Dr. Dawei Li, CMB faculty member in Microbiology & Molecular Genetics, and Arvis Sulovari, second-year CMB graduate student in Dr. Li’s Lab, have published in Neurophsychopharmacology (NPP), a nature publishing group journal.

Dr. Li and Arvis said the following about their publication:
“Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid (GABA) receptors are involved in various complex psychiatric disorders including substance dependence. In the past few years, many genetic association studies have focused on the GABA receptor genes to identify common variants that are associated with these disorders but they have not been able to agree on any particular variants. In our most recent paper “Association of Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid A Receptor α 2 Gene (GABRA2) with Alcohol Use Disorder” we attempt to reconcile these disagreements by showing that a meta-analysis of previous studies in combination with our own data can identify variants in the GABA receptor genes that are associated with substance dependence across studies. Our meta-analysis involved over 13,000 substance dependence case and control samples from various studies combined with another 3,000 case and control samples from our own data. Our study comprises the first or largest meta-analysis ever conducted between multiple GABA receptor genes and substance dependence. Finally, we placed our findings in two important contexts:
the current biological mechanisms behind substance dependence as well as specific gene-drug interactions.”

Their article, titled “Association of Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid A Receptor α 2 Gene (GABRA2) with Alcohol Use Disorder” has been accepted, and the abstract can be read here.

Together with this paper, the Li Lab has recently published association findings of several other genes with substance dependence. The three other articles are published in NPP, American Journal of Medical Genetics, and Human Genetics (in press).

Congratulations, Dr. Li and Arvis!

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