[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Ashkenazi Jewish population has a several-fold higher prevalence of Crohn's disease (CD) compared with non-Jewish European ancestry populations and has a unique genetic history. Haplotype association is critical to CD etiology in this population, most notably at NOD2, in which three causal, uncommon and conditionally independent NOD2 variants reside on a shared background haplotype. We present an analysis of extended haplotypes that showed significantly greater association to CD in the Ashkenazi Jewish population compared with a non-Jewish population (145 haplotypes and no haplotypes with P-value <10(-3), respectively). Two haplotype regions, one each on chromosomes 16 and 21, conferred increased disease risk within established CD loci. We performed exome sequencing of 55 Ashkenazi Jewish individuals and follow-up genotyping focused on variants in these two regions. We observed Ashkenazi Jewish-specific nominal association at R755C in TRPM2 on chromosome 21. Within the chromosome 16 region, R642S of HEATR3 and rs9922362 of BRD7 showed genome-wide significance. Expression studies of HEATR3 demonstrated a positive role in NOD2-mediated NF-κB signaling. The BRD7 signal showed conditional dependence with only the downstream rare CD-causal variants in NOD2, but not with the background haplotype; this elaborates NOD2 as a key illustration of synthetic association.Genes and Immunity advance online publication, 25 April 2013; doi:10.1038/gene.2013.19.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVES:In classifying Crohn's disease (CD) location, proximal (L4) disease includes esophagogastroduodenal (EGD) and jejunal disease. Our aim was to determine the influence of proximal disease on outcomes of behavior and need for surgery and to determine if there was significant clinical heterogeneity between EGD and jejunal disease.METHODS:We performed a cross-sectional query of the NIDDK (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Disease) Inflammatory Bowel Disease Genetics Consortium (IBDGC) database of patients with a confirmed diagnosis of CD and phenotyped per the IBDGC manual. Presence of any L4, L4-EGD, L4-jejunal, and non-L4 disease (L1-ileal, L2-colonic, and L3-ileocolonic) was compared with demographic features including age, race, ethnicity, smoking and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) family history, diagnosis age, disease duration, clinical outcomes of inflammatory, stricturing or penetrating behavior, and CD abdominal surgeries. Univariate and multivariable analyses were performed with R.RESULTS:Among 2,105 patients with complete disease location data, 346 had L4 disease (175 L4-EGD, 115 L4-jejunal, and 56 EGD and jejunal) with 321 having concurrent L1-L3 disease. In all, 1,759 had only L1-L3 disease. L4 vs. non-L4 patients were more likely (P<0.001) to be younger at diagnosis, non-smokers, have coexisting ileal involvement, and have stricturing disease. L4-jejunal vs. L4-EGD patients were at least twice as likely (P<0.001) to have had ileal disease, stricturing behavior, and any or multiple abdominal surgeries. Remarkably, L4-jejunal patients had more (P<0.001) stricturing behavior and multiple abdominal surgeries than non-L4 ileal disease patients. Logistic regression showed stricturing risks were ileal (without proximal) site (odds ratio (OR) 3.18; 95% confidence interval 2.23-4.64), longer disease duration (OR 1.33/decade; 1.19-1.49), jejunal site (OR 2.90; 1.89-4.45), and older age at diagnosis (OR 1.21/decade; 1.10-1.34). Multiple surgery risks were disease duration (OR 3.74/decade; 3.05-4.64), penetrating disease (OR 2.60; 1.64-4.21), and jejunal site (OR 2.39; 1.36-4.20), with short duration from diagnosis to first surgery protective (OR 0.87/decade to first surgery; 0.84-0.90).CONCLUSIONS:Jejunal disease is a significantly greater risk factor for stricturing disease and multiple abdominal surgeries than either EGD or ileal (without proximal) disease. The Montreal site classification should be revised to include separate designations for jejunal and EGD disease.Am J Gastroenterol advance online publication, 11 December 2012; doi:10.1038/ajg.2012.389.
