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Additive genetic effect of APOE and BDNF on hippocampus activity
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology. Stockholm Brain Institute, Sweden.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Aging Research Center (ARC), (together with KI).
2014 (English)In: NeuroImage, ISSN 1053-8119, E-ISSN 1095-9572, Vol. 89, 306-313 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Human memory is a highly heritable polygenic trait with complex inheritance patterns. To study the genetics of memory and memory-related diseases, hippocampal functioning has served as an intermediate phenotype. The importance of investigating gene-gene effects on complex phenotypes has been emphasized, but most imaging studies still focus on single polymorphisms. APOE epsilon 4 and BDNF Met, two of the most studied gene variants for variability in memory performance and neuropsychiatric disorders, have both separately been related to poorer episodic memory and altered hippocampal functioning. Here, we investigated the combined effect of APOE and BDNF on hippocampal activation (N = 151). No non-additive interaction effects were seen. Instead, the results revealed decreased activation in bilateral hippocampus and parahippocampus as a function of the number of APOE e4 and.BDNE Met alleles present (neither, one, or both). The combined effect was stronger than either of the individual effects, and both gene variables explained significant proportions of variance in BOLD signal change. Thus, there was an additive gene-gene effect of APOE and BDNF on medial temporal lobe (MTL) activation, showing that a larger proportion of variance in brain activation attributed to genetics can be explained by considering more than one gene variant This effect might be relevant for the understanding of normal variability in memory function as well as memory-related disorders associated with APOE and BDNF.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. Vol. 89, 306-313 p.
Keyword [en]
BDNF, APOE, fMRI, Hippocampus, Gene-gene effect, Imaging genetics
National Category
Neurosciences Radiology, Nuclear Medicine and Medical Imaging
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-102457DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2013.11.049ISI: 000332057400029OAI: diva2:710826
Swedish Research Council, 315-2004-6977Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation


Available from: 2014-04-08 Created: 2014-04-07 Last updated: 2016-03-17Bibliographically approved

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Nilsson, Lars-GöranPersson, Jonas
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Department of PsychologyAging Research Center (ARC), (together with KI)
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