Non-Genetic Factors Associated with Expression of TS in Vulnerable Individuals: A pilot study of Monozygotic Twins Discordant for TS

Grant Type
Grant Year
Institution Location
Institution Organization Name
Yale University
Investigators Name
Leckman, James, MD

Summary: In families where heredity plays a significant role in the development of TS there is often variability in the symptoms and severity of TS from one affected family member to another. This variable expression of the genetic influence indicates that other, perhaps non-genetic factors are important in determining the symptoms and level of severity of TS in some individuals. Specific factors we are interested in at this point include prenatal history, stressful life events, medication histories, and coping strategies. Through our work with TS patients we have learned that these factors can affect the severity of TS symptoms. In this study, however, we are interested in whether these and other factors may be associated with the actual development of TS. Recently with the help of the TSA we have identified a group of TS patients ideally suited to work with us on this project. The group consists of identical twin pairs. In each twin pair one of the twins has TS while the other may either have TS, motor tics alone or no TS symptoms at all. In studying this group of twin pairs we are assuming that each twin in a pair is genetically identical to the other twin, so that the differences in symptoms and severity of TS symptoms between twins could only be accounted for by non-generic factors. Co-Principal Investigatiors: Dr. James F. Leckman, M.D., Yale University Dr. R. Arlen Price, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania Award: $15,000 Tourette Association of America, Inc. – Research Grant Award 1985