Journal of psychiatric research

A case-control association study and family-based expression analysis of the bipolar disorder candidate gene PI4K2B.

PMID 19539307


Bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and recurrent major depression are complex psychiatric illnesses with a substantial, yet unknown genetic component. Linkage of bipolar disorder and recurrent major depression with markers on chromosome 4p15-p16 has been identified in a large Scottish family and three smaller families. Analysis of haplotypes in the four chromosome 4p-linked families, identified two regions, each shared by three of the four families, which are also supported by a case-control association study. The candidate gene phosphatidylinositol 4-kinase type-II beta (PI4K2B) lies within one of these regions. PI4K2B is a strong functional candidate as it is a member of the phosphatidylinositol pathway, which is targeted by lithium for therapeutic effect in bipolar disorder. Two approaches were undertaken to test the PI4K2B candidate gene as a susceptibility factor for psychiatric illness. First, a case-control association study, using tagging SNPs from the PI4K2B genomic region, in bipolar disorder (n=368), schizophrenia (n=386) and controls (n=458) showed association with a two-marker haplotype in schizophrenia but not bipolar disorder (rs10939038 and rs17408391, global P=0.005, permuted global P=0.039). Second, expression studies at the allele-specific mRNA and protein level using lymphoblastoid cell lines from members of the large Scottish family, which showed linkage to 4p15-p16 in bipolar disorder and recurrent major depression, showed no difference in expression differences between affected and non-affected family members. There is no evidence to suggest that PI4K2B is contributing to bipolar disorder in this family but a role for this gene in schizophrenia has not been excluded.