The American Journal of Gastroenterology 12/2012; · 7.55 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, the two common forms of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), affect over 2.5 million people of European ancestry, with rising prevalence in other populations. Genome-wide association studies and subsequent meta-analyses of these two diseases as separate phenotypes have implicated previously unsuspected mechanisms, such as autophagy, in their pathogenesis and showed that some IBD loci are shared with other inflammatory diseases. Here we expand on the knowledge of relevant pathways by undertaking a meta-analysis of Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis genome-wide association scans, followed by extensive validation of significant findings, with a combined total of more than 75,000 cases and controls. We identify 71 new associations, for a total of 163 IBD loci, that meet genome-wide significance thresholds. Most loci contribute to both phenotypes, and both directional (consistently favouring one allele over the course of human history) and balancing (favouring the retention of both alleles within populations) selection effects are evident. Many IBD loci are also implicated in other immune-mediated disorders, most notably with ankylosing spondylitis and psoriasis. We also observe considerable overlap between susceptibility loci for IBD and mycobacterial infection. Gene co-expression network analysis emphasizes this relationship, with pathways shared between host responses to mycobacteria and those predisposing to IBD.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: African Americans (AAs) are an admixed population of West African (WA) and European ancestry (EA). Crohn's disease (CD) susceptibility genes have not been established. We therefore evaluated the contribution of European admixture and major established risk genes to AA CD. METHODS: Ninety-seven admixture informative markers were genotyped for ancestry estimates using STRUCTURE. Overall, 354 AA CD cases and 354 ethnicity-matched controls were genotyped for total 21 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in ATG16L1, NOD2, IBD5, IL23R and IRGM by TaqMan or direct sequencing. Association was evaluated by logistic regression, adjusted for ancestry. RESULTS: Mean EA was similar among the CD cases and controls (20.9% and 20.4%, respectively, P = 0.58). No significant admixture differences were observed among 211 to 227 cases stratified by phenotypic subclassifications including onset, surgery, site, and behavior. CD was associated with NOD2 carrier (6.93% CD, 2.15% Controls, P = 0.007), ATG16L1 Thr300Ala (36.1% CD, 29.3% Controls, P = 0.003), SLC22A4 and SLC22A5 (IBD5 locus) functional SNPs (Leu503Phe [10.5% CD, 7.6% Controls, P = 0.05] and g-207c [41.3% CD, 35.7% Controls, P = 0.03], respectively), and IL23R rs2201841 (18.2% CD, 13.8% Controls, P = 0.03), but not IRGM variants, nor three African ancestral NOD2 nonsynonymous variants. IBD5 risk was recessive. An all-minor allele IBD5 haplotype from EA was associated (P = 0.05), whereas a more common haplotype isolating g-207c was not. CONCLUSIONS: Specific functional gene variations contribute significantly to AA CD risk. Established NOD2, SLC22A4-A5, and ATG16L1 variants show increased CD risk, with IBD5 recessive. Although CD is more common in whites, European admixture is similar among AA cases and controls. (Inflamm Bowel Dis 2012;).
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Crohn's disease (CD) is a complex disorder resulting from the interaction of intestinal microbiota with the host immune system in genetically susceptible individuals. The largest meta-analysis of genome-wide association to date identified 71 CD-susceptibility loci in individuals of European ancestry. An important epidemiological feature of CD is that it is 2-4 times more prevalent among individuals of Ashkenazi Jewish (AJ) descent compared to non-Jewish Europeans (NJ). To explore genetic variation associated with CD in AJs, we conducted a genome-wide association study (GWAS) by combining raw genotype data across 10 AJ cohorts consisting of 907 cases and 2,345 controls in the discovery stage, followed up by a replication study in 971 cases and 2,124 controls. We confirmed genome-wide significant associations of 9 known CD loci in AJs and replicated 3 additional loci with strong signal (p<5×10⁻⁶). Novel signals detected among AJs were mapped to chromosomes 5q21.1 (rs7705924, combined p = 2×10⁻⁸; combined odds ratio OR = 1.48), 2p15 (rs6545946, p = 7×10⁻⁹; OR = 1.16), 8q21.11 (rs12677663, p = 2×10⁻⁸; OR = 1.15), 10q26.3 (rs10734105, p = 3×10⁻⁸; OR = 1.27), and 11q12.1 (rs11229030, p = 8×10⁻⁹; OR = 1.15), implicating biologically plausible candidate genes, including RPL7, CPAMD8, PRG2, and PRG3. In all, the 16 replicated and newly discovered loci, in addition to the three coding NOD2 variants, accounted for 11.2% of the total genetic variance for CD risk in the AJ population. This study demonstrates the complementary value of genetic studies in the Ashkenazim.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: 6-mercaptopurine (6-MP) is efficacious in the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). However, about one-third of patients respond poorly to therapy. This study aimed to characterize the inherent differences in 6-MP transport that may cotribute to the differences in treatment responses.
