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1.  Lifestyle and clinical determinants of skin autofluorescence in a population‐based cohort study 
Abstract
Background
Skin autofluorescence (SAF) is a noninvasive marker of advanced glycation end products (AGEs). In diabetes, higher SAF levels have been positively associated with long‐term complications, cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. Because little is known about the factors that influence SAF in nondiabetic individuals, we assessed the association of clinical and lifestyle parameters with SAF as well as their interactions in a large‐scale, nondiabetic population and performed the same analysis in a type 2 diabetic subgroup.
Methods
In a cross‐sectional study in participants from the LifeLines Cohort Study, extensive clinical and biochemical phenotyping, including SAF measurement, was assessed in 9009 subjects of whom 314 (3·5%) subjects with type 2 diabetes.
Results
Mean SAF was 2·04 ± 0·44 arbitrary units (AU) in nondiabetic individuals and 2·44 ± 0·55 AU in type 2 diabetic subjects (P < 0·0001). Multivariate backward regression analysis showed that in the nondiabetic population, SAF was significantly and independently associated with age, BMI, HbA1c, creatinine clearance, genetic polymorphism in NAT2 (rs4921914), current smoking, pack‐years of smoking and coffee consumption. In the type 2 diabetic group, a similar set of factors was associated with SAF, except for coffee consumption.
Conclusions
In addition to the established literature on type 2 diabetes, we have demonstrated that SAF levels are associated with several clinical and lifestyle factors in the nondiabetic population. These parameters should be taken into consideration when using SAF as a screening or prediction tool for populations at risk for cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
doi:10.1111/eci.12627
PMCID: PMC5111733  PMID: 27002914
Advanced glycation end products; aging; cardiovascular disease; determinants; skin autofluorescence; type 2 diabetes
2.  Higher hydrocortisone dose increases bilirubin in hypopituitary patients‐ results from an RCT  
Abstract
Background
Bilirubin has anti‐oxidative and anti‐inflammatory properties, which may explain its proposed protective effects on the development of cardiometabolic disorders. Glucocorticoids affect heme oxygenase regulation in vitro, which plays a key role in bilirubin production. Effects of variations in glucocorticoid exposure on circulating bilirubin levels in humans are unknown. Here we tested whether a higher hydrocortisone replacement dose affects circulating bilirubin in hypopituitary patients.
Materials and methods
A randomized double‐blind cross‐over study (ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT01546992) was performed in 47 patients with secondary adrenal failure [10‐week exposure to a higher hydrocortisone dose (0·4–0·6 mg/kg body weight) vs. 10 weeks of a lower hydrocortisone dose (0·2–0·3 mg/kg body weight)].
Results
Plasma total bilirubin was increased by 10% from 7 to 8 μM in response to the higher hydrocortisone dose (P = 0·033). This effect was inversely related to age (P = 0·042), but was unaffected by sex, obesity and (replacement for) other hormonal insufficiencies. The higher hydrocortisone dose also resulted in lower alkaline phosphatase (P = 0·006) and aspartate aminotransferase activities (P = 0·001).
Conclusion
Bilirubin is modestly increased in response to higher glucocorticoid exposure in humans, in conjunction with lower alkaline phosphatase and aspartate aminotransferase activities, which are supposed to represent biomarkers of a pro‐inflammatory state and enhanced liver fat accumulation.
doi:10.1111/eci.12624
PMCID: PMC5111743  PMID: 26999644
Alkaline phosphatase; bilirubin; hydrocortisone; secondary adrenal insufficiency; transaminases
3.  Neonatal and obstetric outcomes in diet- and insulin-treated women with gestational diabetes mellitus: a retrospective study 
Background
To evaluate the neonatal and obstetric outcomes of pregnancies complicated by gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM). Screening and treatment – diet-only versus additional insulin therapy – were based on the 2010 national Dutch guidelines.
Methods
Retrospective study of the electronic medical files of 820 singleton GDM pregnancies treated between January 2011 and September 2014 in a university and non-university hospital. Pregnancy outcomes were compared between regular care treatment regimens –diet-only versus additional insulin therapy- and pregnancy outcomes of the Northern region of the Netherlands served as a reference population.
Results
A total of 460 women (56 %) met glycaemic control on diet-only and 360 women (44 %) required additional insulin therapy. Between the groups, there were no differences in perinatal complications (mortality, birth trauma, hyperbilirubinaemia, hypoglycaemia), small for gestational age, large for gestational age (LGA), neonate weighing >4200 g, neonate weighing ≥4500 g, Apgar score <7 at 5 min, respiratory support, preterm delivery, and admission to the neonatology department. Neonates born in the insulin-group had a lower birth weight compared with the diet-group (3364 vs. 3467 g, p = 0.005) and a lower gestational age at birth (p = 0.001). However, birth weight was not different between the groups when expressed in percentiles, adjusted for gestational age, gender, parity, and ethnicity. The occurrence of preeclampsia and gestational hypertension was comparable between the groups. In the insulin-group, labour was more often induced and more planned caesarean sections were performed (p = 0.001). Compared with the general obstetric population, the percentage of LGA neonates was higher in the GDM population (11.0 % vs.19.9 %, p = <0.001).
Conclusions
Neonatal and obstetric outcomes were comparable either with diet-only or additional insulin therapy. However, compared with the general obstetric population, the incidence of LGA neonates was significantly increased in this GDM cohort.
doi:10.1186/s12902-016-0136-4
PMCID: PMC5041294  PMID: 27680327
Diet; Gestational diabetes mellitus; Insulin; Pregnancy outcomes; Treatment
4.  Agreement between Computerized and Human Assessment of Performance on the Ruff Figural Fluency Test 
PLoS ONE  2016;11(9):e0163286.
The Ruff Figural Fluency Test (RFFT) is a sensitive test for nonverbal fluency suitable for all age groups. However, assessment of performance on the RFFT is time-consuming and may be affected by interrater differences. Therefore, we developed computer software specifically designed to analyze performance on the RFFT by automated pattern recognition. The aim of this study was to compare assessment by the new software with conventional assessment by human raters. The software was developed using data from the Lifelines Cohort Study and validated in an independent cohort of the Prevention of Renal and Vascular End Stage Disease (PREVEND) study. The total study population included 1,761 persons: 54% men; mean age (SD), 58 (10) years. All RFFT protocols were assessed by the new software and two independent human raters (criterion standard). The mean number of unique designs (SD) was 81 (29) and the median number of perseverative errors (interquartile range) was 9 (4 to 16). The intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) between the computerized and human assessment was 0.994 (95%CI, 0.988 to 0.996; p<0.001) and 0.991 (95%CI, 0.990 to 0.991; p<0.001) for the number of unique designs and perseverative errors, respectively. The mean difference (SD) between the computerized and human assessment was -1.42 (2.78) and +0.02 (1.94) points for the number of unique designs and perseverative errors, respectively. This was comparable to the agreement between two independent human assessments: ICC, 0.995 (0.994 to 0.995; p<0.001) and 0.985 (0.982 to 0.988; p<0.001), and mean difference (SD), -0.44 (2.98) and +0.56 (2.36) points for the number of unique designs and perseverative errors, respectively. We conclude that the agreement between the computerized and human assessment was very high and comparable to the agreement between two independent human assessments. Therefore, the software is an accurate tool for the assessment of performance on the RFFT.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0163286
PMCID: PMC5035016  PMID: 27661083
5.  Ethnic Differences in Glycemic Markers in Patients With Type 2 Diabetes 
Diabetes Care  2013;36(10):2931-2936.
OBJECTIVE
Recent studies have reported hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) differences across ethnic groups that could limit its use in clinical practice. The authors of the A1C-Derived Average Glucose study have advocated to report HbA1c in estimated average glucose (AG) equivalents. The aim of this study was to assess the relationships between HbA1c and the mean of three 7-point self-monitored blood glucose (BG) profiles, and to assess whether estimated AG is an accurate measure of glycemia in different ethnic groups.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
We evaluated 1,879 participants with type 2 diabetes in the DURABLE trial who were 30 to 80 years of age, from 11 countries, and, according to self-reported ethnic origin, were Caucasian, of African descent (black), Asian, or Hispanic. We performed logistic regression of the relationship between the mean self-monitored BG and HbA1c, and estimated AG, according to ethnic background.
RESULTS
Baseline mean (SD) HbA1c was 9.0% (1.3) (75 [SD, 14] mmol/mol), and mean self-monitored BG was 12.1 mmol/L (3.1) (217 [SD, 55] mg/dL). In the clinically relevant HbA1c range of 7.0–9.0% (53–75 mmol/mol), non-Caucasian ethnic groups had 0.2–0.5% (2–6 mmol/mol) higher HbA1c compared with Caucasians for a given BG level. At the mean self-monitored BG levels ≤11.6 mmol/L, estimated AG overestimated the actual average BG; at levels >11.6 mmol/L, estimated AG underestimated the actual BG levels.
CONCLUSIONS
For a given degree of glycemia, HbA1c levels vary among different ethnic groups. Ethnicity needs to be taken into account when using HbA1c to assess glycemic control or to set glycemic targets. Estimated AG is not a reliable marker for mean glycemia and therefore is of limited clinical value.
doi:10.2337/dc12-2711
PMCID: PMC3781497  PMID: 23757434
6.  Thyroid Hormone Status and Health-Related Quality of Life in the LifeLines Cohort Study 
Thyroid  2013;23(9):1066-1073.
Background
Thyroid disorders are prevalent in Western society, yet many subjects experience limited symptoms at diagnosis, especially in hypothyroidism. We hypothesize that health-related quality of life (HR-QOL) is more severely impaired in subjects with more abnormal thyroid hormone function tests.
Methods
This is a cross-sectional study of Dutch adults participating in the LifeLines Cohort Study between December 2009 and August 2010. In 9491 Western European participants (median age 45 years; 3993 men and 5498 women), without current or former use of thyroid medication, we compared HR-QOL using the RAND 36-Item Health Survey between subjects with normal thyrotropin (TSH) values and subjects with disturbed thyroid hormone status (serum TSH, free thyroxine, and free triiodothyronine). The influence of possible confounders (age, smoking, co-morbidity) on HR-QOL was evaluated as well.
