Sandy Laston

Texas Biomedical Research Institute, San Antonio, Texas, United States

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Publications (9)34.59 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Context: Elevated LDL cholesterol (LDL-C) is an important risk factor for atherosclerosis and cardiovascular disease. Variants in the proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 9 (PCSK9) gene have been associated not only with plasma LDL-C concentration but also with ischemic heart disease. Little is known about the genetic architecture of PCSK9 and its influence on LDL-C in American Indians. Objective: We aimed to investigate the genetic architecture in the 1p32 region encompassing PCSK9 and its influence on LDL-C in American Indians. Design: Strong Heart Family Study (SHFS) is a family-based genetic study. Participants: 2,458 American Indians from Arizona, OK and North and South Dakota, who were genotyped by Illumina MetaboChip. Results: We genotyped 486 SNPs in a 3.9 Mb region at chromosome 1p32 encompassing PCSK9 in 2458 American Indians. We examined the association between these SNPs and LDL-C. For common variants (MAF≥1%), meta-analysis across the three geographic regions showed common variants in PCSK9 were significantly associated with higher LDL-C. The most significant SNP rs12067569 (MAF=1.7 %, β= 16.9±3.7, P= 5.9×10(-6)) was in complete LD (r(2)=1) with a nearby missense SNP, rs505151 (E670G) (β= 15.0±3.6, P=3.6× 10(-5)). For rare variants (MAF<1%), rs11591147 (R46L, MAF=0.9%) was associated with lower LDL-C (β= -31.1±7.1, P=1.4× 10(-5)). The mean (SD) of LDL-C was 76.9 (7.8) and 107.4 (1.0) mg/dl for those with and without the R46L mutation, respectively. One person who was homozygous for R46L had LDL-C levels of 11 mg/dl. In one family, 6 out of 8 members carrying the R46L mutation had LDL-C levels below the lower 10% percentile of LDL-C among all study participants. Conclusions: Both rare and common variants in PCSK9 influence plasma LDL-C levels in American Indians. Follow-up studies may disclose the influence of these mutations on the risk of CVD and responses to cholesterol-lowering medications.
    The Journal of clinical endocrinology and metabolism. 11/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: A significant proportion of the variability in carotid artery lumen diameter is attributable to genetic factors. Carotid ultrasonography and genotyping were performed in the 3300 American Indian participants in the Strong Heart Family Study (SHFS) to identify chromosomal regions harboring novel genes associated with inter-individual variation in carotid artery lumen diameter. Genome-wide linkage analysis was conducted using standard variance component linkage methods, implemented in SOLAR, based on multipoint identity-by-descent matrices. Genome-wide linkage analysis revealed a significant evidence for linkage for a locus for left carotid artery diastolic and systolic lumen diameters in Arizona SHFS participants on chromosome 7 at 120cM (lod=4.85 and 3.77, respectively, after sex and age adjustment, and lod=3.12 and 2.72, respectively, after adjustment for sex, age, height, weight, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, diabetes mellitus and current smoking). Other regions with suggestive evidence of linkage for left carotid artery diastolic and systolic lumen diameter were found on chromosome 12 at 153cM (lod=2.20 and 2.60, respectively, after sex and age adjustment, and lod=2.44 and 2.16, respectively, after full covariate adjustment) in Oklahoma SHFS participants; suggestive linkage for right carotid artery diastolic and systolic lumen diameter was found on chromosome 9 at 154cM (lod=2.72 and 3.19, respectively after sex and age adjustment, and lod=2.36 and 2.21, respectively, after full covariate adjustment) in Oklahoma SHFS participants. We found significant evidence for loci influencing carotid artery lumen diameter on chromosome 7q and suggestive linkage on chromosomes 12q and 9q.
    International journal of cardiology 07/2013; · 6.18 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Type 2 diabetes is highly prevalent and is the major cause of progressive chronic kidney disease in American Indians. Genome-wide association studies identified several loci associated with diabetes but their impact on susceptibility to diabetic complications is unknown. We studied the association of 18 type 2 diabetes genome-wide association single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) with estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR; MDRD equation) and urine albumin-to-creatinine ratio in 6958 Strong Heart Study family and cohort participants. Center-specific residuals of eGFR and log urine albumin-to-creatinine ratio, obtained from linear regression models adjusted for age, sex, and body mass index, were regressed onto SNP dosage using variance component models in family data and linear regression in unrelated individuals. Estimates were then combined across centers. Four diabetic loci were associated with eGFR and one locus with urine albumin-to-creatinine ratio. A SNP in the WFS1 gene (rs10010131) was associated with higher eGFR in younger individuals and with increased albuminuria. SNPs in the FTO, KCNJ11, and TCF7L2 genes were associated with lower eGFR, but not albuminuria, and were not significant in prospective analyses. Our findings suggest a shared genetic risk for type 2 diabetes and its kidney complications, and a potential role for WFS1 in early-onset diabetic nephropathy in American Indian populations.