Intracellular 6-MP accumulation was assayed in Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-transformed lymphocytes from IBD patients, using (14) C-radiolabeled 6-MP. Cell proliferation was determined by methyl thiazolyl tetrazolium (MTT) assay. Apoptosis was assayed based on the activation of caspase 3. The expressions of 15 potential 6-MP transporters were evaluated by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR).
Intracellular 6-MP accumulation, varying significantly among patients, was carrier-dependent and partially sodium-dependent. 6-MP cytotoxicity was, at least in part, due to apoptosis and correlated with intracellular drug accumulation. The efflux transporters did not appear to contribute to the variability of intracellular drug accumulation between patients, since none correlated with drug accumulation or cytotoxicity. Rather, differential expression of five influx/uptake transporters might be a key contributor to the difference in the accumulation of and susceptibility to the drug.
The heterogeneity of the drug transporters may be the reason for the therapeutic sensitivity of 6-MP in IBD patients. As the 6-MP uptake is a carrier-mediated and partially sodium-dependent process, future studies are necessary to evaluate the role of the putative transporters and their correlation with drug sensitivity in patients.
Journal of Digestive Diseases 02/2012; 13(2):82-93. · 1.85 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: More than 1,000 susceptibility loci have been identified through genome-wide association studies (GWAS) of common variants; however, the specific genes and full allelic spectrum of causal variants underlying these findings have not yet been defined. Here we used pooled next-generation sequencing to study 56 genes from regions associated with Crohn's disease in 350 cases and 350 controls. Through follow-up genotyping of 70 rare and low-frequency protein-altering variants in nine independent case-control series (16,054 Crohn's disease cases, 12,153 ulcerative colitis cases and 17,575 healthy controls), we identified four additional independent risk factors in NOD2, two additional protective variants in IL23R, a highly significant association with a protective splice variant in CARD9 (P < 1 × 10(-16), odds ratio ≈ 0.29) and additional associations with coding variants in IL18RAP, CUL2, C1orf106, PTPN22 and MUC19. We extend the results of successful GWAS by identifying new, rare and probably functional variants that could aid functional experiments and predictive models.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: CpG island (CGI) hypermethylation at discrete loci is a prevalent cancer-promoting abnormality in sporadic colorectal carcinomas (S-CRCs). We investigated genome-wide CGI methylation in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)-associated CRCs (IBD-CRCs).
Methylation microarray analyses were conducted on seven IBD-CRCs, 17 S-CRCs, and eight normal control colonic tissues from patients without CRC or IBD. CGI methylator phenotype (CIMP), a surrogate marker for widespread cancer-specific CGI hypermethylation, was examined in 30 IBD-CRCs and 43 S-CRCs.
The genome-wide CGI methylation pattern of IBD-CRCs was CIMP status-dependent. Based on methylation array data profiling of all autosomal loci, CIMP(+) IBD-CRCs grouped together with S-CRCs, while CIMP(-) IBD-CRCs grouped together with control tissues. CIMP(-) IBD-CRCs demonstrated less methylation than did age-matched CIMP(-) S-CRCs at autosomal CGIs (z-score -0.17 vs. 0.09, P = 3 × 10(-3)) and CRC-associated hypermethylation target CGIs (z-score -0.43 vs. 0.68, P = 1 × 10(-4)). Age-associated hypermethylation target CGIs were significantly overrepresented in CGIs that were hypermethylated in S-CRCs (P = 1 × 10(-192)), but not in CGIs that were hypermethylated in IBD-CRCs (P = 0.11). In contrast, KRAS mutation prevalence was similar between IBD-CRCs and S-CRCs. Notably, CIMP(+) prevalence was significantly higher in older than in younger IBD-CRC cases (50.0 vs. 4.2, P = 0.02), but not in S-CRC cases (9.7 vs. 16.7, P = 0.92).
