Association of estrogen receptor β gene polymorphisms with bulimic disease in women

M. Nilsson, S. Naessén, I. Dahlman, A. Lindén Hirschberg, J. Å Gustafsson, K. Dahlman-Wright

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

73 Scopus citations


In this study, we explored the potential association between estrogen receptor β (ERβ) and disease in a group of bulimic women. Eating disorders are much more common in females than in males, suggesting a possible role for female sex hormone signalling in the pathogenesis of these diseases. Furthermore, estrogen has been implicated in appetite regulation. The occurrence of menstrual disturbances is also increased in bulimic women. We studied 76 bulimic women and 60 controls, and found an association between two common polymorphisms in the ERβ gene with disease in this group of bulimic women. More detailed characterisation of the ERβ gene identified a novel variant changing the primary structure of ERβ protein in one bulimic patient. An initial functional characterization of this variant did not reveal any differences compared to the wild-type protein. Our findings point towards a possible role of ERβ and/or neighboring genes in the etiology of disease in bulimic patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)28-34
Number of pages7
JournalMolecular Psychiatry
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2004


  • Association
  • Eating disorders
  • ERβ
  • Mutation
  • Polymorphisms

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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