Epigenetic changes in the CYP2D6 gene are related to severity of suicide attempt: A cross-sectional study of suicide attempters
Bostrom, A.E.D., Jamshidi, E., Manu, D-M., Kular, L., Schioth, H.B., Asberg, M., & Jokinen, J.
Background The ability to accurately estimate risk of suicide deaths on an individual level remains elusive. Methods This study reports on a case-control study set-up from a well-characterized cohort of 88 predominantly female suicide attempters (SA), stratified into low- (n = 57) and high-risk groups (n = 31) based on reports of later death by suicide, as well as degree of intent-to-die and lethality of SA method. We perform an unbiased analysis of 12,930 whole-blood derived CpG-sites (Illumina Infinium EPIC BeadChip) previously demonstrated to be more conciliable with brain-derived variations. The candidate site was validated by pyrosequencing. External replication was performed in (1) relation to age at index suicide attempt in 97 women with emotionally unstable personality disorder (whole-blood) and (2) death by suicide in a mixed group of 183 prefrontal-cortex (PFC) derived samples who died by suicide or from non-psychiatric etiologies. Results CYP2D6-coupled CpG-site cg07016288 was hypomethylated in severe suicidal behavior (p < 10E-06). Results were validated by pyrosequencing (p < 0.01). Replication analyses demonstrate hypomethylation of cg07016288 in relation to age at index SA in females (p < 0.05) and hypermethylation in PFC of male suicide completers (p < 0.05). Limitations Genotyping of CYP2D6 was not performed and CpG-site associations to gene expression were not explored. Conclusions CYP2D6-coupled epigenetic markers are hypomethylated in females in dependency of features known to confer increased risk of suicide deaths and hypermethylated in PFC of male suicide completers. Further elucidating the role of CYP2D6 in severe suicidality or suicide deaths hold promise to deduce clinically meaningful results.