Genome-wide association study of cocaine dependence and related traits: FAM53B identified as a risk gene

J. Gelernter, R. Sherva, R. Koesterer, L. Almasy, H. Zhao, H. R. Kranzler, L. Farrer

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    87 Scopus citations


    We report a genome-wide association study (GWAS) for cocaine dependence (CD) in three sets of African- and European-American subjects (AAs and EAs, respectively) to identify pathways, genes and alleles important in CD risk. The discovery GWAS data set (n=5697 subjects) was genotyped using the Illumina OmniQuad microarray (8 90 000 analyzed single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs)). Additional genotypes were imputed based on the 1000 Genomes reference panel. Top-ranked findings were evaluated by incorporating information from publicly available GWAS data from 4063 subjects. Then, the most significant GWAS SNPs were genotyped in 2549 independent subjects. We observed one genome-wide-significant (GWS) result: rs2629540 at the FAM53B ('family with sequence similarity 53, member B') locus. This was supported in both AAs and EAs; P-value (meta-analysis of all samples)=4.28 × 10 -8. The gene maps to the same chromosomal region as the maximum peak we observed in a previous linkage study. NCOR2 (nuclear receptor corepressor 2) SNP rs150954431 was associated with P=1.19 × 10 -9 in the EA discovery sample. SNP rs2456778, which maps to CDK1 ('cyclin-dependent kinase 1'), was associated with cocaine-induced paranoia in AAs in the discovery sample only (P=4.68 × 10 -8). This is the first study to identify risk variants for CD using GWAS. Our results implicate novel risk loci and provide insights into potential therapeutic and prevention strategies.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)717-723
    Number of pages7
    JournalMolecular psychiatry
    Issue number6
    StatePublished - Jun 2014


    • European-American and African-American populations
    • GWAS
    • cocaine dependence
    • cocaine-induced paranoia
    • population genetics

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Molecular Biology
    • Psychiatry and Mental health
    • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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