    Kidney International 04/2012; 82(2):220-5. · 8.52 Impact Factor
  • Journal of The American College of Cardiology - J AMER COLL CARDIOL. 01/2011; 57(14).
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    ABSTRACT: To identify genetic variation influencing serum bilirubin levels in American Indians, we performed genome-wide screening and association analyses in the Strong Heart Family Study. Bilirubin is an endogenous antioxidant that has demonstrated an inverse relationship with cardiovascular disease. Genetic variation within the promoter region of uridine diphosphate glucuronosyltransferase (UGT1A1) on chromosome 2q has been associated with elevated serum bilirubin levels in European populations. However, no study has investigated the UGT1A1 promoter in American Indians. Statistical analyses were carried out with 3,484 participants aged 14 to 93 years recruited from three geographic areas in the United States; Arizona, Oklahoma, and North and South Dakota. Variance components linkage analysis detected a quantitative trait locus (QTL) for bilirubin on chromosome 2q in the combined centers (LOD = 6.61, P = 4.24 × 10⁻⁶) and in Oklahoma (LOD = 5.65, P = 4.57 24 × 10⁻⁵). Genetic association of the UGT1A1 promoter polymorphism was significant for all geographic locations. After adjustment using conditional linkage for UGT1A1 promoter variance, the linkage signal dropped to 1.10 in the combined sample and to 3.32 (P = 0.02) in Oklahoma, indicating this polymorphism is not completely responsible for the linkage signal in American Indians. We also detected suggestive linkage signals in the Dakotas on chromosome 10p12 (LOD = 2.18) and in the combined centers (LOD = 2.24) on chromosome 10q21. Replication of a serum bilirubin QTL on chromosome 2q in American Indians implicates UGT1A1 but further genotyping is warranted to identify additional causative polymorphisms. Evidence also supports a potential novel locus for bilirubin on chromosome 10.
    American Journal of Human Biology 11/2010; 23(1):118-25. · 2.34 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is an important public health problem in American Indian populations. Recent research has identified associations of polymorphisms in the myosin heavy chain type II isoform A (MYH9) gene with hypertensive CKD in African-Americans. Whether these associations are also present among American Indian individuals is unknown. To evaluate the role of genetic polymorphisms in the MYH9 gene on kidney disease in American Indians, we genotyped 25 SNPs in the MYH9 gene region in 1,119 comparatively unrelated individuals. Four SNPs failed, and one SNP was monomorphic. We inferred haplotypes using seven SNPs within the region of the previously described E haplotype using Phase v2.1. We studied the association between 20 MYH9 SNPs with kidney function (estimated glomerular filtration rate, eGFR) and CKD (eGFR<60ml/min/1.73m2 or renal replacement therapy or kidney transplant) using age-, sex- and center-adjusted models and measured genotyped within the variance component models. MYH9 SNPs were not significantly associated with kidney traits in additive or recessive genetic adjusted models. MYH9 haplotypes were also not significantly associated with kidney outcomes. In conclusion, common variants in MYH9 polymorphisms may not confer an increased risk of CKD in American Indian populations. Identification of the actual functional genetic variation responsible for the associations seen in African-Americans will likely help to clarify the lack of replication of this gene in our population of American Indians.