Results
Suppressed TSH values (TSH <0.5 mU/L) were found in 114 (1.2%), while 8334 (88.8%) had TSH within the normal range, 973 participants (10.3%) had TSH between 4 and 10 mU/L, and 70 (0.7%) had TSH >10 mU/L. Men had a higher HR-QOL than women (70–92 vs. 65–89; p<0.001), except for the domain “general health” (72 vs. 72; p=0.692). Men with suppressed or elevated TSH values did not score significantly lower than euthyroid men for any of nine domains of the RAND 36-Item Health Survey. Compared with euthyroid women, women with suppressed TSH scored significantly lower in the domains “physical functioning” (84 vs. 89, p=0.013) and “general health” (67 vs. 72, p=0.036). Women with markedly elevated TSH (>10 mU/L) had a score in all HR-QOL domains that was similar to that of women with normal TSH values. There were no differences in the physical component score and the mental component score between any of the TSH groups. Physical component score and mental component score were mainly determined by smoking status, co-morbidity, and body mass index or waist circumference.
Conclusions
In this population-based study, HR-QOL scores of subjects with suppressed TSH values or markedly elevated TSH values were generally not significantly lower than those of subjects with normal or mildly elevated TSH values.
doi:10.1089/thy.2013.0017
PMCID: PMC3770241  PMID: 23530992
8.  Health-Related Quality of Life in Relation to Obesity Grade, Type 2 Diabetes, Metabolic Syndrome and Inflammation 
PLoS ONE  2015;10(10):e0140599.
Background
Health-related quality of life (HR-QoL) may be compromised in obese individuals, depending on the presence of other complications. The aim of this study is to assess the effect of obesity-related conditions on HR-QoL. These conditions are i) grade of obesity with and without type 2 diabetes (T2D), ii) metabolic syndrome (MetS), and iii) level of inflammation.
Methods
From the Dutch LifeLines Cohort Study we included 13,686 obese individuals, aged 18–80 years. HR-QoL was measured with the RAND 36-Item Health Survey which encompasses eight health domains. We calculated the percentage of obese individuals with poor HR-QoL, i.e. those scoring below the domain and sex specific cut-off value derived from the normal weight population. Logistic regression analysis was used to calculate the probability of having poor domain scores according to the conditions under study.
Results
Higher grades of obesity and the additional presence of T2D were associated with lower HR-QoL, particularly in the domains physical functioning (men: odds ratios (ORs) 1.48–11.34, P<0.005, and women: ORs 1.66–5.05, P<0.001) and general health (men: ORs 1.44–3.07, P<0.005, and women: ORs 1.36–3.73, P<0.001). A higher percentage of obese individuals with MetS had a poor HR-QoL than those without MetS. Furthermore, we observed a linear trend between inflammation and the percentage of obese individuals with poor scores on the HR-QoL domains. Individuals with MetS were more likely to have poor scores in the domains general health, vitality, social functioning and role limitations due to emotional problems. Obese women with increased inflammation levels were more likely to have poor scores on all domains except role limitations due to emotional problems and mental health.
Conclusions
The impact of obesity on an individual’s quality of life is enhanced by grade of obesity, T2D, MetS and inflammation and are mainly related to reduced physical health. The mental well-being is less often impaired.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0140599
PMCID: PMC4608696  PMID: 26474291
9.  Randomized Trial on the Influence of the Length of Two Insulin Pen Needles on Glycemic Control and Patient Preference in Obese Patients with Diabetes 
Abstract
Objective
This study determined the influence of needle length for insulin administration on metabolic control and patient preference in obese patients with diabetes mellitus.
Methods
In this multicenter, open-label crossover study, insulin pen needles of two different lengths (5 mm and 8 mm) were compared. A total of 130 insulin-treated type 1 and type 2 diabetes patients with a body mass index ≥30 kg/m2 were randomized, and 126 patients completed the study. Patients started using the 5-mm needle for 3 months, after which they switched to injecting insulin with the 8-mm needle for another 3 months, or vice versa. Hemoglobin A1c (A1C), fructosamine, and 1,5-anhydroglucitol were measured, and self-reported side effects and patient preference were recorded.
Results
No within-group changes were observed with respect to A1C, serum fructosamine, 1,5-anhydroglucitol, hypoglycemic events, bruising, and pain. When data of all 126 subjects were pooled, there was a small, but significant, difference between needle lengths (5-mm, A1C 7.47 ± 0.9%; 8-mm, 7.59 ± 1.0%; P = 0.02). Patients reported less bleeding with the 5-mm needle (P = 0.04) and less insulin leakage from the skin with the 8-mm needle (P = 0.01). There were no significant differences in patient preference, with 46% of the patients preferring the 5-mm needle, 41% the 8-mm needle, and 13% not preferring a particular needle length.
Conclusions
A 5-mm needle is similar to an 8-mm needle in obese patients with diabetes with respect to metabolic control, injection-related complaints, or patient preference and can be used safely.
doi:10.1089/dia.2011.0010
PMCID: PMC3118929  PMID: 21476936
10.  Recombinant TSH Stimulated Remnant Ablation Therapy in Thyroid Cancer: The Success Rate Depends on the Definition of Ablation Success—An Observational Study 
PLoS ONE  2015;10(3):e0120184.
Introduction
Patients with differentiated thyroid cancer (DTC) are treated with (near)-total thyroidectomy followed by remnant ablation. Optimal radioiodine-131 (131I) uptake is achieved by withholding thyroid hormone (THW), pretreatment with recombinant human Thyrotropin Stimulating Hormone (rhTSH) is an alternative. Six randomized trials have been published comparing THW and rhTSH, however comparison is difficult because an uniform definition of ablation success is lacking. Using a strict definition, we performed an observational study aiming to determine the efficacy of rhTSH as preparation for remnant ablation.
Patients and Methods
Adult DTC patients with, tumor stage T1b to T3, Nx, N0 and N1, M0 were included in a prospective multicenter observational study with a fully sequential design, using a stopping rule. All patients received remnant ablation with 131I using rhTSH. Ablation success was defined as no visible uptake in the original thyroid bed on a rhTSH stimulated 150 MBq 131I whole body scan (WBS) 9 months after remnant ablation, or no visible uptake in the original thyroid bed on a post therapeutic WBS when a second high dose was necessary.
Results
After interim analysis of the first 8 patients, the failure rate was estimated to be 69% (90% confidence interval (CI) 20-86%) and the inclusion of new patients had to be stopped. Final analysis resulted in an ablation success in 11 out of 17 patients (65%, 95% CI 38-86%).
Conclusion
According to this study, the efficacy of rhTSH in the preparation of 131I ablation therapy is inferior, when using a strict definition of ablation success. The current lack of agreement as to the definition of successful remnant ablation, makes comparison between different ablation strategies difficult. Our results point to the need for an international consensus on the definition of ablation success, not only in routine patient’s care but also for scientific reasons.
Trial Registration
Dutch Trial Registration NTR2395
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0120184
PMCID: PMC4367989  PMID: 25793762
11.  GWAS identifies an NAT2 acetylator status tag single nucleotide polymorphism to be a major locus for skin fluorescence 
Diabetologia  2014;57(8):1623-1634.
Aims/hypothesis
Skin fluorescence (SF) is a non-invasive marker of AGEs and is associated with the long-term complications of diabetes. SF increases with age and is also greater among individuals with diabetes. A familial correlation of SF suggests that genetics may play a role. We therefore performed parallel genome-wide association studies of SF in two cohorts.
Methods
Cohort 1 included 1,082 participants, 35–67 years of age with type 1 diabetes. Cohort 2 included 8,721 participants without diabetes, aged 18–90 years.
Results
rs1495741 was significantly associated with SF in Cohort 1 (p < 6 × 10−10), which is known to tag the NAT2 acetylator phenotype. The fast acetylator genotype was associated with lower SF, explaining up to 15% of the variance. In Cohort 2, the top signal associated with SF (p = 8.3 × 10−42) was rs4921914, also in NAT2, 440 bases upstream of rs1495741 (linkage disequilibrium r2 = 1.0 for rs4921914 with rs1495741). We replicated these results in two additional cohorts, one with and one without type 1 diabetes. Finally, to understand which compounds are contributing to the NAT2–SF signal, we examined 11 compounds assayed from skin biopsies (n = 198): the fast acetylator genotype was associated with lower levels of the AGEs hydroimidazolones of glyoxal (p = 0.017).
Conclusions/interpretation
We identified a robust association between NAT2 and SF in people with and without diabetes. Our findings provide proof of principle that genetic variation contributes to interindividual SF and that NAT2 acetylation status plays a major role.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s00125-014-3286-9) contains peer-reviewed but unedited supplementary material, which is available to authorised users.
