Evaluation of the 5-HTTLPR and 5-HTTVNTR Polymorphisms in the Serotonin Transporter Gene in Women with Postpartum Depression


Objective: The purpose of the present study was to evaluate the association between the 5-HTTLPR and 5-HTTVNTR polymorphisms in the serotonin transporter gene (SLC6A4) in Brazilian women with diagnosed postpartum depression (PPD) and the presence of depressive symptoms. Method: The cohort consisted of 128 white women who were charac-terized based on skin color and morphological characteristics. The Beck Depression Inventory was used to diagnose PPD and to score the depressive symptoms. The 5-HTTLPR and 5-HTTVNTR polymorphisms were analyzed by PCR-based methods. Results: No association was observed between the PPD diagnosis and either the 5-HTTLPR (p = 0.48) or the 5-HTTVNTR (p = 0.77) polymorphism. When the polymorphisms were analyzed together with haplotype data, the analyses demonstrated that women carriers of the L-12/L-12 diplotype have lower Beck Depression Inventory scores than women carrying other diplotypes (p = 0.04). Discussion: Few studies have investigated the association of SLC6A4 polymorphisms with PPD, and the role of 5-HTTLPR and 5-HTTVNTR polymorphisms in PPD susceptibility has not been established to date. Therefore, our findings link the haplotypes of these two variants with depression symptoms, thereby contributing to our understanding of PPD susceptibility.

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J. Zimmermann-Peruzatto, S. Almeida, A. Lucion, J. Oses, L. Quevedo, K. Pinheiro, R. Silva, R. Pinheiro and M. Giovenardi, "Evaluation of the 5-HTTLPR and 5-HTTVNTR Polymorphisms in the Serotonin Transporter Gene in Women with Postpartum Depression," Neuroscience and Medicine, Vol. 3 No. 3, 2012, pp. 275-280. doi: 10.4236/nm.2012.33031.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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