Association of short alleles of a VNTR of the serotonin transporter gene with anxiety symptoms in patients presenting after deliberate self harm

J Evans, S Battersby, A D Ogilvie, C A D Smith, A J Harmar, D J Nutt, G M Goodwin

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The polymorphism of a variable number tandem repeat (VNTR) region of the serotonin transporter gene consists of three alleles containing, respectively, 9 (STin2.9), 10 (STin2.10) and 12 (STin2.12) copies of a repetitive element. The frequencies of the three alleles in 384 individuals presenting after deliberate self harm were the same as a group of 346 controls. However, ratings of anxiety (and state anger) were higher in those patients with genotypes including the shorter repetitive elements. The findings support the hypothesis that, in this group of patients with low rates of severe psychiatric disorder, allelic variation in the serotonin transporter gene may contribute to the expression of anxiety symptoms. (C) 1997 Elsevier Science Ltd.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)439-443
Number of pages5
Issue number4-5
Publication statusPublished - 1997

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