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1.  Sex-stratified Genome-wide Association Studies Including 270,000 Individuals Show Sexual Dimorphism in Genetic Loci for Anthropometric Traits 
Randall, Joshua C. | Winkler, Thomas W. | Kutalik, Zoltán | Berndt, Sonja I. | Jackson, Anne U. | Monda, Keri L. | Kilpeläinen, Tuomas O. | Esko, Tõnu | Mägi, Reedik | Li, Shengxu | Workalemahu, Tsegaselassie | Feitosa, Mary F. | Croteau-Chonka, Damien C. | Day, Felix R. | Fall, Tove | Ferreira, Teresa | Gustafsson, Stefan | Locke, Adam E. | Mathieson, Iain | Scherag, Andre | Vedantam, Sailaja | Wood, Andrew R. | Liang, Liming | Steinthorsdottir, Valgerdur | Thorleifsson, Gudmar | Dermitzakis, Emmanouil T. | Dimas, Antigone S. | Karpe, Fredrik | Min, Josine L. | Nicholson, George | Clegg, Deborah J. | Person, Thomas | Krohn, Jon P. | Bauer, Sabrina | Buechler, Christa | Eisinger, Kristina | Bonnefond, Amélie | Froguel, Philippe | Hottenga, Jouke-Jan | Prokopenko, Inga | Waite, Lindsay L. | Harris, Tamara B. | Smith, Albert Vernon | Shuldiner, Alan R. | McArdle, Wendy L. | Caulfield, Mark J. | Munroe, Patricia B. | Grönberg, Henrik | Chen, Yii-Der Ida | Li, Guo | Beckmann, Jacques S. | Johnson, Toby | Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur | Teder-Laving, Maris | Khaw, Kay-Tee | Wareham, Nicholas J. | Zhao, Jing Hua | Amin, Najaf | Oostra, Ben A. | Kraja, Aldi T. | Province, Michael A. | Cupples, L. Adrienne | Heard-Costa, Nancy L. | Kaprio, Jaakko | Ripatti, Samuli | Surakka, Ida | Collins, Francis S. | Saramies, Jouko | Tuomilehto, Jaakko | Jula, Antti | Salomaa, Veikko | Erdmann, Jeanette | Hengstenberg, Christian | Loley, Christina | Schunkert, Heribert | Lamina, Claudia | Wichmann, H. Erich | Albrecht, Eva | Gieger, Christian | Hicks, Andrew A. | Johansson, Åsa | Pramstaller, Peter P. | Kathiresan, Sekar | Speliotes, Elizabeth K. | Penninx, Brenda | Hartikainen, Anna-Liisa | Jarvelin, Marjo-Riitta | Gyllensten, Ulf | Boomsma, Dorret I. | Campbell, Harry | Wilson, James F. | Chanock, Stephen J. | Farrall, Martin | Goel, Anuj | Medina-Gomez, Carolina | Rivadeneira, Fernando | Estrada, Karol | Uitterlinden, André G. | Hofman, Albert | Zillikens, M. Carola | den Heijer, Martin | Kiemeney, Lambertus A. | Maschio, Andrea | Hall, Per | Tyrer, Jonathan | Teumer, Alexander | Völzke, Henry | Kovacs, Peter | Tönjes, Anke | Mangino, Massimo | Spector, Tim D. | Hayward, Caroline | Rudan, Igor | Hall, Alistair S. | Samani, Nilesh J. | Attwood, Antony Paul | Sambrook, Jennifer G. | Hung, Joseph | Palmer, Lyle J. | Lokki, Marja-Liisa | Sinisalo, Juha | Boucher, Gabrielle | Huikuri, Heikki | Lorentzon, Mattias | Ohlsson, Claes | Eklund, Niina | Eriksson, Johan G. | Barlassina, Cristina | Rivolta, Carlo | Nolte, Ilja M. | Snieder, Harold | Van der Klauw, Melanie M. | Van Vliet-Ostaptchouk, Jana V. | Gejman, Pablo V. | Shi, Jianxin | Jacobs, Kevin B. | Wang, Zhaoming | Bakker, Stephan J. L. | Mateo Leach, Irene | Navis, Gerjan | van der Harst, Pim | Martin, Nicholas G. | Medland, Sarah E. | Montgomery, Grant W. | Yang, Jian | Chasman, Daniel I. | Ridker, Paul M. | Rose, Lynda M. | Lehtimäki, Terho | Raitakari, Olli | Absher, Devin | Iribarren, Carlos | Basart, Hanneke | Hovingh, Kees G. | Hyppönen, Elina | Power, Chris | Anderson, Denise | Beilby, John P. | Hui, Jennie | Jolley, Jennifer | Sager, Hendrik | Bornstein, Stefan R. | Schwarz, Peter E. H. | Kristiansson, Kati | Perola, Markus | Lindström, Jaana | Swift, Amy J. | Uusitupa, Matti | Atalay, Mustafa | Lakka, Timo A. | Rauramaa, Rainer | Bolton, Jennifer L. | Fowkes, Gerry | Fraser, Ross M. | Price, Jackie F. | Fischer, Krista | KrjutÅ¡kov, Kaarel | Metspalu, Andres | Mihailov, Evelin | Langenberg, Claudia | Luan, Jian'an | Ong, Ken K. | Chines, Peter S. | Keinanen-Kiukaanniemi, Sirkka M. | Saaristo, Timo E. | Edkins, Sarah | Franks, Paul W. | Hallmans, Göran | Shungin, Dmitry | Morris, Andrew David | Palmer, Colin N. A. | Erbel, Raimund | Moebus, Susanne | Nöthen, Markus M. | Pechlivanis, Sonali | Hveem, Kristian | Narisu, Narisu | Hamsten, Anders | Humphries, Steve E. | Strawbridge, Rona J. | Tremoli, Elena | Grallert, Harald | Thorand, Barbara | Illig, Thomas | Koenig, Wolfgang | Müller-Nurasyid, Martina | Peters, Annette | Boehm, Bernhard O. | Kleber, Marcus E. | März, Winfried | Winkelmann, Bernhard R. | Kuusisto, Johanna | Laakso, Markku | Arveiler, Dominique | Cesana, Giancarlo | Kuulasmaa, Kari | Virtamo, Jarmo | Yarnell, John W. G. | Kuh, Diana | Wong, Andrew | Lind, Lars | de Faire, Ulf | Gigante, Bruna | Magnusson, Patrik K. E. | Pedersen, Nancy L. | Dedoussis, George | Dimitriou, Maria | Kolovou, Genovefa | Kanoni, Stavroula | Stirrups, Kathleen | Bonnycastle, Lori L. | Njølstad, Inger | Wilsgaard, Tom | Ganna, Andrea | Rehnberg, Emil | Hingorani, Aroon | Kivimaki, Mika | Kumari, Meena | Assimes, Themistocles L. | Barroso, Inês | Boehnke, Michael | Borecki, Ingrid B. | Deloukas, Panos | Fox, Caroline S. | Frayling, Timothy | Groop, Leif C. | Haritunians, Talin | Hunter, David | Ingelsson, Erik | Kaplan, Robert | Mohlke, Karen L. | O'Connell, Jeffrey R. | Schlessinger, David | Strachan, David P. | Stefansson, Kari | van Duijn, Cornelia M. | Abecasis, Gonçalo R. | McCarthy, Mark I. | Hirschhorn, Joel N. | Qi, Lu | Loos, Ruth J. F. | Lindgren, Cecilia M. | North, Kari E. | Heid, Iris M.
PLoS Genetics  2013;9(6):e1003500.
Given the anthropometric differences between men and women and previous evidence of sex-difference in genetic effects, we conducted a genome-wide search for sexually dimorphic associations with height, weight, body mass index, waist circumference, hip circumference, and waist-to-hip-ratio (133,723 individuals) and took forward 348 SNPs into follow-up (additional 137,052 individuals) in a total of 94 studies. Seven loci displayed significant sex-difference (FDR<5%), including four previously established (near GRB14/COBLL1, LYPLAL1/SLC30A10, VEGFA, ADAMTS9) and three novel anthropometric trait loci (near MAP3K1, HSD17B4, PPARG), all of which were genome-wide significant in women (P<5×10−8), but not in men. Sex-differences were apparent only for waist phenotypes, not for height, weight, BMI, or hip circumference. Moreover, we found no evidence for genetic effects with opposite directions in men versus women. The PPARG locus is of specific interest due to its role in diabetes genetics and therapy. Our results demonstrate the value of sex-specific GWAS to unravel the sexually dimorphic genetic underpinning of complex traits.
Author Summary
Men and women differ substantially regarding height, weight, and body fat. Interestingly, previous work detecting genetic effects for waist-to-hip ratio, to assess body fat distribution, has found that many of these showed sex-differences. However, systematic searches for sex-differences in genetic effects have not yet been conducted. Therefore, we undertook a genome-wide search for sexually dimorphic genetic effects for anthropometric traits including 133,723 individuals in a large meta-analysis and followed promising variants in further 137,052 individuals, including a total of 94 studies. We identified seven loci with significant sex-difference including four previously established (near GRB14/COBLL1, LYPLAL1/SLC30A10, VEGFA, ADAMTS9) and three novel anthropometric trait loci (near MAP3K1, HSD17B4, PPARG), all of which were significant in women, but not in men. Of interest is that sex-difference was only observed for waist phenotypes, but not for height or body-mass-index. We found no evidence for sex-differences with opposite effect direction for men and women. The PPARG locus is of specific interest due to its link to diabetes genetics and therapy. Our findings demonstrate the importance of investigating sex differences, which may lead to a better understanding of disease mechanisms with a potential relevance to treatment options.
