Pathological Gambling Runs In Families

Problem gambling runs in families according to a University of Iowa study published online Feb. 24 in the journal Psychiatry Research. The study also found an excess of alcoholism, drug disorders and antisocial personality disorder in families with pathological gamblers.

"Something is being passed along in these families that increases the persons' likelihood of engaging in impulsive and ultimately self-destructive behavior. In some persons, it manifests as substance abuse, in others as antisocial behavior, and in others gambling, and often the three are combined," said Donald W. Black, M.D., professor of psychiatry in the UI Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine., who has studied pathological gambling for the past eight years.

Demonstrating that gambling runs in families is the first step in finding the gene or genes that underlie gambling, and Black hopes this study will lead to molecular genetic studies of pathological gambling.

UI Study Finds Pathological Gambling Runs In Families


Gene That Protects Against Kidney Stones

Yale School of Medicine researchers report in Nature Genetics this week that they have identified a gene whose function protects the body against kidney stones.

The research identifies a transporter, encoded by the gene, as a potential target for drugs to boost oxalate secretion in the gut and help prevent kidney stones, said Peter Aronson, M.D., professor of internal medicine and physiology and senior author of the study.

The most common type of kidney stones are composed of calcium oxalate. The transporter, known as SLC26A6, normally secretes oxalate into the intestine and prevents absorption of too much of the oxalate from the diet.

Yale Researchers Identify Gene That Protects Against Kidney Stones

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