamine synthesis) and COMT val 158 met (which prolongs the action of dopamine in the cortex) feature both in the time interval estimation and the executive skills literatures. Our paper may be a pioneering attempt to stimulate empirical efforts to show how genotypes among soccer players may be connected via neurotransmitters to certain cognitive abilities that predict sporting success, perhaps also in some other externally-paced team sports. Graphing DA levels against time interval estimation accuracy and also against certain executive skills reveals an inverted-U relationship. A pathway from DA, via endogenous morphine and mu3 receptors on endothelia, to the generation of NO in tiny quantities has been demonstrated. Exercise up-regulates DA and this pathway. With somewhat excessive exercise, negative feedback from NO down-regulates DA, hypothetically keeping it near the peak of the inverted-U. Other research, not yet done on higher animals or humans, shows NO "fine-tuning" movement. We speculate that Caucasian men, playing soccer recreationally, would exemplify the above pattern and their nitric oxide synthase (NOS) would reflect the norm of their community, whereas professional players of soccer and perhaps other EP sports, with DA boosted by

  11. Genetic impact on cognition and brain function in newly diagnosed Parkinson's disease: ICICLE-PD study.

    PubMed

    Nombela, Cristina; Rowe, James B; Winder-Rhodes, Sophie E; Hampshire, Adam; Owen, Adrian M; Breen, David P; Duncan, Gordon W; Khoo, Tien K; Yarnall, Alison J; Firbank, Michael J; Chinnery, Patrick F; Robbins, Trevor W; O'Brien, John T; Brooks, David J; Burn, David J; Barker, Roger A

    2014-10-01

    Parkinson's disease is associated with multiple cognitive impairments and increased risk of dementia, but the extent of these deficits varies widely among patients. The ICICLE-PD study was established to define the characteristics and prevalence of cognitive change soon after diagnosis, in a representative cohort of patients, using a multimodal approach. Specifically, we tested the 'Dual Syndrome' hypothesis for cognitive impairment in Parkinson's disease, which distinguishes an executive syndrome (affecting the frontostriatal regions due to dopaminergic deficits) from a posterior cortical syndrome (affecting visuospatial, mnemonic and semantic functions related to Lewy body pathology and secondary cholinergic loss). An incident Parkinson's disease cohort (n = 168, median 8 months from diagnosis to participation) and matched control group (n = 85) were recruited to a neuroimaging study at two sites in the UK. All participants underwent clinical, neuropsychological and functional magnetic resonance imaging assessments. The three neuroimaging tasks (Tower of London, Spatial Rotations and Memory Encoding Tasks) were designed to probe executive, visuospatial and memory encoding domains, respectively. Patients were also genotyped for three polymorphisms associated with cognitive change in Parkinson's disease and related disorders: (i) rs4680 for COMT Val158Met polymorphism; (ii) rs9468 for MAPT H1 versus H2 haplotype; and (iii) rs429358 for APOE-ε2, 3, 4. We identified performance deficits in all three cognitive domains, which were associated with regionally specific changes in cortical activation. Task-specific regional activations in Parkinson's disease were linked with genetic variation: the rs4680 polymorphism modulated the effect of levodopa therapy on planning-related activations in the frontoparietal network; the MAPT haplotype modulated parietal activations associated with spatial rotations; and APOE allelic variation influenced the magnitude of activation

  12. Sport physiology, dopamine and nitric oxide - Some speculations and hypothesis generation.

    PubMed

    Landers, J G; Esch, Tobias

    2015-12-01

    Elite Spanish professional soccer players surprisingly showed a preponderance of an allele coding for nitric oxide synthase (NOS) that resulted in lower nitric oxide (NO) compared with Spanish endurance and power athletes and sedentary men. The present paper attempts a speculative explanation. Soccer is an "externally-paced" (EP) sport and team work dependent, requiring "executive function skills". We accept that time interval estimation skill is, in part, also an executive skill. Dopamine (DA) is prominent among the neurotransmitters with a role in such skills. Polymorphisms affecting dopamine (especially DRD2/ANKK1-Taq1a which leads to lower density of dopamine D2 receptors in the striatum, leading to increased striatal dopamine synthesis) and COMT val 158 met (which prolongs the action of dopamine in the cortex) feature both in the time interval estimation and the executive skills literatures. Our paper may be a pioneering attempt to stimulate empirical efforts to show how genotypes among soccer players may be connected via neurotransmitters to certain cognitive abilities that predict sporting success, perhaps also in some other externally-paced team sports. Graphing DA levels against time interval estimation accuracy and also against certain executive skills reveals an inverted-U relationship. A pathway from DA, via endogenous morphine and mu3 receptors on endothelia, to the generation of NO in tiny quantities has been demonstrated. Exercise up-regulates DA and this pathway. With somewhat excessive exercise, negative feedback from NO down-regulates DA, hypothetically keeping it near the peak of the inverted-U. Other research, not yet done on higher animals or humans, shows NO "fine-tuning" movement. We speculate that Caucasian men, playing soccer recreationally, would exemplify the above pattern and their nitric oxide synthase (NOS) would reflect the norm of their community, whereas professional players of soccer and perhaps other EP sports, with DA boosted by

  13. Hepatocyte growth factor/cMET pathway activation enhances cancer hallmarks in adrenocortical carcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Phan, Liem M.; Fuentes-Mattei, Enrique; Wu, Weixin; Velazquez-Torres, Guermarie; Sircar, Kanishka; Wood, Christopher G.; Hai, Tao; Jimenez, Camilo; Cote, Gilbert J.; Ozsari, Levent; Hofmann, Marie-Claude; Zheng, Siyuan; Verhaak, Roeland; Pagliaro, Lance; Cortez, Maria Angelica; Lee, Mong-Hong; Yeung, Sai-Ching J.; Habra, Mouhammed Amir

    2015-01-01

    Adrenocortical carcinoma (ACC) is a rare malignancy with poor prognosis and limited response to chemotherapy. Hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) and its receptor cMET augment cancer growth and resistance to chemotherapy, but their role in ACC has not been examined. In this study, we investigated the association between HGF/cMET expression and cancer hallmarks of ACC. Transcriptomic and immunohistochemical analyses indicated that increased HGF/cMET expression in human ACC samples was positively associated with cancer-related biological processes including proliferation and angiogenesis, and negatively correlated with apoptosis. Accordingly, treatment of ACC cells with exogenous HCG resulted in increased cell proliferation in vitro and in vivo while short hairpin RNA-mediated knockdown or pharmacological inhibition of cMET suppressed cell proliferation and tumor growth. Moreover, exposure of cells to mitotane, cisplatin, or radiation rapidly induced pro-cMET expression and was associated with an enrichment of genes (e.g., CYP450 family) related to therapy resistance further implicating cMET in the anticancer drug response. Together, these data suggest an important role for HGF/cMET signaling in ACC growth and resistance to commonly used treatments. Targeting cMET, alone or in combination with other drugs, could provide a breakthrough in the management of this aggressive cancer. PMID:26282167

  14. 20 CFR 10.205 - What conditions must be met to receive COP?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... 20 Employees' Benefits 1 2014-04-01 2012-04-01 true What conditions must be met to receive COP? 10..., AS AMENDED Continuation of Pay Eligibility for Cop § 10.205 What conditions must be met to receive COP? (a) To be eligible for COP, a person must: (1) Have a “traumatic injury” as defined at §...

  15. 20 CFR 10.205 - What conditions must be met to receive COP?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... 20 Employees' Benefits 1 2012-04-01 2012-04-01 false What conditions must be met to receive COP...' COMPENSATION ACT, AS AMENDED Continuation of Pay Eligibility for Cop § 10.205 What conditions must be met to receive COP? (a) To be eligible for COP, a person must: (1) Have a “traumatic injury” as defined at §...

  16. 20 CFR 10.205 - What conditions must be met to receive COP?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... 20 Employees' Benefits 1 2013-04-01 2012-04-01 true What conditions must be met to receive COP? 10..., AS AMENDED Continuation of Pay Eligibility for Cop § 10.205 What conditions must be met to receive COP? (a) To be eligible for COP, a person must: (1) Have a “traumatic injury” as defined at §...

  17. 20 CFR 10.205 - What conditions must be met to receive COP?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 20 Employees' Benefits 1 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false What conditions must be met to receive COP...' COMPENSATION ACT, AS AMENDED Continuation of Pay Eligibility for Cop § 10.205 What conditions must be met to receive COP? (a) To be eligible for COP, a person must: (1) Have a “traumatic injury” as defined at §...

  18. 20 CFR 10.205 - What conditions must be met to receive COP?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... 20 Employees' Benefits 1 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false What conditions must be met to receive COP...' COMPENSATION ACT, AS AMENDED Continuation of Pay Eligibility for Cop § 10.205 What conditions must be met to receive COP? (a) To be eligible for COP, a person must: (1) Have a “traumatic injury” as defined at §...

