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Manic depression's ex-X.

Manic depression's ex-X

A new analysis of DNA from 14 families with a high rate of manic depression finds no statistical link between the mental disorder and two genetic markers on the X chromosome. Several research teams had previously found the markers -- one for color blindness, the other for anemia -- among many people in other families with manic depression, and had proposed that as many as one in three manic depressives has a predisposing gene in that region of the X chromosome (SN: 3/28/87, p.199).

The connection between manic depression and the X-chromosome markers is much less frequent than suggested by those studies, reports a team led by Wade H. Berrettini of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) in Bethesda, Md. An uncommon form of manic depression may be linked to markers on the X chromosome, the NIMH scientists say in the April ARCHIVES OF GENERAL PSYCHIATRY.

Another marker on the X chromosome has also been associated with manic depression (SN: 6/13/87, p.376). But it lies so close to one of the markers used by the NIMH researchers that they excluded its connection to manic depression.

As in prior studies, no fathers and sons in the NIMH families shared a manic depression diagnosis. Some researchers suggest this pattern supports a link between the X chromosome and manic depression. The 23rd pair of human chromosomes contains two X chromosomes for females and one X and one Y for males. The Y is inherited from the father.

The new findings follow a recent report casting doubt on a link between two genetic markers on chromosome 11 and manic depression among Amish families (SN: 11/18/89, p.327).
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Title Annotation:mental disorder and X chromosome link in doubt
Publication:Science News
Date:May 5, 1990
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