Cancer-specific CGI hypermethylation and age-associated CGI hypermethylation are diminished in IBD-CRCs relative to S-CRCs, while the KRAS mutation rate is comparable between these cancers. CGI hypermethylation appears to play only a minor role in IBD-associated carcinogenesis. We speculate that aging, rather than inflammation per se, promotes CIMP(+) CRCs in IBD patients.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: DNA hypermethylation is a common epigenetic abnormality in colorectal cancers (CRCs) and a promising class of CRC screening biomarkers. We conducted a genome-wide search for novel neoplasia-specific hypermethylation events in the colon. We applied methylation microarray analysis to identify loci hypermethylated in 17 primary CRCs relative to eight non-neoplastic colonic mucosae (NCs) from neoplasia-free subjects. These CRC-associated hypermethylation events were then individually evaluated for their ability to discriminate neoplastic from non-neoplastic cases, based on real-time quantitative methylation-specific PCR (qMSP) assays in 113 colonic tissues: 51 CRCs, nine adenomas, 19 NCs from CRC patients (CRC-NCs), and 34 NCs from neoplasia-free subjects (control NCs). A strict microarray data filtering identified 169 candidate CRC-associated hypermethylation events. Fourteen of these 169 loci were evaluated using qMSP assays. Ten of these 14 methylation events significantly distinguished CRCs from age-matched control NCs (P<0.05 by receiver operator characteristic curve analysis); methylation of visual system homeobox 2 (VSX2) achieved the highest discriminative accuracy (83.3% sensitivity and 92.3% specificity, P<1×10(-6)), followed by BEN domain containing 4 (BEND4), neuronal pentraxin I (NPTX1), ALX homeobox 3 (ALX3), miR-34b, glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor (GLP1R), BTG4, homer homolog 2 (HOMER2), zinc finger protein 583 (ZNF583), and gap junction protein, gamma 1 (GJC1). Adenomas were significantly discriminated from control NCs by hypermethylation of VSX2, BEND4, NPTX1, miR-34b, GLP1R, and HOMER2 (P<0.05). CRC-NCs were significantly distinguished from control NCs by methylation of ALX3 (P<1×10(-4)). In conclusion, systematic methylome-wide analysis has identified ten novel methylation events in neoplastic and non-neoplastic colonic mucosae from CRC patients. These potential biomarkers significantly discriminate CRC patients from controls. Thus, they merit further evaluation in stool- and circulating DNA-based CRC detection studies.
Endocrine Related Cancer 06/2011; 18(4):465-78. · 5.26 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: CD4(+) memory T cells include the Th17 cell population, which has been shown to be implicated in autoimmune and inflammatory diseases. These memory T cells express higher IL-23R and produce more IL-17 compared with their naive counterparts. However, the molecular mechanisms that regulate IL-23R expression in human T cells are not completely understood. MicroRNAs play important roles in a wide range of biological events through posttranscriptional suppression of target mRNAs. In this article, we provide evidence that a specific microRNA, Let-7f, inhibits IL-23R expression in human CD4(+) memory T cells. Endogenous expression of Let-7f in memory T cells is significantly lower when compared with naive T cells, and Let-7f blocks IL-23R expression through its complementary target sequence within 3' untranslated region of target gene. Furthermore, exogenous transfection of a Let-7f mimic into memory T cells results in downregulation of IL-23R and its downstream cytokine, IL-17. Our findings reveal a novel mechanism in regulating the IL-23/IL-23R pathway and subsequent downstream IL-17 production, which may provide novel therapeutics for human inflammatory and autoimmune diseases.
