No association between catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene polymorphism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in an Irish sample

Ziarih Hawi, Niamh Millar, Grainne Daly, Michael Fitzgerald, Michael Gill

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Pharmacological and biochemical studies have indicated that imbalances in dopaminergic transmission may contribute to the aetiology of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). The enzyme catechol-O- methyltransferase (COMT) plays a key role in the degradation of catecholamines such as dopamine, L-DOPA, adrenaline, and noradrenaline and therefore could be considered as a candidate locus for ADHD susceptibility. We hypothesised that a proportion of the genetic susceptibility to ADHD may be a consequence of dopamine depletion in the synapses due to high-level activity of the COMT gene (allele 1). Using the haplotype-based haplotype relative risk method and 94 affected children and their parents genotyped for COMT alleles, we found no significant differences in the frequency of the transmitted and nontransmitted alleles to ADHD cases from their parents. The absence of association between COMT alleles and ADHD indicated that this locus does not play a significant role or at least a role independent of other genes, in predisposing to ADHD in the Irish population. (C) 2000 Wiley- Liss, Inc.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)282-284
Number of pages3
JournalAmerican Journal of Medical Genetics Part B: Neuropsychiatric Genetics
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 12 Jun 2000
Externally publishedYes


  • Association
  • Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
  • Catechol-O- methyltransferase (COMT)
  • Dopamine

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