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Reduced DNA Methylation of the Oxytocin Receptor Gene Is Associated With Anhedonia-Asociality in Women With Recent-Onset Schizophrenia and Ultra-high Risk for Psychosis

 Minji Bang  ;  Jee In Kang  ;  Se Joo Kim  ;  Jin Young Park  ;  Kyung Ran Kim  ;  Su Young Lee  ;  Kyungmee Park  ;  Eun Lee  ;  Seung-Koo Lee  ;  Suk Kyoon An 
 SCHIZOPHRENIA BULLETIN, Vol.45(6) : 1279-1290, 2019 
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anhedonia-asociality ; epigenetics ; schizophrenia ; ultrahigh risk for psychosis ; oxytocin receptor gene
Negative symptoms are recognized as a fundamental feature of schizophrenia throughout the disease course. Epigenetic alterations in the oxytocin receptor gene (OXTR) may be a key mechanism involved in social-emotional disturbances of schizophrenia. Here, we investigated OXTR methylation and its association with clinical and brain network connectivity phenotypes of negative symptoms, particularly anhedonia-asociality, in individuals with recent-onset schizophrenia (ROS) and at ultrahigh risk (UHR) for psychosis. Sixty-four ROS (39 women), 46 UHR (19 women), and 98 healthy individuals (52 women) participated in this study. OXTR methylation was quantified using the pyrosequencing method. A subset of participants (16 ROS, 23 UHR, and 33 healthy controls [HCs]) underwent a 5.5-minute resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging to determine the relationship between OXTR methylation and the striatal-amygdala network functional connectivity (FC) underlying anhedonia-asociality. Both men and women with ROS and UHR showed significantly decreased OXTR methylation compared to HCs. In women with ROS and UHR, decreased OXTR methylation showed a significant correlation with increased anhedonia-asociality. FC of the striatal-amygdala network, positively associated with the severity of anhedonia-asociality, showed an inverse correlation with OXTR methylation. This study suggests that epigenetic alterations of OXTR, which can be detected before the development of full-blown psychosis, confer susceptibility to schizophrenia and play a crucial role in the manifestation of anhedonia-asociality, particularly in women.
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1. College of Medicine (의과대학) > Dept. of Psychiatry (정신과학교실) > 1. Journal Papers
1. College of Medicine (의과대학) > Dept. of Radiology (영상의학교실) > 1. Journal Papers
Yonsei Authors
Kang, Jee In(강지인) ORCID logo https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2818-7183
Kim, Kyung Ran(김경란) ORCID logo https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8375-1851
Kim, Se Joo(김세주) ORCID logo https://orcid.org/0000-0002-5438-8210
Park, Jin Young(박진영) ORCID logo https://orcid.org/0000-0002-5351-9549
An, Suk Kyoon(안석균) ORCID logo https://orcid.org/0000-0003-4576-6184
Lee, Su Young(이수영)
Lee, Seung Koo(이승구) ORCID logo https://orcid.org/0000-0001-5646-4072
Lee, Eun(이은) ORCID logo https://orcid.org/0000-0002-7462-0144
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