An inherited duplication at the gene p21 protein-activated Kinase 7 (PAK7) is a risk factor for psychosis

Derek W. Morris, Richard D. Pearson, Paul Cormican, Elaine M. Kenny, Colm T. O'Dushlaine, Louis Philippe Lemieux Perreault, Eleni Giannoulatou, Daniela Tropea, Brion S. Maher, Brandon Wormley, Eric Kelleher, Ciara Fahey, Ines Molinos, Stefania Bellini, Matti Pirinen, Amy Strange, Colin Freeman, Dawn L. Thiselton, Rachel L. Elves, Regina ReganSean Ennis, Timothy G. Dinan, Colm McDonald, Kieran C. Murphy, Eadbhard O'Callaghan, John L. Waddington, Dermot Walsh, Michael O'Donovan, Detelina Grozeva, Nick Craddock, Jennifer Stone, Ed Scolnick, Shaun Purcell, Pamela Sklar, Bradley Coe, Evan E. Eichler, Roel Ophoff, Jacobine Buizer, Jin Szatkiewicz, Christina Hultman, Patrick Sullivan, Hugh Gurling, Andrew Mcquillin, David St Clair, Elliott Rees, George Kirov, James Walters, Douglas Blackwood, Mandy Johnstone, Gary Donohoe, Francis A. OwNeill, Kenneth S. Kendler, Michael Gill, Brien P. Riley, Chris C.A. Spencer, Aiden Corvin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


Identifying rare, highly penetrant risk mutationsmay be an important step in dissectingthe molecular etiology of schizophrenia.We conducted a gene-based analysis of large (>100 kb), rare copy-number variants (CNVs) in the Wellcome Trust Case Control Consortium2 (WTCCC2)schizophrenia sample of 1564 cases and 1748 controls all from Ireland, and further extended the analysis to include an additional 5196 UK controls.Wefound association with duplications at chr20p12.2 (P = 0.007) and evidence of replication in large independent European schizophrenia (P 5 0.052) and UK bipolar disorder case-control cohorts (P = 0.047). A combined analysis of Irish/UK subjects including additional psychosis cases (schizophrenia and bipolar disorder) identified 22 carriers in 11 707 cases and 10 carriers in 21 204 controls [meta-analysis Cochran-Mantel-Haenszel P-value = 2 × 10-4; odds ratio (OR) = 11.3, 95% CI 5 3.7,∞]. Nineteen of the 22 cases and 8 of the 10 controls carried duplications starting at 9.68 Mb with similar breakpoints across samples. By haplotype analysis and sequencing, we identified a tandem ~149 kb duplication overlapping the gene p21 Protein-Activated Kinase 7 (PAK7, also called PAK5) which was in linkage disequilibrium with local haplotypes (P = 2.5 × 10-21), indicative of a singleancestral duplication event.Weconfirmedthe breakpoints in 8/8carriers testedandfound co-segregation of the duplication with illness in two additional familymembers of one of the affectedprobands.Wedemonstrate that PAK7 is developmentally co-expressed with another known psychosis risk gene (DISC1) suggesting a potential molecular mechanism involving aberrant synapse development and plasticity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3316-3326
Number of pages11
JournalHuman molecular genetics
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jun 15 2014
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Genetics(clinical)


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