Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Functional Variant in a Bitter-Taste Receptor (hTAS2R16) Influences Risk of Alcohol Dependence   posted by Razib @ 11/30/2005 07:40:00 AM

A new study in The American Journal of Human Genetics which relates to taste sensitivities and alcoholism:

...Individuals with the ancestral allele K172 are at increased risk of alcohol dependence, regardless of ethnicity. However, this risk allele is uncommon in European Americans (minor-allele frequency [MAF] 0.6%), whereas 45% of African Americans carry the allele (MAF 26%), which makes it a much more significant risk factor in the African American population.

From the discussion:

...To assess the distribution of the K172 allele across multiple populations, we typed this SNP in the Human Genome Diversity Project-CEPH Human Genome Diversity Cell Line Panel, which includes 1,057 individuals and represents 52 different populations (Cann et al. 2002). The MAF for rs846664 had a range of 10%-44% in African populations, but it was not detected or was present at very low frequency in non-African populations.

I talked about the K172 allele before in my post A bitterly positive sweep.