Addiction vulnerability genes include those that are likely to harbor allelic variants that contribute to human individual differences in vulnerability to addictions. During this and prior years, we identified more than 100 such genes based on the covergences between nominally-positive data derived from up to ten separate abuser/control comparisons. We added to evidence supporting roles for many of these genes with additional data from several comparisons between nicotine depdendent and control samples and substance dependent and control samples with higher marker densities. We added additional support from comparisons between smokers who were successful vs unsuccessful in quitting in clinical trials and in community samples. Genes identified in this fashion include a disproportionate number of genes whose products are involved in cell adhesion molecule actions. During this year we identified the frequent functional variations at a locus that contain these genes, focusing on a splicing variant.

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National Institute on Drug Abuse
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Zhong, Xiaoming; Drgonova, Jana; Li, Chuan-Yun et al. (2015) Human cell adhesion molecules: annotated functional subtypes and overrepresentation of addiction-associated genes. Ann N Y Acad Sci 1349:83-95
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