  19. RNAi technology and lentiviral delivery as a powerful tool to suppress Tpr-Met-mediated tumorigenesis.

    PubMed

    Taulli, Riccardo; Accornero, Paolo; Follenzi, Antonia; Mangano, Tony; Morotti, Alessandro; Scuoppo, Claudio; Forni, Paolo E; Bersani, Francesca; Crepaldi, Tiziana; Chiarle, Roberto; Naldini, Luigi; Ponzetto, Carola

    2005-05-01

    Tpr-Met, the oncogenic counterpart of the Met receptor, has been detected in gastric cancers, as well as in precursor lesions and in the adjacent normal gastric mucosa. This has prompted the suggestion that Tpr-Met may predispose to the development of gastric tumors. Given the sequence specificity of RNA interference, oncogenes activated by point mutation or rearrangements can be targeted while spearing the product of the wild-type allele. In this work, we report specific suppression of Tpr-Met expression and inhibition of Tpr-Met-mediated transformation and tumorigenesis by means of a short interfering RNA (siRNA) directed toward the Tpr-Met junction (anti-TM2). When delivered by a lentiviral vector, anti-TM2 siRNA was effective also in mouse embryonal fibroblasts or epithelial cells expressing high levels of Tpr-Met. Our results suggest that lentiviral-mediated delivery of anti-TM2 siRNA may be developed into a powerful tool to treat Tpr-Met-positive cancers.

  20. Conservation and Functional Importance of Carbon-Oxygen Hydrogen Bonding in AdoMet-Dependent Methyltransferases

    SciTech Connect

    Horowitz, Scott; Dirk, Lynnette M.A.; Yesselman, Joseph D.; Nimtz, Jennifer S.; Adhikari, Upendra; Mehl, Ryan A.; Scheiner, Steve; Houtz, Robert L.; Al-Hashimi, Hashim M.; Trievel, Raymond C.

    2013-09-06

    S-Adenosylmethionine (AdoMet)-based methylation is integral to metabolism and signaling. AdoMet-dependent methyltransferases belong to multiple distinct classes and share a catalytic mechanism that arose through convergent evolution; however, fundamental determinants underlying this shared methyl transfer mechanism remain undefined. A survey of high-resolution crystal structures reveals that unconventional carbon–oxygen (CH···O) hydrogen bonds coordinate the AdoMet methyl group in different methyltransferases irrespective of their class, active site structure, or cofactor binding conformation. Corroborating these observations, quantum chemistry calculations demonstrate that these charged interactions formed by the AdoMet sulfonium cation are stronger than typical CH···O hydrogen bonds. Biochemical and structural studies using a model lysine methyltransferase and an active site mutant that abolishes CH···O hydrogen bonding to AdoMet illustrate that these interactions are important for high-affinity AdoMet binding and transition-state stabilization. Further, crystallographic and NMR dynamics experiments of the wild-type enzyme demonstrate that the CH···O hydrogen bonds constrain the motion of the AdoMet methyl group, potentially facilitating its alignment during catalysis. Collectively, the experimental findings with the model methyltransferase and structural survey imply that methyl CH···O hydrogen bonding represents a convergent evolutionary feature of AdoMet-dependent methyltransferases, mediating a universal mechanism for methyl transfer.

  1. "Met" Made Simple: Building Research-Based Teacher Evaluations. Issue Analysis Report

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    New Teacher Project, 2012

    2012-01-01

    Groundbreaking new findings from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation's Measures of Effective Teaching (MET) project hold the potential to answer crucial questions about how to assess teachers' performance. For the past two years, MET researchers have conducted a research project of unprecedented scope, involving 3,000 teachers in six school…

  2. Working with Teachers to Develop Fair and Reliable Measures of Effective Teaching. MET Project

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, 2010

    2010-01-01

    In fall 2009, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation launched the Measures of Effective Teaching (MET) project to develop and test multiple measures of teacher effectiveness. The goal of the MET project is to improve the quality of information about teaching effectiveness available to education professionals within states and districts--information…

  3. Rewarding Results: The MetLife Foundation Community College Excellence Award

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kazis, Richard; Newton, Anne

    2004-01-01

    At the 2004 AACC Annual Convention, Sybil Jacobson, president and CEO of MetLife Foundation, announced the two recipients of the 2004 MetLife Foundation Community College Excellence Award. The award, won by City College of San Francisco (CCSF) and Community College of Denver (CCD), honors two colleges that have made great strides in helping…

  4. Silencing Met receptor tyrosine kinase signaling decreased oral tumor growth and increased survival of nude mice

    PubMed Central

    Tao, X.; Hill, K.S.; Gaziova, I.; Sastry, S.K.; Qui, S.; Szaniszlo, P.; Fennewald, S.; Resto, V.A.; Elferink, L.A.

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY Objectives The hepatocyte growth factor receptor (Met) is frequently overexpressed in Head and Neck Squamous Cell Carcinoma (HNSCC), correlating positively with high-grade tumors and shortened patient survival. As such, Met may represent an important therapeutic target. The purpose of this study was to explore the role of Met signaling for HNSCC growth and locoregional dissemination. Materials and methods Using a lentiviral system for RNA interference, we knocked down Met in established HNSCC cell lines that express high levels of the endogenous receptor. The effect of Met silencing on in vitro proliferation, cell survival and migration was examined using western analysis, immunohisto-chemistry and live cell imaging. In vivo tumor growth, dissemination and mouse survival was assessed using an orthotopic tongue mouse model for HNSCC. Results We show that Met knockdown (1) impaired activation of downstream MAPK signaling; (2) reduced cell viability and anchorage independent growth; (3) abrogated HGF-induced cell motility on laminin; (4) reduced In vivo tumor growth by increased cell apoptosis; (5) caused reduced incidence of tumor dissemination to regional lymph nodes and (6) increased the survival of nude mice with orthotopic xenografts. Conclusion Met signaling is important for HNSCC growth and locoregional dissemination In vivo and that targeting Met may be an important strategy for therapy. PMID:24268630

  5. The MetLife Survey of the American Teacher: Listening to Teachers in Rural Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    MetLife, Inc., 2013

    2013-01-01

    MetLife has sponsored and Harris Interactive has conducted the annual MetLife Survey of the American Teacher series since 1984 to share the voices of teachers with educators, policymakers and the public. The series examines significant changes and trends over time, highlights important current issues, and explores topics relevant to the future of…

  6. The MetLife Survey of the American Teacher: Challenges for School Leadership

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    MetLife, Inc., 2013

    2013-01-01

    "The MetLife Survey of the American Teacher: Challenges for School Leadership" (2012) was conducted by Harris Interactive and is the twenty-ninth in a series sponsored annually by MetLife since 1984 to give voice to those closest to the classroom. This report examines the views of teachers and principals on the responsibilities and challenges…

  7. Non-autocrine, constitutive activation of Met in human anaplastic thyroid carcinoma cells in culture

    PubMed Central

    Bergström, J D; Hermansson, A; Ståhl, T Diaz de; Heldin, N-E

    1999-01-01

    Activation of Met by its ligand HGF has been shown to elicit both mitogenic and motogenic responses in thyrocytes in vitro. In the present study we have investigated the expression of Met in human anaplastic thyroid carcinoma cells in culture. There was a variation in expression level and size of Met in the different cell lines; high Met expression was found in four cell lines, compared to non-neoplastic human thyrocytes. Treatment with glucoproteinase F showed that the size differences observed were due to variances in the degree of glycosylation. Interestingly, in cell lines with high expression of Met, the receptor proteins were found to be constitutively tyrosine phosphorylated. None of these cell lines expressed HGF mRNA, and addition of suramin did not affect the level of tyrosine phosphorylation of Met in unstimulated cells, suggesting the absence of autocrine stimulatory pathways. Furthermore, we did not observe MET gene amplification, activating mutations or phosphatase defects. The tyrosine phosphorylated receptors appeared functionally active since the receptors associated with the adaptor molecule Shc. In summary, we have found ligand-independent constitutively activated Met in four out of six anaplastic thyroid carcinoma cell lines. © 1999 Cancer Research Campaign PMID:10360640

  8. 42 CFR 51a.6 - What confidentiality requirements must be met?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 1 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false What confidentiality requirements must be met? 51a.6 Section 51a.6 Public Health PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES GRANTS PROJECT GRANTS FOR MATERNAL AND CHILD HEALTH § 51a.6 What confidentiality requirements must be met?...

  9. 42 CFR 51a.6 - What confidentiality requirements must be met?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 1 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false What confidentiality requirements must be met? 51a.6 Section 51a.6 Public Health PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES GRANTS PROJECT GRANTS FOR MATERNAL AND CHILD HEALTH § 51a.6 What confidentiality requirements must be met?...

