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1.  Genome-wide Scan of African-American and White Families for Linkage to Myopia 
American journal of ophthalmology  2008;147(3):512-517.e2.
To identify myopia susceptibility genes influencing common myopia in 94 African-American and 36 White families.
A prospective study of families with myopia consisting of a minimum of two individuals affected with myopia.
Extended families consisting of at least two siblings affected with myopia were ascertained. A genome-wide linkage scan using 387 markers was conducted by the Center for Inherited Disease Research. Linkage analyses were conducted with parametric and nonparametric methods. Model-free linkage analysis was performed maximizing over penetrance and over dominance (that is, fitting a wide range of both dominant and recessive models).
Under the model-free analysis, the maximum two point heterogeneity logarithm of the odds score (MALOD) was 2.87 at D6S1009 in the White cohort and the maximum multipoint MALOD was 2.42 at D12S373-D12S1042 in the same cohort. The nonpara-metric linkage (NPL) maximum multipoint at D6S1035 had a P value of .005. An overall multipoint NPL score was obtained by combining NPL scores from both populations. The highest combined NPL score was observed at D20S478 with a significant P value of .008. Suggestive evidence of linkage in the White cohort mapped to a previously mapped locus on chromosome 11 at D11S1981 (NPL = 2.14; P = .02).
Suggestive evidence of linkage to myopia in both African Americans and Whites was seen on chromosome 20 and became more significant when the scores were combined for both groups. The locus on chromosome 11 independently confirms a report by Hammond and associates mapping a myopia quantitative trait locus to this region.
PMCID: PMC4152232  PMID: 19026404
2.  Current Gene Discovery Strategies for Ocular Conditions 
PMCID: PMC3183987  PMID: 21960645
3.  Genomewide scan in Ashkenazi Jewish families demonstrates evidence of linkage of ocular refraction to a QTL on chromosome 1p36 
Human genetics  2006;119(4):389-399.
The development of refractive error is mediated by both environmental and genetic factors. We performed regression-based quantitative trait locus (QTL) linkage analysis on Ashkenazi Jewish families to identify regions in the genome responsible for ocular refraction. We measured refractive error on individuals in 49 multi-generational American families of Ashkenazi Jewish descent. The average family size was 11.1 individuals and was composed of 2.7 generations. Recruitment criteria specified that each family contain at least two myopic members. The mean spherical equivalent refractive error in the sample was −3.46D (SD=3.29) and 87% of individuals were myopic. Microsatellite genotyping with 387 markers was performed on 411 individuals. We performed multipoint regression-based linkage analysis for ocular refraction and a log transformation of the trait using the statistical package Merlin-Regress. Empirical genomewide significance levels were estimated through gene-dropping simulations by generating random genotypes at each of the 387 markers in 200 replicates of our pedigrees. Maximum LOD scores of 9.5 for ocular refraction and 8.7 for log-transformed refraction (LTR) were observed at 49.1 cM on chromosome 1p36 between markers D1S552 and D1S1622. The empirical genomewide significance levels were P=0.065 for ocular refraction and P<0.005 for LTR, providing strong evidence for linkage of refraction to this locus. The inter-marker region containing the peak spans 11 Mb and contains approximately 189 genes. Conclusion: We found genomewide significant evidence for linkage of refractive error to a novel QTL on chromosome 1p36 in an Ashkenazi Jewish population.
PMCID: PMC3123998  PMID: 16501916
4.  Genomewide Scan of Ocular Refraction in African-American Families Shows Significant Linkage to Chromosome 7p15 
Genetic epidemiology  2008;32(5):454-463.
Refractive development is influenced by environmental and genetic factors. Genetic studies have identified several regions of linkage to ocular refraction, but none have been carried out in African-derived populations. We performed quantitative trait locus linkage analyses in African-American (AA) families to identify genomic regions responsible for refraction. We recruited 493 AA individuals in 96 families to participate in the Myopia Family Study. Genotyping of 387 microsatellite markers was performed on 398 participants. The mean refraction among genotyped individuals was −2.87 D (SD = 3.58) and myopia of at least 1 D was present in 267 (68%) participants. Multipoint, regression-based, linkage analyses were carried out on a logarithmic transformation of ocular refraction using the statistical package MERLIN-REGRESS. Empirical significance levels were determined via 4,898 whole-genome gene-dropping simulations. Linkage analyses were repeated after clustering families into two subgroups based on admixture proportions as determined by the software package STRUCTURE. Genomewide significant linkage was seen at 47 cM on chromosome 7 (logarithm of the odds ratio (LOD) = 5.87, P = 0.00005). In addition, three regions on chromosomes 2p, 3p and 10p showed suggestive evidence of linkage (LOD > 2, P < 0.005) for ocular refraction. We mapped the first quantitative trait locus for ocular refraction in an AA population to chr.7p15. Two previous studies in European-derived families reported some evidence of linkage to a nearby region, suggesting that this region may contain polymorphisms that mediate refraction across populations. The genomic region under our linkage peak spans ~17 Mb and contains ~170 genes. Further refinement of this region will be pursued in future studies.