doi:10.1007/s00125-014-3286-9
PMCID: PMC4079945  PMID: 24934506
Acetylation; Genome-wide association study; NAT2; Skin autofluorescence; Skin fluorescence; Skin intrinsic fluorescence
12.  Discovery and Refinement of Loci Associated with Lipid Levels 
Willer, Cristen J. | Schmidt, Ellen M. | Sengupta, Sebanti | Peloso, Gina M. | Gustafsson, Stefan | Kanoni, Stavroula | Ganna, Andrea | Chen, Jin | Buchkovich, Martin L. | Mora, Samia | Beckmann, Jacques S. | Bragg-Gresham, Jennifer L. | Chang, Hsing-Yi | Demirkan, Ayşe | Den Hertog, Heleen M. | Do, Ron | Donnelly, Louise A. | Ehret, Georg B. | Esko, Tõnu | Feitosa, Mary F. | Ferreira, Teresa | Fischer, Krista | Fontanillas, Pierre | Fraser, Ross M. | Freitag, Daniel F. | Gurdasani, Deepti | Heikkilä, Kauko | Hyppönen, Elina | Isaacs, Aaron | Jackson, Anne U. | Johansson, Åsa | Johnson, Toby | Kaakinen, Marika | Kettunen, Johannes | Kleber, Marcus E. | Li, Xiaohui | Luan, Jian’an | Lyytikäinen, Leo-Pekka | Magnusson, Patrik K.E. | Mangino, Massimo | Mihailov, Evelin | Montasser, May E. | Müller-Nurasyid, Martina | Nolte, Ilja M. | O’Connell, Jeffrey R. | Palmer, Cameron D. | Perola, Markus | Petersen, Ann-Kristin | Sanna, Serena | Saxena, Richa | Service, Susan K. | Shah, Sonia | Shungin, Dmitry | Sidore, Carlo | Song, Ci | Strawbridge, Rona J. | Surakka, Ida | Tanaka, Toshiko | Teslovich, Tanya M. | Thorleifsson, Gudmar | Van den Herik, Evita G. | Voight, Benjamin F. | Volcik, Kelly A. | Waite, Lindsay L. | Wong, Andrew | Wu, Ying | Zhang, Weihua | Absher, Devin | Asiki, Gershim | Barroso, Inês | Been, Latonya F. | Bolton, Jennifer L. | Bonnycastle, Lori L | Brambilla, Paolo | Burnett, Mary S. | Cesana, Giancarlo | Dimitriou, Maria | Doney, Alex S.F. | Döring, Angela | Elliott, Paul | Epstein, Stephen E. | Ingi Eyjolfsson, Gudmundur | Gigante, Bruna | Goodarzi, Mark O. | Grallert, Harald | Gravito, Martha L. | Groves, Christopher J. | Hallmans, Göran | Hartikainen, Anna-Liisa | Hayward, Caroline | Hernandez, Dena | Hicks, Andrew A. | Holm, Hilma | Hung, Yi-Jen | Illig, Thomas | Jones, Michelle R. | Kaleebu, Pontiano | Kastelein, John J.P. | Khaw, Kay-Tee | Kim, Eric | Klopp, Norman | Komulainen, Pirjo | Kumari, Meena | Langenberg, Claudia | Lehtimäki, Terho | Lin, Shih-Yi | Lindström, Jaana | Loos, Ruth J.F. | Mach, François | McArdle, Wendy L | Meisinger, Christa | Mitchell, Braxton D. | Müller, Gabrielle | Nagaraja, Ramaiah | Narisu, Narisu | Nieminen, Tuomo V.M. | Nsubuga, Rebecca N. | Olafsson, Isleifur | Ong, Ken K. | Palotie, Aarno | Papamarkou, Theodore | Pomilla, Cristina | Pouta, Anneli | Rader, Daniel J. | Reilly, Muredach P. | Ridker, Paul M. | Rivadeneira, Fernando | Rudan, Igor | Ruokonen, Aimo | Samani, Nilesh | Scharnagl, Hubert | Seeley, Janet | Silander, Kaisa | Stančáková, Alena | Stirrups, Kathleen | Swift, Amy J. | Tiret, Laurence | Uitterlinden, Andre G. | van Pelt, L. Joost | Vedantam, Sailaja | Wainwright, Nicholas | Wijmenga, Cisca | Wild, Sarah H. | Willemsen, Gonneke | Wilsgaard, Tom | Wilson, James F. | Young, Elizabeth H. | Zhao, Jing Hua | Adair, Linda S. | Arveiler, Dominique | Assimes, Themistocles L. | Bandinelli, Stefania | Bennett, Franklyn | Bochud, Murielle | Boehm, Bernhard O. | Boomsma, Dorret I. | Borecki, Ingrid B. | Bornstein, Stefan R. | Bovet, Pascal | Burnier, Michel | Campbell, Harry | Chakravarti, Aravinda | Chambers, John C. | Chen, Yii-Der Ida | Collins, Francis S. | Cooper, Richard S. | Danesh, John | Dedoussis, George | de Faire, Ulf | Feranil, Alan B. | Ferrières, Jean | Ferrucci, Luigi | Freimer, Nelson B. | Gieger, Christian | Groop, Leif C. | Gudnason, Vilmundur | Gyllensten, Ulf | Hamsten, Anders | Harris, Tamara B. | Hingorani, Aroon | Hirschhorn, Joel N. | Hofman, Albert | Hovingh, G. Kees | Hsiung, Chao Agnes | Humphries, Steve E. | Hunt, Steven C. | Hveem, Kristian | Iribarren, Carlos | Järvelin, Marjo-Riitta | Jula, Antti | Kähönen, Mika | Kaprio, Jaakko | Kesäniemi, Antero | Kivimaki, Mika | Kooner, Jaspal S. | Koudstaal, Peter J. | Krauss, Ronald M. | Kuh, Diana | Kuusisto, Johanna | Kyvik, Kirsten O. | Laakso, Markku | Lakka, Timo A. | Lind, Lars | Lindgren, Cecilia M. | Martin, Nicholas G. | März, Winfried | McCarthy, Mark I. | McKenzie, Colin A. | Meneton, Pierre | Metspalu, Andres | Moilanen, Leena | Morris, Andrew D. | Munroe, Patricia B. | Njølstad, Inger | Pedersen, Nancy L. | Power, Chris | Pramstaller, Peter P. | Price, Jackie F. | Psaty, Bruce M. | Quertermous, Thomas | Rauramaa, Rainer | Saleheen, Danish | Salomaa, Veikko | Sanghera, Dharambir K. | Saramies, Jouko | Schwarz, Peter E.H. | Sheu, Wayne H-H | Shuldiner, Alan R. | Siegbahn, Agneta | Spector, Tim D. | Stefansson, Kari | Strachan, David P. | Tayo, Bamidele O. | Tremoli, Elena | Tuomilehto, Jaakko | Uusitupa, Matti | van Duijn, Cornelia M. | Vollenweider, Peter | Wallentin, Lars | Wareham, Nicholas J. | Whitfield, John B. | Wolffenbuttel, Bruce H.R. | Ordovas, Jose M. | Boerwinkle, Eric | Palmer, Colin N.A. | Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur | Chasman, Daniel I. | Rotter, Jerome I. | Franks, Paul W. | Ripatti, Samuli | Cupples, L. Adrienne | Sandhu, Manjinder S. | Rich, Stephen S. | Boehnke, Michael | Deloukas, Panos | Kathiresan, Sekar | Mohlke, Karen L. | Ingelsson, Erik | Abecasis, Gonçalo R.
Nature genetics  2013;45(11):1274-1283.
Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, triglycerides, and total cholesterol are heritable, modifiable, risk factors for coronary artery disease. To identify new loci and refine known loci influencing these lipids, we examined 188,578 individuals using genome-wide and custom genotyping arrays. We identify and annotate 157 loci associated with lipid levels at P < 5×10−8, including 62 loci not previously associated with lipid levels in humans. Using dense genotyping in individuals of European, East Asian, South Asian, and African ancestry, we narrow association signals in 12 loci. We find that loci associated with blood lipids are often associated with cardiovascular and metabolic traits including coronary artery disease, type 2 diabetes, blood pressure, waist-hip ratio, and body mass index. Our results illustrate the value of genetic data from individuals of diverse ancestries and provide insights into biological mechanisms regulating blood lipids to guide future genetic, biological, and therapeutic research.
doi:10.1038/ng.2797
PMCID: PMC3838666  PMID: 24097068
13.  Common variants associated with plasma triglycerides and risk for coronary artery disease 
Do, Ron | Willer, Cristen J. | Schmidt, Ellen M. | Sengupta, Sebanti | Gao, Chi | Peloso, Gina M. | Gustafsson, Stefan | Kanoni, Stavroula | Ganna, Andrea | Chen, Jin | Buchkovich, Martin L. | Mora, Samia | Beckmann, Jacques S. | Bragg-Gresham, Jennifer L. | Chang, Hsing-Yi | Demirkan, Ayşe | Den Hertog, Heleen M. | Donnelly, Louise A. | Ehret, Georg B. | Esko, Tõnu | Feitosa, Mary F. | Ferreira, Teresa | Fischer, Krista | Fontanillas, Pierre | Fraser, Ross M. | Freitag, Daniel F. | Gurdasani, Deepti | Heikkilä, Kauko | Hyppönen, Elina | Isaacs, Aaron | Jackson, Anne U. | Johansson, Åsa | Johnson, Toby | Kaakinen, Marika | Kettunen, Johannes | Kleber, Marcus E. | Li, Xiaohui | Luan, Jian'an | Lyytikäinen, Leo-Pekka | Magnusson, Patrik K.E. | Mangino, Massimo | Mihailov, Evelin | Montasser, May E. | Müller-Nurasyid, Martina | Nolte, Ilja M. | O'Connell, Jeffrey R. | Palmer, Cameron D. | Perola, Markus | Petersen, Ann-Kristin | Sanna, Serena | Saxena, Richa | Service, Susan K. | Shah, Sonia | Shungin, Dmitry | Sidore, Carlo | Song, Ci | Strawbridge, Rona J. | Surakka, Ida | Tanaka, Toshiko | Teslovich, Tanya M. | Thorleifsson, Gudmar | Van den Herik, Evita G. | Voight, Benjamin F. | Volcik, Kelly A. | Waite, Lindsay L. | Wong, Andrew | Wu, Ying | Zhang, Weihua | Absher, Devin | Asiki, Gershim | Barroso, Inês | Been, Latonya F. | Bolton, Jennifer L. | Bonnycastle, Lori L | Brambilla, Paolo | Burnett, Mary S. | Cesana, Giancarlo | Dimitriou, Maria | Doney, Alex S.F. | Döring, Angela | Elliott, Paul | Epstein, Stephen E. | Eyjolfsson, Gudmundur Ingi | Gigante, Bruna | Goodarzi, Mark O. | Grallert, Harald | Gravito, Martha L. | Groves, Christopher J. | Hallmans, Göran | Hartikainen, Anna-Liisa | Hayward, Caroline | Hernandez, Dena | Hicks, Andrew A. | Holm, Hilma | Hung, Yi-Jen | Illig, Thomas | Jones, Michelle R. | Kaleebu, Pontiano | Kastelein, John J.P. | Khaw, Kay-Tee | Kim, Eric | Klopp, Norman | Komulainen, Pirjo | Kumari, Meena | Langenberg, Claudia | Lehtimäki, Terho | Lin, Shih-Yi | Lindström, Jaana | Loos, Ruth J.F. | Mach, François | McArdle, Wendy L | Meisinger, Christa | Mitchell, Braxton D. | Müller, Gabrielle | Nagaraja, Ramaiah | Narisu, Narisu | Nieminen, Tuomo V.M. | Nsubuga, Rebecca N. | Olafsson, Isleifur | Ong, Ken K. | Palotie, Aarno | Papamarkou, Theodore | Pomilla, Cristina | Pouta, Anneli | Rader, Daniel J. | Reilly, Muredach P. | Ridker, Paul M. | Rivadeneira, Fernando | Rudan, Igor | Ruokonen, Aimo | Samani, Nilesh | Scharnagl, Hubert | Seeley, Janet | Silander, Kaisa | Stančáková, Alena | Stirrups, Kathleen | Swift, Amy J. | Tiret, Laurence | Uitterlinden, Andre G. | van Pelt, L. Joost | Vedantam, Sailaja | Wainwright, Nicholas | Wijmenga, Cisca | Wild, Sarah H. | Willemsen, Gonneke | Wilsgaard, Tom | Wilson, James F. | Young, Elizabeth H. | Zhao, Jing Hua | Adair, Linda S. | Arveiler, Dominique | Assimes, Themistocles L. | Bandinelli, Stefania | Bennett, Franklyn | Bochud, Murielle | Boehm, Bernhard O. | Boomsma, Dorret I. | Borecki, Ingrid B. | Bornstein, Stefan R. | Bovet, Pascal | Burnier, Michel | Campbell, Harry | Chakravarti, Aravinda | Chambers, John C. | Chen, Yii-Der Ida | Collins, Francis S. | Cooper, Richard S. | Danesh, John | Dedoussis, George | de Faire, Ulf | Feranil, Alan B. | Ferrières, Jean | Ferrucci, Luigi | Freimer, Nelson B. | Gieger, Christian | Groop, Leif C. | Gudnason, Vilmundur | Gyllensten, Ulf | Hamsten, Anders | Harris, Tamara B. | Hingorani, Aroon | Hirschhorn, Joel N. | Hofman, Albert | Hovingh, G. Kees | Hsiung, Chao Agnes | Humphries, Steve E. | Hunt, Steven C. | Hveem, Kristian | Iribarren, Carlos | Järvelin, Marjo-Riitta | Jula, Antti | Kähönen, Mika | Kaprio, Jaakko | Kesäniemi, Antero | Kivimaki, Mika | Kooner, Jaspal S. | Koudstaal, Peter J. | Krauss, Ronald M. | Kuh, Diana | Kuusisto, Johanna | Kyvik, Kirsten O. | Laakso, Markku | Lakka, Timo A. | Lind, Lars | Lindgren, Cecilia M. | Martin, Nicholas G. | März, Winfried | McCarthy, Mark I. | McKenzie, Colin A. | Meneton, Pierre | Metspalu, Andres | Moilanen, Leena | Morris, Andrew D. | Munroe, Patricia B. | Njølstad, Inger | Pedersen, Nancy L. | Power, Chris | Pramstaller, Peter P. | Price, Jackie F. | Psaty, Bruce M. | Quertermous, Thomas | Rauramaa, Rainer | Saleheen, Danish | Salomaa, Veikko | Sanghera, Dharambir K. | Saramies, Jouko | Schwarz, Peter E.H. | Sheu, Wayne H-H | Shuldiner, Alan R. | Siegbahn, Agneta | Spector, Tim D. | Stefansson, Kari | Strachan, David P. | Tayo, Bamidele O. | Tremoli, Elena | Tuomilehto, Jaakko | Uusitupa, Matti | van Duijn, Cornelia M. | Vollenweider, Peter | Wallentin, Lars | Wareham, Nicholas J. | Whitfield, John B. | Wolffenbuttel, Bruce H.R. | Altshuler, David | Ordovas, Jose M. | Boerwinkle, Eric | Palmer, Colin N.A. | Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur | Chasman, Daniel I. | Rotter, Jerome I. | Franks, Paul W. | Ripatti, Samuli | Cupples, L. Adrienne | Sandhu, Manjinder S. | Rich, Stephen S. | Boehnke, Michael | Deloukas, Panos | Mohlke, Karen L. | Ingelsson, Erik | Abecasis, Goncalo R. | Daly, Mark J. | Neale, Benjamin M. | Kathiresan, Sekar
Nature genetics  2013;45(11):1345-1352.
Triglycerides are transported in plasma by specific triglyceride-rich lipoproteins; in epidemiologic studies, increased triglyceride levels correlate with higher risk for coronary artery disease (CAD). However, it is unclear whether this association reflects causal processes. We used 185 common variants recently mapped for plasma lipids (P<5×10−8 for each) to examine the role of triglycerides on risk for CAD. First, we highlight loci associated with both low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) and triglycerides, and show that the direction and magnitude of both are factors in determining CAD risk. Second, we consider loci with only a strong magnitude of association with triglycerides and show that these loci are also associated with CAD. Finally, in a model accounting for effects on LDL-C and/or high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, a polymorphism's strength of effect on triglycerides is correlated with the magnitude of its effect on CAD risk. These results suggest that triglyceride-rich lipoproteins causally influence risk for CAD.
doi:10.1038/ng.2795
PMCID: PMC3904346  PMID: 24097064
14.  Combined Effects of Smoking and Alcohol on Metabolic Syndrome: The LifeLines Cohort Study 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(4):e96406.
Introduction
The development of metabolic syndrome (MetS) is influenced by environmental factors such as smoking and alcohol consumption. We determined the combined effects of smoking and alcohol on MetS and its individual components.
Methods
64,046 participants aged 18–80 years from the LifeLines Cohort study were categorized into three body mass index (BMI) classes (BMI<25, normal weight; BMI 25–30, overweight; BMI≥30 kg/m2, obese). MetS was defined according to the revised criteria of the National Cholesterol Education Program’s Adult Treatment Panel III (NCEP ATP III). Within each BMI class and smoking subgroup (non-smoker, former smoker, <20 and ≥20 g tobacco/day), the cross-sectional association between alcohol and individual MetS components was tested using regression analysis.
Results
Prevalence of MetS varied greatly between the different smoking-alcohol subgroups (1.7–71.1%). HDL cholesterol levels in all alcohol drinkers were higher than in non-drinkers (0.02 to 0.29 mmol/L, P values<0.001). HDL cholesterol levels were lower when they were also a former or current smoker (<20 and ≥20 g tobacco/day). Consumption of ≤1 drink/day indicated a trend towards lower triglyceride levels (non-significant). Concurrent use alcohol (>1 drink/day) and tobacco showed higher triglycerides levels. Up to 2 drinks/day was associated with a smaller waist circumference in overweight and obese individuals. Consumption of >2 drinks/day increased blood pressure, with the strongest associations found for heavy smokers. The overall metabolic profile of wine drinkers was better than that of non-drinkers or drinkers of beer or spirits/mixed drinks.
Conclusion
Light alcohol consumption may moderate the negative associations of smoking with MetS. Our results suggest that the lifestyle advice that emphasizes smoking cessation and the restriction of alcohol consumption to a maximum of 1 drink/day, is a good approach to reduce the prevalence of MetS.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0096406
PMCID: PMC4004580  PMID: 24781037
15.  Genome-wide meta-analysis identifies 11 new loci for anthropometric traits and provides insights into genetic architecture 
Berndt, Sonja I. | Gustafsson, Stefan | Mägi, Reedik | Ganna, Andrea | Wheeler, Eleanor | Feitosa, Mary F. | Justice, Anne E. | Monda, Keri L. | Croteau-Chonka, Damien C. | Day, Felix R. | Esko, Tõnu | Fall, Tove | Ferreira, Teresa | Gentilini, Davide | Jackson, Anne U. | Luan, Jian’an | Randall, Joshua C. | Vedantam, Sailaja | Willer, Cristen J. | Winkler, Thomas W. | Wood, Andrew R. | Workalemahu, Tsegaselassie | Hu, Yi-Juan | Lee, Sang Hong | Liang, Liming | Lin, Dan-Yu | Min, Josine L. | Neale, Benjamin M. | Thorleifsson, Gudmar | Yang, Jian | Albrecht, Eva | Amin, Najaf | Bragg-Gresham, Jennifer L. | Cadby, Gemma | den Heijer, Martin | Eklund, Niina | Fischer, Krista | Goel, Anuj | Hottenga, Jouke-Jan | Huffman, Jennifer E. | Jarick, Ivonne | Johansson, Åsa | Johnson, Toby | Kanoni, Stavroula | Kleber, Marcus E. | König, Inke R. | Kristiansson, Kati | Kutalik, Zoltán | Lamina, Claudia | Lecoeur, Cecile | Li, Guo | Mangino, Massimo | McArdle, Wendy L. | Medina-Gomez, Carolina | Müller-Nurasyid, Martina | Ngwa, Julius S. | Nolte, Ilja M. | Paternoster, Lavinia | Pechlivanis, Sonali | Perola, Markus | Peters, Marjolein J. | Preuss, Michael | Rose, Lynda M. | Shi, Jianxin | Shungin, Dmitry | Smith, Albert Vernon | Strawbridge, Rona J. | Surakka, Ida | Teumer, Alexander | Trip, Mieke D. | Tyrer, Jonathan | Van Vliet-Ostaptchouk, Jana V. | Vandenput, Liesbeth | Waite, Lindsay L. | Zhao, Jing Hua | Absher, Devin | Asselbergs, Folkert W. | Atalay, Mustafa | Attwood, Antony P. | Balmforth, Anthony J. | Basart, Hanneke | Beilby, John | Bonnycastle, Lori L. | Brambilla, Paolo | Bruinenberg, Marcel | Campbell, Harry | Chasman, Daniel I. | Chines, Peter S. | Collins, Francis S. | Connell, John M. | Cookson, William | de Faire, Ulf | de Vegt, Femmie | Dei, Mariano | Dimitriou, Maria | Edkins, Sarah | Estrada, Karol | Evans, David M. | Farrall, Martin | Ferrario, Marco M. | Ferrières, Jean | Franke, Lude | Frau, Francesca | Gejman, Pablo V. | Grallert, Harald | Grönberg, Henrik | Gudnason, Vilmundur | Hall, Alistair S. | Hall, Per | Hartikainen, Anna-Liisa | Hayward, Caroline | Heard-Costa, Nancy L. | Heath, Andrew C. | Hebebrand, Johannes | Homuth, Georg | Hu, Frank B. | Hunt, Sarah E. | Hyppönen, Elina | Iribarren, Carlos | Jacobs, Kevin B. | Jansson, John-Olov | Jula, Antti | Kähönen, Mika | Kathiresan, Sekar | Kee, Frank | Khaw, Kay-Tee | Kivimaki, Mika | Koenig, Wolfgang | Kraja, Aldi T. | Kumari, Meena | Kuulasmaa, Kari | Kuusisto, Johanna | Laitinen, Jaana H. | Lakka, Timo A. | Langenberg, Claudia | Launer, Lenore J. | Lind, Lars | Lindström, Jaana | Liu, Jianjun | Liuzzi, Antonio | Lokki, Marja-Liisa | Lorentzon, Mattias | Madden, Pamela A. | Magnusson, Patrik K. | Manunta, Paolo | Marek, Diana | März, Winfried | Mateo Leach, Irene | McKnight, Barbara | Medland, Sarah E. | Mihailov, Evelin | Milani, Lili | Montgomery, Grant W. | Mooser, Vincent | Mühleisen, Thomas W. | Munroe, Patricia B. | Musk, Arthur W. | Narisu, Narisu | Navis, Gerjan | Nicholson, George | Nohr, Ellen A. | Ong, Ken K. | Oostra, Ben A. | Palmer, Colin N.A. | Palotie, Aarno | Peden, John F. | Pedersen, Nancy | Peters, Annette | Polasek, Ozren | Pouta, Anneli | Pramstaller, Peter P. | Prokopenko, Inga | Pütter, Carolin | Radhakrishnan, Aparna | Raitakari, Olli | Rendon, Augusto | Rivadeneira, Fernando | Rudan, Igor | Saaristo, Timo E. | Sambrook, Jennifer G. | Sanders, Alan R. | Sanna, Serena | Saramies, Jouko | Schipf, Sabine | Schreiber, Stefan | Schunkert, Heribert | Shin, So-Youn | Signorini, Stefano | Sinisalo, Juha | Skrobek, Boris | Soranzo, Nicole | Stančáková, Alena | Stark, Klaus | Stephens, Jonathan C. | Stirrups, Kathleen | Stolk, Ronald P. | Stumvoll, Michael | Swift, Amy J. | Theodoraki, Eirini V. | Thorand, Barbara | Tregouet, David-Alexandre | Tremoli, Elena | Van der Klauw, Melanie M. | van Meurs, Joyce B.J. | Vermeulen, Sita H. | Viikari, Jorma | Virtamo, Jarmo | Vitart, Veronique | Waeber, Gérard | Wang, Zhaoming | Widén, Elisabeth | Wild, Sarah H. | Willemsen, Gonneke | Winkelmann, Bernhard R. | Witteman, Jacqueline C.M. | Wolffenbuttel, Bruce H.R. | Wong, Andrew | Wright, Alan F. | Zillikens, M. Carola | Amouyel, Philippe | Boehm, Bernhard O. | Boerwinkle, Eric | Boomsma, Dorret I. | Caulfield, Mark J. | Chanock, Stephen J. | Cupples, L. Adrienne | Cusi, Daniele | Dedoussis, George V. | Erdmann, Jeanette | Eriksson, Johan G. | Franks, Paul W. | Froguel, Philippe | Gieger, Christian | Gyllensten, Ulf | Hamsten, Anders | Harris, Tamara B. | Hengstenberg, Christian | Hicks, Andrew A. | Hingorani, Aroon | Hinney, Anke | Hofman, Albert | Hovingh, Kees G. | Hveem, Kristian | Illig, Thomas | Jarvelin, Marjo-Riitta | Jöckel, Karl-Heinz | Keinanen-Kiukaanniemi, Sirkka M. | Kiemeney, Lambertus A. | Kuh, Diana | Laakso, Markku | Lehtimäki, Terho | Levinson, Douglas F. | Martin, Nicholas G. | Metspalu, Andres | Morris, Andrew D. | Nieminen, Markku S. | Njølstad, Inger | Ohlsson, Claes | Oldehinkel, Albertine J. | Ouwehand, Willem H. | Palmer, Lyle J. | Penninx, Brenda | Power, Chris | Province, Michael A. | Psaty, Bruce M. | Qi, Lu | Rauramaa, Rainer | Ridker, Paul M. | Ripatti, Samuli | Salomaa, Veikko | Samani, Nilesh J. | Snieder, Harold | Sørensen, Thorkild I.A. | Spector, Timothy D. | Stefansson, Kari | Tönjes, Anke | Tuomilehto, Jaakko | Uitterlinden, André G. | Uusitupa, Matti | van der Harst, Pim | Vollenweider, Peter | Wallaschofski, Henri | Wareham, Nicholas J. | Watkins, Hugh | Wichmann, H.-Erich | Wilson, James F. | Abecasis, Goncalo R. | Assimes, Themistocles L. | Barroso, Inês | Boehnke, Michael | Borecki, Ingrid B. | Deloukas, Panos | Fox, Caroline S. | Frayling, Timothy | Groop, Leif C. | Haritunian, Talin | Heid, Iris M. | Hunter, David | Kaplan, Robert C. | Karpe, Fredrik | Moffatt, Miriam | Mohlke, Karen L. | O’Connell, Jeffrey R. | Pawitan, Yudi | Schadt, Eric E. | Schlessinger, David | Steinthorsdottir, Valgerdur | Strachan, David P. | Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur | van Duijn, Cornelia M. | Visscher, Peter M. | Di Blasio, Anna Maria | Hirschhorn, Joel N. | Lindgren, Cecilia M. | Morris, Andrew P. | Meyre, David | Scherag, André | McCarthy, Mark I. | Speliotes, Elizabeth K. | North, Kari E. | Loos, Ruth J.F. | Ingelsson, Erik
Nature genetics  2013;45(5):501-512.
Approaches exploiting extremes of the trait distribution may reveal novel loci for common traits, but it is unknown whether such loci are generalizable to the general population. In a genome-wide search for loci associated with upper vs. lower 5th percentiles of body mass index, height and waist-hip ratio, as well as clinical classes of obesity including up to 263,407 European individuals, we identified four new loci (IGFBP4, H6PD, RSRC1, PPP2R2A) influencing height detected in the tails and seven new loci (HNF4G, RPTOR, GNAT2, MRPS33P4, ADCY9, HS6ST3, ZZZ3) for clinical classes of obesity. Further, we show that there is large overlap in terms of genetic structure and distribution of variants between traits based on extremes and the general population and little etiologic heterogeneity between obesity subgroups.
doi:10.1038/ng.2606
PMCID: PMC3973018  PMID: 23563607
16.  High Prevalence of Metabolic Syndrome Features in Patients Previously Treated for Nonfunctioning Pituitary Macroadenoma 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(3):e90602.
Objective
Patients treated for nonfunctioning pituitary macroadenoma (NFMA) with suprasellar extension show disturbed sleep characteristics, possibly related to hypothalamic dysfunction. In addition to hypopituitarism, both structural hypothalamic damage and sleep restriction per se are associated with the metabolic syndrome. However, the prevalence of the metabolic syndrome in patients with NFMA is not well established. Our objective was to study the prevalence and risk factors for (components of) the metabolic syndrome in patients treated for NFMA.
Design
The metabolic syndrome (NCEP-ATP III criteria) was studied in an unselected cohort of 145 NFMA patients (aged 26–88yr, 44% female) in long-term remission after treatment, receiving adequate stable hormone replacement for any pituitary deficiencies. The results were compared to population data of 63,995 Dutch inhabitants by standardization (LifeLines cohort study).
Results
NFMA patients showed increased risk for reduced HDL-cholesterol (SMR 1.59, 95% CI 1.13–2.11), increased triglyceride levels (SMR 2.31, 95% CI 1.78–2.90) and the metabolic syndrome (SMR 1.60, 95% CI 1.22–2.02), but not for increased blood pressure, waist circumference or hyperglycemia. Preoperative visual field defects independently affected the risk for increased blood pressure (OR 6.5, 95% CI 1.9–22.2), and hypopituitarism was associated with a body mass index - dependent risk for increased waist circumference (OR 1.6, 95% CI 1.2–2.2) and the metabolic syndrome (OR 1.4, 95% CI 1.0–1.9).
Conclusions
Patients treated for NFMA are increased at risk for developing the metabolic syndrome, mainly due to decreased HDL-cholesterol and increased triglycerides. Risk factors included hypopituitarism and preoperative visual field defects. Hypothalamic dysfunction may explain the metabolic abnormalities, in addition to intrinsic imperfections of hormone replacement therapy. Additional research is required to explore the relation between derangements in circadian rhythmicity and metabolic syndrome in these patients.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0090602
PMCID: PMC3946551  PMID: 24608862
17.  Data harmonization and federated analysis of population-based studies: the BioSHaRE project 
Abstracts
Background
Individual-level data pooling of large population-based studies across research centres in international research projects faces many hurdles. The BioSHaRE (Biobank Standardisation and Harmonisation for Research Excellence in the European Union) project aims to address these issues by building a collaborative group of investigators and developing tools for data harmonization, database integration and federated data analyses.
Methods
Eight population-based studies in six European countries were recruited to participate in the BioSHaRE project. Through workshops, teleconferences and electronic communications, participating investigators identified a set of 96 variables targeted for harmonization to answer research questions of interest. Using each study’s questionnaires, standard operating procedures, and data dictionaries, harmonization potential was assessed. Whenever harmonization was deemed possible, processing algorithms were developed and implemented in an open-source software infrastructure to transform study-specific data into the target (i.e. harmonized) format. Harmonized datasets located on server in each research centres across Europe were interconnected through a federated database system to perform statistical analysis.
Results
Retrospective harmonization led to the generation of common format variables for 73% of matches considered (96 targeted variables across 8 studies). Authenticated investigators can now perform complex statistical analyses of harmonized datasets stored on distributed servers without actually sharing individual-level data using the DataSHIELD method.
Conclusion
New Internet-based networking technologies and database management systems are providing the means to support collaborative, multi-center research in an efficient and secure manner. The results from this pilot project show that, given a strong collaborative relationship between participating studies, it is possible to seamlessly co-analyse internationally harmonized research databases while allowing each study to retain full control over individual-level data. We encourage additional collaborative research networks in epidemiology, public health, and the social sciences to make use of the open source tools presented herein.
doi:10.1186/1742-7622-10-12
PMCID: PMC4175511  PMID: 24257327
18.  Circulating alpha-klotho levels are not disturbed in patients with type 2 diabetes with and without macrovascular disease in the absence of nephropathy 
Background
Diabetes is associated with a high incidence of macrovascular disease (MVD), including peripheral and coronary artery disease. Circulating soluble-Klotho (sKlotho) is produced in the kidney and is a putative anti-aging and vasculoprotective hormone. Reduced Klotho levels may therefore increase cardiovascular risk in diabetes. We investigated if sKlotho levels are decreased in type 2 diabetes and associate with MVD in the absence of diabetic nephropathy, and whether hyperglycemia affects renal Klotho production in vitro and in vivo.
Methods
sKlotho levels were determined with ELISA in diabetic and non-diabetic patients with and without MVD, and healthy control subjects. Human renal tubular epithelial cells (TECs) were isolated and exposed to high glucose levels (15 and 30 mM) in vitro and Klotho levels were measured with qPCR and quantitative immunofluorescence. Klotho mRNA expression was quantified in kidneys obtained from long term (3 and 8 months) diabetic Ins2Akita mice and normoglycemic control mice.
