Eur J Hum Genet. 2012 Feb 15. doi: 10.1038/ejhg.2012.15. [Epub ahead of print]
Estimating the contribution of genetic variants to difference in incidence of disease between population groups.
SourceOffice of Minority Health and Health Disparities, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA, USA.
AbstractGenome-wide association studies have identified multiple genetic susceptibility variants to several complex human diseases. However, risk-genotype frequency at loci showing robust associations might differ substantially among different populations. In this paper, we present methods to assess the contribution of genetic variants to the difference in the incidence of disease between different population groups for different scenarios. We derive expressions for the contribution of a single genetic variant, multiple genetic variants, and the contribution of the joint effect of a genetic variant and an environmental factor to the difference in the incidence of disease. The contribution of genetic variants to the difference in incidence increases with increasing difference in risk-genotype frequency, but declines with increasing difference in incidence between the two populations. The contribution of genetic variants also increases with increasing relative risk and the contribution of joint effect of genetic and environmental factors increases with increasing relative risk of the gene-environmental interaction. The contribution of genetic variants to the difference in incidence between two populations can be expressed as a function of the population attributable risks of the genetic variants in the two populations. The contribution of a group of genetic variants to the disparity in incidence of disease could change considerably by adding one more genetic variant to the group. Any estimate of genetic contribution to the disparity in incidence of disease between two populations at this stage seems to be an elusive goal.European Journal of Human Genetics advance online publication, 15 February 2012; doi:10.1038/ejhg.2012.15.
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