Now showing 1 - 4 of 4
  • Publication
    Functional impact of global rare copy number variation in autism spectrum disorders
    The autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are a group of conditions characterized by impairments in reciprocal social interaction and communication, and the presence of restricted and repetitive behaviours1. Individuals with an ASD vary greatly in cognitive development, which can range from above average to intellectual disability2. Although ASDs are known to be highly heritable (~90%)3, the underlying genetic determinants are still largely unknown. Here we analysed the genome-wide characteristics of rare (<1% frequency) copy number variation in ASD using dense genotyping arrays. When comparing 996 ASD individuals of European ancestry to 1,287 matched controls, cases were found to carry a higher global burden of rare, genic copy number variants (CNVs) (1.19 fold, P = 0.012), especially so for loci previously implicated in either ASD and/or intellectual disability (1.69 fold, P = 3.4 × 10-4). Among the CNVs there were numerous de novo and inherited events, sometimes in combination in a given family, implicating many novel ASD genes such as SHANK2, SYNGAP1, DLGAP2 and the X-linked DDX53–PTCHD1 locus. We also discovered an enrichment of CNVs disrupting functional gene sets involved in cellular proliferation, projection and motility, and GTPase/Ras signalling. Our results reveal many new genetic and functional targets in ASD that may lead to final connected pathways.
      564Scopus© Citations 1595
  • Publication
    A novel approach of homozygous haplotype sharing identifies candidate genes in autism spectrum disorder
    Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a highly heritable disorder of complex and heterogeneous aetiology. It is primarily characterized by altered cognitive ability including impaired language and communication skills and fundamental deficits in social reciprocity. Despite some notable successes in neuropsychiatric genetics, overall, the high heritability of ASD (~90%) remains poorly explained by common genetic risk variants. However, recent studies suggest that rare genomic variation, in particular copy number variation, may account for a significant proportion of the genetic basis of ASD. We present a large scale analysis to identify candidate genes which may contain low-frequency recessive variation contributing to ASD while taking into account the potential contribution of population differences to the genetic heterogeneity of ASD. Our strategy, homozygous haplotype (HH) mapping, aims to detect homozygous segments of identical haplotype structure that are shared at a higher frequency amongst ASD patients compared to parental controls. The analysis was performed on 1,402 Autism Genome Project trios genotyped for 1 million single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). We identified 25 known and 1,218 novel ASD candidate genes in the discovery analysis including CADM2, ABHD14A, CHRFAM7A, GRIK2, GRM3, EPHA3, FGF10, KCND2, PDZK1, IMMP2L and FOXP2. Furthermore, 10 of the previously reported ASD genes and 300 of the novel candidates identified in the discovery analysis were replicated in an independent sample of 1,182 trios. Our results demonstrate that regions of HH are significantly enriched for previously reported ASD candidate genes and the observed association is independent of gene size (odds ratio 2.10). Our findings highlight the applicability of HH mapping in complex disorders such as ASD and offer an alternative approach to the analysis of genome-wide association data.
      896Scopus© Citations 159
  • Publication
    Genome-wide epistatic expression quantitative trait loci discovery in four human tissues reveals the importance of local chromosomal interactions governing gene expression
    Background: Epistasis (synergistic interaction) among SNPs governing gene expression is likely to arise withintranscriptional networks. However, the power to detect it is limited by the large number of combinations to betested and the modest sample sizes of most datasets. By limiting the interaction search space firstly to cis-trans andthen cis-cis SNP pairs where both SNPs had an independent effect on the expression of the most variabletranscripts in the liver and brain, we greatly reduced the size of the search space.Results: Within the cis-trans search space we discovered three transcripts with significant epistasis. Surprisingly, allinteracting SNP pairs were located nearby each other on the chromosome (within 290 kb-2.16 Mb). Despite theirproximity, the interacting SNPs were outside the range of linkage disequilibrium (LD), which was absent betweenthe pairs (r2 < 0.01). Accordingly, we redefined the search space to detect cis-cis interactions, where a cis-SNP waslocated within 10 Mb of the target transcript. The results of this show evidence for the epistatic regulation of 50transcripts across the tissues studied. Three transcripts, namely, HLA-G, PSORS1C1 and HLA-DRB5 share commonregulatory SNPs in the pre-frontal cortex and their expression is significantly correlated. This pattern of epistasis isconsistent with mediation via long-range chromatin structures rather than the binding of transcription factors intrans. Accordingly, some of the interactions map to regions of the genome known to physically interact inlymphoblastoid cell lines while others map to known promoter and enhancer elements. SNPs involved in interactionsappear to be enriched for promoter markers.Conclusions: In the context of gene expression and its regulation, our analysis indicates that the study of cis-cisor local epistatic interactions may have a more important role than interchromosomal interactions.
      782Scopus© Citations 4
  • Publication
    A genome-wide scan for common alleles affecting risk for autism
    Although autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) have a substantial genetic basis, most of the known genetic risk has been traced to rare variants, principally copy number variants (CNVs). To identify common risk variation, the Autism Genome Project (AGP) Consortium genotyped 1558 rigorously defined ASD families for 1 million single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and analyzed these SNP genotypes for association with ASD. In one of four primary association analyses, the association signal for marker rs4141463, located within MACROD2, crossed the genome-wide association significance threshold of P < 5 × 10−8. When a smaller replication sample was analyzed, the risk allele at rs4141463 was again over-transmitted; yet, consistent with the winner's curse, its effect size in the replication sample was much smaller; and, for the combined samples, the association signal barely fell below the P < 5 × 10−8 threshold. Exploratory analyses of phenotypic subtypes yielded no significant associations after correction for multiple testing. They did, however, yield strong signals within several genes, KIAA0564, PLD5, POU6F2, ST8SIA2 and TAF1C.
      1089Scopus© Citations 475