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Keywords:

  • association;
  • hoarding;
  • haplotype;
  • NTRK3;
  • obsessive–compulsive disorder;
  • tagSNP

Recent work suggests that neurotrophic factors may contribute to the genetic susceptibility to obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD). Among other clinical dimensions, the presence of hoarding obsessions and compulsions has been shown to be correlated with a number of clinical and neuroimaging findings, as well as with a different pattern of genetic inheritance. We used a linkage disequilibrium (LD)-mapping approach to investigate whether neurotrophic tyrosine kinase receptor type 3 (NTRK3), the high-affinity receptor of neurotrophin 3 (NT-3), plays a role in increasing susceptibility to hoarding in OCD. We performed an association study of 52 tag single nucleotide polymorphisms (tagSNPs) covering the whole NTRK3 gene in a sample comprising 120 OCD patients and 342 controls. Single nucleotide polymorphism association and haplotype analysis were performed. Thirty-six of our patients (30%) exhibited significant hoarding obsessions and compulsions. A significant association of two SNPs in the 3′ downstream region of NTRK3 gene and obsessive–compulsive hoarding was identified: rs1017412 [odds ratio (OR) = 2.16; = 0.001] and rs7176429 (OR = 2.78; = 0.0001), although only the latter remained significant after Bonferroni correction. Although the haplotype analysis did not show significant results, a more extended block of LD in the OCD hoarders with respect to the control group was observed, suggesting a lower haplotype diversity in these individuals. Our findings suggest that NTRK3 may contribute to the genetic susceptibility to hoarding in OCD and may constitute an interesting gene to focus on in studies of the genetic basis of obsessive–compulsive hoarding.