Objective: To analyze the genotypes of the promoter region of the serotonin transporter gene (5-HTT) in patients with fibromyalgia (FM).
Methods: Genomic DNA from 62 patients meeting the American College of Rheumatology 1990 criteria for FM and 110 healthy controls was analyzed by polymerase chain reaction. Additionally, the psychopathologic state of 52 of the FM patients was evaluated using the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and the Symptom Checklist-90-Revised (SCL-90-R).
Results: The 5-HTTLPR genotypes in FM patients versus controls were distributed as follows: L/L 27% versus 34%, L/S 42% versus 50%, and S/S 31% versus 16%. FM patients with the S/S genotype had higher mean scores on the BDI and the SCL-90-R compared with those in the L/L and L/S groups.
Conclusion: A higher frequency of the S/S genotype of 5-HTT was found in FM patients compared with healthy controls. The S/S subgroup exhibited higher mean levels of depression and psychological distress. These results support the notion of altered serotonin metabolism in at least a subgroup of patients with FM.