Genome-wide search for genes affecting the risk for alcohol dependence

Theodore Reich, Howard J. Edenberg, Alison Goate, Jeff T. Williams, John P. Rice, Paul Van Eerdewegh, Tatiana Foroud, Victor Hesselbrock, Marc A. Schuckit, Kathleen Bucholz, Bernice Porjesz, Ting Kai Li, P. Michael Conneally, John I. Nurnberger, Jay A. Tischfield, Raymond R. Crowe, C. Robert Cloninger, William Wu, Shantia Shears, Kristie CarrCandice Crose, Chris Willig, Henri Begleiter

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643 Scopus citations


Alcohol dependence is a leading cause of morbidity and premature death. Several lines of evidence suggest a substantial genetic component to the risk for alcoholism: sibs of alcoholic probands have a 3-8 fold increased risk of also developing alcoholism, and twin heritability estimates of 50-60% are reported by contemporary studies of twins. We report on the results of a six- center collaborative study to identify susceptibility loci for alcohol dependence. A genome-wide screen examined 291 markers in 987 individuals from 105 families. Two-point and multipoint nonparametric linkage analyses were performed to detect susceptibility loci for alcohol dependence. Multipoint methods provided the strongest suggestions of linkage with susceptibility loci for alcohol dependence on chromosomes 1 and 7, and more modest evidence for a locus on chromosome 2. In addition, there was suggestive evidence for a protective locus on chromosome 4 near the alcohol dehydrogenase genes, for which protective effects have been reported in Asian populations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)207-215
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican Journal of Medical Genetics - Neuropsychiatric Genetics
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 8 1998


  • Alcohol dependence
  • Alcoholism
  • Genetic susceptibility
  • Genome screening
  • Linkage analysis


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