doi:10.1371/journal.pgen.1003500
PMCID: PMC3674993  PMID: 23754948
2.  New genetic loci link adipose and insulin biology to body fat distribution 
Shungin, Dmitry | Winkler, Thomas W | Croteau-Chonka, Damien C | Ferreira, Teresa | Locke, Adam E | Mägi, Reedik | Strawbridge, Rona J | Pers, Tune H | Fischer, Krista | Justice, Anne E | Workalemahu, Tsegaselassie | Wu, Joseph M.W. | Buchkovich, Martin L | Heard-Costa, Nancy L | Roman, Tamara S | Drong, Alexander W | Song, Ci | Gustafsson, Stefan | Day, Felix R | Esko, Tonu | Fall, Tove | Kutalik, Zoltán | Luan, Jian’an | Randall, Joshua C | Scherag, André | Vedantam, Sailaja | Wood, Andrew R | Chen, Jin | Fehrmann, Rudolf | Karjalainen, Juha | Kahali, Bratati | Liu, Ching-Ti | Schmidt, Ellen M | Absher, Devin | Amin, Najaf | Anderson, Denise | Beekman, Marian | Bragg-Gresham, Jennifer L | Buyske, Steven | Demirkan, Ayse | Ehret, Georg B | Feitosa, Mary F | Goel, Anuj | Jackson, Anne U | Johnson, Toby | Kleber, Marcus E | Kristiansson, Kati | Mangino, Massimo | Leach, Irene Mateo | Medina-Gomez, Carolina | Palmer, Cameron D | Pasko, Dorota | Pechlivanis, Sonali | Peters, Marjolein J | Prokopenko, Inga | Stančáková, Alena | Sung, Yun Ju | Tanaka, Toshiko | Teumer, Alexander | Van Vliet-Ostaptchouk, Jana V | Yengo, Loïc | Zhang, Weihua | Albrecht, Eva | Ärnlöv, Johan | Arscott, Gillian M | Bandinelli, Stefania | Barrett, Amy | Bellis, Claire | Bennett, Amanda J | Berne, Christian | Blüher, Matthias | Böhringer, Stefan | Bonnet, Fabrice | Böttcher, Yvonne | Bruinenberg, Marcel | Carba, Delia B | Caspersen, Ida H | Clarke, Robert | Daw, E Warwick | Deelen, Joris | Deelman, Ewa | Delgado, Graciela | Doney, Alex SF | Eklund, Niina | Erdos, Michael R | Estrada, Karol | Eury, Elodie | Friedrich, Nele | Garcia, Melissa E | Giedraitis, Vilmantas | Gigante, Bruna | Go, Alan S | Golay, Alain | Grallert, Harald | Grammer, Tanja B | Gräßler, Jürgen | Grewal, Jagvir | Groves, Christopher J | Haller, Toomas | Hallmans, Goran | Hartman, Catharina A | Hassinen, Maija | Hayward, Caroline | Heikkilä, Kauko | Herzig, Karl-Heinz | Helmer, Quinta | Hillege, Hans L | Holmen, Oddgeir | Hunt, Steven C | Isaacs, Aaron | Ittermann, Till | James, Alan L | Johansson, Ingegerd | Juliusdottir, Thorhildur | Kalafati, Ioanna-Panagiota | Kinnunen, Leena | Koenig, Wolfgang | Kooner, Ishminder K | Kratzer, Wolfgang | Lamina, Claudia | Leander, Karin | Lee, Nanette R | Lichtner, Peter | Lind, Lars | Lindström, Jaana | Lobbens, Stéphane | Lorentzon, Mattias | Mach, François | Magnusson, Patrik KE | Mahajan, Anubha | McArdle, Wendy L | Menni, Cristina | Merger, Sigrun | Mihailov, Evelin | Milani, Lili | Mills, Rebecca | Moayyeri, Alireza | Monda, Keri L | Mooijaart, Simon P | Mühleisen, Thomas W | Mulas, Antonella | Müller, Gabriele | Müller-Nurasyid, Martina | Nagaraja, Ramaiah | Nalls, Michael A | Narisu, Narisu | Glorioso, Nicola | Nolte, Ilja M | Olden, Matthias | Rayner, Nigel W | Renstrom, Frida | Ried, Janina S | Robertson, Neil R | Rose, Lynda M | Sanna, Serena | Scharnagl, Hubert | Scholtens, Salome | Sennblad, Bengt | Seufferlein, Thomas | Sitlani, Colleen M | Smith, Albert Vernon | Stirrups, Kathleen | Stringham, Heather M | Sundström, Johan | Swertz, Morris A | Swift, Amy J | Syvänen, Ann-Christine | Tayo, Bamidele O | Thorand, Barbara | Thorleifsson, Gudmar | Tomaschitz, Andreas | Troffa, Chiara | van Oort, Floor VA | Verweij, Niek | Vonk, Judith M | Waite, Lindsay L | Wennauer, Roman | Wilsgaard, Tom | Wojczynski, Mary K | Wong, Andrew | Zhang, Qunyuan | Zhao, Jing Hua | Brennan, Eoin P. | Choi, Murim | Eriksson, Per | Folkersen, Lasse | Franco-Cereceda, Anders | Gharavi, Ali G | Hedman, Åsa K | Hivert, Marie-France | Huang, Jinyan | Kanoni, Stavroula | Karpe, Fredrik | Keildson, Sarah | Kiryluk, Krzysztof | Liang, Liming | Lifton, Richard P | Ma, Baoshan | McKnight, Amy J | McPherson, Ruth | Metspalu, Andres | Min, Josine L | Moffatt, Miriam F | Montgomery, Grant W | Murabito, Joanne M | Nicholson, George | Nyholt, Dale R | Olsson, Christian | Perry, John RB | Reinmaa, Eva | Salem, Rany M | Sandholm, Niina | Schadt, Eric E | Scott, Robert A | Stolk, Lisette | Vallejo, Edgar E. | Westra, Harm-Jan | Zondervan, Krina T | Amouyel, Philippe | Arveiler, Dominique | Bakker, Stephan JL | Beilby, John | Bergman, Richard N | Blangero, John | Brown, Morris J | Burnier, Michel | Campbell, Harry | Chakravarti, Aravinda | Chines, Peter S | Claudi-Boehm, Simone | Collins, Francis S | Crawford, Dana C | Danesh, John | de Faire, Ulf | de Geus, Eco JC | Dörr, Marcus | Erbel, Raimund | Eriksson, Johan G | Farrall, Martin | Ferrannini, Ele | Ferrières, Jean | Forouhi, Nita G | Forrester, Terrence | Franco, Oscar H | Gansevoort, Ron T | Gieger, Christian | Gudnason, Vilmundur | Haiman, Christopher A | Harris, Tamara B | Hattersley, Andrew T | Heliövaara, Markku | Hicks, Andrew A | Hingorani, Aroon D | Hoffmann, Wolfgang | Hofman, Albert | Homuth, Georg | Humphries, Steve E | Hyppönen, Elina | Illig, Thomas | Jarvelin, Marjo-Riitta | Johansen, Berit | Jousilahti, Pekka | Jula, Antti M | Kaprio, Jaakko | Kee, Frank | Keinanen-Kiukaanniemi, Sirkka M | Kooner, Jaspal S | Kooperberg, Charles | Kovacs, Peter | Kraja, Aldi T | Kumari, Meena | Kuulasmaa, Kari | Kuusisto, Johanna | Lakka, Timo A | Langenberg, Claudia | Le Marchand, Loic | Lehtimäki, Terho | Lyssenko, Valeriya | Männistö, Satu | Marette, André | Matise, Tara C | McKenzie, Colin A | McKnight, Barbara | Musk, Arthur W | Möhlenkamp, Stefan | Morris, Andrew D | Nelis, Mari | Ohlsson, Claes | Oldehinkel, Albertine J | Ong, Ken K | Palmer, Lyle J | Penninx, Brenda W | Peters, Annette | Pramstaller, Peter P | Raitakari, Olli T | Rankinen, Tuomo | Rao, DC | Rice, Treva K | Ridker, Paul M | Ritchie, Marylyn D. | Rudan, Igor | Salomaa, Veikko | Samani, Nilesh J | Saramies, Jouko | Sarzynski, Mark A | Schwarz, Peter EH | Shuldiner, Alan R | Staessen, Jan A | Steinthorsdottir, Valgerdur | Stolk, Ronald P | Strauch, Konstantin | Tönjes, Anke | Tremblay, Angelo | Tremoli, Elena | Vohl, Marie-Claude | Völker, Uwe | Vollenweider, Peter | Wilson, James F | Witteman, Jacqueline C | Adair, Linda S | Bochud, Murielle | Boehm, Bernhard O | Bornstein, Stefan R | Bouchard, Claude | Cauchi, Stéphane | Caulfield, Mark J | Chambers, John C | Chasman, Daniel I | Cooper, Richard S | Dedoussis, George | Ferrucci, Luigi | Froguel, Philippe | Grabe, Hans-Jörgen | Hamsten, Anders | Hui, Jennie | Hveem, Kristian | Jöckel, Karl-Heinz | Kivimaki, Mika | Kuh, Diana | Laakso, Markku | Liu, Yongmei | März, Winfried | Munroe, Patricia B | Njølstad, Inger | Oostra, Ben A | Palmer, Colin NA | Pedersen, Nancy L | Perola, Markus | Pérusse, Louis | Peters, Ulrike | Power, Chris | Quertermous, Thomas | Rauramaa, Rainer | Rivadeneira, Fernando | Saaristo, Timo E | Saleheen, Danish | Sinisalo, Juha | Slagboom, P Eline | Snieder, Harold | Spector, Tim D | Stefansson, Kari | Stumvoll, Michael | Tuomilehto, Jaakko | Uitterlinden, André G | Uusitupa, Matti | van der Harst, Pim | Veronesi, Giovanni | Walker, Mark | Wareham, Nicholas J | Watkins, Hugh | Wichmann, H-Erich | Abecasis, Goncalo R | Assimes, Themistocles L | Berndt, Sonja I | Boehnke, Michael | Borecki, Ingrid B | Deloukas, Panos | Franke, Lude | Frayling, Timothy M | Groop, Leif C | Hunter, David J. | Kaplan, Robert C | O’Connell, Jeffrey R | Qi, Lu | Schlessinger, David | Strachan, David P | Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur | van Duijn, Cornelia M | Willer, Cristen J | Visscher, Peter M | Yang, Jian | Hirschhorn, Joel N | Zillikens, M Carola | McCarthy, Mark I | Speliotes, Elizabeth K | North, Kari E | Fox, Caroline S | Barroso, Inês | Franks, Paul W | Ingelsson, Erik | Heid, Iris M | Loos, Ruth JF | Cupples, L Adrienne | Morris, Andrew P | Lindgren, Cecilia M | Mohlke, Karen L
Nature  2015;518(7538):187-196.
Body fat distribution is a heritable trait and a well-established predictor of adverse metabolic outcomes, independent of overall adiposity. To increase our understanding of the genetic basis of body fat distribution and its molecular links to cardiometabolic traits, we conducted genome-wide association meta-analyses of waist and hip circumference-related traits in up to 224,459 individuals. We identified 49 loci (33 new) associated with waist-to-hip ratio adjusted for body mass index (WHRadjBMI) and an additional 19 loci newly associated with related waist and hip circumference measures (P<5×10−8). Twenty of the 49 WHRadjBMI loci showed significant sexual dimorphism, 19 of which displayed a stronger effect in women. The identified loci were enriched for genes expressed in adipose tissue and for putative regulatory elements in adipocytes. Pathway analyses implicated adipogenesis, angiogenesis, transcriptional regulation, and insulin resistance as processes affecting fat distribution, providing insight into potential pathophysiological mechanisms.
