K. Peter Lesch

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The tryptophan hydroxylase-2 gene (TPH2) codes for the enzyme of serotonin (5-HT) synthesis in the brain and variation of TPH2 has been implicated in disorders of emotion regulation. Here, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to demonstrate that a potentially functional variant of TPH2 modulates amygdala responsiveness to emotional stimuli(More)
By conferring allele-specific transcriptional activity on the 5-HT transporter gene promoter in humans, the 5-HT transporter gene-linked polymorphic region (5-HTTLPR) influences a constellation of personality traits related to anxiety and increases the risk for neurodevelopmental, neurodegenerative, and psychiatric disorders. Here we have analyzed the(More)
The 5-HT1A receptor plays a critical role in the pathophysiology of anxiety and depression as well as in the mode of action of anxiolytic and antidepressant drugs. Human 5-HT1A gene transcription is modulated by a common C-1016G single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in its upstream regulatory region. In the present study, we evaluated the role of the(More)
In a family study involving 139 probands with DSM-III-R catatonic schizophrenia and 543 first-degree relatives, we investigated age-specific morbidity risk according to Leonhard's clinical distinction between systematic and periodic catatonia. This dichotomy is based on different types of symptomatology, course, and outcome. In systematic catatonia the(More)
Pharmacobehavioral studies in experimental animals, and imaging studies in humans, indicate that serotonergic transmission in the amygdala plays a key role in emotional processing, especially for anxiety-related stimuli. The lateral and basolateral amygdaloid nuclei receive a dense serotonergic innervation in all species studied to date. We investigated(More)
Mood, emotion, and cognition are modulated by the serotonergic midbrain raphe system, which seems to be involved in the pathogenesis of psychiatric disorders like those of the affective spectrum. Since a dysregulation of serotonin transporter expression might be important in the course of those disorders, we isolated and cloned the 5′-regulatory region of(More)
Genetic epidemiology has assembled convincing evidence that anxiety and related disorders are influenced by genetic factors and that the genetic component is highly complex, polygenic, and epistatic. Although several genes which may contribute to the genetic variance of anxiety-related traits or modify the phenotypic expression of pathologic anxiety are(More)
Heritable factors account for approximately 40–60% of the total variance of liability to alcohol dependence. The present study tested whether a novel functional polymorphism in the promotor region of the X-chromosomal monoamine oxidase A gene (MAOA) was related to antisocial and anxious-depressive traits in alcoholics. Due to the X-chromosomal localization(More)
A possible dysregulation of dopaminergic neurotransmission has been implicated in the aetiology of schizophrenic psychoses, in particular of paranoid-hallucinatory states, and of the manic episodes of bipolar affective disorder. In the present study we analysed allelic and genotypic variations of a recently described functional deletion/insertion variant(More)
The human MLC1 (WKL1, KIAA0027) gene encodes a putative transmembrane protein expressed exclusively in brain. Recessive mutations within this gene cause megalencephalic leukoencephalopathy with subcortical cysts (MLC, MIM 604004, 605908). Furthermore, a missense mutation in this gene is suggestively linked with hereditary catatonic schizophrenia in a large(More)