  10. 42 CFR 51a.6 - What confidentiality requirements must be met?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 1 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false What confidentiality requirements must be met? 51a.6 Section 51a.6 Public Health PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES GRANTS PROJECT GRANTS FOR MATERNAL AND CHILD HEALTH § 51a.6 What confidentiality requirements must be met?...

  11. 42 CFR 51a.6 - What confidentiality requirements must be met?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 1 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false What confidentiality requirements must be met? 51a.6 Section 51a.6 Public Health PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES GRANTS PROJECT GRANTS FOR MATERNAL AND CHILD HEALTH § 51a.6 What confidentiality requirements must be met?...

  12. 42 CFR 51a.6 - What confidentiality requirements must be met?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 1 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false What confidentiality requirements must be met? 51a.6 Section 51a.6 Public Health PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES GRANTS PROJECT GRANTS FOR MATERNAL AND CHILD HEALTH § 51a.6 What confidentiality requirements must be met?...

  13. Conservation and functional importance of carbon-oxygen hydrogen bonding in AdoMet-dependent methyltransferases.

    PubMed

    Horowitz, Scott; Dirk, Lynnette M A; Yesselman, Joseph D; Nimtz, Jennifer S; Adhikari, Upendra; Mehl, Ryan A; Scheiner, Steve; Houtz, Robert L; Al-Hashimi, Hashim M; Trievel, Raymond C

    2013-10-16

    S-adenosylmethionine (AdoMet)-based methylation is integral to metabolism and signaling. AdoMet-dependent methyltransferases belong to multiple distinct classes and share a catalytic mechanism that arose through convergent evolution; however, fundamental determinants underlying this shared methyl transfer mechanism remain undefined. A survey of high-resolution crystal structures reveals that unconventional carbon-oxygen (CH···O) hydrogen bonds coordinate the AdoMet methyl group in different methyltransferases irrespective of their class, active site structure, or cofactor binding conformation. Corroborating these observations, quantum chemistry calculations demonstrate that these charged interactions formed by the AdoMet sulfonium cation are stronger than typical CH···O hydrogen bonds. Biochemical and structural studies using a model lysine methyltransferase and an active site mutant that abolishes CH···O hydrogen bonding to AdoMet illustrate that these interactions are important for high-affinity AdoMet binding and transition-state stabilization. Further, crystallographic and NMR dynamics experiments of the wild-type enzyme demonstrate that the CH···O hydrogen bonds constrain the motion of the AdoMet methyl group, potentially facilitating its alignment during catalysis. Collectively, the experimental findings with the model methyltransferase and structural survey imply that methyl CH···O hydrogen bonding represents a convergent evolutionary feature of AdoMet-dependent methyltransferases, mediating a universal mechanism for methyl transfer.

  14. Association between the BDNF Val66Met Polymorphism and Chronicity of Depression

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Yujin; Lim, Shinn Won; Kim, Soo Yeon; Chung, Jae Won; Kim, Jinwoo; Myung, Woojae; Song, Jihae; Kim, Seonwoo; Carroll, Bernard J

    2013-01-01

    Objective Both clinical and biological factors influence the course of depressive disorders. This study tested for associations between the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) gene at the Val66Met locus and the course of major depressive disorder (MDD). Methods Three hundred ten Korean subjects (209 patients, 101 controls) were genotyped for rs6265 at nucleotide 196 (G/A), which produces an amino acid substitution at codon 66 (Val66Met) of the gene for BDNF. Course of illness was evaluated both by chronicity of current episode (episode duration >24 months) and by the lifetime history of recurrences. Results Patients with the Met/Met BDNF genotype had a significantly higher rate of chronic depression than all others. There was a significant dose effect of the Met allele on chronicity. Compared with the Val/Val genotype, the relative risk of chronicity was 1.67 for the Val/Met genotype, and 2.58 for the Met/Met genotype. Lifetime history of recurrent episodes was not related to BDNF genotypes but was significantly associated with younger age of onset and with a history of depression in first degree relatives. Conclusion BDNF genotyping may be informative for anticipating chronicity in major depression. PMID:23482723

  15. Mucin glycosylating enzyme GALNT2 suppresses malignancy in gastric adenocarcinoma by reducing MET phosphorylation

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Shin-Yun; Shun, Chia-Tung; Hung, Kuan-Yu; Juan, Hsueh-Fen; Hsu, Chia-Lang; Huang, Min-Chuan; Lai, I-Rue

    2016-01-01

    Glycosylation affects malignancy in cancer. Here, we report that N- acetylgalactosaminyltransferase 2 (GALNT2), an enzyme that mediates the initial step of mucin type-O glycosylation, suppresses malignant phenotypes in gastric adenocarcinoma (GCA) by modifying MET (Hepatocyte growth factor receptor) activity. GALNT2 mRNA and protein were downregulated in GCAs, and this reduction was associated with more advanced disease stage and shorter recurrence-free survival. Suppressing GALNT2 expression in GCA cells increased cell growth, migration, and invasion in vitro, and tumor metastasis in vivo. GALNT2 knockdown enhanced phosphorylation of MET and decreased expression of the Tn antigen on MET. Inhibiting MET activity with PHA665752 decreased the malignant phenotypes caused by GALNT2 knockdown in GCA cells. Our results indicate that GALNT2 suppresses the malignant potential of GCA cells and provide novel insights into the significance of O-glycosylation in MET activity and GCA progression. PMID:26848976

  16. Opioid-dependent growth of glial cultures: Suppression of astrocyte DNA synthesis by met-enkephalin

    SciTech Connect

    Stiene-Martin, A.; Hauser, K.F. )

    1990-01-01

    The action of met-enkephalin on the growth of astrocytes in mixed-glial cultures was examined. Primary, mixed-glial cultures were isolated from 1 day-old mouse cerebral hemispheres and continuously treated with either basal growth media, 1 {mu}M met-enkephalin, 1 {mu}M met-enkephalin plus the opioid antagonist naloxone, or naloxone alone. Absolute numbers of neural cells were counted in unstained preparations, while combined ({sup 3}H)-thymidine autoradiography and glial fibrillary acid protein (GFAP) immunocytochemistry was performed to identify specific changes in astrocytes. When compared to control and naloxone treated cultures, met-enkephalin caused a significant decrease in both total cell numbers, and in ({sup 3}H)-thymidine incorporation by GFAP-positive cells with flat morphology. These results indicate that met-enkephalin suppresses astrocyte growth in culture.

  17. The oleocanthal-based homovanillyl sinapate as a novel c-Met inhibitor.

    PubMed

    Mohyeldin, Mohamed M; Akl, Mohamed R; Ebrahim, Hassan Y; Dragoi, Ana Maria; Dykes, Samantha; Cardelli, James A; El Sayed, Khalid A

    2016-05-31

    The hepatocyte growth factor (HGF)/mesenchymal-epithelial transition factor (c-Met) signaling axis has gained considerable attention as an attractive molecular target for therapeutic blockade of cancer. Inspired by the chemical structure of S (-)-oleocanthal, a natural secoiridoid from extra-virgin olive oil with documented anticancer activity against c-Met-dependent malignancies, the research presented herein reports on the discovery of the novel olive-derived homovanillyl sinapate (HVS) as a promising c-Met inhibitor. HVS was distinguished for its remarkable potency against wild-type c-Met and its oncogenic variant in cell-free assays and confirmed by in silico docking studies. Furthermore, HVS substantially impaired the c-Met-mediated growth across a broad spectrum of breast cancer cells, while similar treatment doses had no effect on the non-tumorigenic mammary epithelial cell growth. In addition, HVS caused a dose-dependent inhibition of HGF-induced, but not epidermal growth factor (EGF)-induced, cell scattering in addition to HGF-mediated migration, invasion, and 3-dimensional (3D) proliferation of tumor cell spheroids. HVS treatment effects were mediated via inhibition of ligand-mediated c-Met activation and its downstream mitogenic signaling and blocking molecular mediators involved in cellular motility across different cellular contexts. An interesting feature of HVS is its good selectivity for c-Met and Abelson murine leukemia viral oncogene homolog 1 (ABL1) when profiled against a panel of kinases. Docking studies revealed interactions likely to impart high dual affinity for both ABL1 and c-Met kinases. HVS markedly reduced tumor growth, showed excellent pharmacodynamics, and suppressed cell proliferation and microvessel density in an orthotopic model of triple negative breast cancer. Collectively, the present findings suggested that the oleocanthal-based HVS is a promising c-Met inhibitor lead entity with excellent therapeutic potential to control

  18. The clinical and functional significance of c-Met in breast cancer: a review.

    PubMed

    Ho-Yen, Colan M; Jones, J Louise; Kermorgant, Stephanie

    2015-04-08

    c-Met is a receptor tyrosine kinase that upon binding of its ligand, hepatocyte growth factor (HGF), activates downstream pathways with diverse cellular functions that are important in organ development and cancer progression. Anomalous c-Met signalling has been described in a variety of cancer types, and the receptor is regarded as a novel therapeutic target. In breast cancer there is a need to develop new treatments, particularly for the aggressive subtypes such as triple-negative and basal-like cancer, which currently lack targeted therapy. Over the last two decades, much has been learnt about the functional role of c-Met signalling in different models of breast development and cancer. This work has been complemented by clinical studies, establishing the prognostic significance of c-Met in tissue samples of breast cancer. While the clinical trials of anti-c-Met therapy in advanced breast cancer progress, there is a need to review the existing evidence so that the potential of these treatments can be better appreciated. The aim of this article is to examine the role of HGF/c-Met signalling in in vitro and in vivo models of breast cancer, to describe the mechanisms of aberrant c-Met signalling in human tissues, and to give a brief overview of the anti-c-Met therapies currently being evaluated in breast cancer patients. We will show that the HGF/c-Met pathway is associated with breast cancer progression and suggest that there is a firm basis for continued development of anti-c-Met treatment, particularly for patients with basal-like and triple-negative breast cancer.