doi:10.1038/nature14132
PMCID: PMC4338562  PMID: 25673412
3.  Defining the role of common variation in the genomic and biological architecture of adult human height 
Wood, Andrew R | Esko, Tonu | Yang, Jian | Vedantam, Sailaja | Pers, Tune H | Gustafsson, Stefan | Chu, Audrey Y | Estrada, Karol | Luan, Jian’an | Kutalik, Zoltán | Amin, Najaf | Buchkovich, Martin L | Croteau-Chonka, Damien C | Day, Felix R | Duan, Yanan | Fall, Tove | Fehrmann, Rudolf | Ferreira, Teresa | Jackson, Anne U | Karjalainen, Juha | Lo, Ken Sin | Locke, Adam E | Mägi, Reedik | Mihailov, Evelin | Porcu, Eleonora | Randall, Joshua C | Scherag, André | Vinkhuyzen, Anna AE | Westra, Harm-Jan | Winkler, Thomas W | Workalemahu, Tsegaselassie | Zhao, Jing Hua | Absher, Devin | Albrecht, Eva | Anderson, Denise | Baron, Jeffrey | Beekman, Marian | Demirkan, Ayse | Ehret, Georg B | Feenstra, Bjarke | Feitosa, Mary F | Fischer, Krista | Fraser, Ross M | Goel, Anuj | Gong, Jian | Justice, Anne E | Kanoni, Stavroula | Kleber, Marcus E | Kristiansson, Kati | Lim, Unhee | Lotay, Vaneet | Lui, Julian C | Mangino, Massimo | Leach, Irene Mateo | Medina-Gomez, Carolina | Nalls, Michael A | Nyholt, Dale R | Palmer, Cameron D | Pasko, Dorota | Pechlivanis, Sonali | Prokopenko, Inga | Ried, Janina S | Ripke, Stephan | Shungin, Dmitry | Stancáková, Alena | Strawbridge, Rona J | Sung, Yun Ju | Tanaka, Toshiko | Teumer, Alexander | Trompet, Stella | van der Laan, Sander W | van Setten, Jessica | Van Vliet-Ostaptchouk, Jana V | Wang, Zhaoming | Yengo, Loïc | Zhang, Weihua | Afzal, Uzma | Ärnlöv, Johan | Arscott, Gillian M | Bandinelli, Stefania | Barrett, Amy | Bellis, Claire | Bennett, Amanda J | Berne, Christian | Blüher, Matthias | Bolton, Jennifer L | Böttcher, Yvonne | Boyd, Heather A | Bruinenberg, Marcel | Buckley, Brendan M | Buyske, Steven | Caspersen, Ida H | Chines, Peter S | Clarke, Robert | Claudi-Boehm, Simone | Cooper, Matthew | Daw, E Warwick | De Jong, Pim A | Deelen, Joris | Delgado, Graciela | Denny, Josh C | Dhonukshe-Rutten, Rosalie | Dimitriou, Maria | Doney, Alex SF | Dörr, Marcus | Eklund, Niina | Eury, Elodie | Folkersen, Lasse | Garcia, Melissa E | Geller, Frank | Giedraitis, Vilmantas | Go, Alan S | Grallert, Harald | Grammer, Tanja B | Gräßler, Jürgen | Grönberg, Henrik | de Groot, Lisette C.P.G.M. | Groves, Christopher J | Haessler, Jeffrey | Hall, Per | Haller, Toomas | Hallmans, Goran | Hannemann, Anke | Hartman, Catharina A | Hassinen, Maija | Hayward, Caroline | Heard-Costa, Nancy L | Helmer, Quinta | Hemani, Gibran | Henders, Anjali K | Hillege, Hans L | Hlatky, Mark A | Hoffmann, Wolfgang | Hoffmann, Per | Holmen, Oddgeir | Houwing-Duistermaat, Jeanine J | Illig, Thomas | Isaacs, Aaron | James, Alan L | Jeff, Janina | Johansen, Berit | Johansson, Åsa | Jolley, Jennifer | Juliusdottir, Thorhildur | Junttila, Juhani | Kho, Abel N | Kinnunen, Leena | Klopp, Norman | Kocher, Thomas | Kratzer, Wolfgang | Lichtner, Peter | Lind, Lars | Lindström, Jaana | Lobbens, Stéphane | Lorentzon, Mattias | Lu, Yingchang | Lyssenko, Valeriya | Magnusson, Patrik KE | Mahajan, Anubha | Maillard, Marc | McArdle, Wendy L | McKenzie, Colin A | McLachlan, Stela | McLaren, Paul J | Menni, Cristina | Merger, Sigrun | Milani, Lili | Moayyeri, Alireza | Monda, Keri L | Morken, Mario A | Müller, Gabriele | Müller-Nurasyid, Martina | Musk, Arthur W | Narisu, Narisu | Nauck, Matthias | Nolte, Ilja M | Nöthen, Markus M | Oozageer, Laticia | Pilz, Stefan | Rayner, Nigel W | Renstrom, Frida | Robertson, Neil R | Rose, Lynda M | Roussel, Ronan | Sanna, Serena | Scharnagl, Hubert | Scholtens, Salome | Schumacher, Fredrick R | Schunkert, Heribert | Scott, Robert A | Sehmi, Joban | Seufferlein, Thomas | Shi, Jianxin | Silventoinen, Karri | Smit, Johannes H | Smith, Albert Vernon | Smolonska, Joanna | Stanton, Alice V | Stirrups, Kathleen | Stott, David J | Stringham, Heather M | Sundström, Johan | Swertz, Morris A | Syvänen, Ann-Christine | Tayo, Bamidele O | Thorleifsson, Gudmar | Tyrer, Jonathan P | van Dijk, Suzanne | van Schoor, Natasja M | van der Velde, Nathalie | van Heemst, Diana | van Oort, Floor VA | Vermeulen, Sita H | Verweij, Niek | Vonk, Judith M | Waite, Lindsay L | Waldenberger, Melanie | Wennauer, Roman | Wilkens, Lynne R | Willenborg, Christina | Wilsgaard, Tom | Wojczynski, Mary K | Wong, Andrew | Wright, Alan F | Zhang, Qunyuan | Arveiler, Dominique | Bakker, Stephan JL | Beilby, John | Bergman, Richard N | Bergmann, Sven | Biffar, Reiner | Blangero, John | Boomsma, Dorret I | Bornstein, Stefan R | Bovet, Pascal | Brambilla, Paolo | Brown, Morris J | Campbell, Harry | Caulfield, Mark J | Chakravarti, Aravinda | Collins, Rory | Collins, Francis S | Crawford, Dana C | Cupples, L Adrienne | Danesh, John | de Faire, Ulf | den Ruijter, Hester M | Erbel, Raimund | Erdmann, Jeanette | Eriksson, Johan G | Farrall, Martin | Ferrannini, Ele | Ferrières, Jean | Ford, Ian | Forouhi, Nita G | Forrester, Terrence | Gansevoort, Ron T | Gejman, Pablo V | Gieger, Christian | Golay, Alain | Gottesman, Omri | Gudnason, Vilmundur | Gyllensten, Ulf | Haas, David W | Hall, Alistair S | Harris, Tamara B | Hattersley, Andrew T | Heath, Andrew C | Hengstenberg, Christian | Hicks, Andrew A | Hindorff, Lucia A | Hingorani, Aroon D | Hofman, Albert | Hovingh, G Kees | Humphries, Steve E | Hunt, Steven C | Hypponen, Elina | Jacobs, Kevin B | Jarvelin, Marjo-Riitta | Jousilahti, Pekka | Jula, Antti M | Kaprio, Jaakko | Kastelein, John JP | Kayser, Manfred | Kee, Frank | Keinanen-Kiukaanniemi, Sirkka M | Kiemeney, Lambertus A | Kooner, Jaspal S | Kooperberg, Charles | Koskinen, Seppo | Kovacs, Peter | Kraja, Aldi T | Kumari, Meena | Kuusisto, Johanna | Lakka, Timo A | Langenberg, Claudia | Le Marchand, Loic | Lehtimäki, Terho | Lupoli, Sara | Madden, Pamela AF | Männistö, Satu | Manunta, Paolo | Marette, André | Matise, Tara C | McKnight, Barbara | Meitinger, Thomas | Moll, Frans L | Montgomery, Grant W | Morris, Andrew D | Morris, Andrew P | Murray, Jeffrey C | Nelis, Mari | Ohlsson, Claes | Oldehinkel, Albertine J | Ong, Ken K | Ouwehand, Willem H | Pasterkamp, Gerard | Peters, Annette | Pramstaller, Peter P | Price, Jackie F | Qi, Lu | Raitakari, Olli T | Rankinen, Tuomo | Rao, DC | Rice, Treva K | Ritchie, Marylyn | Rudan, Igor | Salomaa, Veikko | Samani, Nilesh J | Saramies, Jouko | Sarzynski, Mark A | Schwarz, Peter EH | Sebert, Sylvain | Sever, Peter | Shuldiner, Alan R | Sinisalo, Juha | Steinthorsdottir, Valgerdur | Stolk, Ronald P | Tardif, Jean-Claude | Tönjes, Anke | Tremblay, Angelo | Tremoli, Elena | Virtamo, Jarmo | Vohl, Marie-Claude | Amouyel, Philippe | Asselbergs, Folkert W | Assimes, Themistocles L | Bochud, Murielle | Boehm, Bernhard O | Boerwinkle, Eric | Bottinger, Erwin P | Bouchard, Claude | Cauchi, Stéphane | Chambers, John C | Chanock, Stephen J | Cooper, Richard S | de Bakker, Paul IW | Dedoussis, George | Ferrucci, Luigi | Franks, Paul W | Froguel, Philippe | Groop, Leif C | Haiman, Christopher A | Hamsten, Anders | Hayes, M Geoffrey | Hui, Jennie | Hunter, David J. | Hveem, Kristian | Jukema, J Wouter | Kaplan, Robert C | Kivimaki, Mika | Kuh, Diana | Laakso, Markku | Liu, Yongmei | Martin, Nicholas G | März, Winfried | Melbye, Mads | Moebus, Susanne | Munroe, Patricia B | Njølstad, Inger | Oostra, Ben A | Palmer, Colin NA | Pedersen, Nancy L | Perola, Markus | Pérusse, Louis | Peters, Ulrike | Powell, Joseph E | Power, Chris | Quertermous, Thomas | Rauramaa, Rainer | Reinmaa, Eva | Ridker, Paul M | Rivadeneira, Fernando | Rotter, Jerome I | Saaristo, Timo E | Saleheen, Danish | Schlessinger, David | Slagboom, P Eline | Snieder, Harold | Spector, Tim D | Strauch, Konstantin | Stumvoll, Michael | Tuomilehto, Jaakko | Uusitupa, Matti | van der Harst, Pim | Völzke, Henry | Walker, Mark | Wareham, Nicholas J | Watkins, Hugh | Wichmann, H-Erich | Wilson, James F | Zanen, Pieter | Deloukas, Panos | Heid, Iris M | Lindgren, Cecilia M | Mohlke, Karen L | Speliotes, Elizabeth K | Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur | Barroso, Inês | Fox, Caroline S | North, Kari E | Strachan, David P | Beckmann, Jacques S. | Berndt, Sonja I | Boehnke, Michael | Borecki, Ingrid B | McCarthy, Mark I | Metspalu, Andres | Stefansson, Kari | Uitterlinden, André G | van Duijn, Cornelia M | Franke, Lude | Willer, Cristen J | Price, Alkes L. | Lettre, Guillaume | Loos, Ruth JF | Weedon, Michael N | Ingelsson, Erik | O’Connell, Jeffrey R | Abecasis, Goncalo R | Chasman, Daniel I | Goddard, Michael E | Visscher, Peter M | Hirschhorn, Joel N | Frayling, Timothy M
Nature genetics  2014;46(11):1173-1186.
Using genome-wide data from 253,288 individuals, we identified 697 variants at genome-wide significance that together explain one-fifth of heritability for adult height. By testing different numbers of variants in independent studies, we show that the most strongly associated ~2,000, ~3,700 and ~9,500 SNPs explained ~21%, ~24% and ~29% of phenotypic variance. Furthermore, all common variants together captured the majority (60%) of heritability. The 697 variants clustered in 423 loci enriched for genes, pathways, and tissue-types known to be involved in growth and together implicated genes and pathways not highlighted in earlier efforts, such as signaling by fibroblast growth factors, WNT/beta-catenin, and chondroitin sulfate-related genes. We identified several genes and pathways not previously connected with human skeletal growth, including mTOR, osteoglycin and binding of hyaluronic acid. Our results indicate a genetic architecture for human height that is characterized by a very large but finite number (thousands) of causal variants.
