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Identify and characterize polymorphisms of genes ADH2ADH3, ALDH2 and CYP2E1 in a Colombian population residing in the city of Bogotá and determine its possible relationship to the alcoholism.


ADH2, ADH3, ALDH2, and CYP2E1 genotypes a population of 148 individuals with non-problematic alcohol and 65 individuals with alcoholism were determined with TaqMan probes and PCR-RFLP. DNA was obtained from peripheral blood white cells.


Significant difference was found in family history of alcoholism and use of other psychoactive substances to compare alcoholics with controls. When allelic frequencies for each category (gender) were considered, frequency of A2 allele carriers in ADH2 was found higher in male patients than controls. In women, the relative frequency for c1 allele in CYP2E1 was lower in controls than alcoholics. The ALDH2 locus is monomorphic. No significant differences in allele distributions of the loci examined to compare two populations were observed, however when stratifying the same trend was found that these differences tended to be significant.


This study allows us to conclude the positive association between family history of alcoholism and alcoholism suggesting that there is a favourable hereditary predisposition. Since substance dependence requires interaction of multiple genes, the combination of genotypes ADH2 * 2, CYP2E1 * 1 combined with genotype homozygous ALDH2 * 1 found in this study could be leading to the population to a potential risk to alcoholism.


Claudia Méndez, Clinical Genetic Group, Faculty of Medicine, Institute of Genetics, Master of Human Genetics, National University of Colombia, Bogotá, Colombia.

Clinical Genetic Group, Faculty of Medicine, Institute of Genetics, Master of Human

Mauricio Rey, Clinical Genetic Group, Faculty of Medicine, Institute of Genetics, Master of Human Genetics, National University of Colombia, Bogotá, Colombia.

Clinical Genetic Group, Faculty of Medicine, Institute of Genetics, Master of Human Genetics
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Received 2014-07-24
Accepted 2015-11-09
Published 2015-12-30