Results
No significant differences in sKlotho levels were observed between diabetic patients with and without MVD (527 (433–704) pg/mL, n = 35), non-diabetic MVD patients (517 (349–571) pg/mL, n = 27), and healthy control subjects (435 (346–663) pg/mL, n = 15). High glucose (15 and 30 mM) did not alter Klotho expression in TECs. Long-term hyperglycemia in diabetic Ins2Akita mice (characterized by increased HbA1c levels [12.9 ± 0.3% (3 months) and 11.3 ± 2.0% (8 months)], p < 0.05 vs. non-diabetic mice) did not affect renal Klotho mRNA expression.
Conclusions
These data indicate that sKlotho levels are not affected in type 2 diabetes patients with and without MVD. Furthermore, hyperglycemia per se does not affect renal Klotho production. As type 2 diabetes does not alter sKlotho levels, sKlotho does not seem to play a major role in the pathogenesis of MVD in type 2 diabetes.
doi:10.1186/1475-2840-12-116
PMCID: PMC3765553  PMID: 23945089
Atherosclerosis; Coronary artery disease; Klotho; Macrovascular disease; Peripheral artery disease; Type 2 diabetes
19.  Genome-wide association analyses identify 18 new loci associated with serum urate concentrations 
Köttgen, Anna | Albrecht, Eva | Teumer, Alexander | Vitart, Veronique | Krumsiek, Jan | Hundertmark, Claudia | Pistis, Giorgio | Ruggiero, Daniela | O’Seaghdha, Conall M | Haller, Toomas | Yang, Qiong | Tanaka, Toshiko | Johnson, Andrew D | Kutalik, Zoltán | Smith, Albert V | Shi, Julia | Struchalin, Maksim | Middelberg, Rita P S | Brown, Morris J | Gaffo, Angelo L | Pirastu, Nicola | Li, Guo | Hayward, Caroline | Zemunik, Tatijana | Huffman, Jennifer | Yengo, Loic | Zhao, Jing Hua | Demirkan, Ayse | Feitosa, Mary F | Liu, Xuan | Malerba, Giovanni | Lopez, Lorna M | van der Harst, Pim | Li, Xinzhong | Kleber, Marcus E | Hicks, Andrew A | Nolte, Ilja M | Johansson, Asa | Murgia, Federico | Wild, Sarah H | Bakker, Stephan J L | Peden, John F | Dehghan, Abbas | Steri, Maristella | Tenesa, Albert | Lagou, Vasiliki | Salo, Perttu | Mangino, Massimo | Rose, Lynda M | Lehtimäki, Terho | Woodward, Owen M | Okada, Yukinori | Tin, Adrienne | Müller, Christian | Oldmeadow, Christopher | Putku, Margus | Czamara, Darina | Kraft, Peter | Frogheri, Laura | Thun, Gian Andri | Grotevendt, Anne | Gislason, Gauti Kjartan | Harris, Tamara B | Launer, Lenore J | McArdle, Patrick | Shuldiner, Alan R | Boerwinkle, Eric | Coresh, Josef | Schmidt, Helena | Schallert, Michael | Martin, Nicholas G | Montgomery, Grant W | Kubo, Michiaki | Nakamura, Yusuke | Tanaka, Toshihiro | Munroe, Patricia B | Samani, Nilesh J | Jacobs, David R | Liu, Kiang | D’Adamo, Pio | Ulivi, Sheila | Rotter, Jerome I | Psaty, Bruce M | Vollenweider, Peter | Waeber, Gerard | Campbell, Susan | Devuyst, Olivier | Navarro, Pau | Kolcic, Ivana | Hastie, Nicholas | Balkau, Beverley | Froguel, Philippe | Esko, Tõnu | Salumets, Andres | Khaw, Kay Tee | Langenberg, Claudia | Wareham, Nicholas J | Isaacs, Aaron | Kraja, Aldi | Zhang, Qunyuan | Wild, Philipp S | Scott, Rodney J | Holliday, Elizabeth G | Org, Elin | Viigimaa, Margus | Bandinelli, Stefania | Metter, Jeffrey E | Lupo, Antonio | Trabetti, Elisabetta | Sorice, Rossella | Döring, Angela | Lattka, Eva | Strauch, Konstantin | Theis, Fabian | Waldenberger, Melanie | Wichmann, H-Erich | Davies, Gail | Gow, Alan J | Bruinenberg, Marcel | Study, LifeLines Cohort | Stolk, Ronald P | Kooner, Jaspal S | Zhang, Weihua | Winkelmann, Bernhard R | Boehm, Bernhard O | Lucae, Susanne | Penninx, Brenda W | Smit, Johannes H | Curhan, Gary | Mudgal, Poorva | Plenge, Robert M | Portas, Laura | Persico, Ivana | Kirin, Mirna | Wilson, James F | Leach, Irene Mateo | van Gilst, Wiek H | Goel, Anuj | Ongen, Halit | Hofman, Albert | Rivadeneira, Fernando | Uitterlinden, Andre G | Imboden, Medea | von Eckardstein, Arnold | Cucca, Francesco | Nagaraja, Ramaiah | Piras, Maria Grazia | Nauck, Matthias | Schurmann, Claudia | Budde, Kathrin | Ernst, Florian | Farrington, Susan M | Theodoratou, Evropi | Prokopenko, Inga | Stumvoll, Michael | Jula, Antti | Perola, Markus | Salomaa, Veikko | Shin, So-Youn | Spector, Tim D | Sala, Cinzia | Ridker, Paul M | Kähönen, Mika | Viikari, Jorma | Hengstenberg, Christian | Nelson, Christopher P | Consortium, CARDIoGRAM | Consortium, DIAGRAM | Consortium, ICBP | Consortium, MAGIC | Meschia, James F | Nalls, Michael A | Sharma, Pankaj | Singleton, Andrew B | Kamatani, Naoyuki | Zeller, Tanja | Burnier, Michel | Attia, John | Laan, Maris | Klopp, Norman | Hillege, Hans L | Kloiber, Stefan | Choi, Hyon | Pirastu, Mario | Tore, Silvia | Probst-Hensch, Nicole M | Völzke, Henry | Gudnason, Vilmundur | Parsa, Afshin | Schmidt, Reinhold | Whitfield, John B | Fornage, Myriam | Gasparini, Paolo | Siscovick, David S | Polašek, Ozren | Campbell, Harry | Rudan, Igor | Bouatia-Naji, Nabila | Metspalu, Andres | Loos, Ruth J F | van Duijn, Cornelia M | Borecki, Ingrid B | Ferrucci, Luigi | Gambaro, Giovanni | Deary, Ian J | Wolffenbuttel, Bruce H R | Chambers, John C | März, Winfried | Pramstaller, Peter P | Snieder, Harold | Gyllensten, Ulf | Wright, Alan F | Navis, Gerjan | Watkins, Hugh | Witteman, Jacqueline C M | Sanna, Serena | Schipf, Sabine | Dunlop, Malcolm G | Tönjes, Anke | Ripatti, Samuli | Soranzo, Nicole | Toniolo, Daniela | Chasman, Daniel I | Raitakari, Olli | Kao, W H Linda | Ciullo, Marina | Fox, Caroline S | Caulfield, Mark | Bochud, Murielle | Gieger, Christian
Nature genetics  2012;45(2):145-154.
Elevated serum urate concentrations can cause gout, a prevalent and painful inflammatory arthritis. By combining data from >140,000 individuals of European ancestry within the Global Urate Genetics Consortium (GUGC), we identified and replicated 28 genome-wide significant loci in association with serum urate concentrations (18 new regions in or near TRIM46, INHBB, SFMBT1, TMEM171, VEGFA, BAZ1B, PRKAG2, STC1, HNF4G, A1CF, ATXN2, UBE2Q2, IGF1R, NFAT5, MAF, HLF, ACVR1B-ACVRL1 and B3GNT4). Associations for many of the loci were of similar magnitude in individuals of non-European ancestry. We further characterized these loci for associations with gout, transcript expression and the fractional excretion of urate. Network analyses implicate the inhibins-activins signaling pathways and glucose metabolism in systemic urate control. New candidate genes for serum urate concentration highlight the importance of metabolic control of urate production and excretion, which may have implications for the treatment and prevention of gout.
