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Research Department of Genetics
University Medical Center Groningen

Worldwide study finds 29 new genes for ulcerative colitis

11 February 2011

Meta-analysis identifies 29 additional ulcerative colitis risk loci, increasing the number of confirmed associations to 47
by Anderson CA, et al. Nat Genet . 2011

This worldwide study was coordinated by UMCG gastroenterologist Dr. Rinse Weersma. He worked closely with colleagues in the Dept. of Genetics and others, and their findings have just been published in Nature Genetics.

They combined 6 separate genome-wide associaiton studies and performed a meta-analysis of all the data. This revealed 29 new genes associated with ulcerative colitis, increasing the total number of known genes for this disease to 47. "We are acquiring more insight into the reasons for ulcerative colitis to develop. This is a landmark study which everyone can refer to in the future" said Dr. Weersma.

Prof. Cisca Wijmenga, Dr. Lude Franke, Harm-Jan Westra and Rudolf Fehrmann from the Dept. of Genetics worked on this research.

Abstract of Nature Genetics paper

Genome-wide association studies and candidate gene studies in ulcerative colitis have identified 18 susceptibility loci. We conducted a meta-analysis of six ulcerative colitis genome-wide association study datasets, comprising 6,687 cases and 19,718 controls, and followed up the top association signals in 9,628 cases and 12,917 controls. We identified 29 additional risk loci (P < 5 × 10(-8)), increasing the number of ulcerative colitis-associated loci to 47. After annotating associated regions using GRAIL, expression quantitative trait loci data and correlations with non-synonymous SNPs, we identified many candidate genes that provide potentially important insights into disease pathogenesis, including IL1R2, IL8RA-IL8RB, IL7R, IL12B, DAP, PRDM1, JAK2, IRF5, GNA12 and LSP1. The total number of confirmed inflammatory bowel disease risk loci is now 99, including a minimum of 28 shared association signals between Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis.

PubMed link

Last modified:18 December 2023 08.30 a.m.
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