ABSTRACT: Individuals of African descent in the United States suffer disproportionately from diseases with a metabolic etiology (obesity, metabolic syndrome, and diabetes), and from the pathological consequences of these disorders (hypertension and cardiovascular disease).
Using a combination of genetic/genomic and bioinformatics approaches, we identified a large number of genes that were both differentially expressed between American subjects self-identified to be of either African or European ancestry and that also contained single nucleotide polymorphisms that distinguish distantly related ancestral populations. Several of these genes control the metabolism of simple carbohydrates and are direct targets for the SREBP1, a metabolic transcription factor also differentially expressed between our study populations.
These data support the concept of stable patterns of gene transcription unique to a geographic ancestral lineage. Differences in expression of several carbohydrate metabolism genes suggest both genetic and transcriptional mechanisms contribute to these patterns and may play a role in exacerbating the disproportionate levels of obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease observed in Americans with African ancestry.
PLoS ONE 01/2009; 4(12):e8183. · 4.09 Impact Factor
04/2008: pages 233 - 244; , ISBN: 9780470692608
ABSTRACT: Strong epidemiologic evidence correlates tobacco use with a variety of serious adverse health effects, but the biological mechanisms that produce these effects remain elusive.
We analyzed gene transcription data to identify expression spectra related to tobacco use in circulating leukocytes of 67 Caucasian male subjects. Levels of cotinine, a nicotine metabolite, were used as a surrogate marker for tobacco exposure. Significance Analysis of Microarray and Gene Set Analysis identified 109 genes in 16 gene sets whose transcription levels were differentially regulated by nicotine exposure. We subsequently analyzed this gene set by hyperclustering, a technique that allows the data to be clustered by both expression ratio and gene annotation (e.g. Gene Ontologies).
Our results demonstrate that tobacco use affects transcription of groups of genes that are involved in proliferation and apoptosis in circulating leukocytes. These transcriptional effects include a repertoire of transcriptional changes likely to increase the incidence of neoplasia through an altered expression of genes associated with transcription and signaling, interferon responses and repression of apoptotic pathways.
BMC Medical Genomics 02/2008; 1:38. · 3.69 Impact Factor