Molecular Genetics of Tourette Syndrome


Tourette Syndrome (TS) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterised by chronic motor and vocal tics, which fluctuate over time. The molecular genetics of TS is supported by genetic epidemiology studies, which strongly suggest the presence of susceptibility genes for TS. Epidemiologic family, segregation and linkage studies, as well as candidate gene studies, have yielded limited specific results to date, however, pathophysiology models that support a molecular genetics approach in TS are emerging. Whole‐genome approaches, including genome‐wide association studies (GWAS) and whole‐genome sequencing, may yield more definitive genomic findings. Uncovering the biological substrate of TS will spur the development of novel, more precisely targeted, treatments for this disabling disorder.

Keywords: Tourette Syndrome; molecular genetics; candidate genes; linkage; association; dopamine; glutamate


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Further Reading

Kurlan R (2010) Clinical practice. Tourette's Syndrome. New England Journal of Medicine 363(24): 2332–2338.

Leckman JF, Bloch MH, Smith ME, Larabi D and Hampson M (2010) Neurobiological substrates of Tourette's disorder. Journal of Child & Adolescent Psychopharmacology 20(4): 237–247.

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Valenti, Antoinette, and Grados, Marco(Jan 2012) Molecular Genetics of Tourette Syndrome. In: eLS. John Wiley & Sons Ltd, Chichester. [doi: 10.1002/9780470015902.a0022494]