doi:10.1038/ng.3097
PMCID: PMC4250049  PMID: 25282103
4.  Defining the role of common variation in the genomic and biological architecture of adult human height 
Wood, Andrew R | Esko, Tonu | Yang, Jian | Vedantam, Sailaja | Pers, Tune H | Gustafsson, Stefan | Chu, Audrey Y | Estrada, Karol | Luan, Jian’an | Kutalik, Zoltán | Amin, Najaf | Buchkovich, Martin L | Croteau-Chonka, Damien C | Day, Felix R | Duan, Yanan | Fall, Tove | Fehrmann, Rudolf | Ferreira, Teresa | Jackson, Anne U | Karjalainen, Juha | Lo, Ken Sin | Locke, Adam E | Mägi, Reedik | Mihailov, Evelin | Porcu, Eleonora | Randall, Joshua C | Scherag, André | Vinkhuyzen, Anna AE | Westra, Harm-Jan | Winkler, Thomas W | Workalemahu, Tsegaselassie | Zhao, Jing Hua | Absher, Devin | Albrecht, Eva | Anderson, Denise | Baron, Jeffrey | Beekman, Marian | Demirkan, Ayse | Ehret, Georg B | Feenstra, Bjarke | Feitosa, Mary F | Fischer, Krista | Fraser, Ross M | Goel, Anuj | Gong, Jian | Justice, Anne E | Kanoni, Stavroula | Kleber, Marcus E | Kristiansson, Kati | Lim, Unhee | Lotay, Vaneet | Lui, Julian C | Mangino, Massimo | Leach, Irene Mateo | Medina-Gomez, Carolina | Nalls, Michael A | Nyholt, Dale R | Palmer, Cameron D | Pasko, Dorota | Pechlivanis, Sonali | Prokopenko, Inga | Ried, Janina S | Ripke, Stephan | Shungin, Dmitry | Stancáková, Alena | Strawbridge, Rona J | Sung, Yun Ju | Tanaka, Toshiko | Teumer, Alexander | Trompet, Stella | van der Laan, Sander W | van Setten, Jessica | Van Vliet-Ostaptchouk, Jana V | Wang, Zhaoming | Yengo, Loïc | Zhang, Weihua | Afzal, Uzma | Ärnlöv, Johan | Arscott, Gillian M | Bandinelli, Stefania | Barrett, Amy | Bellis, Claire | Bennett, Amanda J | Berne, Christian | Blüher, Matthias | Bolton, Jennifer L | Böttcher, Yvonne | Boyd, Heather A | Bruinenberg, Marcel | Buckley, Brendan M | Buyske, Steven | Caspersen, Ida H | Chines, Peter S | Clarke, Robert | Claudi-Boehm, Simone | Cooper, Matthew | Daw, E Warwick | De Jong, Pim A | Deelen, Joris | Delgado, Graciela | Denny, Josh C | Dhonukshe-Rutten, Rosalie | Dimitriou, Maria | Doney, Alex SF | Dörr, Marcus | Eklund, Niina | Eury, Elodie | Folkersen, Lasse | Garcia, Melissa E | Geller, Frank | Giedraitis, Vilmantas | Go, Alan S | Grallert, Harald | Grammer, Tanja B | Gräßler, Jürgen | Grönberg, Henrik | de Groot, Lisette C.P.G.M. | Groves, Christopher J | Haessler, Jeffrey | Hall, Per | Haller, Toomas | Hallmans, Goran | Hannemann, Anke | Hartman, Catharina A | Hassinen, Maija | Hayward, Caroline | Heard-Costa, Nancy L | Helmer, Quinta | Hemani, Gibran | Henders, Anjali K | Hillege, Hans L | Hlatky, Mark A | Hoffmann, Wolfgang | Hoffmann, Per | Holmen, Oddgeir | Houwing-Duistermaat, Jeanine J | Illig, Thomas | Isaacs, Aaron | James, Alan L | Jeff, Janina | Johansen, Berit | Johansson, Åsa | Jolley, Jennifer | Juliusdottir, Thorhildur | Junttila, Juhani | Kho, Abel N | Kinnunen, Leena | Klopp, Norman | Kocher, Thomas | Kratzer, Wolfgang | Lichtner, Peter | Lind, Lars | Lindström, Jaana | Lobbens, Stéphane | Lorentzon, Mattias | Lu, Yingchang | Lyssenko, Valeriya | Magnusson, Patrik KE | Mahajan, Anubha | Maillard, Marc | McArdle, Wendy L | McKenzie, Colin A | McLachlan, Stela | McLaren, Paul J | Menni, Cristina | Merger, Sigrun | Milani, Lili | Moayyeri, Alireza | Monda, Keri L | Morken, Mario A | Müller, Gabriele | Müller-Nurasyid, Martina | Musk, Arthur W | Narisu, Narisu | Nauck, Matthias | Nolte, Ilja M | Nöthen, Markus M | Oozageer, Laticia | Pilz, Stefan | Rayner, Nigel W | Renstrom, Frida | Robertson, Neil R | Rose, Lynda M | Roussel, Ronan | Sanna, Serena | Scharnagl, Hubert | Scholtens, Salome | Schumacher, Fredrick R | Schunkert, Heribert | Scott, Robert A | Sehmi, Joban | Seufferlein, Thomas | Shi, Jianxin | Silventoinen, Karri | Smit, Johannes H | Smith, Albert Vernon | Smolonska, Joanna | Stanton, Alice V | Stirrups, Kathleen | Stott, David J | Stringham, Heather M | Sundström, Johan | Swertz, Morris A | Syvänen, Ann-Christine | Tayo, Bamidele O | Thorleifsson, Gudmar | Tyrer, Jonathan P | van Dijk, Suzanne | van Schoor, Natasja M | van der Velde, Nathalie | van Heemst, Diana | van Oort, Floor VA | Vermeulen, Sita H | Verweij, Niek | Vonk, Judith M | Waite, Lindsay L | Waldenberger, Melanie | Wennauer, Roman | Wilkens, Lynne R | Willenborg, Christina | Wilsgaard, Tom | Wojczynski, Mary K | Wong, Andrew | Wright, Alan F | Zhang, Qunyuan | Arveiler, Dominique | Bakker, Stephan JL | Beilby, John | Bergman, Richard N | Bergmann, Sven | Biffar, Reiner | Blangero, John | Boomsma, Dorret I | Bornstein, Stefan R | Bovet, Pascal | Brambilla, Paolo | Brown, Morris J | Campbell, Harry | Caulfield, Mark J | Chakravarti, Aravinda | Collins, Rory | Collins, Francis S | Crawford, Dana C | Cupples, L Adrienne | Danesh, John | de Faire, Ulf | den Ruijter, Hester M | Erbel, Raimund | Erdmann, Jeanette | Eriksson, Johan G | Farrall, Martin | Ferrannini, Ele | Ferrières, Jean | Ford, Ian | Forouhi, Nita G | Forrester, Terrence | Gansevoort, Ron T | Gejman, Pablo V | Gieger, Christian | Golay, Alain | Gottesman, Omri | Gudnason, Vilmundur | Gyllensten, Ulf | Haas, David W | Hall, Alistair S | Harris, Tamara B | Hattersley, Andrew T | Heath, Andrew C | Hengstenberg, Christian | Hicks, Andrew A | Hindorff, Lucia A | Hingorani, Aroon D | Hofman, Albert | Hovingh, G Kees | Humphries, Steve E | Hunt, Steven C | Hypponen, Elina | Jacobs, Kevin B | Jarvelin, Marjo-Riitta | Jousilahti, Pekka | Jula, Antti M | Kaprio, Jaakko | Kastelein, John JP | Kayser, Manfred | Kee, Frank | Keinanen-Kiukaanniemi, Sirkka M | Kiemeney, Lambertus A | Kooner, Jaspal S | Kooperberg, Charles | Koskinen, Seppo | Kovacs, Peter | Kraja, Aldi T | Kumari, Meena | Kuusisto, Johanna | Lakka, Timo A | Langenberg, Claudia | Le Marchand, Loic | Lehtimäki, Terho | Lupoli, Sara | Madden, Pamela AF | Männistö, Satu | Manunta, Paolo | Marette, André | Matise, Tara C | McKnight, Barbara | Meitinger, Thomas | Moll, Frans L | Montgomery, Grant W | Morris, Andrew D | Morris, Andrew P | Murray, Jeffrey C | Nelis, Mari | Ohlsson, Claes | Oldehinkel, Albertine J | Ong, Ken K | Ouwehand, Willem H | Pasterkamp, Gerard | Peters, Annette | Pramstaller, Peter P | Price, Jackie F | Qi, Lu | Raitakari, Olli T | Rankinen, Tuomo | Rao, DC | Rice, Treva K | Ritchie, Marylyn | Rudan, Igor | Salomaa, Veikko | Samani, Nilesh J | Saramies, Jouko | Sarzynski, Mark A | Schwarz, Peter EH | Sebert, Sylvain | Sever, Peter | Shuldiner, Alan R | Sinisalo, Juha | Steinthorsdottir, Valgerdur | Stolk, Ronald P | Tardif, Jean-Claude | Tönjes, Anke | Tremblay, Angelo | Tremoli, Elena | Virtamo, Jarmo | Vohl, Marie-Claude | Amouyel, Philippe | Asselbergs, Folkert W | Assimes, Themistocles L | Bochud, Murielle | Boehm, Bernhard O | Boerwinkle, Eric | Bottinger, Erwin P | Bouchard, Claude | Cauchi, Stéphane | Chambers, John C | Chanock, Stephen J | Cooper, Richard S | de Bakker, Paul IW | Dedoussis, George | Ferrucci, Luigi | Franks, Paul W | Froguel, Philippe | Groop, Leif C | Haiman, Christopher A | Hamsten, Anders | Hayes, M Geoffrey | Hui, Jennie | Hunter, David J. | Hveem, Kristian | Jukema, J Wouter | Kaplan, Robert C | Kivimaki, Mika | Kuh, Diana | Laakso, Markku | Liu, Yongmei | Martin, Nicholas G | März, Winfried | Melbye, Mads | Moebus, Susanne | Munroe, Patricia B | Njølstad, Inger | Oostra, Ben A | Palmer, Colin NA | Pedersen, Nancy L | Perola, Markus | Pérusse, Louis | Peters, Ulrike | Powell, Joseph E | Power, Chris | Quertermous, Thomas | Rauramaa, Rainer | Reinmaa, Eva | Ridker, Paul M | Rivadeneira, Fernando | Rotter, Jerome I | Saaristo, Timo E | Saleheen, Danish | Schlessinger, David | Slagboom, P Eline | Snieder, Harold | Spector, Tim D | Strauch, Konstantin | Stumvoll, Michael | Tuomilehto, Jaakko | Uusitupa, Matti | van der Harst, Pim | Völzke, Henry | Walker, Mark | Wareham, Nicholas J | Watkins, Hugh | Wichmann, H-Erich | Wilson, James F | Zanen, Pieter | Deloukas, Panos | Heid, Iris M | Lindgren, Cecilia M | Mohlke, Karen L | Speliotes, Elizabeth K | Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur | Barroso, Inês | Fox, Caroline S | North, Kari E | Strachan, David P | Beckmann, Jacques S. | Berndt, Sonja I | Boehnke, Michael | Borecki, Ingrid B | McCarthy, Mark I | Metspalu, Andres | Stefansson, Kari | Uitterlinden, André G | van Duijn, Cornelia M | Franke, Lude | Willer, Cristen J | Price, Alkes L. | Lettre, Guillaume | Loos, Ruth JF | Weedon, Michael N | Ingelsson, Erik | O’Connell, Jeffrey R | Abecasis, Goncalo R | Chasman, Daniel I | Goddard, Michael E | Visscher, Peter M | Hirschhorn, Joel N | Frayling, Timothy M
Nature genetics  2014;46(11):1173-1186.
Using genome-wide data from 253,288 individuals, we identified 697 variants at genome-wide significance that together explain one-fifth of heritability for adult height. By testing different numbers of variants in independent studies, we show that the most strongly associated ~2,000, ~3,700 and ~9,500 SNPs explained ~21%, ~24% and ~29% of phenotypic variance. Furthermore, all common variants together captured the majority (60%) of heritability. The 697 variants clustered in 423 loci enriched for genes, pathways, and tissue-types known to be involved in growth and together implicated genes and pathways not highlighted in earlier efforts, such as signaling by fibroblast growth factors, WNT/beta-catenin, and chondroitin sulfate-related genes. We identified several genes and pathways not previously connected with human skeletal growth, including mTOR, osteoglycin and binding of hyaluronic acid. Our results indicate a genetic architecture for human height that is characterized by a very large but finite number (thousands) of causal variants.
doi:10.1038/ng.3097
PMCID: PMC4250049  PMID: 25282103
5.  Complete ascertainment of Parkinson disease in the Swedish Twin Registry 
Neurobiology of aging  2007;29(12):1765-1773.
This report describes the ascertainment of Parkinson disease (PD) in all individuals aged 50 years or older (49,814 individuals) from the Swedish Twin Registry. In phase one of the study, all twins were screened for PD using telephone interviews, with a response rate of 72.7%. In phase two, twins with suspected PD were re-contacted to exclude anyone from follow-up who reported parkinsonian symptoms due to diseases other than PD. In the third phase, in-person clinical evaluations were completed for twins who were still considered PD suspects after phase two and for a sample of co-twins. During the clinical evaluations, we also collected blood samples and information about a variety of environmental exposures. Overall prevalence rate for PD was 496 per 100,000 individuals. Among the 132 PD cases identified, there were only three concordant twin pairs. In total 7.2% of PD cases reported a first degree relative with PD.
doi:10.1016/j.neurobiolaging.2007.04.009
PMCID: PMC2662365  PMID: 17532098
Parkinson disease; twin; concordance; prevalence; family history
6.  The impact of low-frequency and rare variants on lipid levels 
Surakka, Ida | Horikoshi, Momoko | Mägi, Reedik | Sarin, Antti-Pekka | Mahajan, Anubha | Lagou, Vasiliki | Marullo, Letizia | Ferreira, Teresa | Miraglio, Benjamin | Timonen, Sanna | Kettunen, Johannes | Pirinen, Matti | Karjalainen, Juha | Thorleifsson, Gudmar | Hägg, Sara | Hottenga, Jouke-Jan | Isaacs, Aaron | Ladenvall, Claes | Beekman, Marian | Esko, Tõnu | Ried, Janina S | Nelson, Christopher P | Willenborg, Christina | Gustafsson, Stefan | Westra, Harm-Jan | Blades, Matthew | de Craen, Anton JM | de Geus, Eco J | Deelen, Joris | Grallert, Harald | Hamsten, Anders | Havulinna, Aki S. | Hengstenberg, Christian | Houwing-Duistermaat, Jeanine J | Hyppönen, Elina | Karssen, Lennart C | Lehtimäki, Terho | Lyssenko, Valeriya | Magnusson, Patrik KE | Mihailov, Evelin | Müller-Nurasyid, Martina | Mpindi, John-Patrick | Pedersen, Nancy L | Penninx, Brenda WJH | Perola, Markus | Pers, Tune H | Peters, Annette | Rung, Johan | Smit, Johannes H | Steinthorsdottir, Valgerdur | Tobin, Martin D | Tsernikova, Natalia | van Leeuwen, Elisabeth M | Viikari, Jorma S | Willems, Sara M | Willemsen, Gonneke | Schunkert, Heribert | Erdmann, Jeanette | Samani, Nilesh J | Kaprio, Jaakko | Lind, Lars | Gieger, Christian | Metspalu, Andres | Slagboom, P Eline | Groop, Leif | van Duijn, Cornelia M | Eriksson, Johan G | Jula, Antti | Salomaa, Veikko | Boomsma, Dorret I | Power, Christine | Raitakari, Olli T | Ingelsson, Erik | Järvelin, Marjo-Riitta | Stefansson, Kari | Franke, Lude | Ikonen, Elina | Kallioniemi, Olli | Pietiäinen, Vilja | Lindgren, Cecilia M | Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur | Palotie, Aarno | McCarthy, Mark I | Morris, Andrew P | Prokopenko, Inga | Ripatti, Samuli
Nature genetics  2015;47(6):589-597.
