What does catechol-O-methyltransferase do?
Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), an enzyme that is involved in the degradation of catecholamine neurotransmitters (e.g., dopamine, epinephrine, and norepinephrine), can affect executive functions involved in cognitive flexibility, impulse control, abstract thought, and the ability to follow instructions (1, 2, 3).
What is COMT polymorphism?
The COMT gene is located on chromosome 22 and contains a functional polymorphism that translates into a substitution of methionine (met) for valine (val) at codon 158 (val158met). Met allele carriers show about 40% lower prefrontal enzymatic activity than val allele carriers (Chen et al., 2004).
What is COMT Val158Met polymorphism?
A common functional polymorphism (Val158Met) leads to a three- to-four-fold variation in the COMT enzyme activity, the Met form displaying lower enzymatic activity. The Val158Met polymorphism affects pain perception, and subjects with the Met/Met genotype have the most pronounced response to experimental pain.
What does the COMT gene regulate?
The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene is of significant interest to neuroscience, due to its role in modulating dopamine function. COMT is dynamically regulated; its expression is altered during normal brain development and in response to environmental stimuli.
What is the COMT gene psychology?
The COMT gene is a gene that regulates the function of dopamine. It appears that this gene is also mutated in individuals with OCD. However this mutation causes the opposite effect as the SERT mutation discussed above.
How do COMT inhibitors work?
The COMT inhibitors, tolcapone and entacapone, are a new class of Parkinson’s medications. By inhibiting the enzyme catechol-o-methyl-transferase (COMT), they prevent peripheral degradation of levodopa, allowing a higher concentration to cross the blood-brain barrier.
What is COMT genotype?
COMT Genotyping Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) is an enzyme that inactivates hormones, such as epinephrine, norepinephrine, and dopamine. The hormones help to regulate heartbeat, breathing rate, cognitive function, memory, mood, and pain perception.
How is COMT linked to schizophrenia?
Genetic evidence : The COMT gene is found in a region of the 22nd chromosome of the human genome which is shown in genetic linkage studies for harbouring schizophrenia genes. Individuals with a deletion in this region (1/ 4000 human births) have 30 times more likelihood of developing schizophrenia.
Does COMT increase or decrease dopamine?
Increased COMT activity results in increased dopamine release capacity in the striatum. Changes in the level of TH and DAT protein would represent a major compensatory shift in the dopamine system.