doi:10.1038/ng.2500
PMCID: PMC3663712  PMID: 23263486
20.  Seventy-five genetic loci influencing the human red blood cell 
van der Harst, Pim | Zhang, Weihua | Leach, Irene Mateo | Rendon, Augusto | Verweij, Niek | Sehmi, Joban | Paul, Dirk S. | Elling, Ulrich | Allayee, Hooman | Li, Xinzhong | Radhakrishnan, Aparna | Tan, Sian-Tsung | Voss, Katrin | Weichenberger, Christian X. | Albers, Cornelis A. | Al-Hussani, Abtehale | Asselbergs, Folkert W. | Ciullo, Marina | Danjou, Fabrice | Dina, Christian | Esko, Tõnu | Evans, David M. | Franke, Lude | Gögele, Martin | Hartiala, Jaana | Hersch, Micha | Holm, Hilma | Hottenga, Jouke-Jan | Kanoni, Stavroula | Kleber, Marcus E. | Lagou, Vasiliki | Langenberg, Claudia | Lopez, Lorna M. | Lyytikäinen, Leo-Pekka | Melander, Olle | Murgia, Federico | Nolte, Ilja M. | O’Reilly, Paul F. | Padmanabhan, Sandosh | Parsa, Afshin | Pirastu, Nicola | Porcu, Eleonora | Portas, Laura | Prokopenko, Inga | Ried, Janina S. | Shin, So-Youn | Tang, Clara S. | Teumer, Alexander | Traglia, Michela | Ulivi, Sheila | Westra, Harm-Jan | Yang, Jian | Zhao, Jing Hua | Anni, Franco | Abdellaoui, Abdel | Attwood, Antony | Balkau, Beverley | Bandinelli, Stefania | Bastardot, François | Benyamin, Beben | Boehm, Bernhard O. | Cookson, William O. | Das, Debashish | de Bakker, Paul I. W. | de Boer, Rudolf A. | de Geus, Eco J. C. | de Moor, Marleen H. | Dimitriou, Maria | Domingues, Francisco S. | Döring, Angela | Engström, Gunnar | Eyjolfsson, Gudmundur Ingi | Ferrucci, Luigi | Fischer, Krista | Galanello, Renzo | Garner, Stephen F. | Genser, Bernd | Gibson, Quince D. | Girotto, Giorgia | Gudbjartsson, Daniel Fannar | Harris, Sarah E. | Hartikainen, Anna-Liisa | Hastie, Claire E. | Hedblad, Bo | Illig, Thomas | Jolley, Jennifer | Kähönen, Mika | Kema, Ido P. | Kemp, John P. | Liang, Liming | Lloyd-Jones, Heather | Loos, Ruth J. F. | Meacham, Stuart | Medland, Sarah E. | Meisinger, Christa | Memari, Yasin | Mihailov, Evelin | Miller, Kathy | Moffatt, Miriam F. | Nauck, Matthias | Novatchkova, Maria | Nutile, Teresa | Olafsson, Isleifur | Onundarson, Pall T. | Parracciani, Debora | Penninx, Brenda W. | Perseu, Lucia | Piga, Antonio | Pistis, Giorgio | Pouta, Anneli | Puc, Ursula | Raitakari, Olli | Ring, Susan M. | Robino, Antonietta | Ruggiero, Daniela | Ruokonen, Aimo | Saint-Pierre, Aude | Sala, Cinzia | Salumets, Andres | Sambrook, Jennifer | Schepers, Hein | Schmidt, Carsten Oliver | Silljé, Herman H. W. | Sladek, Rob | Smit, Johannes H. | Starr, John M. | Stephens, Jonathan | Sulem, Patrick | Tanaka, Toshiko | Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur | Tragante, Vinicius | van Gilst, Wiek H. | van Pelt, L. Joost | van Veldhuisen, Dirk J. | Völker, Uwe | Whitfield, John B. | Willemsen, Gonneke | Winkelmann, Bernhard R. | Wirnsberger, Gerald | Algra, Ale | Cucca, Francesco | d’Adamo, Adamo Pio | Danesh, John | Deary, Ian J. | Dominiczak, Anna F. | Elliott, Paul | Fortina, Paolo | Froguel, Philippe | Gasparini, Paolo | Greinacher, Andreas | Hazen, Stanley L. | Jarvelin, Marjo-Riitta | Khaw, Kay Tee | Lehtimäki, Terho | Maerz, Winfried | Martin, Nicholas G. | Metspalu, Andres | Mitchell, Braxton D. | Montgomery, Grant W. | Moore, Carmel | Navis, Gerjan | Pirastu, Mario | Pramstaller, Peter P. | Ramirez-Solis, Ramiro | Schadt, Eric | Scott, James | Shuldiner, Alan R. | Smith, George Davey | Smith, J. Gustav | Snieder, Harold | Sorice, Rossella | Spector, Tim D. | Stefansson, Kari | Stumvoll, Michael | Wilson Tang, W. H. | Toniolo, Daniela | Tönjes, Anke | Visscher, Peter M. | Vollenweider, Peter | Wareham, Nicholas J. | Wolffenbuttel, Bruce H. R. | Boomsma, Dorret I. | Beckmann, Jacques S. | Dedoussis, George V. | Deloukas, Panos | Ferreira, Manuel A. | Sanna, Serena | Uda, Manuela | Hicks, Andrew A. | Penninger, Josef Martin | Gieger, Christian | Kooner, Jaspal S. | Ouwehand, Willem H. | Soranzo, Nicole | Chambers, John C
Nature  2012;492(7429):369-375.
Anaemia is a chief determinant of globalill health, contributing to cognitive impairment, growth retardation and impaired physical capacity. To understand further the genetic factors influencing red blood cells, we carried out a genome-wide association study of haemoglobin concentration and related parameters in up to 135,367 individuals. Here we identify 75 independent genetic loci associated with one or more red blood cell phenotypes at P <10−8, which together explain 4–9% of the phenotypic variance per trait. Using expression quantitative trait loci and bioinformatic strategies, we identify 121 candidate genes enriched in functions relevant to red blood cell biology. The candidate genes are expressed preferentially in red blood cell precursors, and 43 have haematopoietic phenotypes in Mus musculus or Drosophila melanogaster. Through open-chromatin and coding-variant analyses we identify potential causal genetic variants at 41 loci. Our findings provide extensive new insights into genetic mechanisms and biological pathways controlling red blood cell formation and function.
doi:10.1038/nature11677
PMCID: PMC3623669  PMID: 23222517
21.  A Meta-Analysis of Thyroid-Related Traits Reveals Novel Loci and Gender-Specific Differences in the Regulation of Thyroid Function 
Porcu, Eleonora | Medici, Marco | Pistis, Giorgio | Volpato, Claudia B. | Wilson, Scott G. | Cappola, Anne R. | Bos, Steffan D. | Deelen, Joris | den Heijer, Martin | Freathy, Rachel M. | Lahti, Jari | Liu, Chunyu | Lopez, Lorna M. | Nolte, Ilja M. | O'Connell, Jeffrey R. | Tanaka, Toshiko | Trompet, Stella | Arnold, Alice | Bandinelli, Stefania | Beekman, Marian | Böhringer, Stefan | Brown, Suzanne J. | Buckley, Brendan M. | Camaschella, Clara | de Craen, Anton J. M. | Davies, Gail | de Visser, Marieke C. H. | Ford, Ian | Forsen, Tom | Frayling, Timothy M. | Fugazzola, Laura | Gögele, Martin | Hattersley, Andrew T. | Hermus, Ad R. | Hofman, Albert | Houwing-Duistermaat, Jeanine J. | Jensen, Richard A. | Kajantie, Eero | Kloppenburg, Margreet | Lim, Ee M. | Masciullo, Corrado | Mariotti, Stefano | Minelli, Cosetta | Mitchell, Braxton D. | Nagaraja, Ramaiah | Netea-Maier, Romana T. | Palotie, Aarno | Persani, Luca | Piras, Maria G. | Psaty, Bruce M. | Räikkönen, Katri | Richards, J. Brent | Rivadeneira, Fernando | Sala, Cinzia | Sabra, Mona M. | Sattar, Naveed | Shields, Beverley M. | Soranzo, Nicole | Starr, John M. | Stott, David J. | Sweep, Fred C. G. J. | Usala, Gianluca | van der Klauw, Melanie M. | van Heemst, Diana | van Mullem, Alies | H.Vermeulen, Sita | Visser, W. Edward | Walsh, John P. | Westendorp, Rudi G. J. | Widen, Elisabeth | Zhai, Guangju | Cucca, Francesco | Deary, Ian J. | Eriksson, Johan G. | Ferrucci, Luigi | Fox, Caroline S. | Jukema, J. Wouter | Kiemeney, Lambertus A. | Pramstaller, Peter P. | Schlessinger, David | Shuldiner, Alan R. | Slagboom, Eline P. | Uitterlinden, André G. | Vaidya, Bijay | Visser, Theo J. | Wolffenbuttel, Bruce H. R. | Meulenbelt, Ingrid | Rotter, Jerome I. | Spector, Tim D. | Hicks, Andrew A. | Toniolo, Daniela | Sanna, Serena | Peeters, Robin P. | Naitza, Silvia
PLoS Genetics  2013;9(2):e1003266.
Thyroid hormone is essential for normal metabolism and development, and overt abnormalities in thyroid function lead to common endocrine disorders affecting approximately 10% of individuals over their life span. In addition, even mild alterations in thyroid function are associated with weight changes, atrial fibrillation, osteoporosis, and psychiatric disorders. To identify novel variants underlying thyroid function, we performed a large meta-analysis of genome-wide association studies for serum levels of the highly heritable thyroid function markers TSH and FT4, in up to 26,420 and 17,520 euthyroid subjects, respectively. Here we report 26 independent associations, including several novel loci for TSH (PDE10A, VEGFA, IGFBP5, NFIA, SOX9, PRDM11, FGF7, INSR, ABO, MIR1179, NRG1, MBIP, ITPK1, SASH1, GLIS3) and FT4 (LHX3, FOXE1, AADAT, NETO1/FBXO15, LPCAT2/CAPNS2). Notably, only limited overlap was detected between TSH and FT4 associated signals, in spite of the feedback regulation of their circulating levels by the hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid axis. Five of the reported loci (PDE8B, PDE10A, MAF/LOC440389, NETO1/FBXO15, and LPCAT2/CAPNS2) show strong gender-specific differences, which offer clues for the known sexual dimorphism in thyroid function and related pathologies. Importantly, the TSH-associated loci contribute not only to variation within the normal range, but also to TSH values outside the reference range, suggesting that they may be involved in thyroid dysfunction. Overall, our findings explain, respectively, 5.64% and 2.30% of total TSH and FT4 trait variance, and they improve the current knowledge of the regulation of hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid axis function and the consequences of genetic variation for hypo- or hyperthyroidism.
Author Summary
Levels of thyroid hormones are tightly regulated by TSH produced in the pituitary, and even mild alterations in their concentrations are strong indicators of thyroid pathologies, which are very common worldwide. To identify common genetic variants associated with the highly heritable markers of thyroid function, TSH and FT4, we conducted a meta-analysis of genome-wide association studies in 26,420 and 17,520 individuals, respectively, of European ancestry with normal thyroid function. Our analysis identified 26 independent genetic variants regulating these traits, several of which are new, and confirmed previously detected polymorphisms affecting TSH (within the PDE8B gene and near CAPZB, MAF/LOC440389, and NR3C2) and FT4 (within DIO1) levels. Gender-specific differences in the genetic effects of several variants for TSH and FT4 levels were identified at several loci, which offer clues to understand the known sexual dimorphism in thyroid function and pathology. Of particular clinical interest, we show that TSH-associated loci contribute not only to normal variation, but also to TSH values outside reference range, suggesting that they may be involved in thyroid dysfunction. Overall, our findings add to the developing landscape of the regulation of thyroid homeostasis and the consequences of genetic variation for thyroid related diseases.