  19. Demethylation of a LINE-1 antisense promoter in the cMet locus impairs Met signalling through induction of illegitimate transcription.

    PubMed

    Weber, B; Kimhi, S; Howard, G; Eden, A; Lyko, F

    2010-10-28

    The cytosine analogues 5-azacytidine and 5-aza-2'-deoxycytidine are currently the most advanced drugs for epigenetic cancer therapy. Both drugs function as DNA methyltransferase (DNMT) inhibitors and lead to the reactivation of epigenetically silenced tumour suppressor genes. However, not much is known about their target sequence specificity and their possible side effects on normally methylated sequences such as long interspersed nuclear element (LINE)-1 retroelements. It has been shown that demethylation and activation of the LINE-1 antisense promoter can drive the transcription of neighbouring sequences. In this study, we show that demethylation of the colon carcinoma cell line HCT116, either by treatment with DNMT inhibitors or by genetic disruption of the major DNMTs, induces the expression of an illegitimate fusion transcript between an intronic LINE-1 element and the proto-oncogene cMet (L1-cMet). Similar findings were also obtained with myeloid leukaemia cells, an established cellular model for the approved indication of azacytidine and decitabine. Interestingly, upregulation of L1-cMet transcription resulted in reduced cMet expression, which in turn led to decreased cMet receptor signalling. Our results thus provide an important paradigm for demethylation-dependent modulation of gene expression, even if the promoter of the corresponding gene is unmethylated.

  20. FAK is required for c-Met/β-catenin-driven hepatocarcinogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Shang, Na; Arteaga, Maribel; Zaidi, Ali; Stauffer, Jimmy; Cotler, Scott J.; Zeleznik-Le, Nancy; Zhang, Jiwang; Qiu, Wei

    2014-01-01

    Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the third most common cause of cancer death worldwide and most patients with HCC have limited treatment options. Focal Adhesion Kinase (FAK) is overexpressed in many HCC specimens, offering a potential target for HCC treatment. However, the role of FAK in hepatocarcinogenesis remains elusive. Establishing whether FAK expression plays a role in HCC development is necessary to determine whether it is a viable therapeutic target. In this study, we generated mice with hepatocyte-specific deletion of Fak and investigated the role of Fak in an oncogenic (c-MET/β-catenin, MET/CAT)-driven HCC model. We found that deletion of Fak in hepatocytes did not affect morphology, proliferation or apoptosis. However, Fak deficiency significantly repressed MET/CAT-induced tumor development and prolonged survival of animals with MET/CAT-induced HCC. In mouse livers and HCC cell lines, Fak was activated by MET, which induced the activation of Akt/Erk and up-regulated Cyclin D1 and tumor cell proliferation. CAT enhanced MET-stimulated FAK activation and synergistically induced the activation of the AKT/ERK-Cyclin D1 signaling pathway in a FAK kinase-dependent manner. In addition, FAK was required for CAT-induced Cyclin D1 expression in a kinase-independent fashion. Conclusion Fak is required for c-Met/β-catenin-driven hepatocarcinogenesis. Inhibition of FAK provides a potential strategy to treat HCC. PMID:25163657

  1. Brucella melitensis Methionyl-tRNA-Synthetase (MetRS), a Potential Drug Target for Brucellosis

    PubMed Central

    Ranade, Ranae M.; Zhang, Zhongsheng; Dranow, David M.; Myers, Janette B.; Choi, Ryan; Nakazawa Hewitt, Steve; Edwards, Thomas E.; Davies, Douglas R.; Lorimer, Donald; Boyle, Stephen M.; Barrett, Lynn K.; Buckner, Frederick S.; Fan, Erkang; Van Voorhis, Wesley C.

    2016-01-01

    We investigated Brucella melitensis methionyl-tRNA-synthetase (BmMetRS) with molecular, structural and phenotypic methods to learn if BmMetRS is a promising target for brucellosis drug development. Recombinant BmMetRS was expressed, purified from wild type Brucella melitensis biovar Abortus 2308 strain ATCC/CRP #DD-156 and screened by a thermal melt assay against a focused library of one hundred previously classified methionyl-tRNA-synthetase inhibitors of the blood stage form of Trypanosoma brucei. Three compounds showed appreciable shift of denaturation temperature and were selected for further studies on inhibition of the recombinant enzyme activity and cell viability against wild type B. melitensis strain 16M. BmMetRS protein complexed with these three inhibitors resolved into three-dimensional crystal structures and was analyzed. All three selected methionyl-tRNA-synthetase compounds inhibit recombinant BmMetRS enzymatic functions in an aminoacylation assay at varying concentrations. Furthermore, growth inhibition of B. melitensis strain 16M by the compounds was shown. Inhibitor-BmMetRS crystal structure models were used to illustrate the molecular basis of the enzyme inhibition. Our current data suggests that BmMetRS is a promising target for brucellosis drug development. However, further studies are needed to optimize lead compound potency, efficacy and safety as well as determine the pharmacokinetics, optimal dosage, and duration for effective treatment. PMID:27500735

  2. BDNF val66met genotype and schizotypal personality traits interact to influence probabilistic association learning.

    PubMed

    Skilleter, Ashley Jayne; Weickert, Cynthia Shannon; Moustafa, Ahmed Abdelhalim; Gendy, Rasha; Chan, Mico; Arifin, Nur; Mitchell, Philip Bowden; Weickert, Thomas Wesley

    2014-11-01

    The brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) val66met polymorphism rs6265 influences learning and may represent a risk factor for schizophrenia. Healthy people with high schizotypal personality traits display cognitive deficits that are similar to but not as severe as those observed in schizophrenia and they can be studied without confounds of antipsychotics or chronic illness. How genetic variation in BDNF may impact learning in individuals falling along the schizophrenia spectrum is unknown. We predicted that schizotypal personality traits would influence learning and that schizotypal personality-based differences in learning would vary depending on the BDNF val66met genotype. Eighty-nine healthy adults completed the Schizotypal Personality Questionnaire (SPQ) and a probabilistic association learning test. Blood samples were genotyped for the BDNF val66met polymorphism. An ANOVA was performed with BDNF genotype (val homozygotes and met-carriers) and SPQ score (high/low) as grouping variables and probabilistic association learning as the dependent variable. Participants with low SPQ scores (fewer schizotypal personality traits) showed significantly better learning than those with high SPQ scores. BDNF met-carriers displaying few schizotypal personality traits performed best, whereas BDNF met-carriers displaying high schizotypal personality traits performed worst. Thus, the BDNF val66met polymorphism appears to influence probabilistic association learning differently depending on the extent of schizotypal personality traits displayed.

