ALDH2 Is Associated to Alcohol Dependence and Is the Major Genetic Determinant of "Daily Maximum Drinks" in a GWAS Study of an Isolated Rural Chinese Sample
Department of Genetics, Texas Biomedical Research Institute, San Antonio, Texas.American Journal of Medical Genetics Part B Neuropsychiatric Genetics (Impact Factor: 3.42). 03/2014; 165(2). DOI: 10.1002/ajmg.b.32213
Alcohol dependence (AD) is a moderately heritable phenotype with a small number of known risk genes mapped via linkage or candidate gene studies. We considered 313 males from among 595 members of documented, extended pedigrees in which AD segregates collected in Northern Hunan Province, China. A joint analysis of both males and females could not be performed as the difference in alcohol consumption variance was too large. Genome-wide association analyses were performed for approximately 300,000 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). Significant associations found in the ALDH2 region for AD (minimum P = 4.73 × 10(-8) ) and two AD-related phenotypes: flushing response (minimum P = 4.75 × 10(-26) ) and maximum drinks in a 24-hr period (minimum P = 1.54 × 10(-16) ). Association of previous candidate SNP, rs10774610 in CCDC63, was confirmed but resulted from linkage disequilibrium with ALDH2. ALDH2 is strongly associated with flushing response, AD, and maximum drinks in males, with nonsynonymous SNP rs671 explaining 29.2%, 7.9%, and 22.9% of phenotypic variation, respectively, in this sample. When rs671 was considered as a candidate SNP in females, it explained 23.6% of the variation in flushing response, but alcohol consumption rates were too low among females-despite familial enrichment for AD-for an adequate test of association for either AD or maximum drinks. These results support a mediating effect of aldehyde dehydrogenase deficiency on alcohol consumption in males and a secondary, culturally mediated limitation on alcohol consumption by females that should be appropriately modeled in future studies of alcohol consumption in populations where this may be a factor. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
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ABSTRACT: Alcohol dependence (AD) is a complex psychiatric disorder that affects about 12.5 % of US adults. Genetic factors play a major role in the development of AD. We conducted a genomewide association study in 2,875 African-Americans including 1,719 AD cases and 1,156 controls. We used the Illumina Omni 1-Quad microarray, which yielded 769,498 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) after quality control. To explore the genetic architecture of AD, we estimated the variance that could be explained by all SNPs and subsets of SNPs using two different approaches to genome partitioning. We found that 23.9 % (s.e. 9.3 %) of the phenotypic variance could be explained by using all of the common SNPs on the array. We also found a significant linear relationship between the proportion of the top SNPs used and the phenotypic variance explained by them. Based on genome partitioning of common variants, we also observed a significant linear relationship between the variance explained by a chromosome and its length. Chromosome 4, known to contain several AD risk genes, accounted for excess risk in proportion to its length. By functional partitioning, we found that the genetic variants within 20 kb of genes explained 17.5 % (s.e. 11.4 %) of the phenotypic variance. Our findings are consistent with the generally accepted view that AD is a highly polygenic trait, i.e., the genetic risk in AD appears to be conferred by multiple variants, each of which may have a small or moderate effect.
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ABSTRACT: Background/aims: Alcohol dependence is a common severe psychiatric disorder with a multifactorial etiology. Since the completion of the human genome project and with the increased availability of high-throughput genotyping, multiple genetic risk factors for substance-related disorders, including alcohol dependence, have been identified, but not all results could be replicated. Methods: We systematically review the clinical literature on genetic risk factors for alcohol dependence and alcohol-related phenotypes, including candidate gene-based studies, linkage studies and genome-wide association studies (GWAS). Results: Irrespectively of the methodology employed, the most robust findings regarding genetic risk factors for alcohol dependence concern genetic variations that affect alcohol metabolism. GWAS confirm the importance of the alcohol dehydrogenase gene cluster on chromosome 4 in the genetic risk for alcohol dependence with multiple variants that exert a small, but cumulative influence. A single variant with strong influence on individual risk is the aldehyde dehydrogenase 2 ALDHD2*2 variant common in Asian populations. Other robust associations have been found with previously uncharacterized genes like KIAA0040, and such observations can lead to the identification of thus far unknown signaling pathways. Converging evidence also points to a role of glutamatergic, dopaminergic and serotonergic neurotransmitter signaling in the risk for alcohol dependence, but effects are small, and gene-environment interactions further increase the complexity. Conclusion: With few exceptions like ALDH2*2, the contribution of individual genetic variants to the risk for alcohol-related disorders is small. However, the concentration of risk variants within neurotransmitter signaling pathways may help to deepen our understanding of the underlying pathophysiology and thereby contribute to develop novel therapeutic strategies.
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ABSTRACT: Linkage studies of alcoholism have implicated several chromosome regions, leading to the successful identification of susceptibility genes, including ADH4 and GABRA2 on chromosome 4. Quantitative endophenotypes that are potentially closer to gene action than clinical endpoints offer a means of obtaining more refined linkage signals of genes that predispose alcohol use disorders (AUD). In this study we examine a self-reported measure of the maximum number of drinks consumed in a 24-hr period (abbreviated Max Drinks), a significantly heritable phenotype (h(2) = 0.32 ± 0.05; P = 4.61 × 10(-14) ) with a strong genetic correlation with AUD (ρg = 0.99 ± 0.13) for the San Antonio Family Study (n = 1,203). Genome-wide SNPs were analyzed using variance components linkage methods in the program SOLAR, revealing a novel, genome-wide significant QTL (LOD = 4.17; P = 5.85 × 10(-6) ) for Max Drinks at chromosome 6p22.3, a region with a number of compelling candidate genes implicated in neuronal function and psychiatric illness. Joint analysis of Max Drinks and AUD status shows that the QTL has a significant non-zero effect on diagnosis (P = 4.04 × 10(-3) ), accounting for 8.6% of the total variation. Significant SNP associations for Max Drinks were also identified at the linkage region, including one, rs7761213 (P = 2.14 × 10(-4) ), obtained for an independent sample of Chinese families. Thus, our study identifies a potential risk locus for AUD at 6p22.3, with significant pleiotropic effects on the heaviness of alcohol consumption that may not be population specific. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
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