Using a genome-wide screen of 9.6 million genetic variants achieved through 1000 Genomes imputation in 62,166 samples, we identify association to lipids in 93 loci including 79 previously identified loci with new lead-SNPs, 10 new loci, 15 loci with a low-frequency and 10 loci with missense lead-SNPs, and, 2 loci with an accumulation of rare variants. In six loci, SNPs with established function in lipid genetics (CELSR2, GCKR, LIPC, and APOE), or candidate missense mutations with predicted damaging function (CD300LG and TM6SF2), explained the locus associations. The low-frequency variants increased the proportion of variance explained, particularly for LDL-C and TC. Altogether, our results highlight the impact of low-frequency variants in complex traits and show that imputation offers a cost-effective alternative to re-sequencing.
doi:10.1038/ng.3300
PMCID: PMC4757735  PMID: 25961943
7.  Anxiety Trajectories in the Second Half of Life: Genetic and Environmental Contributions over Age 
Psychology and aging  2016;31(1):101-113.
Clinically significant anxiety symptoms are prevalent among the elderly, yet knowledge about the longitudinal course of anxiety symptoms in later life remains scarce. The goals of this study were to (1) characterize age trajectories of state anxiety symptoms in the second half of life, and (2) estimate genetic and environmental contributions to individual differences in the age trajectory of state anxiety. This study was based on data from 1,482 participants in the Swedish Adoption/Twin Study of Aging who were aged 50 and older at their first occasion (512 complete twin pairs, 458 singletons) and had up to six measurement occasions spanning 11 years. Consistent with lifespan developmental theories of age-related emotional change, anxiety symptom levels declined during the transition from midlife to the mid −60s, followed by a mild increase that gradually plateaued in the 80s. There were substantial individual differences in the age trajectory of anxiety. After accounting for effects of sex, cohort, mode of testing and proximity to death, this longitudinal variation was partitioned into biometric sources. Nonshared environmental variance was highest in the late 60s and declined thereafter, whereas genetic variance increased at an accelerated pace from approximately age 60 onward. There was no evidence for effects of rearing or other shared environment on anxiety symptoms in later life. These findings highlight how the etiology of anxiety symptoms changes from midlife to old age.
doi:10.1037/pag0000063
PMCID: PMC4752394  PMID: 26751006
Anxiety; Aging; Trajectory; Twin Study; Longitudinal Study
8.  G×E Interaction Influences Trajectories of Hand Grip Strength 
Behavior genetics  2015;46(1):20-30.
Age-related decline in grip strength predicts later life disability, frailty, lower well-being and cognitive change. While grip strength is heritable, genetic influence on change in grip strength has been relatively ignored, with non-shared environmental influence identified as the primary contributor in a single longitudinal study. The extent to which gene-environment interplay, particularly gene-environment interactions, contributes to grip trajectories has yet to be examined. We considered longitudinal grip strength measurements in seven twin studies of aging in the Interplay of Genes and Environment across Multiple Studies consortium. Growth curve parameters were estimated for same-sex pairs, aged 34–99 (N = 10,681). Fisher's test for mixture distribution of within-monozy-gotic twin-pair differences (N = 1724) was performed on growth curve parameters. We observed significant gene-environment interaction on grip strength trajectories. Finally, we compared the variability of within-pair differences of growth curve parameters by APOE haplotypes. Though not statistically significant, the results suggested that APOE ε2ε2/ε2ε3 haplotypes might buffer environmental influences on grip strength trajectories.
doi:10.1007/s10519-015-9736-4
PMCID: PMC4720577  PMID: 26318288
Grip strength; Gene-environment interaction; Twins; APOE
9.  Non-Replication of Association for Six Polymorphisms From Meta-Analysis of Genome-Wide Association Studies of Parkinson’s Disease: Large-Scale Collaborative Study 
Early genome-wide association (GWA) studies on Parkinson’s disease (PD) have not been able to yield conclusive, replicable signals of association, perhaps due to limited sample size. We aimed to investigate whether association signals derived from the meta-analysis of the first two GWA investigations might be replicable in different populations. We examined six single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) (rs1000291, rs1865997, rs2241743, rs2282048, rs2313982, and rs3018626) that had reached nominal significance with at least two of three different strategies proposed in a previous analysis of the original GWA studies. Investigators from the “Genetic Epidemiology of Parkinson’s Disease” (GEOPD) consortium were invited to join in this study. Ten teams contributed replication data from 3,458 PD cases and 3,719 controls. The data from the two previously published GWAs (599 PD cases, 592 controls and 443 sibling pairs) were considered as well. All data were synthesized using both fixed and random effects models. The summary allelic odds ratios were ranging from 0.97 to 1.09 by random effects, when all data were included. The summary estimates of the replication data sets (excluding the original GWA data) were very close to 1.00 (range 0.98–1.09) and none of the effects were nominally statistically significant. The replication data sets had significantly different results than the GWA data. Our data do not support evidence that any of these six SNPs reflect susceptibility markers for PD. Much stronger signals of statistical significance in GWA platforms are needed to have substantial chances of replication. Specifically in PD genetics, this would require much larger GWA studies and perhaps novel analytical techniques.
doi:10.1002/ajmg.b.30980
PMCID: PMC4699803  PMID: 19475631
Parkinson’s disease; meta-analysis; genome-wide association
10.  The CODAtwins project: the cohort description of COllaborative project of Development of Anthropometrical measures in Twins to study macro-environmental variation in genetic and environmental effects on anthropometric traits 
Silventoinen, Karri | Jelenkovic, Aline | Sund, Reijo | Honda, Chika | Aaltonen, Sari | Yokoyama, Yoshie | Tarnoki, Adam D | Tarnoki, David L | Ning, Feng | Ji, Fuling | Pang, Zengchang | Ordoñana, Juan R | Sánchez-Romera, Juan F | Colodro-Conde, Lucia | Burt, S Alexandra | Klump, Kelly L | Medland, Sarah E | Montgomery, Grant W | Kandler, Christian | McAdams, Tom A | Eley, Thalia C | Gregory, Alice M | Saudino, Kimberly J | Dubois, Lise | Boivin, Michel | Haworth, Claire MA | Plomin, Robert | Öncel, Sevgi Y | Aliev, Fazil | Stazi, Maria A | Fagnani, Corrado | D'Ippolito, Cristina | Craig, Jeffrey M | Saffery, Richard | Siribaddana, Sisira H | Hotopf, Matthew | Sumathipala, Athula | Spector, Timothy | Mangino, Massimo | Lachance, Genevieve | Gatz, Margaret | Butler, David A | Bayasgalan, Gombojav | Narandalai, Danshiitsoodol | Freitas, Duarte L | Maia, José Antonio | Harden, K Paige | Tucker-Drob, Elliot M | Christensen, Kaare | Skytthe, Axel | Kyvik, Kirsten O | Hong, Changhee | Chong, Youngsook | Derom, Catherine A | Vlietinck, Robert F | Loos, Ruth JF | Cozen, Wendy | Hwang, Amie E | Mack, Thomas M | He, Mingguang | Ding, Xiaohu | Chang, Billy | Silberg, Judy L | Eaves, Lindon J | Maes, Hermine H | Cutler, Tessa L | Hopper, John L | Aujard, Kelly | Magnusson, Patrik KE | Pedersen, Nancy L | Dahl-Aslan, Anna K | Song, Yun-Mi | Yang, Sarah | Lee, Kayoung | Baker, Laura A | Tuvblad, Catherine | Bjerregaard-Andersen, Morten | Beck-Nielsen, Henning | Sodemann, Morten | Heikkilä, Kauko | Tan, Qihua | Zhang, Dongfeng | Swan, Gary E | Krasnow, Ruth | Jang, Kerry L | Knafo-Noam, Ariel | Mankuta, David | Abramson, Lior | Lichtenstein, Paul | Krueger, Robert F | McGue, Matt | Pahlen, Shandell | Tynelius, Per | Duncan, Glen E | Buchwald, Dedra | Corley, Robin P | Huibregtse, Brooke M | Nelson, Tracy L | Whitfield, Keith E | Franz, Carol E | Kremen, William S | Lyons, Michael J | Ooki, Syuichi | Brandt, Ingunn | Nilsen, Thomas Sevenius | Inui, Fujio | Watanabe, Mikio | Bartels, Meike | van Beijsterveldt, Toos CEM | Wardle, Jane | Llewellyn, Clare H | Fisher, Abigail | Rebato, Esther | Martin, Nicholas G | Iwatani, Yoshinori | Hayakawa, Kazuo | Rasmussen, Finn | Sung, Joohon | Harris, Jennifer R | Willemsen, Gonneke | Busjahn, Andreas | Goldberg, Jack H | Boomsma, Dorret I | Hur, Yoon-Mi | Sørensen, Thorkild IA | Kaprio, Jaakko
For over one hundred years, the genetics of human anthropometric traits has attracted scientific interest. In particular, height and body mass index (BMI, calculated as kg/m2) have been under intensive genetic research. However, it is still largely unknown whether and how heritability estimates vary between human populations. Opportunities to address this question have increased recently because of the establishment of many new twin cohorts and the increasing accumulation of data in established twin cohorts. We started a new research project to analyze systematically 1) the variation of heritability estimates of height, BMI and their trajectories over the life course between birth cohorts, ethnicities and countries, and 2) to study the effects of birth related factors, education and smoking on these anthropometric traits and whether these effects vary between twin cohorts. We identified 67 twin projects including both monozygotic and dizygotic twins using various sources. We asked for individual level data on height and weight including repeated measurements, birth related traits, background variables, education and smoking. By the end of 2014, 48 projects participated. Together, we have 893,458 height and weight measures (52% females) from 434,723 twin individuals, including 201,192 complete twin pairs (40% monozygotic, 40% same-sex dizygotic and 20% opposite-sex dizygotic) representing 22 countries. This project demonstrates that large-scale international twin studies are feasible and can promote the use of existing data for novel research purposes.