  3. Brucella melitensis Methionyl-tRNA-Synthetase (MetRS), a Potential Drug Target for Brucellosis.

    PubMed

    Ojo, Kayode K; Ranade, Ranae M; Zhang, Zhongsheng; Dranow, David M; Myers, Janette B; Choi, Ryan; Nakazawa Hewitt, Steve; Edwards, Thomas E; Davies, Douglas R; Lorimer, Donald; Boyle, Stephen M; Barrett, Lynn K; Buckner, Frederick S; Fan, Erkang; Van Voorhis, Wesley C

    2016-01-01

    We investigated Brucella melitensis methionyl-tRNA-synthetase (BmMetRS) with molecular, structural and phenotypic methods to learn if BmMetRS is a promising target for brucellosis drug development. Recombinant BmMetRS was expressed, purified from wild type Brucella melitensis biovar Abortus 2308 strain ATCC/CRP #DD-156 and screened by a thermal melt assay against a focused library of one hundred previously classified methionyl-tRNA-synthetase inhibitors of the blood stage form of Trypanosoma brucei. Three compounds showed appreciable shift of denaturation temperature and were selected for further studies on inhibition of the recombinant enzyme activity and cell viability against wild type B. melitensis strain 16M. BmMetRS protein complexed with these three inhibitors resolved into three-dimensional crystal structures and was analyzed. All three selected methionyl-tRNA-synthetase compounds inhibit recombinant BmMetRS enzymatic functions in an aminoacylation assay at varying concentrations. Furthermore, growth inhibition of B. melitensis strain 16M by the compounds was shown. Inhibitor-BmMetRS crystal structure models were used to illustrate the molecular basis of the enzyme inhibition. Our current data suggests that BmMetRS is a promising target for brucellosis drug development. However, further studies are needed to optimize lead compound potency, efficacy and safety as well as determine the pharmacokinetics, optimal dosage, and duration for effective treatment. PMID:27500735

  4. Biological significance and targeting of c-Met tyrosine kinase receptor in cancer.

    PubMed

    Goetsch, Liliane; Caussanel, Veronique; Corvaia, Nathalie

    2013-01-01

    c-Met is a tyrosine kinase receptor largely described to be involved in cancer progression and metastasis. In such pathologic situation, many alterations of this receptor were noticed that include transcriptional overexpression, gene amplification, somatic or germline mutations and/or ligand dependent autocrine/paracrine loops. More recently it has also been suggested that c-Met would be involved in resistance to targeted therapies directed towards EGFR or angiogenesis. Major efforts from a large number of pharmaceutical companies are invested dedicated to evaluate the efficacy of either small molecule inhibitors or monoclonal antibodies directed against c-Met or its unique ligand HGF. A series of promising results from the first completed clinical trials indicated that compounds targeting c-Met have an acceptable toxicity profile and that efficacy was noticed in some treated patients. Non squamous NSCLC patients that express more often high levels of c-Met seemed to represent a most sensitive subset for and anti-c-Met/erlotinib therapy. Many Phase III trials are currently recruiting and a particular effort was performed in order to discover biomarkers associated with efficacy and patient selection. This review will provide an overview of the current knowledge on the c-Met axis for development of novel therapeutics in Oncology.

  5. Pharmacological inhibition of KIT activates MET signaling in gastrointestinal stromal tumors

    PubMed Central

    Cohen, Noah A.; Zeng, Shan; Seifert, Adrian M.; Kim, Teresa S.; Sorenson, Eric C.; Greer, Jonathan B.; Beckman, Michael J.; Santamaria-Barria, Juan A.; Crawley, Megan H.; Green, Benjamin L.; Rossi, Ferdinand; Besmer, Peter; Antonescu, Cristina R.; DeMatteo, Ronald P.

    2015-01-01

    Gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST) are the most common adult sarcomas and the oncogenic driver is usually a KIT or PDGFRA mutation. While GIST are often initially sensitive to imatinib or other tyrosine kinase inhibitors, resistance generally develops necessitating backup strategies for therapy. In this study, we determined that a subset of human GIST specimens that acquired imatinib resistance acquired expression of activated forms of the MET oncogene. MET activation also developed after imatinib therapy in a mouse model of GIST (KitV558del/+ mice), where it was associated with increased tumor hypoxia. MET activation also occurred in imatinib-sensitive human GIST cell lines after imatinib treatment in vitro. MET inhibition by crizotinib or RNA interference was cytotoxic to an imatinib-resistant human GIST cell population. Moreover, combining crizotinib and imatinib was more effective than imatinib alone in imatinib-sensitive GIST models. Lastly, cabozantinib, a dual MET and KIT small molecule inhibitor, was markedly more effective than imatinib in multiple preclinical models of imatinib-sensitive and imatinib-resistant GIST. Collectively, our findings showed that activation of compensatory MET signaling by KIT inhibition may contribute to tumor resistance. Furthermore, our work offered a preclinical proof of concept for MET inhibition by cabozantinib as an effective strategy for GIST treatment. PMID:25836719

  6. Analysis and significance of c-MET expression in adenoid cystic carcinoma of the salivary gland.

    PubMed

    Bell, Diana; Ferrarotto, Renata; Fox, Melanie D; Roberts, Dianna; Hanna, Ehab Y; Weber, Randal S; El-Naggar, Adel K

    2015-01-01

    Adenoid cystic carcinoma (ACC), a rare salivary gland malignancy, is a histogenetic, morphologic, and clinical heterogeneous disease. Extensive efforts have been made to characterize molecular events associated with these tumors, including the identification of prognostic and predictive biomarkers. Increased copy number gain and amplification of c-Met, the cell surface receptor for hepatocyte growth factor, has been shown to enhance tumor growth and invasiveness and promote metastasis in certain tumor types. In this study, we evaluated the expression of c-Met by immunohistochemistry (IHC) in a large cohort of salivary gland ACCs and examined its clinicopathologic implications. Archival formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded blocks from 200 ACC patients were used in this study. Pathologic patterns and phenotypic expression of c-Met were recorded and compared with clinical factors including gender, age, disease stage at diagnosis, and clinical outcomes. Correlations between c-MET expression and clinical characteristics were assessed by Pearson's chi-square test or by the 2-tailed Fisher exact test. Curves describing overall survival were generated by Kaplan-Meier product limit method. Strong c-MET expression was seen in inner ductal and outer myoepithelial cells in 53.2% of the cases. There was no correlation between c-Met overexpression and clinicopathologic parameters or patient's overall survival ( p = .94074). In conclusion, c-MET expression is high in a significant subgroup of ACC patients. While c-MET expression is not a prognostic factor in ACC, its role as a predictive marker of benefit from MET inhibitors deserves further investigation.

  7. Association of BDNF Val66Met polymorphism with HPA and SAM axis reactivity to psychological and physical stress

    PubMed Central

    Tsuru, Jusen; Tanaka, Yoshihiro; Ishitobi, Yoshinobu; Maruyama, Yoshihiro; Inoue, Ayako; Kawano, Aimi; Ikeda, Rie; Ando, Tomoko; Oshita, Harumi; Aizawa, Saeko; Masuda, Koji; Higuma, Haruka; Kanehisa, Masayuki; Ninomiya, Taiga; Akiyoshi, Jotaro

    2014-01-01

    Background Decreased expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is implicated in enhanced stress responses. The BDNF Val66Met polymorphism is associated with psychological changes; for example, carriers of the Met allele exhibit increased harm avoidance as well as a higher prevalence of depression and anxiety disorder. Methods To analyze the effects of BDNF Val66Met on stress responses, we tested 226 university students (88 women and 138 men) using a social stress procedure (Trier Social Stress Test [TSST]) and an electrical stimulation stress test. Stress indices were derived from repeated measurements of salivary α-amylase, salivary cortisol, heart rate, and psychological testing during the stress tests. All subjects were genotyped for the Val66Met polymorphism (G196A). Results A significant three-way interaction (time [3 levels] × BDNF [Val/Val, Val/Met, Met/Met]; P<0.05) was demonstrated that revealed different salivary cortisol responses in the TSST but not in electrical stimulation. Met/Met women had stronger cortisol responses than Val/Met and Val/Val individuals in the TSST. Met/Met men exhibited stronger salivary cortisol responses than Val/Met and Val/Val individuals in the TSST. Conclusion These results indicate that a common, functionally significant polymorphism in BDNF had different effects on hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenocortical axis reactivity but not on sympathetic adrenomedullary reactivity in TSST and electrical stimulation tests. PMID:25419135

  8. Effects of the BDNF Val66Met polymorphism on white matter microstructure in healthy adults.

    PubMed

    Tost, Heike; Alam, Tajvar; Geramita, Matthew; Rebsch, Christine; Kolachana, Bhaskar; Dickinson, Dwight; Verchinski, Beth A; Lemaitre, Herve; Barnett, Alan S; Trampush, Joey W; Weinberger, Daniel R; Marenco, Stefano

    2013-02-01

    The BDNF Val(66)Met polymorphism, a possible risk variant for mental disorders, is a potent modulator of neural plasticity in humans and has been linked to deficits in gray matter structure, function, and cognition. The impact of the variant on brain white matter structure, however, is controversial and remains poorly understood. Here, we used diffusion tensor imaging to examine the effects of BDNF Val(66)Met genotype on white matter microstructure in a sample of 85 healthy Caucasian adults. We demonstrate decreases of fractional anisotropy and widespread increases in radial diffusivity in Val/Val homozygotes compared with Met-allele carriers, particularly in prefrontal and occipital pathways. These data provide an independent confirmation of prior imaging genetics work, are consistent with complex effects of the BDNF Val(66)Met polymorphism on human brain structure, and may serve to generate hypotheses about variation in white matter microstructure in mental disorders associated with this variant. PMID:23132269

