The Effect of Single Dose Methylphenidate on Neurometabolites according to COMT Gene Val158Met Polymorphism in the Patient with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: A Study Using Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy.
ABSTRACT: Attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a common neurodevelopmental disorder. Thus, the present study aimed to determine the effects of a single dose of methylphenidate (Mph) on neurometabolite levels according to polymorphisms of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene.This study evaluated the neurometabolite levels including N-acetylaspartate (NAA), creatine (Cr), and choline (Cho) of ADHD patients, before and after treatment with Mph (10 mg) according to the presence of COMT polymorphisms. The spectra were obtained from the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), cerebellum, and striatum.The NAA levels of the val/val and val genotype carriers (val/val and val/met genotypes) increased in the DLPFC and ACC, respectively, following Mph treatment. The NAA/Cr ratio was lower in the DLPFC of val carriers than in the met/met genotype carriers prior to Mph administration. The Cho levels of the val/met genotype and val carriers increased in the striatum following Mph treatment. Following Mph treatment, the Cr levels of the met/met genotype carriers were higher than those of the val/met genotype and val carriers. Additionally, after Mph treatment, there was a significant increase in Cr levels in the DLPFC of the met/met genotype carriers but a significant decrease in such levels in the striatum of val/val genotype carriers.These findings suggest that polymorphisms of the COMT gene can account for individual differences in neurochemical responses to Mph among ADHD patients. Therefore, further studies are needed to fully characterize the effects of the Val158met polymorphism of the COMT gene on treatment outcomes in patients with ADHD.
Project description:Increased dopamine availability may be associated with impaired structural maturation of brain white matter connectivity. This study aimed to derive a comprehensive, whole-brain characterization of large-scale axonal connectivity differences in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) associated with catechol-O-methyltransferase gene (COMT) Val158Met polymorphism. Using diffusion tensor imaging, whole-brain tractography, and an imaging connectomics approach, we characterized altered white matter connectivity in youth with ADHD who were COMT Val-homozygous (N?=?29) compared with those who were Met-carriers (N?=?29). Additionally, we examined whether dopamine transporter gene (DAT1) and dopamine D4 receptor gene (DRD4) polymorphisms were associated with white matter differences. Level of attention was assessed using the continuous performance test before and after an 8-week open-label trial of methylphenidate (MPH). A network of white matter connections linking 18 different brain regions was significantly weakened in youth with ADHD who were COMT Met-carriers compared to those who were Val-homozygous (P?<?0.05, family-wise error-corrected). A measure of white matter integrity, fractional anisotropy, was correlated with impaired pretreatment performance in continuous performance test omission errors and response time variability, as well as with improvement in continuous performance test response time variability after MPH treatment. Altered white matter connectivity was exclusively based on COMT genotypes, and was not evident in DAT1 or DRD4. We demonstrated that white matter connectivity in youth with ADHD is associated with COMT Val158Met genotypes. The present findings suggest that different layers of dopamine-related genes and interindividual variability in the genetic polymorphisms should be taken into account when investigating the human connectome.
Project description:The single nucleotide val158met polymorphism in catechol o-methyltransferase (COMT) influences prefrontal cortex function. Working memory, dependent on the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), has been repeatedly shown to be influenced by this COMT polymorphism. The high activity COMT val isoform is associated with lower synaptic dopamine levels. Altered synaptic dopamine levels are expected to lead to molecular adaptations within the synapse and within DLPFC neural circuitry. In this human post mortem study using high quality DLPFC tissue, we first examined the influence of the COMT val158met polymorphism on markers of dopamine neurotransmission, N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptor subunits and glutamatic acid decarboxylase 67 (GAD67), all known to be critical to DLPFC circuitry and function. Next, we compared target gene expression profiles in a cohort of control and schizophrenia cases, each characterized by COMT genotype. We find that the COMT val allele in control subjects is associated with significant upregulation of GluN2A and GAD67 mRNA levels compared to met carriers. Comparisons between control and schizophrenia groups reveal that GluN2A, GAD67 and DRD2 are differentially regulated between diagnostic groups in a genotype specific manner. Chronic antipsychotic treatment in rodents did not explain these differences. These data demonstrate an association between COMTval158met genotype and gene expression profile in the DLPFC of controls, possibly adaptations to maintain DLPFC function. In schizophrenia val homozygotes, these adaptations are not seen and could reflect pathophysiologic mechanisms related to the known poorer performance of these subjects on DLPFC-dependent tasks.