doi:10.1017/thg.2015.29
PMCID: PMC4696543  PMID: 26014041
11.  Genome-wide association study identifies novel locus for neuroticism and shows polygenic association with Major Depressive Disorder 
de Moor, Marleen H.M. | van den Berg, Stéphanie M. | Verweij, Karin J.H. | Krueger, Robert F. | Luciano, Michelle | Vasquez, Alejandro Arias | Matteson, Lindsay K. | Derringer, Jaime | Esko, Tõnu | Amin, Najaf | Gordon, Scott D. | Hansell, Narelle K. | Hart, Amy B. | Seppälä, Ilkka | Huffman, Jennifer E. | Konte, Bettina | Lahti, Jari | Lee, Minyoung | Miller, Mike | Nutile, Teresa | Tanaka, Toshiko | Teumer, Alexander | Viktorin, Alexander | Wedenoja, Juho | Abecasis, Goncalo R. | Adkins, Daniel E. | Agrawal, Arpana | Allik, Jüri | Appel, Katja | Bigdeli, Timothy B. | Busonero, Fabio | Campbell, Harry | Costa, Paul T. | Smith, George Davey | Davies, Gail | de Wit, Harriet | Ding, Jun | Engelhardt, Barbara E. | Eriksson, Johan G. | Fedko, Iryna O. | Ferrucci, Luigi | Franke, Barbara | Giegling, Ina | Grucza, Richard | Hartmann, Annette M. | Heath, Andrew C. | Heinonen, Kati | Henders, Anjali K. | Homuth, Georg | Hottenga, Jouke-Jan | Janzing, Joost | Jokela, Markus | Karlsson, Robert | Kemp, John P. | Kirkpatrick, Matthew G. | Latvala, Antti | Lehtimäki, Terho | Liewald, David C. | Madden, Pamela A.F. | Magri, Chiara | Magnusson, Patrik K.E. | Marten, Jonathan | Maschio, Andrea | Medland, Sarah E. | Mihailov, Evelin | Milaneschi, Yuri | Montgomery, Grant W. | Nauck, Matthias | Ouwens, Klaasjan G. | Palotie, Aarno | Pettersson, Erik | Polasek, Ozren | Qian, Yong | Pulkki-Råback, Laura | Raitakari, Olli T. | Realo, Anu | Rose, Richard J. | Ruggiero, Daniela | Schmidt, Carsten O. | Slutske, Wendy S. | Sorice, Rossella | Starr, John M. | Pourcain, Beate St | Sutin, Angelina R. | Timpson, Nicholas J. | Trochet, Holly | Vermeulen, Sita | Vuoksimaa, Eero | Widen, Elisabeth | Wouda, Jasper | Wright, Margaret J. | Zgaga, Lina | Scotland, Generation | Porteous, David | Minelli, Alessandra | Palmer, Abraham A. | Rujescu, Dan | Ciullo, Marina | Hayward, Caroline | Rudan, Igor | Metspalu, Andres | Kaprio, Jaakko | Deary, Ian J. | Räikkönen, Katri | Wilson, James F. | Keltikangas-Järvinen, Liisa | Bierut, Laura J. | Hettema, John M. | Grabe, Hans J. | van Duijn, Cornelia M. | Evans, David M. | Schlessinger, David | Pedersen, Nancy L. | Terracciano, Antonio | McGue, Matt | Penninx, Brenda W.J.H. | Martin, Nicholas G. | Boomsma, Dorret I.
JAMA psychiatry  2015;72(7):642-650.
Importance
Neuroticism is a personality trait that is briefly defined by emotional instability. It is a robust genetic risk factor for Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) and other psychiatric disorders. Hence, neuroticism is an important phenotype for psychiatric genetics. The Genetics of Personality Consortium (GPC) has created a resource for genome-wide association analyses of personality traits in over 63,000 participants (including MDD cases).
Objective
To identify genetic variants associated with neuroticism by performing a meta-analysis of genome-wide association (GWA) results based on 1000Genomes imputation, to evaluate if common genetic variants as assessed by Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs) explain variation in neuroticism by estimating SNP-based heritability, and to examine whether SNPs that predict neuroticism also predict MDD.
Setting
30 cohorts with genome-wide genotype, personality and MDD data from the GPC.
Participants
The study included 63,661 participants from 29 discovery cohorts and 9,786 participants from a replication cohort. Participants came from Europe, the United States or Australia.
Main outcome measure(s)
Neuroticism scores harmonized across all cohorts by Item Response Theory (IRT) analysis, and clinically assessed MDD case-control status.
Results
A genome-wide significant SNP was found in the MAGI1 gene (rs35855737; P=9.26 × 10−9 in the discovery meta-analysis, and P=2.38 × 10−8 in the meta-analysis of all 30 cohorts). Common genetic variants explain 15% of the variance in neuroticism. Polygenic scores based on the meta-analysis of neuroticism in 27 of the discovery cohorts significantly predicted neuroticism in 2 independent cohorts. Importantly, polygenic scores also predicted MDD in these cohorts.
Conclusions and relevance
This study identifies a novel locus for neuroticism. The variant is located in a known gene that has been associated with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia in previous studies. In addition, the study shows that neuroticism is influenced by many genetic variants of small effect that are either common or tagged by common variants. These genetic variants also influence MDD. Future studies should confirm the role of the MAGI1 locus for neuroticism, and further investigate the association of MAGI1 and the polygenic association to a range of other psychiatric disorders that are phenotypically correlated with neuroticism.
doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2015.0554
PMCID: PMC4667957  PMID: 25993607
12.  The Type A Behavior Pattern and Cardiovascular Disease as Predictors of Dementia 
Objective
Research has suggested that greater psychophysiological reactivity to stress increases risk of dementia and that those with the Type A behavior pattern (TABP) are predisposed to elevated stress reactivity and cardiovascular disease (CVD), but no study has evaluated the associations amongst TABP, CVD and dementia prospectively. Hence, the present study aimed to investigate dementia risk in relation to TABP and CVD.
Methods
A population-based cohort of 1,069 persons with a baseline mean age of 64.81 years from the Swedish Twin Registry was followed consecutively for 23 years. Based on self-reported items, TABP was measured using 6 scales: Ambition, Stress, Hard-driving, Neuroticism, Cynicism, and Paranoia. CVD was self-reported and dementia was diagnosed adhering to DSMIII- R or DSM-IV criteria.
Results
TABP was generally not associated with dementia risk. However, significant interaction effects of stress, paranoia, and cynicism with CVD on dementia risk were observed. That is, for those with CVD, high scores on stress, paranoia, and cynicism were associated with increased risk of dementia (hazard ratio [HR]=1.43, 95% confidence interval [CI]=0.95–2.15; HR=1.39, 95% CI=0.83–2.33; HR=1.25, 95% CI=0.76–2.06, respectively), whereas for those who did not have CVD, high scores on these measures appeared to be protective (HR=0.76, 95% CI=0.50–1.14; HR=0.55, 95% CI=0.34–0.89; HR=0.50, 95% CI=0.29–0.84, respectively).
Conclusion
Some features of TABP confer an increased risk for dementia in those with CVD, whereas those without CVD are protected. When evaluating the risk of dementia, CVD and personality traits should be taken into consideration.
doi:10.1037/hea0000028
PMCID: PMC4102675  PMID: 24364377
Dementia; Personality; Type A Behavior Pattern; Cardiovascular disease; Longitudinal studies
13.  Traffic-related air pollution exposure and incidence of stroke in four cohorts from Stockholm 
We investigated the risk of stroke related to long-term ambient air pollution exposure, in particular the role of various exposure time windows, using four cohorts from Stockholm County, Sweden. In total, 22,587 individuals were recruited from 1992 to 2004 and followed until 2011. Yearly air pollution levels resulting from local road traffic emissions were assessed at participant residences using dispersion models for particulate matter (PM10) and nitrogen oxides (NOX). Cohort-specific hazard ratios were estimated for time-weighted air pollution exposure during different time windows and the incidence of stroke, adjusted for common risk factors, and then meta-analysed. Overall, 868 subjects suffered a non-fatal or fatal stroke during 238,731 person-years of follow-up. An increment of 20 μg/m3 in estimated annual mean of road-traffic related NOX exposure at recruitment was associated with a hazard ratio of 1.16 (95% CI 0.83–1.61), with evidence of heterogeneity between the cohorts. For PM10, an increment of 10 μg/m3 corresponded to a hazard ratio of 1.14 (95% CI 0.68–1.90). Time-window analyses did not reveal any clear induction-latency pattern. In conclusion, we found suggestive evidence of an association between long-term exposure to NOX and PM10 from local traffic and stroke at comparatively low levels of air pollution.
doi:10.1038/jes.2015.22
PMCID: PMC4648059  PMID: 25827311
epidemiology; exposure modeling; particulate matter; personal exposure
14.  IGEMS: The Consortium on Interplay of Genes and Environment across Multiple Studies 
The Interplay of Genes and Environment across Multiple Studies (IGEMS) group is a consortium of eight longitudinal twin studies established to explore the nature of social context effects and gene-environment interplay in late-life functioning. The resulting analysis of the combined data from over 17,500 participants aged 25–102 at baseline (including nearly 2,600 monogygotic and 4,300 dizygotic twin pairs and over 1,700 family members) aims to understand why early life adversity, and social factors such as isolation and loneliness, are associated with diverse outcomes including mortality, physical functioning (health, functional ability), and psychological functioning (well-being, cognition), particularly in later life.
doi:10.1017/thg.2012.110
PMCID: PMC3699700  PMID: 23186995
twins; gene-environment interaction; aging; longitudinal
15.  Genetic Influences on Suicide and Nonfatal Suicidal Behavior: Twin Study Findings 
It has been well established that suicidal behavior is familial. Twin studies provide a unique opportunity to distinguish genetic effects from other familial influences. Consistent with findings from previous twin studies, including case series and selected samples, data from the population-based Swedish Twin Registry clearly demonstrate the importance of genetic influences on suicide. Twin studies of suicidal ideation and suicide attempts also implicate genetic influences, even when accounting for the effects of psychopathology. Future work is needed to evaluate the possibility of age and gender differences in heritability of suicide and nonfatal suicidal behavior.
doi:10.1016/j.eurpsy.2009.12.008
PMCID: PMC4537645  PMID: 20444580
suicide; suicidal ideation; suicide attempt; concordance; twin studies; heritability
16.  Air Pollution from Road Traffic and Systemic Inflammation in Adults: A Cross-Sectional Analysis in the European ESCAPE Project 
Environmental Health Perspectives  2015;123(8):785-791.
Background
Exposure to particulate matter air pollution (PM) has been associated with cardiovascular diseases.
Objectives
In this study we evaluated whether annual exposure to ambient air pollution is associated with systemic inflammation, which is hypothesized to be an intermediate step to cardiovascular disease.
Methods
Six cohorts of adults from Central and Northern Europe were used in this cross-sectional study as part of the larger ESCAPE project (European Study of Cohorts for Air Pollution Effects). Data on levels of blood markers for systemic inflammation—high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (CRP) and fibrinogen—were available for 22,561 and 17,428 persons, respectively. Land use regression models were used to estimate cohort participants’ long-term exposure to various size fractions of PM, soot, and nitrogen oxides (NOx). In addition, traffic intensity on the closest street and traffic load within 100 m from home were used as indicators of traffic air pollution exposure.
Results
Particulate air pollution was not associated with systemic inflammation. However, cohort participants living on a busy (> 10,000 vehicles/day) road had elevated CRP values (10.2%; 95% CI: 2.4, 18.8%, compared with persons living on a quiet residential street with < 1,000 vehicles/day). Annual NOx concentration was also positively associated with levels of CRP (3.2%; 95% CI: 0.3, 6.1 per 20 μg/m3), but the effect estimate was more sensitive to model adjustments. For fibrinogen, no consistent associations were observed.
Conclusions
Living close to busy traffic was associated with increased CRP concentrations, a known risk factor for cardiovascular diseases. However, it remains unclear which specific air pollutants are responsible for the association.
Citation
Lanki T, Hampel R, Tiittanen P, Andrich S, Beelen R, Brunekreef B, Dratva J, De Faire U, Fuks KB, Hoffmann B, Imboden M, Jousilahti P, Koenig W, Mahabadi AA, Künzli N, Pedersen NL, Penell J, Pershagen G, Probst-Hensch NM, Schaffner E, Schindler C, Sugiri D, Swart WJ, Tsai MY, Turunen AW, Weinmayr G, Wolf K, Yli-Tuomi T, Peters A. 2015. Air pollution from road traffic and systemic inflammation in adults: a cross-sectional analysis in the European ESCAPE project. Environ Health Perspect 123:785–791; http://dx.doi.org/10.1289/ehp.1408224
doi:10.1289/ehp.1408224
PMCID: PMC4529004  PMID: 25816055
17.  Serum Levels of Human MIC-1/GDF15 Vary in a Diurnal Pattern, Do Not Display a Profile Suggestive of a Satiety Factor and Are Related to BMI 
PLoS ONE  2015;10(7):e0133362.
