A genome wide search for alcoholism susceptibility genes



Alcoholism is currently one of the most serious public health problems in the US. Lifetime prevalence rates are relatively high with one in five men and one in 12 women meeting criteria for this condition. Identification of genetic loci conferring an increased susceptibility to developing alcohol dependence could strengthen prevention efforts by informing individuals of their risk before abusive drinking ensues. Families identified through a double proband methodology have provided an exceptional opportunity for gene-finding because of the increased recurrence risks seen in these sibships. A total of 360 markers for 22 autosomes were spaced at an average distance of 9.4 cM and genotyping performed for 330 members of these multiplex families. Extensive clinical data, personality variation, and event-related potential characteristics were available for reducing heterogeneity and detecting robust linkage signals. Multipoint linkage analysis using different analytic strategies give strong support for loci on chromosomes 1, 2, 6, 7, 10, 12, 14, 16, and 17. © 2004 Wiley-Liss, Inc.