Association study of schizophrenia and the dopamine D3 receptor gene locus in two independent samples

Am J Med Genet. 1996 Nov 22;67(6):505-14. doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1096-8628(19961122)67:6<505::AID-AJMG1>3.0.CO;2-G.


Using a case-control design, an association of schizophrenia with the dopamine D3 receptor gene (D3RG) locus was investigated. Initial analysis of pooled results from published studies revealed a significant excess of individuals homozygous for either allele among the patients. The association was next tested in two cohorts ascertained independently at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and at Houston, Texas. The Pittsburgh sample was comprised of patients with schizophrenia (DSM-III-R) (n = 130). The controls belonged to two groups: adults screened for the absence of substance abuse or major psychiatric illness (n = 128), and neonates (n = 160). Multivariate analysis suggested an association with allele 1 of the biallelic D3RG polymorphism in comparison with the adult, but not the neonatal, controls. The association was most marked among Caucasian patients with a family history of schizophrenia (odds ratio 13.69, confidence intervals 1.80, 104.30). Survival analysis suggested an earlier age of onset among male patients homozygous for allele 2. The Houston cohort included Caucasian patients with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder (DSM-III-R criteria, n = 50), and normal controls matched for gender (n = 51). In this group, no significant associations were noted among all the patients or among subgroups of patients based on family history or age of onset. Possible reasons for the discordant results are discussed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age of Onset
  • Alleles
  • Black People / genetics
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Cohort Studies
  • Deoxyribonucleases, Type II Site-Specific / metabolism
  • Female
  • Genotype
  • Heterozygote
  • Homozygote
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Polymorphism, Genetic
  • Receptors, Dopamine D2 / genetics*
  • Receptors, Dopamine D3
  • Schizophrenia / genetics*
  • White People / genetics


  • DRD3 protein, human
  • Receptors, Dopamine D2
  • Receptors, Dopamine D3
  • Deoxyribonucleases, Type II Site-Specific
  • TGGCCA-specific type II deoxyribonucleases