Tourette syndrome (TS) is a frequent neuropsychiatric disorder of unknown etiology. A number of chromosomal regions have been nominated as TS loci in linkage studies, but confirmation has met with limited success and causative mutations have not yet been definitely identified. Furthermore, TS, chronic tics, and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) occur at increased frequencies among TS relatives, supporting the view that these phenotypes represent parts of the same genetically determined spectrum. We ascertained a four-generation Italian kindred segregating TS, chronic multiple motor tics (CMT), and OCD, and we performed a ten-centimorgan (cM) genome-wide linkage scan in order to map the underlying genetic defect. Suggestive linkage to chromosome 14q31.1 (multipoint LOD=2.4) was detected by affected-only analysis under an autosomal dominant model and a narrower phenotype definition (only the subjects with TS and CMT were considered as affected). The linkage peak increased and it approached genome-wide significance (LOD=3.29) when a broader phenotype definition was adopted (subjects with TS, CMT, and OCD considered as affected). Haplotype analysis defined a ∼2.3 cM critical region, shared by all the relatives with TS, CMT, or OCD. In conclusion, we provide strong evidence for linkage of TS spectrum to chromosome 14q31.1. Suggestive linkage to an overlapping region of chromosome 14q was reported in a recent scan of TS sibling pairs. This region might therefore contain an important gene for TS, and it should be prioritized for further study.

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Keywords Linkage mapping, Locus, Movement disorders, Tics, Tourette syndrome
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Journal Neurogenetics
Breedveld, G.J, Fabbrini, G, Oostra, B.A, Berardelli, A, & Bonifati, V. (2010). Tourette disorder spectrum maps to chromosome 14q31.1 in an Italian kindred. Neurogenetics, 11(4), 417–423. doi:10.1007/s10048-010-0244-7