The COMTval158met polymorphism is associated with symptom relief during exposure-based cognitive-behavioral treatment in panic disorder
2010 (English)In: BMC PSYCHIATRY, ISSN 1471-244X, Vol. 10Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Background: Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) represents a learning process leading to symptom relief and resulting in long-term changes in behavior. CBT for panic disorder is based on exposure and exposure-based processes can be studied in the laboratory as extinction of experimentally acquired fear responses. We have recently demonstrated that the ability to extinguish learned fear responses is associated with a functional genetic polymorphism (COMTval158met) in the COMT gene and this study was aimed at transferring the experimental results on the COMTval158met polymorphism on extinction into a clinical setting. Methods: We tested a possible effect of the COMTval158met polymorphism on the efficacy of CBT, in particular exposure-based treatment modules, in a sample of 69 panic disorder patients. Results: We present evidence that panic patients with the COMTval158met met/met genotype may profit less from (exposure-based) CBT treatment methods as compared to patients carrying at least one val-allele. No association was found with the 5-HTTLPR/rs25531 genotypes which is presented as additional material. Conclusions: We were thus able to transfer findings on the effect of the COMTval158met polymorphism from an experimental extinction study obtained using healthy subjects to a clinical setting. Furthermore patients carrying a COMT val-allele tend to report more anxiety and more depression symptoms as compared to those with the met/met genotype. Limitations of the study as well as possible clinical implications are discussed.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
BioMed Central , 2010. Vol. 10
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-64390DOI: 10.1186/1471-244X-10-99ISI: 000285481600001OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-64390DiVA: diva2:390129
Tina B Lonsdorf, Christian Ruck, Jan Bergstrom, Gerhard Andersson, Arne Ohman, Nils Lindefors and Martin Schalling, The COMTval158met polymorphism is associated with symptom relief during exposure-based cognitive-behavioral treatment in panic disorder, 2010, BMC PSYCHIATRY, (10), 99.
Licensee: BioMed Central