  9. Effects of the BDNF Val66Met Polymorphism on White Matter Microstructure in Healthy Adults

    PubMed Central

    Tost, Heike; Alam, Tajvar; Geramita, Matthew; Rebsch, Christine; Kolachana, Bhaskar; Dickinson, Dwight; Verchinski, Beth A; Lemaitre, Herve; Barnett, Alan S; Trampush, Joey W; Weinberger, Daniel R; Marenco, Stefano

    2013-01-01

    The BDNF Val66Met polymorphism, a possible risk variant for mental disorders, is a potent modulator of neural plasticity in humans and has been linked to deficits in gray matter structure, function, and cognition. The impact of the variant on brain white matter structure, however, is controversial and remains poorly understood. Here, we used diffusion tensor imaging to examine the effects of BDNF Val66Met genotype on white matter microstructure in a sample of 85 healthy Caucasian adults. We demonstrate decreases of fractional anisotropy and widespread increases in radial diffusivity in Val/Val homozygotes compared with Met-allele carriers, particularly in prefrontal and occipital pathways. These data provide an independent confirmation of prior imaging genetics work, are consistent with complex effects of the BDNF Val66Met polymorphism on human brain structure, and may serve to generate hypotheses about variation in white matter microstructure in mental disorders associated with this variant. PMID:23132269

  10. Using Remote Sensing and Radar MET Data to Support Watershed Assessments Comprising IEM

    EPA Science Inventory

    Meteorological (MET) data required by watershed assessments that comprise Integrated Environmental Modeling (IEM) have traditionally been provided by land-based weather (gauge) stations; although these data may not be most appropriate for describing adequate spatial and temporal...

  11. An engineered dimeric fragment of hepatocyte growth factor is a potent c-MET agonist

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Cassie J.; Jones, Douglas S.; Tsai, Ping-Chuan; Venkataramana, Abhishek; Cochran, Jennifer R.

    2015-01-01

    Hepatocyte growth factor (HGF), through activation of the c-MET receptor, mediates biological processes critical for tissue regeneration; however, its clinical application is limited by protein instability and poor recombinant expression. We previously engineered a HGF fragment (eNK1) that possesses increased stability and expression yield, and developed a c-MET agonist by coupling eNK1 through an introduced cysteine residue. Here, we further characterize this eNK1 dimer, and show it elicits significantly greater c-MET activation, cell migration, and proliferation than the eNK1 monomer. The efficacy of the eNK1 dimer was similar to HGF, suggesting its promise as a c-MET agonist. PMID:25451235

  12. Val66Met BDNF polymorphism is associated with Parkinson's disease cognitive impairment.

    PubMed

    Altmann, Vivian; Schumacher-Schuh, Artur F; Rieck, Mariana; Callegari-Jacques, Sidia M; Rieder, Carlos R M; Hutz, Mara H

    2016-02-26

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is one of the most common neurodegenerative diseases worldwide. Besides characteristic PD motor features, the disease has important non-motor characteristics such as cognitive impairment. The role of genetic factors in cognitive impairment associated with PD is still unclear. In this study, we examined whether BDNF Val66Met was associated with impaired cognition in Parkinson's disease. One hundred and seventy five patients with a clinical diagnosis of Parkinson's disease were included. Global cognitive abilities of the patients were measured by the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE). Poisson Regression models were used to test for association between 66Met carriers and cognitive impairment controlling for covariates. Carriers of at least one BDNF 66Met allele presented a higher prevalence of cognitive impairment (p=0.005 RR=1.45 IC=95% [1.1-1.8]). These results suggest a role for BDNF Val66Met polymorphism on cognitive impairment in PD. PMID:26806863

  13. The MET Oncogene as a Therapeutical Target in Cancer Invasive Growth

    PubMed Central

    Luraghi, Paolo; Schelter, Florian; Krüger, Achim; Boccaccio, Carla

    2012-01-01

    The MET proto-oncogene, encoding the tyrosine kinase receptor for Hepatocyte Growth Factor (HGF) regulates invasive growth, a genetic program that associates control of cell proliferation with invasion of the extracellular matrix and protection from apoptosis. Physiologically, invasive growth takes place during embryonic development, and, in post-natal life, in wound healing and regeneration of several tissues. The MET oncogene is overexpressed and/or genetically mutated in many tumors, thereby sustaining pathological invasive growth, a prerequisite for metastasis. MET is the subject of intense research as a target for small molecule kinase inhibitors and, together with its ligand HGF, for inhibitory antibodies. The tight interplay of MET with the protease network has unveiled mechanisms to be exploited to achieve effective inhibition of invasive growth. PMID:22973229

  14. The Mars Phoenix MET Pressure Sensor - Technical Implementation, Quality of Data and Data Processing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kahanpää, H.; Polkko, J.; Harri, A.; Genzer, M.; Schmidt, W.

    2009-05-01

    Meteorological conditions on the landing site of the Mars Phoenix lander were monitored with the MET experiment, provided by Canadian Space Agency (CSA). The MET experiment includes a LIDAR, three temperature sensors and a pressure sensor. The Phoenix MET pressure sensor is provided by Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) and is based on technology developed by Vaisala corporate. Three Barocap sensor heads are used to measure pressure and two Thermocap sensor heads to measure housekeeping temperature. The engineering data measured by the Phoenix MET pressure sensor is introduced. This data includes sensor level tests, spacecraft level tests, measurements during the interplanetary cruise and health check measurements during the mission on Mars. The following characteristics of the sensor are determined using this data: resolution, repeatability, temperature dependence, stability, total accuracy and time constant. Data processing methods used to calculate corrected pressure readings from the raw data are introduced.

  15. Autism-Associated Promoter Variant in MET Impacts Functional and Structural Brain Networks

    PubMed Central

    Rudie, J. D.; Hernandez, L. M.; Brown, J. A.; Beck-Pancer, D.; Colich, N. L.; Gorrindo, P.; Thompson, P. M.; Geschwind, D. H.; Bookheimer, S. Y.; Levitt, P.; Dapretto, M.

    2012-01-01

    SUMMARY As genes that confer increased risk for autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are identified, a crucial next step is to determine how these risk factors impact brain structure and function and contribute to disorder heterogeneity. With three converging lines of evidence, we show that a common, functional ASD risk variant in the Met Receptor Tyrosine Kinase (MET) gene is a potent modulator of key social brain circuitry in children and adolescents with and without ASD. MET risk genotype predicted atypical fMRI activation and deactivation patterns to social stimuli (i.e., emotional faces), as well as reduced functional and structural connectivity in temporo-parietal regions known to have high MET expression, particularly within the default mode network. Notably, these effects were more pronounced in individuals with ASD. These findings highlight how genetic stratification may reduce heterogeneity and help elucidate the biological basis of complex neuropsychiatric disorders such as ASD. PMID:22958829

  16. Hepatocyte growth factor and its receptor (c-MET) in prostatic carcinoma.

    PubMed Central

    Humphrey, P. A.; Zhu, X.; Zarnegar, R.; Swanson, P. E.; Ratliff, T. L.; Vollmer, R. T.; Day, M. L.

    1995-01-01

    Hepatocyte growth factor (scatter factor) and its receptor, the c-met proto-oncogene product (c-MET), have been implicated in embryogenesis, tissue reorganization, and tumor progression. Little is known, however, of the expression and functional significance of these molecules in prostatic cells and tissue. In this investigation, we assessed the expression of hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) and c-MET in prostatic tissues and cell lines and also determined the effect of purified recombinant HGF on cell proliferation and scattering of prostatic carcinoma cell lines. HGF was expressed by human prostatic stromal myofibroblasts in primary culture but not by three human prostatic carcinoma cell lines (LNCaP, DU 145, and PC-3) as assessed by Northern blot analysis. HGF was also detected by reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction in both benign and malignant tissues from radical prostatectomy specimens. c-MET transcripts were identified by Northern blot in two androgen-insensitive human prostatic carcinoma cell lines (DU 145 and PC-3) but not the androgen-sensitive LNCaP cell line. Additional evidence of linkage of androgen responsiveness and c-MET was provided by experiments in which androgen deprivation of normal rat prostates via castration produced a marked up-regulation of c-MET expression as determined by Northern blot and immunohistochemistry. c-MET protein was detected by immunohistochemical analysis in a substantial percentage (58 of 128 or 45%) of prostatic carcinomas and was found more often in metastatic growths of human prostatic carcinoma (15 of 20 patients) compared with primary tumors (43 of 108 patients; P < 0.005). Moreover, in Dunning R-3327 rat prostatic carcinoma cell lines, c-MET expression was highest in the androgen-insensitive subline with the highest metastatic capacity. Purified recombinant human HGF induced dose-dependent cellular proliferation and scattering in the DU 145 carcinoma cell line. These data indicate that HGF may function in

  17. Determining unmet, adequately met, and overly met needs for health care and services for persons living with HIV/AIDS in Mississippi.

