Genetic analysis of diagnostic systems of alcoholism in males
van den Bree, MBM., Johnson, E., Neale, MC., Svikis, DS., McGue, M., & Pickens, RW. (1998). Genetic analysis of diagnostic systems of alcoholism in males. Biological Psychiatry, 43(2), 139-145. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0006-3223(97)00225-4
Background: Research into genes involved in alcoholism could benefit from use of diagnostic systems most sensitive to detecting genetic influences. In this study, heritable influences were estimated in a single twin sample with commonly used criteria for alcoholism.
Methods: Male twin probands ascertained through alcohol and drug abuse treatment programs and their same-sex cotwins (54 monozygotic and 65 dizygotic pairs) were diagnosed independently by DSM-III (alcohol dependence and alcohol abuse and/or dependence), Feighner (probable and definite alcoholism), and Cloninger (type 1 and type 2 alcoholism) systems. Using univariate structural equation modeling, heritability was estimated for each diagnostic system.
Results: The highest heritability estimates were obtained for Feighner probable alcoholism (h2 = .63), Cloninger type 2 alcoholism (h2 = .54), and DSM-III alcohol dependence (h2 = .52).
Conclusions: Certain diagnostic systems appear to have greater sensitivity for detecting genetic influence and may therefore be more appropriate for use in molecular genetic studies attempting to find genes for alcoholism.