The Neuregulin 1 (NRG1) gene was initially implicated in schizophrenia (SZ) and has recently been associated with bipolar disorder (BPD) in two studies. An association with major depressive disorder (MDD) has not yet been investigated but is warranted in view of the genetic overlap between MDD and BPD. We have performed a large-scale case–control study investigating the association between NRG1 polymorphisms and MDD, genotyping a selection of 14 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) spanning the NRG1 gene in a sample of 1,398 patients of White European ancestry with a diagnosis of MDD and 1,304 ethnically matched controls from three clinical sites in the UK. We found no single marker or haplotype associations that withstood correction for multiple testing. Our findings do not provide evidence that NRG1 plays a role in MDD or that this gene explains part of the genetic overlap with BPD. © 2009 Wiley-Liss, Inc.