Associations of endocrine stress-related gene polymorphisms with risk of autism spectrum disorders: Evidence from an integrated meta-analysis.
Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) plays an important role in the catabolism of brain dopamine and norepinephrine, which have been implicated in the pathogenesis of Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) as well as in other neuropsychatric disorders. We aimed to investigate the association of COMT Val158Met gene polymorphism with ASD and to examine the influence of such genotypes on hyperactivity symptoms in ASD patients. Eighty ASD patients (mean age 9 ± 1.9 years) and 100 control children (mean age 8.9 ± 1.9 years) were examined. COMT Val58Met polymorphism was genotyped using Tetra-primer ARMS-PCR method. The clinical diagnosis of ASD and ADHD were confirmed according to the DSM-IV criteria for research. We found no significant difference in genotypes or alleles' frequencies of COMT Val158Met polymorphism between ASD patients and control group. There was a significant association between COMT (Val/Val) genotype and both increasing CARS (p=0.001) and hyperactivity scores (p=0.006). Regarding Conner's Score, the DSM-IV hyperactive impulsive were significantly higher in Val/Val genotype than both Met/Val and Met/Met genotypes (p=0.03). Our data suggested an association between COMT Val58Met polymorphism and hyperactivity symptoms in Egyptian children with ASD.