    Human Genetics 03/2010; 127(3):295-301. · 4.63 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Population studies have demonstrated an important role of social, behavioral, and environmental factors in blood pressure (BP) levels. Accounting for the genetic interaction of these factors may help to identify common BP susceptibility alleles. We studied the interaction of additive genetic effects and behavioral (physical activity, smoking, alcohol use) and socioeconomic (education) factors on BP in approximately 3600 American Indian participants of the Strong Heart Family Study, using variance component models. The mean and SD of resting systolic and diastolic BPs were 123 + or - 17 and 76 + or - 11 mm Hg, respectively. We detected evidence for distinct genetic effects on diastolic BP among ever smokers compared with never smokers (P = 0.01). For alcohol intake, we observed significant genotype-by-environment interactions on diastolic (rhog = 0.10, P = 0.0003) and on systolic BPs (rhog = 0.59, P = 0.0008) among current drinkers compared with former or never drinkers. We also detected genotype-by-physical activity interactions on diastolic BP (rhog = 0.35, P = 0.0004). Finally, there was evidence for distinct genetic effects on diastolic BP among individuals with less than high school education compared with those with 12 or more years of education (rhog = 0.41, P = 0.02). Our findings suggest that behavioral and socioeconomic factors can modify the genetic effects on BP phenotypes. Accounting for context dependent factors may help us to better understand the complexities of the gene effects on BP and other complex phenotypes with high levels of genetic heterogeneity.
    Circulation Cardiovascular Genetics 08/2009; 2(4):396-401. · 6.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Pulse pressure, a measure of central arterial stiffness and a predictor of cardiovascular mortality, has known genetic components. To localize the genetic effects of pulse pressure, we conducted a genome-wide linkage analysis of 1,892 American-Indian participants of the Strong Heart Family Study (SHFS). Blood pressure was measured three times and the average of the last two measures was used for analyses. Pulse pressure, the difference between systolic blood pressure (SBP) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP), was log-transformed and adjusted for the effects of age and sex within each study center. Variance component linkage analyses were performed using marker allele frequencies derived from all individuals and multipoint identity-by-descent matrices calculated in Loki. We identified a quantitative-trait locus influencing pulse pressure on chromosome 7 at 37 cM (marker D7S493, LOD = 3.3) and suggestive evidence of linkage on chromosome 19 at 92 cM (marker D19S888, LOD = 1.8). The signal on 7p15.3 overlaps positive findings for pulse pressure among Utah population samples, suggesting that this region may harbor gene variants for blood pressure related traits.
    American Journal of Hypertension 03/2008; 21(2):194-9. · 3.67 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The pathogenesis of atherosclerosis involves both hemostatic and inflammatory mechanisms. Fibrinogen is associated with both risk of thrombosis and inflammation. A recent meta-analysis showed that risk of coronary heart disease may increase 1.8 fold for 1 g/L of increased fibrinogen, independent of traditional risk factors. It is known that fibrinogen levels may be influenced by demographic, environmental and genetic factors. Epidemiologic and candidate gene studies are available; but few genome-wide linkage studies have been conducted, particularly in minority populations. The Strong Heart Study has demonstrated an increased incidence of cardiovascular disease in the American Indian population, and therefore represents an important source for genetic-epidemiological investigations. The Strong Heart Family Study enrolled over 3,600 American Indian participants in large, multi-generational families, ascertained from an ongoing population-based study in the same communities. Fibrinogen was determined using standard technique in a central laboratory and extensive additional phenotypic measures were obtained. Participants were genotyped for 382 short tandem repeat markers distributed throughout the genome; and results were analyzed using a variance decomposition method, as implemented in the SOLAR 2.0 program. Data from 3535 participants were included and after step-wise, linear regression analysis, two models were selected for investigation. Basic demographic adjustments constituted model 1, while model 2 considered waist circumference, diabetes mellitus and postmenopausal status as additional covariates. Five LOD scores between 1.82 and 3.02 were identified, with the maximally adjusted model showing the highest score on chromosome 7 at 28 cM. Genes for two key components of the inflammatory response, i.e. interleukin-6 and "signal transducer and activator of transcription 3" (STAT3), were identified within 2 and 8 Mb of this 1 LOD drop interval respectively. A LOD score of 1.82 on chromosome 17 between 68 and 93 cM is supported by reports from two other populations with LOD scores of 1.4 and 1.95. In a minority population with a high prevalence of cardiovascular disease, strong evidence for a novel genetic determinant of fibrinogen levels is found on chromosome 7 at 28 cM. Four other loci, some of which have been suggested by previous studies, were also identified.
    BMC Medical Genetics 02/2008; 9:77. · 2.54 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

47 Citations
34.59 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2012
    • Texas Biomedical Research Institute
      • Department of Genetics
      San Antonio, Texas, United States
  • 2008–2009
    • Southwest Foundation For Biomedical Research
      San Antonio, Texas, United States