Associations of phenylthiocarbamide tasting to alcohol problems and family history of alcoholism differ by gender

Kimberly A. Driscoll, Marisol Perez, Kelly C. Cukrowicz, Melanie Butler, Thomas E. Joiner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

18 Scopus citations

Abstract

Past research associating phenylthiocarbamide/propylthiouracil (PTC/PROP) taste status with alcoholism has produced equivocal results. Some have found higher proportions of nontasters among those with a family history of alcoholism than controls, whereas others have not. The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship between PTC taste status, alcohol problems, and family history of alcoholism. A total of 244 undergraduate students participated in this study, with a gender distribution of 75% female and 25% male. We found support for our hypothesis that male supertasters would report fewer problems with alcohol and a less significant family history of alcoholism. Interestingly, we also found that female supertasters had a greater family history of alcoholism and more current problems associated with alcohol use. Implications for the genetic link between PTC taste status and alcoholism are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)21-27
Number of pages7
JournalPsychiatry Research
Volume143
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 30 2006

Keywords

  • Alcoholism
  • Family history of alcohol
  • Gender
  • PTC
  • Taste status

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