The human calcium-activated potassium channel gene (hKCNN3, hSKCa3) contains two tandemly arranged, multiallelic CAG repeats located in exon 1 which result in short to moderate polyglutamine stretches of unknown functional significance. Case-control and family-based association studies suggested an association of hKCNN3 repeats with susceptibility for schizophrenia. Twelve multiplex pedigrees with periodic catatonia, a schizophrenia subtype with major gene effect and patterns of anticipation, were genotyped using the multiallelic hKCNN3 repeat polymorphism. Using a dominant model of inheritance with sex- and age-dependent penetrance classes, cumulative results showed exclusion of linkage of hKCNN3 to periodic catatonia under the assumption of genetic homogeneity with lod score of -48.01 at zero recombination fraction. Our results provide evidence that hKCNN3 is not the causative gene in the familial schizophrenia subtype of periodic catatonia. By fluorescent in situ hybridization we confirmed the assignment of hKCNN3 to chromosome 1q21 near the heterochromatin region. Linkage mapping showed segregation with marker D1S498 (theta = 0.05) and placed hKCNN3 in the genetic linkage map in a cluster of genes near the centromeric region of chromosome 1.