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No association of candidate genes with cannabis use in a large sample of Australian twin families

Authors

  • Karin J. H. Verweij,

    Corresponding author
    1. Genetic Epidemiology, Molecular Epidemiology, and Queensland Statistical Genetics Laboratories, Queensland Institute of Medical Research, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
    2. School of Psychology, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
      Karin J.H. Verweij, Genetic Epidemiology, Queensland Institute of Medical Research, 300 Herston Road, Brisbane, Queensland 4006, Australia. E-mail: karin.verweij@qimr.edu.au
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  • Brendan P. Zietsch,

    1. Genetic Epidemiology, Molecular Epidemiology, and Queensland Statistical Genetics Laboratories, Queensland Institute of Medical Research, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
    2. School of Psychology, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
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  • Jimmy Z. Liu,

    1. Genetic Epidemiology, Molecular Epidemiology, and Queensland Statistical Genetics Laboratories, Queensland Institute of Medical Research, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
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  • Sarah E. Medland,

    1. Genetic Epidemiology, Molecular Epidemiology, and Queensland Statistical Genetics Laboratories, Queensland Institute of Medical Research, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
    2. School of Psychology, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
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  • Michael T. Lynskey,

    1. Department of Psychiatry, Washington University School of Medicine, St Louis, MO, USA
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  • Pamela A. F. Madden,

    1. Department of Psychiatry, Washington University School of Medicine, St Louis, MO, USA
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  • Arpana Agrawal,

    1. Department of Psychiatry, Washington University School of Medicine, St Louis, MO, USA
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  • Grant W. Montgomery,

    1. Genetic Epidemiology, Molecular Epidemiology, and Queensland Statistical Genetics Laboratories, Queensland Institute of Medical Research, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
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  • Andrew C. Heath,

    1. Department of Psychiatry, Washington University School of Medicine, St Louis, MO, USA
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  • Nicholas G. Martin

    1. Genetic Epidemiology, Molecular Epidemiology, and Queensland Statistical Genetics Laboratories, Queensland Institute of Medical Research, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
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Karin J.H. Verweij, Genetic Epidemiology, Queensland Institute of Medical Research, 300 Herston Road, Brisbane, Queensland 4006, Australia. E-mail: karin.verweij@qimr.edu.au

ABSTRACT

While there is solid evidence that cannabis use is heritable, attempts to identify genetic influences at the molecular level have yielded mixed results. Here, a large twin family sample (n = 7452) was used to test for association between 10 previously reported candidate genes and lifetime frequency of cannabis use using a gene-based association test. None of the candidate genes reached even nominal significance (P < 0.05). The lack of replication may point to our limited understanding of the neurobiology of cannabis involvement and also to potential publication bias and false-positive findings in previous studies.

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