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A C17T polymorphism in the mu opiate receptor is associated with quantitative measures of drug use in African American women

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Previous studies of the association of the C17T polymorphism of the mu opiate receptor gene with substance dependence compared cases with substance dependence to controls and usually found no significant association. However, the studies were limited by small sample size—no study had more than 12 subjects with the TT genotype, a genotype that is rare in white and Asian subjects. Moreover, drug use is not dichotomous but follows a spectrum from non‐use to modest, intermittent use, to use several times daily. We asked whether the Kreek–McHugh–Schluger–Kellogg (KMSK) scales for alcohol, cocaine, opiates and tobacco that quantify substance use during the time of a subject's maximal use might be more sensitive measures than dichotomous outcomes. We administered the KMSK scales and completed C17T genotyping on 1009 human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)‐infected and 469 HIV‐uninfected women in The Women's Interagency HIV Study, an ongoing study of HIV in women. Forty‐two of the 697 African American, 1 of the 182 Hispanic and none of the 161 white women had the TT genotype. KMSK cocaine, alcohol and tobacco scores were significantly higher in the African American women with the TT genotype (P = 0.008, 0.0001, and 0.006, respectively), but opiate scores were not. Ordinal regression models controlling for HIV serostatus, age, education, and income had odds ratios for the TT genotype for predicting alcohol, tobacco, cocaine and opiates scores of 2.1 (P = 0.02), 2.4 (P = 0.0004), 2.0 (P = 0.03) and 1.9 (P = 0.07). We conclude that the TT genotype of OPRM1 may increase the risk of substance use and abuse.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Neurology, SUNY Downstate Medical Center, USA 2: Laboratory of the Biology of Addictive Diseases, The Rockefeller University, USA 3: The CORE Center at John H. Stroger Hospital of Cook County, USA 4: Department of Medicine, Montefiore Medical Center and Albert Einstein College of Medicine, USA 5: Department of Medicine, SUNY Downstate Medical Center, USA 6: Department of Medicine, Georgetown University School of Medicine, USA 7: Department of Preventive Medicine, Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California, USA 8: Department of Epidemiology, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA 9: Memory and Aging Center/Department of Neurology and Division of Geriatric Medicine/Department of Medicine, University of California, USA

Publication date: 2012-01-01

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