Modifiable lifestyle factors and severe COVID-19 risk: a Mendelian randomisation study.
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BMC Med Genomics
Springer Science and Business Media LLC
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Li, S., & Hua, X. (2021). Modifiable lifestyle factors and severe COVID-19 risk: a Mendelian randomisation study.. BMC Med Genomics, 14 (1) https://doi.org/10.1186/s12920-021-00887-1
BACKGROUND: Lifestyle factors including obesity and smoking are suggested to be correlated with increased risk of COVID-19 severe illness or related death. However, whether these relationships are causal is not well known; neither for the relationships between COVID-19 severe illness and other common lifestyle factors, such as physical activity and alcohol consumption. METHODS: Genome-wide significant genetic variants associated with body mass index (BMI), lifetime smoking, physical activity and alcohol consumption identified by large-scale genome-wide association studies (GWAS) of up to 941,280 individuals were selected as instrumental variables. Summary statistics of the genetic variants on severe illness of COVID-19 were obtained from GWAS analyses of up to 6492 cases and 1,012,809 controls. Two-sample Mendelian randomisation analyses were conducted. RESULTS: Both per-standard deviation (SD) increase in genetically predicted BMI and lifetime smoking were associated with about two-fold increased risks of severe respiratory COVID-19 and COVID-19 hospitalization (all P < 0.05). Per-SD increase in genetically predicted physical activity was associated with decreased risks of severe respiratory COVID-19 (odds ratio [OR] = 0.19; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.05, 0.74; P = 0.02), but not with COVID-19 hospitalization (OR = 0.44; 95% CI 0.18, 1.07; P = 0.07). No evidence of association was found for genetically predicted alcohol consumption. Similar results were found across robust Mendelian randomisation methods. CONCLUSIONS: Evidence is found that BMI and smoking causally increase and physical activity might causally decrease the risk of COVID-19 severe illness. This study highlights the importance of maintaining a healthy lifestyle in protecting from COVID-19 severe illness and its public health value in fighting against COVID-19 pandemic.
Research Article, Genomic epidemiology, COVID-19, Lifestyle factors, Mendelian randomisation, Causation assessment, Obesity, Smoking, Alcohol consumption, Physical activity
Victorian Cancer Agency (ECRF19020)
External DOI: https://doi.org/10.1186/s12920-021-00887-1
This record's URL: https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/317084
Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)
Licence URL: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/