Genetic meta-analysis of diagnosed Alzheimer’s disease identifies new risk loci and implicates Aβ, tau, immunity and lipid processing

Brian W. Kunkle, Benjamin Grenier-Boley, Rebecca Sims, Joshua C. Bis, Vincent Damotte, Adam C. Naj, Anne Boland, Maria Vronskaya, Sven J. van der Lee, Alexandre Amlie-Wolf, C. line Bellenguez, Aura Frizatti, Vincent Chouraki, Eden R. Martin, Kristel Sleegers, Nandini Badarinarayan, Johanna Jakobsdottir, Kara L. Hamilton-Nelson, Sonia Moreno-Grau, Robert OlasoRachel Raybould, Yuning Chen, Amanda B. Kuzma, Mikko Hiltunen, Taniesha Morgan, Shahzad Ahmad, Badri N. Vardarajan, Jacques Epelbaum, Per Hoffmann, Merce Boada, Gary W. Beecham, Jean-Guillaume Garnier, Denise Harold, Annette L. Fitzpatrick, Otto Valladares, Marie-Laure Moutet, Amy Gerrish, Albert V. Smith, Liming Qu, Delphine Bacq, Nicola Denning, Xueqiu Jian, Yi Zhao, Maria del Zompo, Nick C. Fox, Seung-Hoan Choi, Ignacio Mateo, Joseph T. Hughes, Hieab H. Adams, Joel H. Kramer, Alzheimer Disease Genetics Consortium (ADGC),, The European Alzheimer’s Disease Initiative (EADI),, Cohorts for Heart and Aging Research in Genomic Epidemiology Consortium (CHARGE),, Genetic and Environmental Risk in AD/Defining Genetic, Polygenic and Environmental Risk for Alzheimer’s Disease Consortium (GERAD/PERADES),, M.A. Pericak-Vance, J.C. Lambert, Gerard D. Schellenberg

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Risk for late-onset Alzheimer’s disease (LOAD), the most prevalent dementia, is partially driven by genetics. To identify LOAD risk loci, we performed a large genome-wide association meta-analysis of clinically diagnosed LOAD (94,437 individuals). We confirm 20 previous LOAD risk loci and identify five new genome-wide loci (IQCK, ACE, ADAM10, ADAMTS1, and WWOX), two of which (ADAM10, ACE) were identified in a recent genome-wide association (GWAS)-by-familial-proxy of Alzheimer’s or dementia. Fine-mapping of the human leukocyte antigen (HLA) region confirms the neurological and immune-mediated disease haplotype HLA-DR15 as a risk factor for LOAD. Pathway analysis implicates immunity, lipid metabolism, tau binding proteins, and amyloid precursor protein (APP) metabolism, showing that genetic variants affecting APP and Aβ processing are associated not only with early-onset autosomal dominant Alzheimer’s disease but also with LOAD. Analyses of risk genes and pathways show enrichment for rare variants (P = 1.32 × 10−7), indicating that additional rare variants remain to be identified. We also identify important genetic correlations between LOAD and traits such as family history of dementia and education.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)414-430
JournalNature Genetics
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2019
Externally publishedYes

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