Separate and combined effects of genetic variants and pre-treatment whole blood gene expression on response to exposure-based cognitive behavioural therapy for anxiety disorders

Coleman, Jonathan R I, Lester, Kathryn J, Roberts, Susanna, Keers, Robert, Lee, Sang hyuck, De Jong, Simone, Gaspar, Héléna, Teismann, Tobias, Wannemüller, André, Schneider, Silvia, Jöhren, Peter, Margraf, Jürgen, Breen, Gerome and Eley, Thalia C (2016) Separate and combined effects of genetic variants and pre-treatment whole blood gene expression on response to exposure-based cognitive behavioural therapy for anxiety disorders. World Journal of Biological Psychiatry, 18 (3). pp. 215-226. ISSN 1562-2975

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Abstract

Objectives: Exposure-based cognitive behavioural therapy (eCBT) is an effective treatment for anxiety disorders. Response varies between individuals. Gene expression integrates genetic and environmental influences. We analysed the effect of gene expression and genetic markers separately and together on treatment response.

Methods: Adult participants (n ≤ 181) diagnosed with panic disorder or a specific phobia underwent eCBT as part of standard care. Percentage decrease in the Clinical Global Impression severity rating was assessed across treatment, and between baseline and a 6-month follow-up. Associations with treatment response were assessed using expression data from 3,233 probes, and expression profiles clustered in a data- and literature-driven manner. A total of 3,343,497 genetic variants were used to predict treatment response alone and combined in polygenic risk scores. Genotype and expression data were combined in expression quantitative trait loci (eQTL) analyses.

Results: Expression levels were not associated with either treatment phenotype in any analysis. A total of 1,492 eQTLs were identified with q < 0.05, but interactions between genetic variants and treatment response did not affect expression levels significantly. Genetic variants did not significantly predict treatment response alone or in polygenic risk scores.

Conclusions: We assessed gene expression alone and alongside genetic variants. No associations with treatment outcome were identified. Future studies require larger sample sizes to discover associations.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Psychology > Psychology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion
Depositing User: Lene Hyltoft
Date Deposited: 15 Jul 2016 13:16
Last Modified: 25 Aug 2017 02:13
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/62023

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