Tentative association of the serotonin transporter with schizophrenia and unipolar depression but not with bipolar disorder in Han Chinese

W Q Liu, N F Gu, G Y Feng, S Li, S C Bai, J G Zhang, T Shen, H Xue, G Breen, D St Clair, L He

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The serotonin transporter gene (SERT) plays an important role in the serotonin uptake into neurons, Recently, several polymorphisms including a variable-number-tandem-repeat (VNTR) in the second intron and an insertion/deletion polymorphism (5-HTT linked polymorphic region, 5-HTTLPR) were identified and reported to be associated with a variety of mental illnesses, including major depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety-related traits, and autism, in our study, we performed an association study between the SERT VNTR polymorphism and schizophrenia (n = 260), bipolar disorder (n = 137), and unipolar depression (n = 33) in the Han Chinese. A large group of ethnically matched control individuals (n = 362) were also genotyped. Allele 12 of the VNTR polymorphism was associated with schizophrenia (P = 0.007) and unipolar depression (P = 0.011). Bipolar disorder was not associated with the VNTR (P = 0.93). Thus, we conclude that the SERT VNTR polymorphism may be a risk factor for both schizophrenia and unipolar depression, but not for bipolar disorder, in the Halt Chinese. Pharmacogenetics 9:491-495 (C) 1999 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)491-495
Number of pages5
Publication statusPublished - 1999


  • bipolar disorder
  • Han-Chinese
  • schizophrenia
  • serotonin transporter
  • VNTR
  • unipolar depression
  • 5-HTT GENE

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