doi:10.1371/journal.pgen.1003266
PMCID: PMC3567175  PMID: 23408906
22.  Genome-wide association study identifies loci influencing concentrations of liver enzymes in plasma 
Chambers, John C | Zhang, Weihua | Sehmi, Joban | Li, Xinzhong | Wass, Mark N | Van der Harst, Pim | Holm, Hilma | Sanna, Serena | Kavousi, Maryam | Baumeister, Sebastian E | Coin, Lachlan J | Deng, Guohong | Gieger, Christian | Heard-Costa, Nancy L | Hottenga, Jouke-Jan | Kühnel, Brigitte | Kumar, Vinod | Lagou, Vasiliki | Liang, Liming | Luan, Jian’an | Vidal, Pedro Marques | Leach, Irene Mateo | O’Reilly, Paul F | Peden, John F | Rahmioglu, Nilufer | Soininen, Pasi | Speliotes, Elizabeth K | Yuan, Xin | Thorleifsson, Gudmar | Alizadeh, Behrooz Z | Atwood, Larry D | Borecki, Ingrid B | Brown, Morris J | Charoen, Pimphen | Cucca, Francesco | Das, Debashish | de Geus, Eco J C | Dixon, Anna L | Döring, Angela | Ehret, Georg | Eyjolfsson, Gudmundur I | Farrall, Martin | Forouhi, Nita G | Friedrich, Nele | Goessling, Wolfram | Gudbjartsson, Daniel F | Harris, Tamara B | Hartikainen, Anna-Liisa | Heath, Simon | Hirschfield, Gideon M | Hofman, Albert | Homuth, Georg | Hyppönen, Elina | Janssen, Harry L A | Johnson, Toby | Kangas, Antti J | Kema, Ido P | Kühn, Jens P | Lai, Sandra | Lathrop, Mark | Lerch, Markus M | Li, Yun | Liang, T Jake | Lin, Jing-Ping | Loos, Ruth J F | Martin, Nicholas G | Moffatt, Miriam F | Montgomery, Grant W | Munroe, Patricia B | Musunuru, Kiran | Nakamura, Yusuke | O’Donnell, Christopher J | Olafsson, Isleifur | Penninx, Brenda W | Pouta, Anneli | Prins, Bram P | Prokopenko, Inga | Puls, Ralf | Ruokonen, Aimo | Savolainen, Markku J | Schlessinger, David | Schouten, Jeoffrey N L | Seedorf, Udo | Sen-Chowdhry, Srijita | Siminovitch, Katherine A | Smit, Johannes H | Spector, Timothy D | Tan, Wenting | Teslovich, Tanya M | Tukiainen, Taru | Uitterlinden, Andre G | Van der Klauw, Melanie M | Vasan, Ramachandran S | Wallace, Chris | Wallaschofski, Henri | Wichmann, H-Erich | Willemsen, Gonneke | Würtz, Peter | Xu, Chun | Yerges-Armstrong, Laura M | Abecasis, Goncalo R | Ahmadi, Kourosh R | Boomsma, Dorret I | Caulfield, Mark | Cookson, William O | van Duijn, Cornelia M | Froguel, Philippe | Matsuda, Koichi | McCarthy, Mark I | Meisinger, Christa | Mooser, Vincent | Pietiläinen, Kirsi H | Schumann, Gunter | Snieder, Harold | Sternberg, Michael J E | Stolk, Ronald P | Thomas, Howard C | Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur | Uda, Manuela | Waeber, Gérard | Wareham, Nicholas J | Waterworth, Dawn M | Watkins, Hugh | Whitfield, John B | Witteman, Jacqueline C M | Wolffenbuttel, Bruce H R | Fox, Caroline S | Ala-Korpela, Mika | Stefansson, Kari | Vollenweider, Peter | Völzke, Henry | Schadt, Eric E | Scott, James | Järvelin, Marjo-Riitta | Elliott, Paul | Kooner, Jaspal S
Nature genetics  2011;43(11):1131-1138.
Concentrations of liver enzymes in plasma are widely used as indicators of liver disease. We carried out a genome-wide association study in 61,089 individuals, identifying 42 loci associated with concentrations of liver enzymes in plasma, of which 32 are new associations (P = 10−8 to P = 10−190). We used functional genomic approaches including metabonomic profiling and gene expression analyses to identify probable candidate genes at these regions. We identified 69 candidate genes, including genes involved in biliary transport (ATP8B1 and ABCB11), glucose, carbohydrate and lipid metabolism (FADS1, FADS2, GCKR, JMJD1C, HNF1A, MLXIPL, PNPLA3, PPP1R3B, SLC2A2 and TRIB1), glycoprotein biosynthesis and cell surface glycobiology (ABO, ASGR1, FUT2, GPLD1 and ST3GAL4), inflammation and immunity (CD276, CDH6, GCKR, HNF1A, HPR, ITGA1, RORA and STAT4) and glutathione metabolism (GSTT1, GSTT2 and GGT), as well as several genes of uncertain or unknown function (including ABHD12, EFHD1, EFNA1, EPHA2, MICAL3 and ZNF827). Our results provide new insight into genetic mechanisms and pathways influencing markers of liver function.
doi:10.1038/ng.970
PMCID: PMC3482372  PMID: 22001757
23.  Metformin in non-Diabetic Patients Presenting with ST Elevation Myocardial Infarction: Rationale and Design of the Glycometabolic Intervention as Adjunct to Primary Percutaneous Intervention in ST Elevation Myocardial Infarction (GIPS)-III Trial 
Cardiovascular Drugs and Therapy  2012;26(5):417-426.
Background
Left ventricular dysfunction and the development of heart failure is a frequent and serious complication of myocardial infarction. Recent animal experimental studies suggested that metformin treatment reduces myocardial injury and preserves cardiac function in non-diabetic rats after experimental myocardial infarction. We will study the efficacy of metformin with the aim to preserve left ventricular ejection fraction in non-diabetic patients presenting with ST elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI).
Methods
The Glycometabolic Intervention as adjunct to Primary percutaneous intervention in ST elevation myocardial infarction (GIPS)-III trial is a prospective, single center, double blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial. Three-hundred-and-fifty patients, without diabetes, requiring primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) for STEMI will be randomized to metformin 500 mg twice daily or placebo treatment and will undergo magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) after 4 months. Major exclusion criteria were prior myocardial infarction and severe renal dysfunction. The primary efficacy parameter is left ventricular ejection fraction 4 months after randomization. Secondary and tertiary efficacy parameters include major adverse cardiac events, new onset diabetes and glycometabolic parameters, and echocardiographic diastolic function. Safety parameters include renal function deterioration and lactic acidosis.
Conclusions
The GIPS-III trial will evaluate the efficacy of metformin treatment to preserve left ventricular ejection fraction in STEMI patients without diabetes.
doi:10.1007/s10557-012-6413-1
PMCID: PMC3464381  PMID: 22968678
ST-elevation myocardial infarction; Metformin; Left ventricular ejection fraction; Heart failure; Cardiac remodeling
24.  Differential Effects of Comorbidity on Antihypertensive and Glucose-Regulating Treatment in Diabetes Mellitus – A Cohort Study 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(6):e38707.
Background
Comorbidity is often mentioned as interfering with “optimal” treatment decisions in diabetes care. It is suggested that diabetes-related comorbidity will increase adequate treatment, whereas diabetes-unrelated comorbidity may decrease this process of care. We hypothesized that these effects differ according to expected priority of the conditions.
Methods
We evaluated the relationship between comorbidity and treatment intensification in a study of 11,248 type 2 diabetes patients using the GIANTT (Groningen Initiative to Analyse type 2 diabetes Treatment) database. We formed a cohort of patients with a systolic blood pressure ≥140 mmHg (6,820 hypertensive diabetics), and a cohort of patients with an HbA1c ≥7% (3,589 hyperglycemic diabetics) in 2007. We differentiated comorbidity by diabetes-related or unrelated conditions and by priority. High priority conditions include conditions that are life-interfering, incident or requiring new medication treatment. We performed Cox regression analyses to assess association with treatment intensification, defined as dose increase, start, or addition of drugs.
Results
In both the hypertensive and hyperglycemic cohort, only patients with incident diabetes-related comorbidity had a higher chance of treatment intensification (HR 4.48, 2.33–8.62 (p<0.001) for hypertensives; HR 2.37, 1.09–5.17 (p = 0.030) for hyperglycemics). Intensification of hypertension treatment was less likely when a new glucose-regulating drug was prescribed (HR 0.24, 0.06–0.97 (p = 0.046)). None of the prevalent or unrelated comorbidity was significantly associated with treatment intensification.
Conclusions
Diabetes-related comorbidity induced better risk factor treatment only for incident cases, implying that appropriate care is provided more often when complications occur. Diabetes-unrelated comorbidity did not affect hypertension or hyperglycemia management, even when it was incident or life-interfering. Thus, the observed “undertreatment” in diabetes care cannot be explained by constraints caused by such comorbidity.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0038707
PMCID: PMC3367971  PMID: 22679516
25.  The DURAbility of Basal versus Lispro mix 75/25 insulin Efficacy (DURABLE) Trial 
Diabetes Care  2011;34(2):249-255.
OBJECTIVE
This study compared the durability of glycemic control of twice-daily insulin lispro mix 75/25 (LM75/25: 75% insulin lispro protamine suspension/25% lispro) and once-daily insulin glargine, added to oral antihyperglycemic drugs in type 2 diabetes patients.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
During the initiation phase, patients were randomized to LM75/25 or glargine. After 6 months, patients with A1C ≤7.0% advanced to the maintenance phase for ≤24 months. The primary objective was the between-group comparison of duration of maintaining the A1C goal.
RESULTS
Of 900 patients receiving LM75/25 and 918 patients receiving glargine who completed initiation, 473 and 419, respectively, had A1C ≤7.0% and continued into maintenance. Baseline characteristics except age were similar in this group. Median time of maintaining the A1C goal was 16.8 months for LM75/25 (95% CI 14.0–19.7) and 14.4 months for glargine (95% CI 13.4–16.8; P = 0.040). A1C goal was maintained in 202 LM75/25-treated patients (43%) and in 147 glargine-treated patients (35%; P = 0.006). No differences were observed in overall, nocturnal, or severe hypoglycemia. LM75/25 patients had higher total daily insulin dose (0.45 ± 0.21 vs. 0.37 ± 0.21 units/kg/day) and more weight gain (5.4 ± 5.8 vs. 3.7 ± 5.6 kg) from baseline. Patients taking LM75/25 and glargine with lower baseline A1C levels were more likely to maintain the A1C goal (P = 0.043 and P < 0.001, respectively).
CONCLUSIONS
A modestly longer durability of glycemic control was achieved with LM75/25 compared with glargine. Patients with lower baseline A1C levels were more likely to maintain the goal, supporting the concept of earlier insulin initiation.
doi:10.2337/dc10-1701
PMCID: PMC3024329  PMID: 21270182

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