Panic disorder (PD) is a debilitating anxiety disorder characterized by episodes of intense fear with autonomic and psychological symptoms that lead to behavioral impairment. A convergence of genetic and biological evidence implicates gamma-aminobutyric acid type A receptor subunits on chromosome 15q12 as candidate genes for PD. This study investigated 120 Caucasian, multiplex PD pedigrees using regional microsatellites (chr15q11-13) and found support for linkage (logarithm of odds (LOD) ≥2), with a prominent parent-of-origin effect. Genotyping with 10 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) showed linkage to GABRB3 (rs11631421, LOD=4.6) and GABRA5 (rs2075716, LOD=2.2), and allelic association to GABRB3 (rs8024564, p=0.005; rs8025575, p=0.02) and GABRA5 (rs35399885, p=0.05). Genotyping of an independent Sardinian PD trio sample also supported association in the region, again with a parent-of-origin effect. These findings provide genetic evidence for the involvement of the genes GABRB3 and GABRA5 in the susceptibility to PD.