Project description:INTRODUCTION:In this article, the COMT gene val(158)met polymorphism and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)-related differences in diffusion-tensor-imaging-measured white matter (WM) structure in children with ADHD and controls were investigated. PATIENTS AND METHODS:A total of 71 children diagnosed with ADHD and 24 controls aged 8-15 years were recruited. Using diffusion tensor imaging, COMT polymorphism and ADHD-related WM alterations were investigated, and any interaction effect between the COMT polymorphism and ADHD was also examined. The effects of age, sex, and estimated total IQ were controlled by multivariate analysis of covariance (MANCOVA). RESULTS:First, an interaction between the COMT val(158)met polymorphism and ADHD in the right (R) cingulum (cingulate gyrus) (CGC) was found. According to this, valine (val) homozygote ADHD-diagnosed children had significantly lower fractional anisotropy (FA) and higher radial diffusivity (RD) in the R-CGC than ADHD-diagnosed methionine (met) carriers, and val homozygote controls had higher FA and lower RD in the R-CGC than val homozygote ADHD patients. Second, met carriers had higher FA and axial diffusivity in the left (L)-uncinate fasciculus and lower RD in the L-posterior corona radiata and L-posterior thalamic radiation (include optic radiation) than the val homozygotes, independent of ADHD diagnosis. Third, children with ADHD had lower FA in the L-CGC and R-retrolenticular part of the internal capsule than the controls, independent of the COMT polymorphism. CONCLUSION:Significant differences reported here may be evidence that the COMT gene val(158)met polymorphism variants, as well as ADHD, could affect brain development. ADHD and the COMT polymorphism might be interactively affecting WM development in the R-CGC to alter the WM connectivity in children with val homozygote ADHD.
Project description:The val allele of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) val(158)met polymorphism has been linked with nicotine dependence and with cognitive performance in healthy volunteers. We tested the hypothesis that the val allele is a risk factor for altered brain function and cognition during nicotine abstinence as compared with the normal smoking state. Chronic smokers (n=33) were genotyped prospectively for the COMT polymorphism for balanced selection of met/met, val/met and val/val groups. A visual N-back working memory task was performed during two separate blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) functional magnetic resonance imaging sessions in counterbalanced order: (1) smoking as usual, and (2)>or=14 h confirmed abstinence. Significant genotype by session interactions were observed for BOLD signal in right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC; (P=0.0005), left DLPFC (P=0.02) and dorsal cingulate/medial prefrontal cortex (P=0.01) as well as for task reaction time (P=0.03). Smokers with val/val genotypes were more sensitive to the abstinence challenge than carriers of the met allele, with the greatest effects on BOLD signal and performance speed at the highest working memory load. These data suggest a novel brain-behavior mechanism that may underlie the increased susceptibility to nicotine dependence and smoking relapse associated with the COMT val allele. Exploration of the effects of COMT inhibitors as a possible smoking cessation aid in this group may be warranted.
Project description:The cerebellum, although traditionally considered a motor structure, has been increasingly recognized to play a role in regulating executive function, the dysfunction of which is a factor in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Additionally, catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) polymorphism has been reported to be associated with executive function. We examined whether the cortico-cerebellar executive function network is altered in children with ADHD and whether COMT polymorphism is associated with the altered network. Thirty-one children with ADHD and thirty age- and IQ-matched typically developing (TD) controls underwent resting-state functional MRI, and functional connectivity of executive function-related Crus I/II in the cerebellum was analysed. COMT Val158Met genotype data were also obtained from children with ADHD. Relative to TD controls, children with ADHD showed significantly lower functional connectivity of the right Crus I/II with the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. Additionally, the functional connectivity of children with ADHD was modulated by COMT polymorphism, with Met-carriers exhibiting significantly lower functional connectivity than the Val/Val genotype. These results suggest the existence of variations, such as ethnic differences, in COMT genetic effects on the cortico-cerebellar executive function network. These variations contribute to heterogeneity in ADHD. Further neuroimaging genetics study might lead to the development of fundamental therapies that target ADHD pathophysiology.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Prefrontal dopamine is catabolized by the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) enzyme. Current evidence suggests that the val/met single nucleotide polymorphism in the COMT gene can predict the efficiency of executive cognition in humans. Individuals carrying the val allele perform more poorly because less synaptic dopamine is available. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We investigated the influence of the COMT polymorphism on motor performance in a task that requires different executive functions. We administered a manual aiming motor task that was performed under four different conditions of execution by 111 healthy participants. Participants were grouped according to genotype (met/met, met/val, val/val), and the motor performance among groups was compared. Overall, the results indicate that met/met carriers presented lower levels of peak velocity during the movement trajectory than the val carriers, but met/met carriers displayed higher accuracy than the val carriers. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This study found a significant association between the COMT polymorphism and manual aiming control. Few studies have investigated the genetics of motor control, and these findings indicate that individual differences in motor control require further investigation using genetic studies.
