Genome-wide significant results identified for plasma apolipoprotein H levels in middle-aged and older adults
Apolipoprotein H (ApoH) is a multi-functional plasma glycoprotein that has been associated with negative health outcomes. ApoH levels have high heritability. We undertook a genome-wide association study of ApoH levels using the largest sample to date and replicated the results in an independent cohort (total N = 1,255). In the discovery phase, a meta-analysis of two cohorts, the Sydney Memory and Ageing Study (Sydney MAS) and the Older Australian Twins Study (OATS) (n = 942) revealed genome-wide significant results in or near the APOH gene on chromosome 17 (top SNP, rs7211380, p = 1 × 10−11). The results were replicated in an independent cohort, the Hunter Community Study (p < 0.002) (n = 313). Conditional and joint analysis (COJO) confirmed the association of the chromosomal 17 region with ApoH levels. The set of independent SNPs identified by COJO explained 23% of the variance. The relationships between the top SNPs and cardiovascular/lipid/cognition measures and diabetes were assessed in Sydney MAS, with suggestive results observed for diabetes and cognitive performance. However, replication of these results in the smaller OATS cohort was not found. This work provides impetus for future research to better understand the contribution of genetics to ApoH levels and its possible impacts on health.
Mather, K. A., Thalamuthu, A., Oldmeadow, C., Song, F., Armstrong, N. J., Poljak, A., . . . Sachdev, P. S. (2016). Genome-wide significant results identified for plasma apolipoprotein H levels in middle-aged and older adults. Scientific Reports, 6, 23675. doi:10.1038/srep23675