Effects of the Val158Met Polymorphism of the Catechol-O-Methyltransferase Gene on Measures of Sensory Gating in Health and Schizophrenia
The effects of the Val158Met polymorphism of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene on sensory gating were studied in 41 mentally healthy volunteers (healthy group) and 39 patients with schizophrenia. P50 auditory event-related potentials obtained in the paired-pulse stimulation paradigm with an interpulse interval of 500 msec were recorded. Comparison of the two groups demonstrated a decrease in P50 inhibition in patients as compared with the healthy group (p < 0.05). The COMT polymorphism was found to affect the parameters of the P50 wave only in the healthy group: carriers of the Val/Val genotype had maximum-amplitude responses to the first stimulus in the pair (A1) and the highest level of inhibition of P50. Comparison of measures of P50 inhibition between the healthy and schizophrenia groups with different variants of the Val158Met genotype revealed significant differences only in comparison with the cohort with the Val/Val genotype. P50 latency was significantly influenced by the genotype factor in the combined cohort of healthy volunteers and patients, due to an increase in latency in carriers of the Met/Met genotype. In the patients group, the profile of correlations between P50 parameters and the PANSS was found to depend on the COMT genotype.
Keywordssensory gating P50 auditory potential Val158Met polymorphism of the catechol-O-methyltransferase gene schizophrenia
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