    PubMed

    Krause, Denise D; May, Warren L; Butler, Kenneth R

    2013-08-01

    A statewide needs assessment of persons living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) was conducted to determine what is known about access to care, utilization of services, and perceived barriers to receiving care and services. Our objective was to determine which needs were being met or unmet among PLWHA in Mississippi to provide a better understanding of how effectively to allocate funding to provide for the needs of that group. In this cross-sectional study, a true random sample of PLWHA in Mississippi was interviewed in 2005-2006. Questions were asked to identify opinions about respondents' experiences with 23 health care services and 30 public or private assistance services. The kappa statistic was used to measure agreement between level of services needed and level of services provided. Services with the lowest kappa scores revealed which services were being either mostly unmet, or even overly met. Greatest service needs were HIV viral load test, Pap smear, CD4/T-cell count test, and medication for HIV/AIDS, which were reasonably well met. The most significantly unmet needs were dental care and dental exams, eye care and eye exams, help paying for housing, subsidized housing assistance, mental health therapy or counseling, access to emotional support groups, and job placement or employment. Overly met services included medical care at a physician's office or clinic and free condoms. This study identified needs perceived to be significantly unmet by PLWHA, as well as areas that were perceived to be adequately or overly met. This information may be used to target areas with the greatest impact for improvement and provide insight into how to effectively allocate health care resources and public/private assistance. PMID:23252519

  18. MET-XAlign: a metabolite cross-alignment tool for LC/MS-based comparative metabolomics.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Wenchao; Lei, Zhentian; Huhman, David; Sumner, Lloyd W; Zhao, Patrick X

    2015-09-15

    Liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry (LC/MS) metabolite profiling has been widely used in comparative metabolomics studies; however, LC/MS-based comparative metabolomics currently faces several critical challenges. One of the greatest challenges is how to effectively align metabolites across different LC/MS profiles; a single metabolite can give rise to multiple peak features, and the grouped peak features that can be used to construct a spectrum pattern of single metabolite can vary greatly between biochemical experiments and even between instrument runs. Another major challenge is that the observed retention time for a single metabolite can also be significantly affected by experimental conditions. To overcome these two key challenges, we present a novel metabolite-based alignment approach entitled MET-XAlign to align metabolites across LC/MS metabolomics profiles. MET-XAlign takes the deduced molecular mass and estimated compound retention time information that can be extracted by our previously published tool, MET-COFEA, and aligns metabolites based on this information. We demonstrate that MET-XAlign is able to cross-align metabolite compounds, either known or unknown, in LC/MS profiles not only across different samples but also across different biological experiments and different electrospray ionization modes. Therefore, our proposed metabolite-based cross-alignment approach is a great step forward and its implementation, MET-XAlign, is a very useful tool in LC/MS-based comparative metabolomics. MET-XAlign has been successfully implemented with core algorithm coding in C++, making it very efficient, and visualization interface coding in the Microsoft.NET Framework. The MET-XAlign software along with demonstrative data is freely available at http://bioinfo.noble.org/manuscript-support/met-xalign/ .

  19. User's Guide for MetView: A Meteorological Display and Assessment Tool

    SciTech Connect

    Glantz, Clifford S.; Pelton, Mitchell A.; Allwine, K Jerry; Burk, Kenneth W.

    2000-09-27

    MetView Version 2.0 is an easy-to-use model for accessing, viewing, and analyzing meteorological data. MetView provides both graphical and numerical displays of data. It can accommodate data from an extensive meteorological monitoring network that includes near-surface monitoring locations, instrumented towers, sodars, and meteorologist observations. MetView is used operationally for both routine, emergency response, and research applications at the U.S. Department of Energy's Hanford Site. At the Site's Emergency Operations Center, MetView aids in the access, visualization, and interpretation of real-time meteorological data. Historical data can also be accessed and displayed. Emergency response personnel at the Emergency Operations Center use MetView products in the formulation of protective action recommendations and other decisions. In the initial stage of an emergency, MetView can be operated using a very simple, five-step procedure. This first-responder procedure allows non-technical staff to rapidly generate meteorological products and disseminate key information. After first-responder information products are produced, the Emergency Operations Center's technical staff can conduct more sophisticated analyses using the model. This may include examining the vertical variation in winds, assessing recent changes in atmospheric conditions, evaluating atmospheric mixing rates, and forecasting changes in meteorological conditions. This user's guide provides easy-to-follow instructions for both first-responder and routine operation of the model. Examples, with explanations, are provided for each type of MetView output display. Information is provided on the naming convention, format, and contents of each type of meteorological data file used by the model area. This user's guide serves as a ready reference for experienced MetView users and a training manual for new users.

  20. BI-14GENOMIC PROFILING OF A PREDICTIVE SIGNATURE FOR MET-TARGETED THERAPY IN GLIOBLASTOMA

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Jennifer; Ascierto, Maria Libera; Newsome, David; Mittal, Sandeep; Kang, Liang; Briggs, Michael; Tanner, Kirk; Berens, Michael E.; Marincola, Francesco M.; Vande Woude, George F.; Xie, Qian

    2014-01-01

    The success of molecular targeted therapy against cancer depends on discovering the tumor driver genes and the molecular determinants that control the pathway activity. Glioblastoma (GBM) is one of the most devastating cancers due to its highly infiltrating nature, and MET pathway activation is a major cause of invasion in both primary and recurrent tumors. Because MET inhibitors are in clinical trials against GBM, there may be clinical utility from developing more effective patient enrollment strategies tailored to targeted therapeutics. Previously, we reported (Xie et al., PNAS 2012) that GBM tumors with high levels of hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) often display HGF-autocrine activation through its receptor MET, which is a key molecular feature in sensitivity to MET inhibitors. In this study, we sought to develop a molecular signature that can be used as a biomarker to identify GBM patients whose tumor would be vulnerable to treatment with MET inhibitors. Because GBM is a heterogeneous disease in which drug response in the individual patient can be influenced by a variety of different mechanisms, the expression of a single gene was not anticipated to be sufficient to pinpoint sensitivity to the drug; rather, a hypothesis-driven, biomarker-based molecular signature would likely be of a higher value. We analyzed genomic data from GBM patients in The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) Network as well as from preclinical tumor models. We found that GBM tumors sensitive to MET inhibitors share common genomic profiles. More importantly, using patient-derived xenograft models, a 25-gene molecular signature was identified that predicted sensitivity to MET inhibitors. Our findings are a proof-of-concept for the use of genomic signatures to identify GBM patients with greater vulnerability for MET-targeted therapy.

  1. Structural Basis for Selective Small Molecule Kinase Inhibition of Activated c-Met

    SciTech Connect

    Rickert, Keith W.; Patel, Sangita B.; Allison, Timothy J.; Byrne, Noel J.; Darke, Paul L.; Ford, Rachael E.; Guerin, David J.; Hall, Dawn L.; Kornienko, Maria; Lu, Jun; Munshi, Sanjeev K.; Reid, John C.; Shipman, Jennifer M.; Stanton, Elizabeth F.; Wilson, Kevin J.; Young, Jonathon R.; Soisson, Stephen M.; Lumb, Kevin J.

    2012-03-15

    The receptor tyrosine kinase c-Met is implicated in oncogenesis and is the target for several small molecule and biologic agents in clinical trials for the treatment of cancer. Binding of the hepatocyte growth factor to the cell surface receptor of c-Met induces activation via autophosphorylation of the kinase domain. Here we describe the structural basis of c-Met activation upon autophosphorylation and the selective small molecule inhibiton of autophosphorylated c-Met. MK-2461 is a potent c-Met inhibitor that is selective for the phosphorylated state of the enzyme. Compound 1 is an MK-2461 analog with a 20-fold enthalpy-driven preference for the autophosphorylated over unphosphorylated c-Met kinase domain. The crystal structure of the unbound kinase domain phosphorylated at Tyr-1234 and Tyr-1235 shows that activation loop phosphorylation leads to the ejection and disorder of the activation loop and rearrangement of helix {alpha}C and the G loop to generate a viable active site. Helix {alpha}C adopts a orientation different from that seen in activation loop mutants. The crystal structure of the complex formed by the autophosphorylated c-Met kinase domain and compound 1 reveals a significant induced fit conformational change of the G loop and ordering of the activation loop, explaining the selectivity of compound 1 for the autophosphorylated state. The results highlight the role of structural plasticity within the kinase domain in imparting the specificity of ligand binding and provide the framework for structure-guided design of activated c-Met inhibitors.

  2. Structural Basis for the Differential Regulation of DNA by the Methionine Repressor MetJ

    SciTech Connect

    Augustus, Anne; Reardon, Patrick; Heller, William T; Spicer, Leonard D.

