VNTR polymorphism of the DRD4 locus in different Pakistani ethnic groups

Genet Test. 2008 Jun;12(2):299-304. doi: 10.1089/gte.2007.0120.


The present study was designed to investigate the dopamine receptor D4 (DRD4) locus variable number of tandem repeat (VNTR) allelic distribution in different Pakistani ethnic groups. DNA samples from nine different ethnic groups of Pakistan were analyzed. Greek and Somali samples were included as representatives of the European and African populations, respectively. Pakistani, Greek, and Somali populations were also compared to the published data on different world populations. The allelic distribution revealed that the four-repeat allele was the most common allele in all the Pakistani ethnic groups as is in different other world populations, followed by the seven- and two-repeat alleles. To study the evolutionary relationship of the Pakistani ethnic groups among themselves and with a few other world populations, multidimensional scaling based on the allelic frequencies of the DRD4 VNTR was obtained. This analysis grouped most of the Pakistani ethnic groups together and closer to the European and Middle Eastern populations, except for the Mohanna from Sindh, who grouped with the African populations. In addition, the Somali and the Greek samples analyzed in this study grouped closer to the previous data obtained on the African and European populations, respectively.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • African Continental Ancestry Group / ethnology
  • African Continental Ancestry Group / genetics
  • Alleles
  • Ethnic Groups / genetics*
  • European Continental Ancestry Group / ethnology
  • European Continental Ancestry Group / genetics
  • Gene Frequency
  • Humans
  • Minisatellite Repeats / genetics*
  • Pakistan / ethnology
  • Polymorphism, Genetic*
  • Receptors, Dopamine D4 / genetics*


  • DRD4 protein, human
  • Receptors, Dopamine D4