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Single-Nucleotide Polymorphisms in TrkB and Risk for Depression: Findings From the Women’s Interagency HIV Study

Avdoshina, Valeriya MD, PhD*; Mocchetti, Italo PhD*; Liu, Chenglong MD; Young, Mary A. MD; Anastos, Kathryn MD; Cohen, Mardge MD§; Crystal, Howard MD; Pearce, Celeste L. PhD; Golub, Elizabeth T. PhD#; Tractenberg, Rochelle E. PhD**,††,‡‡,§§

JAIDS Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes: October 1st, 2013 - Volume 64 - Issue 2 - p 138–141
doi: 10.1097/QAI.0b013e3182a468e9
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Abstract: Individuals infected with HIV type 1 are more likely than noninfected individuals to develop depression. HIV lowers brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), a neurotrophic factor whose receptors play a crucial role in the pathophysiology of depression. Therefore, we examined whether a single-nucleotide polymorphism in the BDNF gene (rs56164415) and related receptors TrkB (rs1212171) and p75NTR (rs2072446) were associated with depression in HIV-infected individuals. A total of 1365 HIV-positive and 371 HIV-negative female subjects were included. The distribution of alleles was analyzed independently in African Americans (non-Hispanic) and Caucasians (non-Hispanic). We have found that the absence of depressive symptoms in HIV-positive subjects is associated with a genetic variation of the TrkB but not with BDNF or p75NTR genes. This mutation explains 0.8% and 4.4% of the variability for the absence of depression in African Americans and Caucasians, respectively.

Departments of *Neuroscience and

Medicine, Georgetown University Medical Center, Washington, DC;

Departments of Medicine and Epidemiology & Population Health, Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Montefiore Medical Center, Bronx, NY;

§Departments of Medicine, Stroger Hospital and Rush University, Chicago, IL;

Departments of Neurology and Pathology, SUNY Downstate Medical Center, Brooklyn, NY;

Department of Preventive Medicine, Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA;

#Department of Epidemiology, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD;

Departments of **Neurology;

††Biostatistics, Bioinformatics, and Biomathematics;

‡‡Psychiatry, Georgetown University Medical Center, Washington, DC; and

§§Collaborative for Research on Outcomes and Metrics, Department of Neurology, Georgetown University Medical Center, Washington, DC.

Correspondence to: Italo Mocchetti, PhD, Department of Neuroscience, Georgetown University Medical Center, New Research Building WP13, 3970 Reservoir Rd, NW, Washington, DC 20057 (e-mail:

Supported by National Institutes of Health (NIH) Grant 1R01-DA026174 to I.M. V.A. is partially supported by a pilot grant through the NIH R25 MH080661 funded program at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Womens’ Interagency HIV Study is funded by NIH Grants UO1-AI-35004, UO1-AI-31834, UO1-AI-34994, UO1-AI-34989, UO1-AI-34993, UO1-AI-42590, UO1-HD-32632, and UL1 RR024131.

The authors have no conflicts of interest to disclose.

Received April 09, 2013

Accepted July 03, 2013

© 2013 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins