MRC Centre for Neuropsychiatric Genetics and Genomics, Department of Psychological Medicine and Neurology, School of Medicine, Neuroscience and Mental Health Research Institute, Cardiff University, Cardiff, UK.
Rare mutations in AβPP, PSEN1, and PSEN2 cause uncommon early onset forms of Alzheimer's disease (AD), and common variants in MAPT are associated with risk of other neurodegenerative disorders. We sought to establish whether common genetic variation in these genes confer risk to the common form of AD which occurs later in life (>65 years). We therefore tested single-nucleotide polymorphisms at these loci for association with late-onset AD (LOAD) in a large case-control sample consisting of 3,940 cases and 13,373 controls. Single-marker analysis did not identify any variants that reached genome-wide significance, a result which is supported by other recent genome-wide association studies. However, we did observe a significant association at the MAPT locus using a gene-wide approach (p = 0.009). We also observed suggestive association between AD and the marker rs9468, which defines the H1 haplotype, an extended haplotype that spans the MAPT gene and has previously been implicated in other neurodegenerative disorders including Parkinson's disease, progressive supranuclear palsy, and corticobasal degeneration. In summary common variants at AβPP, PSEN1, and PSEN2 and MAPT are unlikely to make strong contributions to susceptibility for LOAD. However, the gene-wide effect observed at MAPT indicates a possible contribution to disease risk which requires further study.
Data provided are for informational purposes only. Although carefully collected, accuracy cannot be guaranteed. The impact factor represents a rough estimation of the journal's impact factor and does not reflect the actual current impact factor. Publisher conditions are provided by RoMEO. Differing provisions from the publisher's actual policy or licence agreement may be applicable.
"One explanation for the absence of genes such as APP, PSEN1, or PSEN2 from the list of candidates identified by GWAS is that the studies were lacking sufficient power to detect small or rare contributions to risk . Increased power could be achieved by recruiting more patients and controls and by increasing the density of SNP genotyping . "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: The human Aβ peptide causes progressive paralysis when expressed in the muscles of the nematode worm, C. elegans. We have exploited this model of Aβ toxicity by carrying out an RNAi screen to identify genes whose reduced expression modifies the severity of this locomotor phenotype. Our initial finding was that none of the human orthologues of these worm genes is identical with the genome-wide significant GWAS genes reported to date (the "white zone"); moreover there was no identity between worm screen hits and the longer list of GWAS genes which included those with borderline levels of significance (the "grey zone"). This indicates that Aβ toxicity should not be considered as equivalent to sporadic AD. To increase the sensitivity of our analysis, we then considered the physical interactors (+1 interactome) of the products of the genes in both the worm and the white+grey zone lists. When we consider these worm and GWAS gene lists we find that 4 of the 60 worm genes have a +1 interactome overlap that is larger than expected by chance. Two of these genes form a chaperonin complex, the third is closely associated with this complex and the fourth gene codes for actin, the major substrate of the same chaperonin.
"The use of peripheral markers, like Aß and tau in easily accessible peripheral cells (in particular platelets and skin fibroblasts), as a diagnostic tool has been under investigation for more than 10 years [7,8]. Molecular genetics analyses of common single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in genes such as presenilin or ApoE4 did not significantly improve risk estimation for the susceptibility of AD . Likewise, there is no consistent evidence for an association between AD and genetic variation of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) . "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Alzheimer disease (AD) is the most common form of dementia but the identification of reliable, early and non-invasive biomarkers remains a major challenge. We present a novel miRNA-based signature for detecting AD from blood samples.
We apply next-generation sequencing to miRNAs from blood samples of 48 AD patients and 22 unaffected controls, yielding a total of 140 unique mature miRNAs with significantly changed expression levels. Of these, 82 have higher and 58 have lower abundance in AD patient samples. We selected a panel of 12 miRNAs for an RT-qPCR analysis on a larger cohort of 202 samples, comprising not only AD patients and healthy controls but also patients with other CNS illnesses. These included mild cognitive impairment, which is assumed to represent a transitional period before the development of AD, as well as multiple sclerosis, Parkinson disease, major depression, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. miRNA target enrichment analysis of the selected 12 miRNAs indicates an involvement of miRNAs in nervous system development, neuron projection, neuron projection development and neuron projection morphogenesis. Using this 12-miRNA signature, we differentiate between AD and controls with an accuracy of 93%, a specificity of 95% and a sensitivity of 92%. The differentiation of AD from other neurological diseases is possible with accuracies between 74% and 78%. The differentiation of the other CNS disorders from controls yields even higher accuracies.
The data indicate that deregulated miRNAs in blood might be used as biomarkers in the diagnosis of AD or other neurological diseases.
"The MAPT (microtubule-associated protein tau) locus is one of the most remarkable in neurogenetics due not only to its involvement in multiple neurodegenerative disorders, including progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP) (1,2), corticobasal degeneration (CBD) (3), Parksinson's disease (PD) (4–6) and possibly Alzheimer's disease (AD) (7,8), but also its genetic evolution and complex alternative splicing—features which are to some extent linked and so all the more intriguing (9–11). Therefore, obtaining robust information regarding the expression, splicing and genetic regulation of this gene within the human brain is of immense importance and the driving force behind this paper. "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: The MAPT (microtubule-associated protein tau) locus is one of the most remarkable in neurogenetics due not only to its involvement in multiple neurodegenerative disorders, including progressive supranuclear palsy, corticobasal degeneration, Parksinson's disease and possibly Alzheimer's disease, but also due its genetic evolution and complex alternative splicing features which are, to some extent, linked and so all the more intriguing. Therefore, obtaining robust information regarding the expression, splicing and genetic regulation of this gene within the human brain is of immense importance. In this study, we used 2011 brain samples originating from 439 individuals to provide the most reliable and coherent information on the regional expression, splicing and regulation of MAPT available to date. We found significant regional variation in mRNA expression and splicing of MAPT within the human brain. Furthermore, at the gene level, the regional distribution of mRNA expression and total tau protein expression levels were largely in agreement, appearing to be highly correlated. Finally and most importantly, we show that while the reported H1/H2 association with gene level expression is likely to be due to a technical artefact, this polymorphism is associated with the expression of exon 3-containing isoforms in human brain. These findings would suggest that contrary to the prevailing view, genetic risk factors for neurodegenerative diseases at the MAPT locus are likely to operate by changing mRNA splicing in different brain regions, as opposed to the overall expression of the MAPT gene.
Full-text · Article · Jun 2012 · Human Molecular Genetics