DISC1 gene and affective psychopathology: A combined structural and functional MRI study

E.M. Opmeer, M.J. van Tol, R. Kortekaas, N.J.A. van der Wee, S. Woudstra, M.A. van Buchem, B.W. Penninx, D.J. Veltman, A. Aleman

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The gene Disrupted-In-Schizophrenia-1 (DISC1) has been indicated as a determinant of psychopathology, including affective disorders, and shown to influence prefrontal cortex (PFC) and hippocampus functioning, regions of major interest for affective disorders. We aimed to investigate whether DISC1 differentially modulates brain function during executive and memory processing, and morphology in regions relevant for depression and anxiety disorders (affective disorders). 128 participants, with (n=103) and without (controls; n=25) affective disorders underwent genotyping for Ser704Cys (with Cys-allele considered as risk-allele) and structural and functional (f) Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) during visuospatial planning and emotional episodic memory tasks. For both voxel-based morphometry and fMRI analyses, we investigated the effect of genotype in controls and explored genotypeXdiagnosis interactions. Results are reported at p<0.05 FWE small volume corrected. In controls, Cys-carriers showed smaller bilateral (para)hippocampal volumes compared with Ser-homozygotes, and lower activation in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and dorsolateral PFC during visuospatial planning. In anxiety patients, Cys-carriers showed larger (para)hippocampal volumes and more ACC activation during visuospatial planning. In depressive patients, no effect of genotype was observed and overall, no effect of genotype on episodic memory processing was detected. We demonstrated that Ser704Cys-genotype influences (para)hippocampal structure and functioning the dorsal PFC during executive planning, most prominently in unaffected controls. Results suggest that presence of psychopathology moderates Ser704Cys effects.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)150-157
JournalJournal of Psychiatric Research
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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