PMCID: PMC3097031  PMID: 18293391
ocular refraction; myopia; linkage; genetics; African-American
5.  Dissecting the genetic heterogeneity of myopia susceptibility in an Ashkenazi Jewish population using ordered subset analysis 
Molecular Vision  2011;17:1641-1651.
Despite many years of research, most of the genetic factors contributing to myopia development remain unknown. Genetic studies have pointed to a strong inherited component, but although many candidate regions have been implicated, few genes have been positively identified.
We have previously reported 2 genomewide linkage scans in a population of 63 highly aggregated Ashkenazi Jewish families that identified a locus on chromosome 22. Here we used ordered subset analysis (OSA), conditioned on non-parametric linkage to chromosome 22 to detect other chromosomal regions which had evidence of linkage to myopia in subsets of the families, but not the overall sample.
Strong evidence of linkage to a 19-cM linkage interval with a peak OSA nonparametric allele-sharing logarithm-of-odds (LOD) score of 3.14 on 20p12-q11.1 (ΔLOD=2.39, empirical p=0.029) was identified in a subset of 20 families that also exhibited strong evidence of linkage to chromosome 22. One other locus also presented with suggestive LOD scores >2.0 on chromosome 11p14-q14 and one locus on chromosome 6q22-q24 had an OSA LOD score=1.76 (ΔLOD=1.65, empirical p=0.02).
The chromosome 6 and 20 loci are entirely novel and appear linked in a subset of families whose myopia is known to be linked to chromosome 22. The chromosome 11 locus overlaps with the known Myopia-7 (MYP7, OMIM 609256) locus. Using ordered subset analysis allows us to find additional loci linked to myopia in subsets of families, and underlines the complex genetic heterogeneity of myopia even in highly aggregated families and genetically isolated populations such as the Ashkenazi Jews.
PMCID: PMC3123157  PMID: 21738393
6.  Genomewide Linkage Scans for Ocular Refraction and Meta-analysis of Four Populations in the Myopia Family Study 
Genomewide linkage scans were performed in Caucasian (CAUC) and Old Order Amish (OOA) families to identify genomic regions containing genes responsible for refractive error control. We also performed a meta-analysis by combining these results with our previous linkage results from Ashkenazi Jewish (ASHK) and African American (AFRAM) families.
Two hundred seventy-one CAUC and 411 OOA participants (36 and 61 families, respectively) were recruited to participate in the Myopia Family Study. Recruitment criteria were designed to enrich the sample for multiplex myopic families. Genomewide, model-free, multipoint linkage analyses were performed separately for each population by using >370 microsatellite markers. Empirical significance levels were determined via gene-dropping simulations. A meta-analysis was performed by combining linkage results from the CAUC, OOA, AFRAM, and ASHK samples, and results were compared to previously reported loci for myopia and refraction.
Suggestive evidence of linkage was found at 12q24 (LOD = 4.583, P = 0.00037) and 4q21 (LOD = 2.72, P = 0.0028) in the CAUC sample and at 5qter (LOD = 3.271, P = 0.0014) in the OOA. Meta-analysis linkage results were largely driven by population-specific signals from ASHK and AFRAM families. The meta-analysis showed suggestive evidence of linkage to 4q21-22 (meta-P = 0.00214) adjacent to the previously reported MYP9 and MYP11 loci.
The results showed suggestive evidence of linkage of ocular refraction to 12q24 and 4q21 in CAUC and to 5qter in OOA families. The meta-analysis supports the view that several genes play a role in refractive development across populations. In MFS families, four broad genomic regions (on 1p, 4q, 7p, and 12q) most likely contain genes that influence ocular refraction.