Project description:Nicotine and tonic dopamine (DA) levels [as inferred by catechol-O-methyl tranferase (COMT) Val158Met genotype] interact to affect prefrontal processing. Prefrontal cortical areas are involved in response to performance feedback, which is impaired in smokers. We investigated whether there is a nicotine?×?COMT genotype interaction in brain circuitry during performance feedback of a reward task. We scanned 23 healthy smokers (10 Val/Val homozygotes, 13 Met allele carriers) during two fMRI sessions while subjects were wearing a nicotine or placebo patch. A significant nicotine?×?COMT genotype interaction for BOLD signal during performance feedback in cortico-striatal areas was seen. Activation in these areas during the nicotine patch condition was greater in Val/Val homozygotes and reduced in Met allele carriers. During negative performance feedback, the change in activation in error detection areas such as anterior cingulate cortex (ACC)/superior frontal gyrus on nicotine compared to placebo was greater in Val/Val homozygotes compared to Met allele carriers. With transdermal nicotine administration, Val/Val homozygotes showed greater activation with performance feedback in the dorsal striatum, area associated with habitual responding. In response to negative feedback, Val/Val homozygotes had greater activation in error detection areas, including the ACC, suggesting increased sensitivity to loss with nicotine exposure. Although these results are preliminary due to small sample size, they suggest a possible neurobiological mechanism underlying the clinical observation that Val/Val homozygotes, presumably with elevated COMT activity compared to Met allele carriers and therefore reduced prefrontal DA levels, have poorer outcomes with nicotine replacement therapy.
Project description:The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) enzyme is critical for the catabolic regulation of synaptic dopamine, resulting in altered cortical functioning. The COMT Val(158)Met polymorphism has been implicated in human mental illness, with Met/Met homozygotes associated with increased susceptibility to posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Our primary objective was to examine the intermediate phenotype of fear inhibition in PTSD stratified by COMT genotype (Met/Met, Val/Met, and Val/Val) and differential gene regulation via methylation status at CpG sites in the COMT promoter region. More specifically, we examined the potential interaction of COMT genotype and PTSD diagnosis on fear-potentiated startle during fear conditioning and extinction and COMT DNA methylation levels (as determined using genomic DNA isolated from whole blood). Participants were recruited from medical and gynecological clinics of an urban hospital in Atlanta, GA, USA. We found that individuals with the Met/Met genotype demonstrated higher fear-potentiated startle to the CS- (safety signal) and during extinction of the CS+ (danger signal) compared to Val/Met and Val/Val genotypes. The PTSD+ Met/Met genotype group had the greatest impairment in fear inhibition to the CS- (p?=?0.006), compared to Val carriers. In addition, the Met/Met genotype was associated with DNA methylation at four CpG sites, two of which were associated with impaired fear inhibition to the safety signal. These results suggest that multiple differential mechanisms for regulating COMT function - at the level of protein structure via the Val(158)Met genotype and at the level of gene regulation via differential methylation - are associated with impaired fear inhibition in PTSD.
Project description:Catechol-O-methyltransferease (COMT) metabolizes prefrontal cortex dopamine (DA), a neurotransmitter involved in executive behavior; the Val158Met genotype has been linked to executive dysfunction, which might increase sexual risk behaviors favoring HIV transmission. Main and interaction effects of COMT genotype and executive functioning on sexual risk behavior were examined. 192 sexually active nonmonogamous men completed a sexual behavior questionnaire, executive functioning tests, and were genotyped using blood-derived DNA. Main effects for executive dysfunction but not COMT on number of sexual partners were observed. A COMT x executive dysfunction interaction was found for number of sexual partners and insertive anal sex, significant for carriers of the Met/Met and to a lesser extent Val/Met genotypes but not Val/Val carriers. In the context of HIV and methamphetamine dependence, dopaminergic overactivity in prefrontal cortex conferred by the Met/Met genotype appears to result in a liability for executive dysfunction and potentially associated risky sexual behavior.
Project description:The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) enzyme has a key function in the degradation of catecholamines and a functional polymorphism is val158met. The val/val genotype results in a three to fourfold higher enzymatic activity compared with the met/met genotype, with the val/met genotype exhibiting intermediate activity. Since pain syndromes as well as anxiety and depression are associated to low and high COMT activity respectively and these conditions are all associated with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) we wanted for the first time to explore the relationship between the polymorphism and IBS.867 subjects (445 women) representative of the general population and 70 consecutively sampled patients with IBS (61 women) were genotyped for the val158met polymorphism and the IBS patients filled out the Hospital-Anxiety-and-Depression-Scale (HADS) questionnaire, and an IBS symptom diary.There was a significantly higher occurrence of the val/val genotype in patients compared with controls (30% vs 20%; Chi(2) (1) 3.98; p = 0.046) and a trend toward a lower occurrence of the val/met genotype in IBS patients compared with controls (39% vs 49%; Chi(2) (1) 2.89; p = 0.089). Within the IBS patients the val/val carriers exhibited significantly increased bowel frequency (2.6 vs 1.8 stools per day; Chi(2) (1) 5.3; p = 0.03) and a smaller proportion of stools with incomplete defecation (41% vs 68%; Chi(2) (1) 4.3; p = 0.04) compared with the rest (val/met+met/met carriers). The val/val carriers also showed a trend for a smaller proportion of hard stools (0% vs 15%; Chi(2) (1) 3.2; p = 0.08) and a higher frequency of postprandial defecation (26% vs 21%; Chi(2) (1) 3.0; p = 0.08).In this study we found an association between the val/val genotype of the val158met COMT gene and IBS as well as to specific IBS related bowel pattern in IBS patients.