The influence of genes variability of the central nervous system related toobesity on the establishment and evolution of eating disorders

Several studies have been done to determine which genes related with the Central Nervous System (CNS) could be involved in obesity. These studies have managed to point out a series of relevant genes such as: FTO, MC4R, BDNF, NEGR1, TFAP2B, etc. However, none of these loci have been studied in the field of eating disorders, whose incidence continues increasing among young women, adolescents and even girls. It does not seem far-fetched to think that if there are alterations in these genes that can lead to a change in behavior (e.g. anxiety, hyperphagia, etc.) that leads to obesity, these same alterations could lead to an eating disorder (whether anorexia, bulimia or disorder by binge); especially if certain additional psychopathological features or certain sociocultural environments coexist. In a previous study we have identified some of these genes suggesting that they can play a role in personality traits of patients with eating disorders. The main aim of this study is to analyze 159 tag-SNPs (variants that represent the variability of a gene) located in 15 CNS genes previously
related to obesity among a sample of 400 patients with eating disorders and 400 controls. This case-control study will be performed to analyze if there are an association between these genes and the risk of eating disorders as well as with psychopathological parameters. The determination of genetic profiles with direct influence on the implantation or evolution of eating disorders would allow us to identify early risk patients, thus helping to adopt the appropriate preventive or therapeutic measures.

Duration: 2018 – 2020

Coordinator (PI): Guillermo Gervasini Rodríguez (Universidad de Extremadura, Spain)

Participants: David Albuquerque (CIAS), Juan Antonio Carillo Norte
(Universidad de Extremadura), Angustias Garcia Herraiz (Unidad de Salud Mental II, Unidad de Trastornos Alimentarios, Servicio Extremeño de Salud)

Finantial support: Fundación Alicia Koplowitz (Spain)