Genetic polymorphism of angiotensin I-converting enzyme (ACE), but not angiotensin II type I receptor (ATr1), has a gender-specific role in panic disorder


Mujgan Cengiz, PhD, Department of Medical Biology, Cerrahpasa Medical Faculty, Istanbul University, 34098 Cerrahpasa-Fatih/Istanbul, Turkey. Email:


Aims:  Angiotensins were shown to have some role in the development of panic disorder (PD). In this study, we aimed to determine the frequency of polymorphisms in two angiotensin-related genes, angiotensin I-converting enzyme (ACE) and angiotensin II type I receptor (ATr1), in a sample of Turkish patients with PD and to evaluate their association with PD development.

Methods:  Polymerase chain reaction and restriction fragment length polymorphism was used to analyze ATr1 A1166C polymorphism, and only polymerase chain reaction was used to analyze functional ACE insertion/deletion polymorphism in 123 patients with PD and in 169 similarly aged disease-free controls.

Results:  There was no significant difference in the genotype distribution between PD patients and controls for each polymorphism (P > 0.05). Allele frequency of ACE insertion/deletion was borderline statistically significant between the groups (P = 0.055; odds ratio: 1.39; 95% confidence interval: 0.99–1.95), and allele frequency of ATr1 A1166C was not significantly different between the groups (P = 0.32; odds ratio: 0.81; 95% confidence interval: 0.53–1.22).

Conclusion:  This study suggests that polymorphisms of ACE I/D and ATr1 A1166C are not associated with risk of PD in Turkish patients. However, in ACE insertion/deletion polymorphism, the insertion allele was found to be more frequent in the male subgroup of patients (χ2 = 4.61, P = 0.032) than in controls, suggesting a potential male-specific role of the less active ACE insertion allele in the pathogenesis of PD.