The overall goal of the Genomics and Bioinformatics Core (GBC) of this Indiana Alcohol Research Center (lARC) is to support both human and animal studies that pursue the genes underlying alcoholpreference, alcoholism, and related diseases. The GBC has developed and deployed genotyping assays for the functional SNPs in human alcohol metabolizing enzymes {ADH1A, ADH1B, ADH1C, ALDH1A1, and ALDH2) and has determined the genotypes at these loci for many collaborative studies that have tested their association with alcoholism and related traits. We also design and offer SNP panels for genotyping the ADHs, GABA receptors, and other neurotransmitter receptors for association studies both within the lARC and for outside collaborators. The GBC has expanded its human genotyping services to include newly identified candidate genes at the request of collaborators. The GBC also offers DNA and RNA extraction services. To identify genes that are differentially expressed between high alcohol drinking and low alcohol drinking animal models, the Core will offer mRNA, microRNA, and protein quantification assays to confirm expression differences in candidate genes for alcoholism identified by microarrays, RNA-seq, or other technologies. Due to the enormous amount of data that needs to be analyzed in whole genome studies, the GBC will incorporate bioinformatics as one of our new services and provide data management, data analyses, data integration, and data sharing of large-scale data sets from next generation sequencing (RNA sequencing, whole genome DNA sequencing, and DNA-methylation analysis). In addition, the searchable data base, MyTrack, will benefit all the lARC investigators and registered users. The GBC will offer genetic monitoring for the alcohol preferring and nonpreferring rat lines and strains and provide alcohol concentration measurement using gas chromatography. The GBC supports human Components 2 and 3, Animal Research Components 5 and 6, pilot projects P58 and P59, numerous existing and future outside collaborations, the Animal Production Core for genetic monitoring, and all the lARC investigators for measuring alcohol concentrations. The GBC also interacts with the Administration Core. There is an increase in accuracy and cost savings as a result of having the genotyping and other services performed in a core laboratory rather than having multiple investigators set up independent facilities. The findings of the GBC contribute to the identification of genes that determine vulnerability to alcoholism, and will advance the understanding of alcohol-seeking behavior.

Public Health Relevance

The identification of genes, pathways, and behavior traits that determine vulnerability to alcoholism will advance our understanding of alcohol-preference difference and provide information for therapeutic treatments. The Genomics and Bioinformatics Core supplies vital support and key technologies that advance this goal.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)
Comprehensive Center (P60)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZAA1-GG)
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Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis
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