    2006-01-01

    The Met regulon in Escherichia coli encodes several proteins responsible for the biosynthesis of methionine. Regulation of the expression of most of these proteins is governed by the methionine repressor protein MetJ and its co-repressor, the methionine derivative S-adenosylmethionine. Genes controlled by MetJ contain from two to five sequential copies of a homologous 8-bp sequence called the metbox. A crystal structure for one of the complexes, the repressor tetramer bound to two metboxes, has been reported (Somers, W. S., and S. E. Phillips (1992) Nature 359, 387-393), but little structural work on the larger assemblies has been done presumably because of the difficulties in crystallization and the variability in the number and sequences of metboxes for the various genes. Small angle neutron scattering was used to study complexes of MetJ and S-adenosylmethionine with double-stranded DNA containing two, three, and five metboxes. Our results demonstrate that the crystal structure of the two-metbox complex is not the native solution conformation of the complex. Instead, the system adopts a less compact conformation in which there is decreased interaction between the adjacent MetJ dimers. Models built of the higher order complexes from the scattering data show that the three-metbox complex is organized much like the two-metbox complex. However, the five-metbox complex differs significantly from the smaller complexes, providing much closer packing of the adjacent MetJ dimers and allowing additional contacts not available in the crystal structure. The results suggest that there is a structural basis for the differences observed in the regulatory effectiveness of MetJ for the various genes of the Met regulon.

  3. BDNF val66met affects hippocampal volume and emotion-related hippocampal memory activity.

    PubMed

    Molendijk, M L; van Tol, M-J; Penninx, B W J H; van der Wee, N J A; Aleman, A; Veltman, D J; Spinhoven, P; Elzinga, B M

    2012-01-31

    The val(66)met polymorphism on the BDNF gene has been reported to explain individual differences in hippocampal volume and memory-related activity. These findings, however, have not been replicated consistently and no studies to date controlled for the potentially confounding impact of early life stress, such as childhood abuse, and psychiatric status. Using structural and functional MRI, we therefore investigated in 126 depressed and/or anxious patients and 31 healthy control subjects the effects of val(66)met on hippocampal volume and encoding activity of neutral, positive and negative words, while taking into account childhood abuse and psychiatric status. Our results show slightly lower hippocampal volumes in carriers of a met allele (n=54) relative to val/val homozygotes (n=103) (P=0.02, effect size (Cohen's d)=0.37), which appeared to be independent of childhood abuse and psychiatric status. For hippocampal encoding activity, we found a val(66)met-word valence interaction (P=0.02) such that carriers of a met allele showed increased levels of activation in response to negative words relative to activation in the neutral word condition and relative to val/val homozygotes. This, however, was only evident in the absence of childhood abuse, as abused val/val homozygotes showed hippocampal encoding activity for negative words that was comparable to that of carriers of a met allele. Neither psychiatric status nor memory accuracy did account for these associations. In conclusion, BDNF val(66)met has a significant impact on hippocampal volume independently of childhood abuse and psychiatric status. Furthermore, early adverse experiences such as childhood abuse account for individual differences in hippocampal encoding activity of negative stimuli but this effect manifests differently as a function of val(66)met.

  4. HGF/Met Signaling in Head and Neck Cancer: Impact on the Tumor Microenvironment.

    PubMed

    Hartmann, Stefan; Bhola, Neil E; Grandis, Jennifer R

    2016-08-15

    Studies to date have revealed several major molecular alterations that contribute to head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) initiation, progression, metastatic spread, and therapeutic failure. The EGFR is the only FDA-approved therapeutic target, yet responses to cetuximab have been limited. Activation and cross-talk of cellular receptors and consequent activation of different signaling pathways contribute to limited activity of blockade of a single pathway. The hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) receptor, Met, has been implicated in HNSCC tumorigenesis and EGFR inhibitor resistance. HGF, the sole ligand of Met, is overexpressed in the tumor microenvironment. The role of HGF/Met signaling in proliferation, metastasis, and angiogenesis has been investigated in HNSCC, leading to clinical trials with various Met inhibitors and HGF antibodies. However, the role of the HGF/Met signaling axis in mediating the tumor microenvironment has been relatively understudied in HNSCC. In this review, we discuss the functional roles of Met and HGF in HNSCC with a focus on the tumor microenvironment and the immune system. Clin Cancer Res; 22(16); 4005-13. ©2016 AACR. PMID:27370607

  5. Fumarase tumor suppressor gene and MET oncogene cooperate in upholding transformation and tumorigenesis.

    PubMed

    Costa, Barbara; Dettori, Daniela; Lorenzato, Annalisa; Bardella, Chiara; Coltella, Nadia; Martino, Cosimo; Cammarata, Cristina; Carmeliet, Peter; Olivero, Martina; Di Renzo, Maria Flavia

    2010-08-01

    Loss of the fumarate hydratase (FH) tumor suppressor gene results in the development of benign tumors that rarely, but regrettably, progress to very aggressive cancers. Using mouse embryo fibroblasts (MEFs) to model transformation, we found that fh knockdown results in increased expression of the met oncogene-encoded tyrosine kinase receptor through hypoxia-inducible factor (hif) stabilization. MET-increased expression was alone able to stabilize hif, thus establishing a feed forward loop that might enforce tumor progression. The fh-defective MEFs showed increased motility and protection from apoptosis. Motility, but not survival, relied on hif-1alpha and was greatly enhanced by MET ligand hepatocyte growth factor. Met cooperated with a weakly oncogenic ras in making MEFs transformed and tumorigenic, as shown by in vitro and in vivo assays. Loss of fh was not equally effective by itself but enhanced the transformed and tumorigenic phenotype induced by ras and MET. Consistently, the rescue of fumarase expression abrogated the motogenic and transformed phenotype of fh-defective MEFs. In conclusion, the data suggest that the progression of tumors where FH is lost might be boosted by activation of the MET oncogene, which is able to drive cell-autonomous tumor progression and is a strong candidate for targeted therapy. PMID:20354140

  6. Differential effects of BDNF val(66)met in repetitive associative learning paradigms.

    PubMed

    Freundlieb, Nils; Backhaus, Winifried; Brüggemann, Norbert; Gerloff, Christian; Klein, Christine; Pinnschmidt, Hans O; Hummel, Friedhelm C

    2015-09-01

    In healthy young subjects, the brain derived neurotropic factor (BDNF) val(66)met polymorphism negatively affects behavioural outcome in short-term motor cortex or hippocampus-based learning paradigms. In repetitive training paradigms over several days this effect can be overcome, in tests involving other brain areas even positive effects were found. To further specify the role of this polymorphism in cognitive processes, we used an associative vocabulary learning paradigm over four consecutive days and tested 38 young healthy subjects and 29 healthy elderly subjects. As a control paradigm, we designed a nonverbal haptic Braille letter-learning paradigm based on the same principles. Behavioural outcome was then associated with the BDNF-genotype. In the vocabulary learning task, met carrier (met/val and met/met) benefitted more from the repetitive training than val/val subjects. This was paralleled by a higher reduction of delayed answers during the course of the study, an effect that was also present in the haptic paradigm. However, in a group of healthy elderly subjects, no similar tendency was found. We conclude that the BDNF val(66)met polymorphism alters highly circumscribed answer behaviours in young healthy subjects. This might partly explain the high variability of previously published results.

  7. (-)-Oleocanthal as a c-Met inhibitor for the control of metastatic breast and prostate cancers.

    PubMed

    Elnagar, Ahmed Y; Sylvester, Paul W; El Sayed, Khalid A

    2011-07-01

    The proto-oncogene receptor tyrosine kinase c-Met encodes the high-affinity receptor for hepatocyte growth factor (HGF). Dysregulation of the HGF-c-Met pathway plays a significant oncogenic role in many tumors. Overexpression of c-Met is a prognostic indicator for some transitional cell carcinomas. Extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO) provides a variety of minor phenolic compounds with beneficial properties. (-)-Oleocanthal (1) is a naturally occurring minor secoiridoid isolated from EVOO, which showed potent anti-inflammatory activity via its ability to inhibit COX-1 and COX-2. It altered the structure of neurotoxic proteins believed to contribute to the debilitating effects of Alzheimer's disease. Computer-Assisted Molecular Design (CAMD) identified 1 as a potential virtual c-Met inhibitor hit. Oleocanthal inhibited the proliferation, migration, and invasion of the epithelial human breast and prostate cancer cell lines MCF7, MDA-MB-231, and PC-3, respectively, with an IC (50) range of 10-20 µM, and demonstrated anti-angiogenic activity via downregulating the expression of the microvessel density marker CD31 in endothelial colony forming cells with an IC (50) of 4.4 µM. It inhibited the phosphorylation of c-Met kinase IN VITRO in the Z'-LYTE™ assay, with an IC (50) value of 4.8 µM. (-)-Oleocanthal and EVOO can have potential therapeutic use for the control of c-Met-dependent malignancies. PMID:21328179