The development and application of a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) based assay to determine the impact of genetic variation in South African patients diagnosed with depression

Delport, Darnielle (2014-04)

Thesis (MPath)--Stellenbosch University, 2014.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) is a severe debilitating medical condition that may lead to suicide. Due to a poor understanding of the biological mechanisms underlying the disease process therapeutic decisions are usually taken using a ‘trial and error’ approach. This is not ideal since many treatments do not work as expected for all individuals. Studies have shown that only half of MDD patients receive the appropriate treatment, whereas many patients have adverse response to anti-depressants. These may include weight gain and raised homocysteine levels that may further compromise the health status of MDD patients and may partly explain the link with cardiovascular disease. The objective of the study was to identify genetic risk factors interacting with environmental factors implicated in MDD that may be of relevance to the South African population. Polymorphisms in the MTHFR (677 C>T, rs1801133 and 1298 A>C, rs1801131), COMT (472G>A, rs4680), CYP2D6 (6937G>A, rs3892097), ASMT (24436 G>A, rs4446909) and SLC6A4 (43 bp ins/del, rs4795541) genes were genotyped in 86 MDD patients and 97 population-matched controls. The specific aims were 1) to analytically validate high throughput real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) genotyping assays for the selected SNPs against direct sequencing as the gold standard for 2) possible integration into a pathology-supported genetic testing strategy aimed at improved clinical management of MDD. A total of 183 unrelated Caucasians participated in the study, including 69 females and 17 males with MDD and 57 female and 40 male controls without a personal and family medical history of overlapping stress/anxiety and depressive disorders. All study participants were genotyped for the six selected SNPs considered clinically useful based on international data. The allelic distribution of the SNPs, single or combined into a genotype risk score after counting their minor alleles, did not differ between MDD patients and controls. Homocysteine levels were determined and correlated with body mass index (BMI) and other variables known to influence these phenotypes. The folate score assessed with use of the study questionnaire was significantly lower in the patient group compared with controls (p=0.003) and correlated significantly with BMI, particularly in females (p=0.009). BMI was on average 8% higher in the MDD patients compared with controls (p=0.015) after adjustment for age and sex. The MTHFR rs1801133 677 T-allele was associated with a 14% increase in BMI in MDD patients but not controls (p=0.032), which in turn was associated with significantly increased homocysteine levels (p<0.05). The aims of the study were successfully achieved. Identification of the MTHFR rs1801133 677 T-allele reinforces the importance of adequate folate intake in the diet due to increased risk of obesity and depression found to be associated with low dietary intake. Evidence of shared genetic vulnerability for many chronic diseases and drug response mediated by the MTHFR 677 T-allele support the clinical relevance of this low-penetrance mutation.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Major depressie (MD) is ‘n aftakelende siektetoestand wat tot selfdood kan lei. Onkunde oor die siekte se onderliggende biologiese meganismes lei dikwels tot ‘n lukrake terapeutiese benadering. Dit is ‘n onbevredigende situasie aangesien indiwidue verskillend reageer op die middels wat voorgeskryf word. Navorsing toon dat slegs ongeveer die helfte van MD pasiënte toepaslike behandeling kry, terwyl anti-depressante ‘n nadelige uitwerking het op baie pasiënte. Dit sluit massatoename en verhoogde homosisteïenvlakke in wat MD pasiënte se gesondheid bykomend nadelig kan beïnvloed en die verband met kardiovaskulêre siekte gedeeltelik kan verklaar. Hierdie studie poog om MD verwante genetiese risikofaktore en omgewingsfaktore wat mekaar beïnvloed en moontlik op die Suid Afrikaanse bevolking betrekking het, te identifiseer. Polimorfismes in die MTHFR (677 C>T, rs1801133 en 1298 A>C, rs1801131), COMT (472G>A, rs4680), CYP2D6 (6937G>A, rs3892097), ASMT (24436 G>A, rs4446909) en SLC6A4 (43 bp ins/del, rs4795541) gene is geanaliseer in 86 MD pasiënte en 97 kontroles geselekteer van dieselfde populasie. Die spesifieke doelwitte was om 1) hoë deurset direkte polimerase kettingreaksie (RT-PCR) genotiperingstoetse vir die 6 gekose polimorfismes met direkte volgordebepaling as maatstaf analities te valideer vir 2) moontlike insluiting in ‘n patologie-ondersteunde genetiese toetsstrategie met die oog op beter kliniese hantering van MD. Altesaam 183 Kaukasiërs het aan die studie deelgeneem. Die MD pasiënte het uit 69 vroue en 17 mans bestaan. Die kontroles (57 vroue en 40 mans) het geen mediese geskiedenis (persoonlik of familie) van oorvleuelende stress/angstigheid of depressie gehad nie. Gebaseer op internasionale data, is al die deelnemers vir die 6 gekose, potensieel klinies-bruikbare polimorfismes getoets. Die alleliese verspreiding van die polimorfismes enkel of gekombineer (uitgedruk as ‘n genotipe-risiko-syfer nadat minor allele getel is), was dieselfde in MD-pasiënte en kontroles. Homosisteïenvlakke is bepaal en gekorreleer met die liggaamsmassa-indeks (BMI) en ander veranderlikes wat bekend is vir hulle invloed op hierdie fenotipes. In teenstelling met die kontroles, was die folaat telling, soos bepaal met die studievraelys, betekenisvol laer in die pasiënte (p=0.003). Die korrelasie met die liggaamsmassa-indeks, spesifiek by vroue, was ook betekenisvol (p=0.009). Na aanpassings vir ouderdom en geslag, is gevind dat die liggaamsmassa-indeks gemiddeld 8% hoër was in die die MD pasiënte teenoor die kontroles. By MD-pasiënte, maar nie by die kontroles nie, is die MTHFR rs1801133 677 T-alleel geassosieer met ‘n 14% toename in liggaamsmassa-indeks (p=0.032), wat ook geassosieer was met betekenisvolle verhoogde homosisteïenvlakke (p<0.05). Die doelwitte van die studie is bereik. Identifisering van die MTHFR rs1801133 677 T-alleel beklemtoon hoe belangrik dit is om voldoende folaat in te neem, veral omdat ‘n verhoogde risiko vir vetsug en depressie met ‘n lae folaatinname in die diet geassosieer word. Die kliniese belang van die MTHFR 677 T-alleel word beklemtoon deur toenemende bewyse wat daarop dui dat gedeelde genetiese vatbaarheid vir ‘n verskeidenheid van kroniese siektes asook middelrespons aan bemiddeling deur hierdie lae penetrasie mutasie toegeskryf kan word.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/86564
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