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Genome-wide association study implicates immune activation of multiple integrin genes in inflammatory bowel disease

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de Lange, KM 
Moutsianas, L 
Lee, JC 
Lamb, CA 
Luo, Y 


Genetic association studies have identified 215 risk loci for inflammatory bowel disease, thereby uncovering fundamental aspects of its molecular biology. We performed a genome-wide association study of 25,305 individuals and conducted a meta-analysis with published summary statistics, yielding a total sample size of 59,957 subjects. We identified 25 new susceptibility loci, 3 of which contain integrin genes that encode proteins in pathways that have been identified as important therapeutic targets in inflammatory bowel disease. The associated variants are correlated with expression changes in response to immune stimulus at two of these genes (ITGA4  and ITGB8) and at previously implicated loci (ITGAL and ICAM1). In all four cases, the expression-increasing allele also increases disease risk. We also identified likely causal missense variants in a gene implicated in primary immune deficiency, PLCG2, and a negative regulator of inflammation, SLAMF8. Our results demonstrate that new associations at common variants continue to identify genes relevant to therapeutic target identification and prioritization.



Alleles, Genetic Predisposition to Disease, Genome-Wide Association Study, Humans, Inflammation, Inflammatory Bowel Diseases, Integrins, Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide, Quantitative Trait Loci

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Nature Genetics

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Nature Publishing Group
Medical Research Council (MR/M00533X/1)
National Association for Colitis and Crohn's Disease (NACC) (MR/M00533X/1)
This work was co-funded by the Wellcome Trust [098051] and the Medical Research Council, UK [MR/J00314X/1]. Case collections were supported by Crohn’s and Colitis UK. KMdL, LM, CAL, YL, DR, JG-A, NJP, CAA and JCB are supported by the Wellcome Trust [098051; 093885/Z/10/Z; 094491/Z/10/Z]. KMdL is supported by a Woolf Fisher Trust scholarship. CAL is a clinical lecturer funded by the NIHR. We thank Anna Stanton for co-ordinating the Guy’s and St Thomas’ patient recruitment. We acknowledge support from the Department of Health via the NIHR comprehensive Biomedical Research Centre awards to Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust in partnership with King’s College London and to Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge in partnership with the University of Cambridge. This research was also supported by the NIHR Newcastle Biomedical Research Centre. The UK Household Longitudinal Study is led by the Institute for Social and Economic Research at the University of Essex and funded by the Economic and Social Research Council.