The TGF-b superfamily cytokine MIC-1/GDF15 circulates in the blood of healthy humans. Its levels rise substantially in cancer and other diseases and this may sometimes lead to development of an anorexia/cachexia syndrome. This is mediated by a direct action of MIC-1/GDF15 on feeding centres in the hypothalamus and brainstem. More recent studies in germline gene deleted mice also suggest that this cytokine may play a role in physiological regulation of energy homeostasis. To further characterize the role of MIC-1/GDF15 in physiological regulation of energy homeostasis in man, we have examined diurnal and food associated variation in serum levels and whether variation in circulating levels relate to BMI in human monozygotic twin pairs. We found that the within twin pair differences in serum MIC-1/GDF15 levels were significantly correlated with within twin pair differences in BMI, suggesting a role for MIC-1/GDF15 in the regulation of energy balance in man. MIC-1/GDF15 serum levels altered slightly in response to a meal, but comparison with variation its serum levels over a 24hour period suggested that these changes are likely to be due to bimodal diurnal variation which can alter serum MIC-1/GDF15 levels by about plus or minus 10% from the mesor. The lack of a rapid and substantial postprandial increase in MIC-1/GDF15 serum levels suggests that MIC1/GDF15 is unlikely to act as a satiety factor. Taken together, our findings suggest that MIC-1/GDF15 may be a physiological regulator of energy homeostasis in man, most probably due to actions on long-term regulation of energy homeostasis.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0133362
PMCID: PMC4514813  PMID: 26207898
18.  HHEX_23 AA Genotype Exacerbates Effect of Diabetes on Dementia and Alzheimer Disease: A Population-Based Longitudinal Study 
PLoS Medicine  2015;12(7):e1001853.
Background
Research has suggested that variations within the IDE/HHEX gene region may underlie the association of type 2 diabetes with Alzheimer disease (AD). We sought to explore whether IDE genes play a role in the association of diabetes with dementia, AD, and structural brain changes using data from two community-based cohorts of older adults and a subsample with structural MRI.
Methods and Findings
The first cohort, which included dementia-free adults aged ≥75 y (n = 970) at baseline, was followed for 9 y to detect incident dementia (n = 358) and AD (n = 271) cases. The second cohort (for replication), which included 2,060 dementia-free participants aged ≥60 y at baseline, was followed for 6 y to identify incident dementia (n = 166) and AD (n = 121) cases. A subsample (n = 338) of dementia-free participants from the second cohort underwent MRI. HHEX_23 and IDE_9 were genotyped, and diabetes (here including type 2 diabetes and prediabetes) was assessed. In the first cohort, diabetes led to an adjusted hazard ratio (HR) of 1.73 (95% CI 1.19–2.32) and 1.66 (95% CI 1.06–2.40) for dementia and AD, respectively, among all participants. Compared to people carrying the GG genotype without diabetes, AA genotype carriers with diabetes had an adjusted HR of 5.54 (95% CI 2.40–7.18) and 4.81 (95% CI 1.88–8.50) for dementia and AD, respectively. There was a significant interaction between HHEX_23-AA and diabetes on dementia (HR 4.79, 95% CI 1.63–8.90, p = 0.013) and AD (HR 3.55, 95% CI 1.45–9.91, p = 0.025) compared to the GG genotype without diabetes. In the second cohort, the HRs were 1.68 (95% CI 1.04–2.99) and 1.64 (1.02–2.33) for the diabetes–AD and dementia–AD associations, respectively, and 4.06 (95% CI 1.06–7.58, p = 0.039) and 3.29 (95% CI 1.02–8.33, p = 0.044) for the interactions, respectively. MRI data showed that HHEX_23-AA carriers with diabetes had significant structural brain changes compared to HHEX_23-GG carriers without diabetes. No joint effects of IDE_9 and diabetes on dementia were shown. As a limitation, the sample sizes were small for certain subgroups.
Conclusions
A variant in the HHEX_23 gene interacts with diabetes to be associated with a substantially increased risk of dementia and AD, and with structural brain changes among dementia-free elderly people.
In a longitudinal study, Weili Xu and colleagues explore whether variants in two insulin pathway genes modify the association of type 2 diabetes with dementia and AD.
Editors' Summary
Background
Worldwide, about 44 million people have dementia, a group of degenerative, incurable brain disorders that mainly affect older people. Dementia is characterized by an irreversible decline in memory, communication, and other “cognitive” functions. The most common forms of dementia are Alzheimer disease, which is caused by the development of small clumps of proteins (β-amyloid plaques) around brain cells, and vascular dementia, which is caused by reduced blood flow to parts of the brain. Early symptoms of dementia include increasing forgetfulness and losing track of time. As the condition progresses, affected individuals gradually lose the ability to look after themselves and to communicate, and they may become anxious or aggressive. Eventually, affected individuals may lose control of various physical functions and many become totally dependent on specialist nurses and other professional carers for their day-to-day needs.
Why Was This Study Done?
Epidemiological studies (investigations that examine patterns of disease in populations) suggest that, among older individuals, having type 2 diabetes (a condition in which resistance to the hormone insulin leads to high blood sugar levels) is associated with a 50% increased risk of developing dementia. Even prediabetes (a blood sugar level that is high but not high enough to meet the criteria for diabetes) is associated with an increased risk of dementia. Prediabetes and diabetes increase the risk of vascular disease, but it is thought that polymorphisms (naturally occurring genetic variations) in the IDE/HHEX region of the human genome may be involved in the association between diabetes and dementia/Alzheimer disease. IDE encodes insulin-degrading enzyme, which clears insulin from cells but also degrades β-amyloid; HHEX encodes a transcription factor that controls IDE expression. In this population-based longitudinal study, the researchers explore whether two single nucleotide polymorphisms in this region—IDE_9 and HHEX_23—impact the association between diabetes and dementia. Population-based longitudinal studies measure the baseline characteristics of individuals in the general population and determine which individuals subsequently develop specific conditions.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
For their study, the researchers examined data collected from two cohorts (groups) of dementia-free elderly adults living in Stockholm, Sweden. Blood samples taken from 3,030 participants at baseline were used to determine which individuals had diabetes (type 2 diabetes or prediabetes) and to investigate which HHEX_23 and IDE_9 variants each individual carried (genotyping). The researchers also examined the brain structure of a subsample of the second cohort using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). All the participants were followed for several years to see which individuals developed dementia/Alzheimer disease. In both cohorts, having diabetes was associated with a 60% increased risk of dementia/Alzheimer disease after adjusting for other characteristics that affect the development of these conditions. Pooled data from both cohorts indicated that, compared to people without diabetes carrying HHEX_23-GG (the human genome contains two copies [alleles] of each gene, and an individual carrying HHEX_23-GG has the nucleotide guanine at a particular position in both HHEX_23 copies), people with diabetes carrying HHEX_23-AA (adenine at that position in both HHEX_23 copies) had a 5-fold higher risk of developing dementia/Alzheimer disease. Other analyses indicated that the HHEX_23-AA genotype interacted with diabetes to substantially increase the risk of dementia/Alzheimer disease. Finally, MRI showed that, at baseline, HHEX_23-AA carriers with diabetes had structural brain changes compared to HHEX_23-GG carriers without diabetes, even though they were all free of dementia at the time.
What Do These Findings Mean?
These and other findings indicate that polymorphisms in HHEX_23, but not IDE_9, are involved in the association between diabetes, dementia, and structural brain changes. Thus, a genetic variant in HHEX_23 may play an important role in the development of Alzheimer disease and other forms of dementia among people with diabetes or prediabetes. These findings may not apply to younger or rural populations, and their accuracy may be affected by the use of a single blood sugar level reading to diagnose diabetes and prediabetes. Moreover, because some of the genotype/diabetes subgroups contained very few people, these findings need to be confirmed in additional studies. Further studies are also needed to understand the role of HHEX_23 in the association between diabetes and dementia. Importantly, however, these findings highlight the need to control diabetes to prevent the development of Alzheimer disease and other forms of dementia, particularly among HHEX_23-AA carriers.
Additional Information
This list of resources contains links that can be accessed when viewing the PDF on a device or via the online version of the article at http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1001828.
The UK National Health Service Choices website provides information (including personal stories and links to additional resources) about dementia, vascular dementia, Alzheimer disease, and diabetes
The UK not-for-profit organization Alzheimer’s Society provides information for patients and carers about dementia, including personal experiences of dementia
The US not-for-profit organization Alzheimer’s Association also provides information for patients and carers about dementia, personal stories about dementia, and information about the association between diabetes and dementia
Alzheimer’s Disease International is the federation of Alzheimer disease associations around the world; it provides links to individual Alzheimer disease associations, information about dementia, and links to World Alzheimer Reports
MedlinePlus provides links to additional resources about dementia, Alzheimer disease, vascular dementia, and diabetes (in English and Spanish)
More information about the Kungsholmen Project and the Swedish National Study on Aging and Care–Kungsholmen, the projects that enrolled the cohorts used by the researchers for this study, is available
doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1001853
PMCID: PMC4501827  PMID: 26173052
19.  Smoking Is Associated with Mosaic Loss of Chromosome Y 
Science (New York, N.Y.)  2014;347(6217):81-83.
Tobacco smoking is a risk factor for numerous disorders, including cancers affecting organs outside the respiratory tract. Epidemiological data suggest that smoking is a greater risk factor for these cancers in males compared to females. This observation, together with the fact that males have a higher incidence of, and mortality from, most non-sex-specific cancers, remain unexplained. Loss of chromosome Y (LOY) in blood cells is associated with increased risk of non-hematological tumors. We demonstrate here that smoking is associated with LOY in blood cells in three independent cohorts (TwinGene: odds ratio [OR]=4.3, 95% CI =2.8-6.7; ULSAM: OR=2.4, 95% CI=1.6-3.6; and PIVUS: OR=3.5, 95% CI=1.4-8.4) encompassing a total of 6014 men. The data also suggest that smoking has a transient and dose-dependent mutagenic effect on LOY-status. The finding that smoking induces LOY thus links a preventable risk factor with the most common acquired human mutation.
doi:10.1126/science.1262092
PMCID: PMC4356728  PMID: 25477213
20.  Neuropathologic assessment of dementia markers in identical and fraternal twins 
Twin studies are an incomparable source of investigation to shed light on genetic and non-genetic components of neurodegenerative diseases, as Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Detailed clinicopathologic correlations using twin longitudinal data and postmortem examinations are mostly missing. We describe clinical and pathologic findings of 7 monozygotic (MZ) and dizygotic (DZ) twin pairs.
Our findings show good agreement between clinical and pathologic diagnoses in the majority of the twin pairs, with greater neuropathologic concordance in MZ than DZ twins. Greater neuropathologic concordance was found for β-amyloid than tau pathology within the pairs. ApoE4 was associated with higher β-amyloid and earlier dementia onset, and importantly, higher frequency of other co-occurring brain pathologies, regardless of the zygosity. Dementia onset, dementia duration, difference between twins in age at dementia onset and at death, did not correlate with AD pathology.
These clinicopathologic correlations of older identical and fraternal twins support the relevance of genetic factors in AD, but not their sufficiency to determine the pathology, and consequently the disease, even in monozygotic twins. It is the interaction among genetic and non-genetic risks which plays a major role in influencing, or probably determining, the degeneration of those brain circuits associated with pathology and cognitive deficits in AD.
doi:10.1111/bpa.12127
PMCID: PMC4065212  PMID: 24450926
AD pathology; aging; ApoE; dementia; monozygotic and dizygotic twins; non-AD co-occurring brain pathologies
21.  Discovery and Fine-Mapping of Glycaemic and Obesity-Related Trait Loci Using High-Density Imputation 
Horikoshi, Momoko | Mӓgi, Reedik | van de Bunt, Martijn | Surakka, Ida | Sarin, Antti-Pekka | Mahajan, Anubha | Marullo, Letizia | Thorleifsson, Gudmar | Hӓgg, Sara | Hottenga, Jouke-Jan | Ladenvall, Claes | Ried, Janina S. | Winkler, Thomas W. | Willems, Sara M. | Pervjakova, Natalia | Esko, Tõnu | Beekman, Marian | Nelson, Christopher P. | Willenborg, Christina | Wiltshire, Steven | Ferreira, Teresa | Fernandez, Juan | Gaulton, Kyle J. | Steinthorsdottir, Valgerdur | Hamsten, Anders | Magnusson, Patrik K. E. | Willemsen, Gonneke | Milaneschi, Yuri | Robertson, Neil R. | Groves, Christopher J. | Bennett, Amanda J. | Lehtimӓki, Terho | Viikari, Jorma S. | Rung, Johan | Lyssenko, Valeriya | Perola, Markus | Heid, Iris M. | Herder, Christian | Grallert, Harald | Müller-Nurasyid, Martina | Roden, Michael | Hypponen, Elina | Isaacs, Aaron | van Leeuwen, Elisabeth M. | Karssen, Lennart C. | Mihailov, Evelin | Houwing-Duistermaat, Jeanine J. | de Craen, Anton J. M. | Deelen, Joris | Havulinna, Aki S. | Blades, Matthew | Hengstenberg, Christian | Erdmann, Jeanette | Schunkert, Heribert | Kaprio, Jaakko | Tobin, Martin D. | Samani, Nilesh J. | Lind, Lars | Salomaa, Veikko | Lindgren, Cecilia M. | Slagboom, P. Eline | Metspalu, Andres | van Duijn, Cornelia M. | Eriksson, Johan G. | Peters, Annette | Gieger, Christian | Jula, Antti | Groop, Leif | Raitakari, Olli T. | Power, Chris | Penninx, Brenda W. J. H. | de Geus, Eco | Smit, Johannes H. | Boomsma, Dorret I. | Pedersen, Nancy L. | Ingelsson, Erik | Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur | Stefansson, Kari | Ripatti, Samuli | Prokopenko, Inga | McCarthy, Mark I. | Morris, Andrew P.
