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Abstract

Volume 11, Issue 3 (May 2009) 11, 351–355; 10.1038/aja.2008.3

Possible association of the 5-HTTLPR serotonin transporter promoter gene polymorphism with premature ejaculation in a Turkish population

Emin Ozbek1, Ali I Tasci2, Volkan Tugcu2, Yusuf O Ilbey1, Abdulmuttalip Simsek1, Levent Ozcan1, Emre C Polat1 and Vedat Koksal3

1 Department of Urology, Bezm-i Alem Valide Sultan Vakif Gureba Research and Education Hospital, Istanbul 34095, Tukey
2 Department of Urology, Bakirkoy Research and Education Hospital, Istanbul 34095, Turkey
3 Burc Genetic Laboratory, Istanbul 34095, Turkey

Correspondence: Dr Emin Ozbek, Bezm-i Alem Valide Sultan Vakif Gureba Research and Education Hospital, Department of Urology, Istanbul 34095, Turkey. Fax: +90-212-6217-580 E-mail: ozbekemin@hotmail.com

Received 23 April 2008; Revised 4 July 2008; Accepted 20 July 2008; Published online 2 March 2009

Abstract

We evaluated the genotypes of the serotonin transporter gene (5-HTT) in patients with premature ejaculation (PE) to determine the role of genetic factors in the etiopathogenesis of PE and possibly to identify the patient subgroups. A total of 70 PE patients and 70 controls were included in this study. All men were heterosexual, had no other disorders and were either married or in a stable relationship. PE was defined as ejaculation that occurred within 1 min of vaginal intromission. Genomic DNA from patients and controls was analyzed using polymerase chain reaction, and allelic variations of the promoter region of the serotonin transporter gene (5-HTTLPR) were determined. The 5-HTTLPR (serotonin transporter promoter gene) genotypes in PE patients vs. controls were distributed as follows: L/L 16% vs. 17%, L/S 30% vs. 53% and S/S 54% vs. 28%. We examined the haplotype analysis for three polymorphisms of the 5-HTTLPR gene: LL, LS and SS. The appropriateness of the allele frequencies in the 5-HTTLPR gene was analyzed by the Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium using the 2-test. The short (S) allele of the 5-HTTLPR gene was significantly more frequent in PE patients than in controls (P < 0.05). We suggest that the 5-HTTLPR gene plays a role in the pathophysiology of all primary PE cases. Further studies are needed to evaluate the relationship between 5-HTTLPR gene polymorphism and patient subgroup (such as primary and secondary PE) responses to selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors as well as ethnic differences.

Keywords: 5-HTTLPR, polymorphism, premature ejaculation, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, serotonin transporter gene

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