No association between functional catechol O-methyl transferase 1947A>G polymorphism and smoking initiation, persistent smoking or smoking cessation
David SP., Johnstone E., Griffiths SE., Murphy M., Yudkin P., Mant D., Walton R.
Nicotine stimulates dopamine release and activates dopaminergic reward neurones in central pathways giving rise to dependence. Catechol O-methyl transferase (COMT) inactivates extraneuronally released dopamine and is present in dopaminergic brain regions. A functional polymorphism (COMT 1947A > G) resulting in increased enzyme activity has been associated with alcoholism and polysubstance abuse. We examined the relationship between the COMT 1947A > G polymorphism and smoking initiation, smoking persistence and smoking cessation. We genotyped 266 current smokers, 270 ex-smokers and 265 lifetime non-smokers (never smokers), matched for age and gender, for the COMT 1947A > G polymorphism. Smoking status was ascertained by self-report. There was no difference in genotype frequencies between never smokers and ever smokers (current + ex-smokers); between non-smokers (never + ex-smokers) and current smokers; or between current smokers and ex-smokers. These data suggest that the COMT 1947A > G polymorphism is not associated with smoking initiation, smoking persistence or smoking cessation. © 2002 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.