Objective: To investigate the influence of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) gene variations on cognitive performance and clinical symptomatology in first-episode psychosis (FEP). Methods: We performed BDNF val66met variant genotyping, cognitive testing (verbal fluency and digit spans) and assessments of symptom severity (as assessed with the PANSS) in a population-based sample of FEP patients (77 with schizophreniform psychosis and 53 with affective psychoses) and 191 neighboring healthy controls. Results: There was no difference in the proportion of Met allele carriers between FEP patients and controls, and no significant influence of BDNF genotype on cognitive test scores in either of the psychosis groups. A decreased severity of negative symptoms was found in FEP subjects that carried a Met allele, and this finding reached significance for the subgroup with affective psychoses (p < 0.01, ANOVA). Conclusions: These results suggest that, in FEP, the BDNF gene Val66Met polymorphism does not exert a pervasive influence on cognitive functioning but may modulate the severity of negative symptoms. © 2012 Elsevier Editora Ltda. All rights reserved.
Martinho, E., Michelon, L., Ayres, A. M., Scazufca, M., Menezes, P. R., Schaufelberger, M. S., … Filho, G. B. (2012). BDNF gene polymorphism, cognition and symptom severity in a Brazilian population-based sample of first-episode psychosis subjects. Revista Brasileira de Psiquiatria, 34(SUPPL2). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rbp.2012.06.004