PMCID: PMC2885973  PMID: 19151385
7.  Identification of tag single-nucleotide polymorphisms in regions with varying linkage disequilibrium 
BMC Genetics  2005;6(Suppl 1):S73.
We compared seven different tagging single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) programs in 10 regions with varied amounts of linkage disequilibrium (LD) and physical distance. We used the Collaborative Studies on the Genetics of Alcoholism dataset, part of the Genetic Analysis Workshop 14. We show that in regions with moderate to strong LD these programs are relatively consistent, despite different parameters and methods. In addition, we compared the selected SNPs in a multipoint linkage analysis for one region with strong LD. As the number of selected SNPs increased, the LOD score, mean information content, and type I error also increased.
PMCID: PMC1866708  PMID: 16451687
8.  GeneLink: a database to facilitate genetic studies of complex traits 
BMC Genomics  2004;5:81.
In contrast to gene-mapping studies of simple Mendelian disorders, genetic analyses of complex traits are far more challenging, and high quality data management systems are often critical to the success of these projects. To minimize the difficulties inherent in complex trait studies, we have developed GeneLink, a Web-accessible, password-protected Sybase database.
GeneLink is a powerful tool for complex trait mapping, enabling genotypic data to be easily merged with pedigree and extensive phenotypic data. Specifically designed to facilitate large-scale (multi-center) genetic linkage or association studies, GeneLink securely and efficiently handles large amounts of data and provides additional features to facilitate data analysis by existing software packages and quality control. These include the ability to download chromosome-specific data files containing marker data in map order in various formats appropriate for downstream analyses (e.g., GAS and LINKAGE). Furthermore, an unlimited number of phenotypes (either qualitative or quantitative) can be stored and analyzed. Finally, GeneLink generates several quality assurance reports, including genotyping success rates of specified DNA samples or success and heterozygosity rates for specified markers.
GeneLink has already proven an invaluable tool for complex trait mapping studies and is discussed primarily in the context of our large, multi-center study of hereditary prostate cancer (HPC). GeneLink is freely available at .
PMCID: PMC526767  PMID: 15491493
9.  Candidate high myopia loci on chromosomes 18p and 12q do not play a major role in susceptibility to common myopia 
BMC Medical Genetics  2004;5:20.
To determine whether previously reported loci predisposing to nonsyndromic high myopia show linkage to common myopia in pedigrees from two ethnic groups: Ashkenazi Jewish and Amish. We hypothesized that these high myopia loci might exhibit allelic heterogeneity and be responsible for moderate /mild or common myopia.
Cycloplegic and manifest refraction were performed on 38 Jewish and 40 Amish families. Individuals with at least -1.00 D in each meridian of both eyes were classified as myopic. Genomic DNA was genotyped with 12 markers on chromosomes 12q21-23 and 18p11.3. Parametric and nonparametric linkage analyses were conducted to determine whether susceptibility alleles at these loci are important in families with less severe, clinical forms of myopia.
There was no strong evidence of linkage of common myopia to these candidate regions: all two-point and multipoint heterogeneity LOD scores were < 1.0 and non-parametric linkage p-values were > 0.01. However, one Amish family showed slight evidence of linkage (LOD>1.0) on 12q; another 3 Amish families each gave LOD >1.0 on 18p; and 3 Jewish families each gave LOD >1.0 on 12q.
Significant evidence of linkage (LOD> 3) of myopia was not found on chromosome 18p or 12q loci in these families. These results suggest that these loci do not play a major role in the causation of common myopia in our families studied.
PMCID: PMC512288  PMID: 15291966
10.  Importance sampling method of correction for multiple testing in affected sib-pair linkage analysis 
BMC Genetics  2003;4(Suppl 1):S73.
Using the Genetic Analysis Workshop 13 simulated data set, we compared the technique of importance sampling to several other methods designed to adjust p-values for multiple testing: the Bonferroni correction, the method proposed by Feingold et al., and naïve Monte Carlo simulation. We performed affected sib-pair linkage analysis for each of the 100 replicates for each of five binary traits and adjusted the derived p-values using each of the correction methods. The type I error rates for each correction method and the ability of each of the methods to detect loci known to influence trait values were compared. All of the methods considered were conservative with respect to type I error, especially the Bonferroni method. The ability of these methods to detect trait loci was also low. However, this may be partially due to a limitation inherent in our binary trait definitions.
PMCID: PMC1866512  PMID: 14975141

Results 1-10 (10)