The Journal of Immunology 06/2011; 186(11):6182-90. · 5.52 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Inflammatory bowel diseases (IBDs) are complex, multifactorial disorders that comprise Crohn's disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC). Genome-wide association studies have identified approximately 100 loci that are significantly associated with IBD. These loci implicate a diverse array of genes and pathophysiologic mechanisms, including microbe recognition, lymphocyte activation, cytokine signaling, and intestinal epithelial defense. Consistent with epidemiologic predictions, many IBD-associated loci demonstrate genome-wide significant associations to both CD and UC, notably, genes whose products function in the interleukin-23 pathway, and transcription factors, including NK2 transcription factor related, locus 3 (NKX2-3), SMAD3, STAT3, ZMIZ1, and c-REL. Although CD and UC are both associated with genomic regions that implicate products of genes involved in leukocyte trafficking, there is evidence for association patterns that are distinct between CD and UC. CD-predominant associations include NOD2 and genes that regulate autophagy. In UC, the predominant association signal is on chromosome 6p21, in the major histocompatibility complex region, near HLA class II genes. UC-predominant loci have also implicated genes mediating epithelial defense function. There is a striking overlap of loci between diseases, which could provide comparative insight into mechanisms of disease pathogenesis. Genes that encode factors that function in the interleukin-23 pathway have been associated with a number of chronic inflammatory diseases, notably psoriasis and ankylosing spondylitis. Distinct genetic associations indicate that the colitis associated with primary sclerosing cholangitis is pathophysiologically distinct from UC that is not associated with primary sclerosing cholangitis. As many as 14 susceptibility loci are shared between IBD and celiac disease, indicating significant overlap in pathophysiology. Future genetic studies will be directed toward identifying uncommon variations with potentially greater statistical effects, defining population differences, and more completely accounting for familial transmission of disease.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Genome-wide association studies and candidate gene studies in ulcerative colitis have identified 18 susceptibility loci. We conducted a meta-analysis of six ulcerative colitis genome-wide association study datasets, comprising 6,687 cases and 19,718 controls, and followed up the top association signals in 9,628 cases and 12,917 controls. We identified 29 additional risk loci (P < 5 × 10(-8)), increasing the number of ulcerative colitis-associated loci to 47. After annotating associated regions using GRAIL, expression quantitative trait loci data and correlations with non-synonymous SNPs, we identified many candidate genes that provide potentially important insights into disease pathogenesis, including IL1R2, IL8RA-IL8RB, IL7R, IL12B, DAP, PRDM1, JAK2, IRF5, GNA12 and LSP1. The total number of confirmed inflammatory bowel disease risk loci is now 99, including a minimum of 28 shared association signals between Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Crohn's disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC) result from pathophysiologically distinct dysregulated immune responses, as evidenced by the preponderance of differing immune cell mediators and circulating cytokine expression profiles. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small, noncoding RNAs that act as negative regulators of gene expression and have an increasingly recognized role in immune regulation. We hypothesized that differences in circulating immune cells in CD and UC patients are reflected by altered miRNA expression and that miRNA expression patterns can distinguish CD and UC from normal healthy individuals.
Peripheral blood was obtained from patients with active CD, inactive CD, active UC, inactive UC, and normal healthy adults. Total RNA was isolated and miRNA expression assessed using miRNA microarray and validated by mature miRNA quantitative reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction.
Five miRNAs were significantly increased and two miRNAs (149* and miRplus-F1065) were significantly decreased in the blood of active CD patients as compared to healthy controls. Twelve miRNAs were significantly increased and miRNA-505* was significantly decreased in the blood of active UC patients as compared to healthy controls. Ten miRNAs were significantly increased and one miRNA was significantly decreased in the blood of active UC patients as compared to active CD patients.
Peripheral blood miRNAs can be used to distinguish active CD and UC from healthy controls. The data support the evidence that CD and UC are associated with different circulating immune cells types and that the differential expression of peripheral blood miRNAs may form the basis of future diagnostic tests for inflammatory bowel disease.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Genome-wide association studies and candidate gene studies in ulcerative colitis have identified 18 susceptibility loci. We conducted a meta-analysis of six ulcerative colitis genome-wide association study datasets, comprising 6,687 cases and 19,718 controls, and followed up the top association signals in 9,628 cases and 12,917 controls. We identified 29 additional risk loci (P < 5 x 10(-8)), increasing the number of ulcerative colitis-associated loci to 47. After annotating associated regions using GRAIL, expression quantitative trait loci data and correlations with non-synonymous SNPs, we identified many candidate genes that provide potentially important insights into disease pathogenesis, including IL1R2, IL8RA-IL8RB, IL7R, IL12B, DAP, PRDM1, JAK2, IRF5, GNA12 and LSP1. The total number of confirmed inflammatory bowel disease risk loci is now 99, including a minimum of 28 shared association signals between Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis.