[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a neurodegenerative disease characterized by the selective loss of motor neurons. Several
susceptibility genes for ALS have been reported; however, ALS etiology and pathogenesis remain largely unknown. To identify
further ALS-susceptibility genes, we conducted a large-scale case–control association study using gene-based tag single-nucleotide
polymorphisms (SNPs). A functional SNP (rs2275294) was found to be significantly associated with ALS through a stepwise screening
approach (combined P= 9.3 × 10−10, odds ratio = 1.32). The SNP was located in an enhancer region of ZNF512B, a transcription factor of unknown biological function, and the susceptibility allele showed decreased activity and decreased
binding to nuclear proteins. ZNF512B over-expression increased transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β) signaling, while knockdown
had the opposite effect. ZNF512B expression was increased in the anterior horn motor neurons of the spinal cord of ALS patients
when compared with controls. Our results strongly suggest that ZNF512B is an important positive regulator of TGF-β signaling
and that decreased ZNF512B expression increases susceptibility to ALS.
Full-text · Article · Jun 2011 · Human Molecular Genetics
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Because population stratification can cause spurious associations in case-control studies, understanding the population structure is important. Here, we examined Japanese population structure by "Eigenanalysis," using the genotypes for 140,387 SNPs in 7003 Japanese individuals, along with 60 European, 60 African, and 90 East-Asian individuals, in the HapMap project. Most Japanese individuals fell into two main clusters, Hondo and Ryukyu; the Hondo cluster includes most of the individuals from the main islands in Japan, and the Ryukyu cluster includes most of the individuals from Okinawa. The SNPs with the greatest frequency differences between the Hondo and Ryukyu clusters were found in the HLA region in chromosome 6. The nonsynonymous SNPs with the greatest frequency differences between the Hondo and Ryukyu clusters were the Val/Ala polymorphism (rs3827760) in the EDAR gene, associated with hair thickness, and the Gly/Ala polymorphism (rs17822931) in the ABCC11 gene, associated with ear-wax type. Genetic differentiation was observed, even among different regions in Honshu Island, the largest island of Japan. Simulation studies showed that the inclusion of different proportions of individuals from different regions of Japan in case and control groups can lead to an inflated rate of false-positive results when the sample sizes are large.
Preview · Article · Oct 2008 · The American Journal of Human Genetics
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is one of the common autoimmune diseases with complex genetic components. To identify a gene(s) susceptible to SLE, we performed a case-control association study using genome-wide gene-based single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in Japanese population. Here we report that an SNP (rs3748079) located in a promoter region of the inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate receptor type 3 (ITPR3) gene on chromosome 6p21 was significantly associated with SLE in two independent Japanese case-control samples [P=0.0000000178 with odds ratio of 1.88, 95% confidence interval (CI) of 1.51-2.35]. This particular SNP also revealed associations with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) (P=0.0084 with odds ratio of 1.23, 95% CI of 1.05-1.43) and with Graves' disease (GD) (P=0.00036 with odds ratio of 1.57, 95% CI of 1.22-2.02). We found the binding of NKX2.5 specific to the non-susceptible T allele in the region including this SNP. Furthermore, an SNP in NKX2.5 also revealed an association with SLE (P=0.0037 with odds ratio of 1.74, 95% CI of 1.19-2.55). Individuals with risk genotype of both ITPR3 and NKX2.5 loci have higher risk for SLE (odds ratio=5.77). Our data demonstrate that genetic and functional interactions of ITPR3 and NKX2.5 play a crucial role in the pathogenesis of SLE.
Full-text · Article · Feb 2008 · Journal of Human Genetics
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We report the development of a real-time Invader assay combined with multiplex PCR (mPCR-RETINA), an SNP-based approach that can measure the allelic ratio in copy number variation (CNV) regions of a genome. RETINA monitors the real-time fluorescence intensity of each allele during the Invader assay and detects allelic asymmetries caused by genomic duplication/multiplication in heterozygous individuals. By combining mPCR-RETINA and real-time quantitative PCR that detects total copy number, we can estimate the copy number of each allele in CNV regions, which should be useful for investigating the functional significance of allele copy number with disease susceptibilities and drug responses. Also, mPCR-RETINA can efficiently refine the detailed structures of CNV regions. Due to the combination of RETINA with multiplex PCR, mPCR-RETINA requires a very small amount of genomic DNA for analysis (0.1-0.38 ng/locus). Additionally, mPCR-RETINA has clear advantages in its simple protocol and target-specific reaction, even in nonunique regions. We believe mPCR-RETINA will provide a significant contribution to identifying functional alleles in CNV regions.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Genetic factors are clearly involved in the development of obesity, but the genetic background of obesity remains largely unclear. Starting from 62 663 gene-based single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in three sequential case-control association studies, we identified a replicated association between the obesity phenotype (BMI > or =30 kg/m(2)) and a SNP (rs2293855) located in the myotublarin-related protein 9 (MTMR9) gene in the chromosomal segment 8p23-p22. P-values (minor allele dominant model) of the first set (93 cases versus 649 controls) and the second set (564 cases versus 562 controls) were 0.008 and 0.0002, respectively. The association was replicated in the third set [394 cases versus 958 controls, P = 0.005, odds ratio (95% CI) =1.40 (1.11-1.78)]. The global P-value was 0.0000005. A multiple regression analysis revealed that gender, age BMI and rs2293855 genotype (minor allele dominant model) were significantly associated with both systolic and diastolic blood pressures. MTMR9 was shown to be the only gene within the haplotype block that contained SNPs associated with obesity. Both the transcript and protein of MTMR9 were detected in the rodent lateral hypothalamic area as well as in the arcuate nucleus, and the protein co-existed with orexin, melanin concentrating hormone, neuropeptide Y and proopiomelanocortin. The levels of MTMR9 transcript in the murine hypothalamic region increased after fasting and were decreased by a high-fat diet. Our data suggested that genetic variations in MTMR9 may confer a predisposition towards obesity and hypertension through regulation of hypothalamic neuropeptides.
Full-text · Article · Jan 2008 · Human Molecular Genetics
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Osteoarthritis (MIM 165720), characterized by degeneration of articular cartilage, is the most common form of human arthritis and a major concern for aging societies worldwide. Epidemiological and genetic studies have shown that osteoarthritis is a polygenic disease. Here, we report that the gene encoding growth differentiation factor 5 (GDF5) is associated with osteoarthritis in Asian populations. A SNP in the 5' UTR of GDF5 (+104T/C; rs143383) showed significant association (P = 1.8 x 10(-13)) with hip osteoarthritis in two independent Japanese populations. This association was replicated for knee osteoarthritis in Japanese (P = 0.0021) and Han Chinese (P = 0.00028) populations. This SNP, located in the GDF5 core promoter, exerts allelic differences on transcriptional activity in chondrogenic cells, with the susceptibility allele showing reduced activity. Our findings implicate GDF5 as a susceptibility gene for osteoarthritis and suggest that decreased GDF5 expression is involved in the pathogenesis of osteoarthritis.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Brain infarction is one of the common causes of death and also a major cause of severe disability. To identify a gene(s) susceptible to brain infarction, we performed a large-scale association study of Japanese patients with brain infarction, using 52608 gene-based single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers. Comparison of allele frequencies between 1112 cases with brain infarction and age- and sex-matched control subjects of the same number found an SNP in the 5'-flanking region of angiotensin receptor like-1 (AGTRL1) gene (rs9943582, - 154G/A) to have a significant association with brain infarction [odds ratio = 1.30, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.14-1.47, P = 0.000066]. We also found the binding of Sp1 transcription factor to the region including the susceptible G allele, but not the non-susceptible A allele. Luciferase assay and RT-PCR analysis demonstrated that exogenously introduced Sp1 induced transcription of AGTRL1 and its ligand, apelin, as well, indicating direct regulation of apelin/APJ pathway by Sp1. Furthermore, a 14 year follow-up cohort study in a Japanese community in Hisayama town, Japan revealed that the homozygote of the susceptible G allele of this particular SNP had significantly higher risk of brain infarction (hazard ratio = 2.00, 95% CI = 1.22-3.29, P = 0.006). Our results indicate that the SNP in the AGTRL1 gene is associated with the susceptibility to brain infarction.
Preview · Article · Apr 2007 · Human Molecular Genetics
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Genetic factors are important for the development of obesity. However, the genetic background of obesity still remains unclear.
Our objective was to search for obesity-related genes using a large number of gene-based single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs).
We conducted case-control association analyses using 94 obese patients and 658 controls with 62,663 SNPs selected from the SNP database. SNPs that possessed P < or = 0.02 were further analyzed using 796 obese and 711 control subjects. One SNP (rs3764220) in the secretogranin III (SCG3) gene showed the lowest P value (P = 0.0000019). We sequenced an approximately 300-kb genomic region around rs3764220 and discovered SNPs for haplotype analyses. SCG3 was the only gene within a haplotype block that contained rs3764220. The functions of SCG3 were studied.
Obese subjects (body mass index > or = 30 kg/m(2), n = 890) and control subjects (general population; n = 658, body mass index < or = 25 kg/m(2); n = 711) were recruited for this study.
Twelve SNPs in the SCG3 gene including rs3764220 were in almost complete linkage disequilibrium and significantly associated with an obesity phenotype. Two SNPs (rs16964465, rs16964476) affected the transcriptional activity of SCG3, and subjects with the minor allele seemed to be resistant to obesity (odds ratio, 9.23; 95% confidence interval, 2.77-30.80; chi(2) = 19.2; P = 0.0000067). SCG3 mRNA and immunoreactivity were detected in the paraventricular nucleus, lateral hypothalamic area, and arcuate nucleus, and the protein coexisted with orexin, melanin-concentrating hormone, neuropeptide Y, and proopiomelanocortin. SCG3 formed a granule-like structure together with these neuropeptides.
Genetic variations in the SCG3 gene may influence the risk of obesity through possible regulation of hypothalamic neuropeptide secretion.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cerebral infarction is the most common type of stroke and often causes long-term disability. To investigate the genetic contribution to cerebral infarction, we conducted a case-control study using 52,608 gene-based tag SNPs selected from the JSNP database. Here we report that a nonsynonymous SNP in a member of protein kinase C (PKC) family, PRKCH, was significantly associated with lacunar infarction in two independent Japanese samples (P = 5.1 x 10(-7), crude odds ratio of 1.40). This SNP is likely to affect PKC activity. Furthermore, a 14-year follow-up cohort study in Hisayama (Fukuoka, Japan) supported involvement of this SNP in the development of cerebral infarction (P = 0.03, age- and sex-adjusted hazard ratio of 2.83). We also found that PKCeta was expressed mainly in vascular endothelial cells and foamy macrophages in human atherosclerotic lesions, and its expression increased as the lesion type progressed. Our results support a role for PRKCH in the pathogenesis of cerebral infarction.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Myocardial infarction (MI) results from complex interactions of multiple genetic and environmental factors. To disclose genetic backgrounds of MI, we performed a large-scale, case-control association study using 52,608 gene-based single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers, and identified a candidate SNP located on chromosome 3p21.2-p21.1. Subsequent linkage-disequilibrium mapping indicated very significant association between MI and a SNP in exon 2 of the inter-alpha (globulin) inhibitor 3 gene (ITIH3; chi(2) = 24.88, P = 6.1 x 10(-7), 3,353 affected individuals versus 3,807 controls). In vitro functional analyses showed that this SNP enhanced the transcriptional level of the ITIH3 gene. Furthermore, we found expression of the ITIH3 protein in the vascular smooth muscle cells and macrophages in the human atherosclerotic lesions, suggesting ITIH3 SNP to be a novel genetic risk factor of MI.
Full-text · Article · Feb 2007 · Journal of Human Genetics
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Through a large-scale case-control association study using 52,608 haplotype-based single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers, we identified a susceptible locus for myocardial infarction (MI) on chromosome 22q12.1. Following linkage disequilibrium (LD) mapping, haplotype analyses revealed that six SNPs in this locus, all of which were in complete LD, showed markedly significant association with MI (chi2=25.27, P=0.0000005; comparison of allele frequency, 3,435 affected individuals versus 3,774 controls, in the case of intron 1 5,338 C>T; rs2331291). Within this locus, we isolated a complete cDNA of a novel gene, designated myocardial infarction associated transcript (MIAT). MIAT has five exons, and in vitro translation assay showed that MIAT did not encode any translational product, indicating that this is likely to be a functional RNA. In vitro functional analyses revealed that the minor variant of one SNP in exon 5 increased transcriptional level of the novel gene. Moreover, unidentified nuclear protein(s) bound more intensely to risk allele than non-risk allele. These results indicate that the altered expression of MIAT by the SNP may play some role in the pathogenesis of MI.
Full-text · Article · Nov 2006 · Journal of Human Genetics
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Warfarin is the most commonly used oral anticoagulant for treatment of thromboembolism, but adjustment of the dose appropriate to each patient is not so easy because of the large inter-individual variation in dose requirement. We analyzed single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) genotypes of the VKORC1 and CYP2C9 genes using DNA from 828 Japanese patients treated with warfarin, and investigated association between SNP genotype and warfarin-maintenance dose. Five SNPs in VKORC1, 5' flanking-1413A > G, intron 1-136T > C, intron 2+124C > G, intron 2+837T > C and exon 3 343G > A, were in absolute linkage disequilibrium, and showed a significant association with daily warfarin dose of these patients. The median warfarin dose of patients with homozygosity for the minor allele was 4.0 mg/day, which is significantly higher than those heterozygous for the minor allele (3.5 mg/day) or those homozygous for the major allele (2.5 mg/day; P = 5.1 x 10(-11) in the case of intron 1-136T > C SNP). We then genotyped the CYP2C9 gene for the Japanese common genetic variant, CYP2C9*3 and, based on the genotype of these two genes, classified patients into three categories, which we call "warfarin-responsive index." The median warfarin daily dose varied significantly in this classification according to the warfarin-responsive index (2.0 mg/day for index 0 group, 2.5 mg/day for index 1 group, and 3.5 mg/day for index 2 group; P = 4.4 x 10(-13)). Thus, analysis of the combination of VKORC1 and CYP2C9 genotypes should identify warfarin-sensitive patients who require a lower dose of drug, allowing personalized warfarin treatment.
Preview · Article · Mar 2006 · Journal of Human Genetics
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Human earwax consists of wet and dry types. Dry earwax is frequent in East Asians, whereas wet earwax is common in other populations. Here we show that a SNP, 538G --> A (rs17822931), in the ABCC11 gene is responsible for determination of earwax type. The AA genotype corresponds to dry earwax, and GA and GG to wet type. A 27-bp deletion in ABCC11 exon 29 was also found in a few individuals of Asian ancestry. A functional assay demonstrated that cells with allele A show a lower excretory activity for cGMP than those with allele G. The allele A frequency shows a north-south and east-west downward geographical gradient; worldwide, it is highest in Chinese and Koreans, and a common dry-type haplotype is retained among various ethnic populations. These suggest that the allele A arose in northeast Asia and thereafter spread through the world. The 538G --> A SNP is the first example of DNA polymorphism determining a visible genetic trait.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To establish 'personalized medicines' that can provide the right drug at the appropriate dose for each individual patient on the basis of genetic background, we have been building the infrastructure for a Japanese single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) database of the genes encoding various enzymes, transporters and receptors that are involved in the metabolism, transportation and action of drugs. We have so far screened a genomic region of 4,068.3 kb, and identified a total of 7,552 genetic variations, including 6,733 SNP and 819 genetic variations of other types among 267 genes in Japanese populations. Interestingly, among the 212 non-synonymous substitutions we found, six would be considered to be nonsense mutations. In this review, we focused on the molecular features of the non-synonymous substitutions and insertion/deletion polymorphisms within coding regions detected in drug-related gene loci. The database established in this study makes us confident of achieving one of our goals, which is establishment of personalized medicine.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The inflammatory bowel diseases (IBDs), Crohn's disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis, are chronic inflammatory disorders of the digestive tract. The pathogenesis of IBD is complicated, and it is widely accepted that immunologic, environmental and genetic components contribute to its etiology. To identify genetic susceptibility factors in CD, we performed a genome-wide association study in Japanese patients and controls using nearly 80,000 gene-based single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers and investigated the haplotype structure of the candidate locus in Japanese and European patients. We identified highly significant associations (P = 1.71 x 10(-14) with odds ratio of 2.17) of SNPs and haplotypes within the TNFSF15 (the gene encoding tumor necrosis factor superfamily, member 15) genes in Japanese CD patients. The association was confirmed in the study of two European IBD cohorts. Interestingly, a core TNFSF15 haplotype showing association with increased risk to the disease was common in the two ethnic groups. Our results suggest that the genetic variations in the TNFSF15 gene contribute to the susceptibility to IBD in the Japanese and European populations.
Full-text · Article · Dec 2005 · Human Molecular Genetics
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Osteoarthritis (OA), a common skeletal disease, is a leading cause of disability among the elderly populations. OA is characterized by gradual loss of articular cartilage, but the etiology and pathogenesis of OA are largely unknown. Epidemiological and genetic studies have demonstrated that genetic factors play an important role in OA. To identify susceptibility genes for OA, we performed a large-scale, case-control association study using gene-based single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). In two independent case-control populations, we found significant association (P=9.8x10(-7)) between hip OA and a SNP (IVS3-293C>T) located in intron 3 of the calmodulin (CaM) 1 gene (CALM1). CALM1 was expressed in cultured chondrocytes and articular cartilage, and its expression was increased in OA. Subsequent linkage-disequilibrium mapping identified five SNPs showing significant association equivalent to IVS3-293C>T. One of these (-16C>T) is located in the core promoter region of CALM1. Functional analyses indicate that the susceptibility -16T allele decreases CALM1 transcription in vitro and in vivo. Inhibition of CaM in chondrogenic cells reduced the expression of the major cartilage matrix genes Col2a1 and Agc1. These results suggest that the transcriptional level of CALM1 is associated with susceptibility for hip OA through modulation of chondrogenic activity. Our findings reveal the CALM1-mediated signaling pathway in chondrocytes as a novel potential target for treatment of OA.
Preview · Article · May 2005 · Human Molecular Genetics
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To search for a gene(s) conferring susceptibility to diabetic nephropathy (DN), we genotyped over 80,000 gene-based single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in Japanese patients and identified that the engulfment and cell motility 1 gene (ELMO1) was a likely candidate for conferring susceptibility to DN, in view of the significant association of an SNP in this gene with the disease (intron 18+9170, GG vs. GA+AA, chi(2) = 19.9, P = 0.000008; odds ratio 2.67, 95% CI 1.71-4.16). In situ hybridization (ISH) using the kidney of normal and diabetic mice revealed that ELMO1 expression was weakly detectable mainly in tubular and glomerular epithelial cells in normal mouse kidney and was clearly elevated in the kidney of diabetic mice. Subsequent in vitro analysis revealed that ELMO1 expression was elevated in cells cultured under high glucose conditions (25 mmol/l) compared with cells cultured under normal glucose conditions (5.5 mmol/l). Furthermore, we identified that the expression of extracellular matrix protein genes, such as type 1 collagen and fibronectin, were increased in cells that overexpress ELMO1, whereas the expression of matrix metalloproteinases was decreased. These results indicate that ELMO1 is a novel candidate gene that both confers susceptibility to DN and plays an important role in the development and progression of this disease.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The application of pharmacogenomic information to diagnostic assays is expected to improve the prediction of drug efficacy and toxicity, leading to appropriate therapeutic regimens for individual patients. Cardiovascular events are common and severe adverse drug reactions (ADRs) among transplant patients treated with calcineurin inhibitors (CNIs). We conducted case-control association studies using 50,947 gene-based single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) to identify genetic variations that might be associated with cardiovascular risk factors in 72 renal transplant recipients with CNI therapy. The overall incidence of cardiovascular events was 13.9% (10/72) among patients receiving cyclosporine or tacrolimus; arrhythmias in six patients (8.3%), ischemic heart diseases in two patients (2.8%), and heart failure in two patients (2.8%). On the basis of results of the genome-wide association studies, we attempted to establish a scoring system to predict individual risks for cardiovascular toxicity of cyclosporine and tacrolimus. Estimation of the predictive performance was carried out by the use of internal leave-one-out cross-validation test. When we combined arrhythmia, ischemic heart disease and heart failure cases as subjects with a cardiotoxicity phenotype, nine of ten ADR patients and 50 of 62 non-ADR patients were correctly classified into the respective categories using the top eight SNPs. In addition, the proportion of individuals in the control population (n=246) with scores over the cut-off (11.0%) was close to the cardiovascular ADR frequency (8.3%) among renal transplant patients in the previous clinical study. Our results open the possibility that prediction of CNI-induced cardiovascular complications can lead to better prognosis and quality of life among kidney-transplant patients, and to improved immunosuppressive regimens.
Preview · Article · Feb 2005 · Journal of Human Genetics
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To optimize the strategies for population-based pharmacogenetic studies, we extensively analyzed single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and haplotypes in 199 drug-related genes, through use of 4,190 SNPs in 752 control subjects. Drug-related genes, like other genes, have a haplotype-block structure, and a few haplotype-tagging SNPs (htSNPs) could represent most of the major haplotypes constructed with common SNPs in a block. Because our data included 860 uncommon (frequency <0.1) SNPs with frequencies that were accurately estimated, we analyzed the relationship between haplotypes and uncommon SNPs within the blocks (549 SNPs). We inferred haplotype frequencies through use of the data from all htSNPs and one of the uncommon SNPs within a block and calculated four joint probabilities for the haplotypes. We show that, irrespective of the minor-allele frequency of an uncommon SNP, the majority (mean +/- SD frequency 0.943+/-0.117) of the minor alleles were assigned to a single haplotype tagged by htSNPs if the uncommon SNP was within the block. These results support the hypothesis that recombinations occur only infrequently within blocks. The proportion of a single haplotype tagged by htSNPs to which the minor alleles of an uncommon SNP were assigned was positively correlated with the minor-allele frequency when the frequency was <0.03 (P<.000001; n=233 [Spearman's rank correlation coefficient]). The results of simulation studies suggested that haplotype analysis using htSNPs may be useful in the detection of uncommon SNPs associated with phenotypes if the frequencies of the SNPs are higher in affected than in control populations, the SNPs are within the blocks, and the frequencies of the SNPs are >0.03.
Full-text · Article · Aug 2004 · The American Journal of Human Genetics
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Heterotrimeric guanine nucleotide binding proteins (G proteins) regulate various signals from transmembrane receptors to intracellular effectors thereby mediating cell growth, differentiation, and apoptosis. We have been publishing a series of genetic variations detected in the genomic regions corresponding to the potential drug target genes. As an addition to genetic information reported earlier, we provide here 20 novel single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the region corresponding to a gene encoding alpha subunits of G(12) protein, GNA12, in the Japanese population: 16 in introns, two in the coding region, and two in the 3' flanking region. We also identified 12 genetic variations of other types from this locus. The collection of genetic variations reported here will serve as a useful resource for analyzing potential associations between genotypes and susceptibility to common diseases as well as efficacy and/or adverse reactions to drugs.
Preview · Article · Feb 2004 · Journal of Human Genetics