PLoS Genetics  2015;11(7):e1005230.
Reference panels from the 1000 Genomes (1000G) Project Consortium provide near complete coverage of common and low-frequency genetic variation with minor allele frequency ≥0.5% across European ancestry populations. Within the European Network for Genetic and Genomic Epidemiology (ENGAGE) Consortium, we have undertaken the first large-scale meta-analysis of genome-wide association studies (GWAS), supplemented by 1000G imputation, for four quantitative glycaemic and obesity-related traits, in up to 87,048 individuals of European ancestry. We identified two loci for body mass index (BMI) at genome-wide significance, and two for fasting glucose (FG), none of which has been previously reported in larger meta-analysis efforts to combine GWAS of European ancestry. Through conditional analysis, we also detected multiple distinct signals of association mapping to established loci for waist-hip ratio adjusted for BMI (RSPO3) and FG (GCK and G6PC2). The index variant for one association signal at the G6PC2 locus is a low-frequency coding allele, H177Y, which has recently been demonstrated to have a functional role in glucose regulation. Fine-mapping analyses revealed that the non-coding variants most likely to drive association signals at established and novel loci were enriched for overlap with enhancer elements, which for FG mapped to promoter and transcription factor binding sites in pancreatic islets, in particular. Our study demonstrates that 1000G imputation and genetic fine-mapping of common and low-frequency variant association signals at GWAS loci, integrated with genomic annotation in relevant tissues, can provide insight into the functional and regulatory mechanisms through which their effects on glycaemic and obesity-related traits are mediated.
Author Summary
Human genetic studies have demonstrated that quantitative human anthropometric and metabolic traits, including body mass index, waist-hip ratio, and plasma concentrations of glucose and insulin, are highly heritable, and are established risk factors for type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. Although many regions of the genome have been associated with these traits, the specific genes responsible have not yet been identified. By making use of advanced statistical “imputation” techniques applied to more than 87,000 individuals of European ancestry, and publicly available “reference panels” of more than 37 million genetic variants, we have been able to identify novel regions of the genome associated with these glycaemic and obesity-related traits and localise genes within these regions that are most likely to be causal. This improved understanding of the biological mechanisms underlying glycaemic and obesity-related traits is extremely important because it may advance drug development for downstream disease endpoints, ultimately leading to public health benefits.
doi:10.1371/journal.pgen.1005230
PMCID: PMC4488845  PMID: 26132169
22.  Heritability of Parkinson disease in Swedish twins: a longitudinal study 
Neurobiology of aging  2011;32(10):1923.e1-1923.e8.
Previous twin studies report no heritability of Parkinson disease (PD) based on cross-sectional information. Here, we apply a longitudinal design and re-evaluate cross-sectional data in the population-based Swedish Twin Registry (STR) using clinical as well as hospital discharge and cause of death diagnoses. In the longitudinal analyses (based on 46,436 individuals), we identified 542 twins with PD and 65 twins with parkinsonism. Concordance rates for PD were 11% for monozygotic and 4% for same-sexed dizygotic twin pairs, with a heritability estimate of 34%. Concordance rates for PD or parkinsonism were 13% for monozygotic and 5% for same-sexed dizygotic twin pairs, with a heritability estimate of 40%. In the cross-sectional analyses (based on 49,814 individuals), we identified 287 twins with PD and 79 twins with parkinsonism. Concordance rates for PD were 4% for monozygotic and same-sexed dizygotic twin pairs and zero for opposite-sexed twin pairs. Concordance rates for PD or parkinsonism were somewhat higher but the heritability estimate was non-significant. Our longitudinal analyses demonstrate that PD and parkinsonism are modestly heritable.
doi:10.1016/j.neurobiolaging.2011.02.017
PMCID: PMC4452894  PMID: 21482443
Parkinson disease; twin; epidemiology
23.  Natural-Cause Mortality and Long-Term Exposure to Particle Components: An Analysis of 19 European Cohorts within the Multi-Center ESCAPE Project 
Beelen, Rob | Hoek, Gerard | Raaschou-Nielsen, Ole | Stafoggia, Massimo | Andersen, Zorana Jovanovic | Weinmayr, Gudrun | Hoffmann, Barbara | Wolf, Kathrin | Samoli, Evangelia | Fischer, Paul H. | Nieuwenhuijsen, Mark J. | Xun, Wei W. | Katsouyanni, Klea | Dimakopoulou, Konstantina | Marcon, Alessandro | Vartiainen, Erkki | Lanki, Timo | Yli-Tuomi, Tarja | Oftedal, Bente | Schwarze, Per E. | Nafstad, Per | De Faire, Ulf | Pedersen, Nancy L. | Östenson, Claes-Göran | Fratiglioni, Laura | Penell, Johanna | Korek, Michal | Pershagen, Göran | Eriksen, Kirsten Thorup | Overvad, Kim | Sørensen, Mette | Eeftens, Marloes | Peeters, Petra H. | Meliefste, Kees | Wang, Meng | Bueno-de-Mesquita, H. Bas | Sugiri, Dorothea | Krämer, Ursula | Heinrich, Joachim | de Hoogh, Kees | Key, Timothy | Peters, Annette | Hampel, Regina | Concin, Hans | Nagel, Gabriele | Jaensch, Andrea | Ineichen, Alex | Tsai, Ming-Yi | Schaffner, Emmanuel | Probst-Hensch, Nicole M. | Schindler, Christian | Ragettli, Martina S. | Vilier, Alice | Clavel-Chapelon, Françoise | Declercq, Christophe | Ricceri, Fulvio | Sacerdote, Carlotta | Galassi, Claudia | Migliore, Enrica | Ranzi, Andrea | Cesaroni, Giulia | Badaloni, Chiara | Forastiere, Francesco | Katsoulis, Michail | Trichopoulou, Antonia | Keuken, Menno | Jedynska, Aleksandra | Kooter, Ingeborg M. | Kukkonen, Jaakko | Sokhi, Ranjeet S. | Vineis, Paolo | Brunekreef, Bert
Environmental Health Perspectives  2015;123(6):525-533.
Background
Studies have shown associations between mortality and long-term exposure to particulate matter air pollution. Few cohort studies have estimated the effects of the elemental composition of particulate matter on mortality.
Objectives
Our aim was to study the association between natural-cause mortality and long-term exposure to elemental components of particulate matter.
Methods
Mortality and confounder data from 19 European cohort studies were used. Residential exposure to eight a priori–selected components of particulate matter (PM) was characterized following a strictly standardized protocol. Annual average concentrations of copper, iron, potassium, nickel, sulfur, silicon, vanadium, and zinc within PM size fractions ≤ 2.5 μm (PM2.5) and ≤ 10 μm (PM10) were estimated using land-use regression models. Cohort-specific statistical analyses of the associations between mortality and air pollution were conducted using Cox proportional hazards models using a common protocol followed by meta-analysis.
Results
The total study population consisted of 291,816 participants, of whom 25,466 died from a natural cause during follow-up (average time of follow-up, 14.3 years). Hazard ratios were positive for almost all elements and statistically significant for PM2.5 sulfur (1.14; 95% CI: 1.06, 1.23 per 200 ng/m3). In a two-pollutant model, the association with PM2.5 sulfur was robust to adjustment for PM2.5 mass, whereas the association with PM2.5 mass was reduced.
Conclusions
Long-term exposure to PM2.5 sulfur was associated with natural-cause mortality. This association was robust to adjustment for other pollutants and PM2.5.
Citation
Beelen R, Hoek G, Raaschou-Nielsen O, Stafoggia M, Andersen ZJ, Weinmayr G, Hoffmann B, Wolf K, Samoli E, Fischer PH, Nieuwenhuijsen MJ, Xun WW, Katsouyanni K, Dimakopoulou K, Marcon A, Vartiainen E, Lanki T, Yli-Tuomi T, Oftedal B, Schwarze PE, Nafstad P, De Faire U, Pedersen NL, Östenson C-G, Fratiglioni L, Penell J, Korek M, Pershagen G, Eriksen KT, Overvad K, Sørensen M, Eeftens M, Peeters PH, Meliefste K, Wang M, Bueno-de-Mesquita HB, Sugiri D, Krämer U, Heinrich J, de Hoogh K, Key T, Peters A, Hampel R, Concin H, Nagel G, Jaensch A, Ineichen A, Tsai MY, Schaffner E, Probst-Hensch NM, Schindler C, Ragettli MS, Vilier A, Clavel-Chapelon F, Declercq C, Ricceri F, Sacerdote C, Galassi C, Migliore E, Ranzi A, Cesaroni G, Badaloni C, Forastiere F, Katsoulis M, Trichopoulou A, Keuken M, Jedynska A, Kooter IM, Kukkonen J, Sokhi RS, Vineis P, Brunekreef B. 2015. Natural-cause mortality and long-term exposure to particle components: an analysis of 19 European cohorts within the Multi-Center ESCAPE Project. Environ Health Perspect 123:525–533; http://dx.doi.org/10.1289/ehp.1408095
doi:10.1289/ehp.1408095
PMCID: PMC4455583  PMID: 25712504
24.  Genetic and Environmental Mediation of the Associations between Self-Rated Health and Cognitive Abilities 
Experimental aging research  2009;35(2):178-201.
This study first investigated whether common complex diseases mediate the associations between self-rated health and cognitive abilities. Second, the genetic and environmental mediation of these relationships was explored using bivariate quantitative genetic analyses. Slight evidence was found that associations between self-rated health and cognitive test scores were mediated by chronic diseases. In the younger age group (< 67 years) associations between self-rated health and spatial reasoning and perceptual speed were mediated by both genetic and environmental factors. In the oldest age group (≥ 67 years), associations between self-rated health and verbal ability, spatial reasoning, perceptual speed and visual memory were entirely due to genetic factors.
doi:10.1080/03610730902720372
PMCID: PMC4445688  PMID: 19280446
self-rated health; twins; cognitive abilities; genes; environment
25.  Risk of urinary incontinence symptoms in oral contraceptive users: A national cohort study from the Swedish Twin Register 
Fertility and sterility  2008;92(2):428-433.
Objective:
To assess the impact of oral contraceptives on lower urinary tract dysfunction in premenopausal women.
Design-Subjects:
A cohort study of 10,791 women (born 1959-1985) from the population-based Swedish Twin Register who participated in a web-based survey of common diseases.
Setting:
National Register.
Intervention(s):
None.
Main Outcome Measure(s):
Symptoms of urinary incontinence.
Result(s):
For users of oral contraception there was a significantly reduced risk for symptoms of stress urinary incontinence (OR 0.57, 95% CI 0.41- 0.79); mixed urinary incontinence (OR 0.52, 95% CI 0.31-0.89); and urgency urinary incontinence (OR 0.36, 95% CI 0.14-0.92). The reduction remained significant when adjusting for age, body mass index and pregnancy history. A reduced prevalence of symptoms of overactive bladder in oral contraceptive users was also observed although the association was non-significant (OR 0.97, 95% CI 0.79-1.18). There were no significant associations between lower urinary tract symptoms and women using a levonorgestrel-releasing intrauterine device compared to non-contraceptive users, with the exception of nocturia (OR 0.53, 95% CI 0.32-0.89).
Conclusion(s):
Oral contraceptive use reduces the overall risk for symptoms of urinary incontinence.
doi:10.1016/j.fertnstert.2008.07.002
PMCID: PMC4442795  PMID: 18706546
contraception; incontinence; overactive bladder; intrauterine device

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