Stathmin genotype is associated with reexperiencing symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder in Chinese earthquake survivors

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Stathmin (STMN1) has been demonstrated as a regulator of fear processing across species, which implicates that it may be important in the etiopathogenesis of fear-related psychiatric disorders such as posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). This study examined the association between STMN1 rs182455 genotype, a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) located within or close to the putative transcriptional control region of STMN1 gene, and PTSD symptoms. A total of 326 Chinese adults who suffered from a deadly 2008 Wenchuan earthquake and unexpectedly lost their children during the disaster participated in this study. PTSD symptoms were measured with the PTSD Checklist (PCL). The Sequenom iPlex chemistries and the MassARRAY system were used to genotype the STMN1 rs182455 SNP. Our results indicated that the STMN1rs182455 genotype was not associated with severity of total PTSD symptoms in either females or males; however, it could significantly predict severity of PTSD's reexperiencing symptoms in females. The findings provide preliminary evidence supporting the important role of STMN1 in the development of PTSD, and expand extant knowledge on the genetic underpinnings of PTSD and the sex-specific expression of PTSD's symptoms.

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