1JAMA Psychiatry 2013 Jun 70: 573-81
TitleA comprehensive family-based replication study of schizophrenia genes.
Abstractschizophrenia (SCZ) is a devastating psychiatric condition. Identifying the specific genetic variants and pathways that increase susceptibility to SCZ is critical to improve disease understanding and address the urgent need for new drug targets.
To identify SCZ susceptibility genes.
We integrated results from a meta-analysis of 18 genome-wide association studies (GWAS) involving 1,085,772 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and 6 databases that showed significant informativeness for SCZ. The 9380 most promising SNPs were then specifically genotyped in an independent family-based replication study that, after quality control, consisted of 8107 SNPs.
Linkage meta-analysis, brain transcriptome meta-analysis, candidate gene database, OMIM, relevant mouse studies, and expression quantitative trait locus databases.
We included 11,185 cases and 10,768 control subjects from 6 databases and, after quality control 6298 individuals (including 3286 cases) from 1811 nuclear families.
Case-control status for SCZ.
Replication results showed a highly significant enrichment of SNPs with small P values. Of the SNPs with replication values of P.01, the proportion of SNPs that had the same direction of effects as in the GWAS meta-analysis was 89% in the combined ancestry group (sign test, P < 2.20 x 10(-16) and 93% in subjects of European ancestry only (P < 2.20 < 10(-16)). Our results supported the major histocompatibility complex region showing a3.7-fold overall enrichment of replication values of P < .01 in subjects from European ancestry. We replicated SNPs in TCF4 (P = 2.53 x 10(-10)) and NOTCH4 (P = 3.16 x 10(-7)) that are among the most robust SCZ findings. More novel findings included POM121L2 (P = 3.51 x 10(-7)), AS3MT (P = 9.01 x 10(-7)), CNNM2 (P = 6.07 = 10(-7)), and NT5C2(P = 4.09 x 10(-7)). To explore the many small effects, we performed pathway analyses. The most significant pathways involved neuronal function (axonal guidance, neuronal systems, and L1 cell adhesion molecule interaction)and the immune system (antigen processing, cell adhesion molecules relevant to T cells, and translocation to immunological synapse).
We replicated novel SCZ disease genes and pathogenic pathways. Better understanding the molecular and biological mechanisms involved with schizophrenia may improve disease management and may identify new drug targets.
SCZ Keywordsschizophrenia
2Front Neurosci 2014 -1 8: 331
TitleNeuroinformatic analyses of common and distinct genetic components associated with major neuropsychiatric disorders.
AbstractMajor neuropsychiatric disorders are highly heritable, with mounting evidence suggesting that these disorders share overlapping sets of molecular and cellular underpinnings. In the current article we systematically test the degree of genetic commonality across six major neuropsychiatric disorders-attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), anxiety disorders (Anx), autistic spectrum disorders (ASD), bipolar disorder (BD), major depressive disorder (MDD), and schizophrenia (SCZ). We curated a well-vetted list of genes based on large-scale human genetic studies based on the NHGRI catalog of published genome-wide association studies (GWAS). A total of 180 genes were accepted into the analysis on the basis of low but liberal GWAS p-values (<10(-5)). 22% of genes overlapped two or more disorders. The most widely shared subset of genes-common to five of six disorders-included ANK3, AS3MT, CACNA1C, CACNB2, CNNM2, CSMD1, DPCR1, ITIH3, NT5C2, PPP1R11, SYNE1, TCF4, TENM4, TRIM26, and ZNRD1. Using a suite of neuroinformatic resources, we showed that many of the shared genes are implicated in the postsynaptic density (PSD), expressed in immune tissues and co-expressed in developing human brain. Using a translational cross-species approach, we detected two distinct genetic components that were both shared by each of the six disorders; the 1st component is involved in CNS development, neural projections and synaptic transmission, while the 2nd is implicated in various cytoplasmic organelles and cellular processes. Combined, these genetic components account for 20-30% of the genetic load. The remaining risk is conferred by distinct, disorder-specific variants. Our systematic comparative analysis of shared and unique genetic factors highlights key gene sets and molecular processes that may ultimately translate into improved diagnosis and treatment of these debilitating disorders.
SCZ Keywordsschizophrenia
3Int J Epidemiol 2014 Apr 43: 465-75
TitleRecent challenges to the psychiatric diagnostic nosology: a focus on the genetics and genomics of neurodevelopmental disorders.
AbstractRecent advances in the genetics of neurodevelopmental disorder (NDD) have demonstrated that rare mutations play a role not only in Mendelian syndromes, but in complex, common forms of NDDs as well. Strikingly, both common polymorphisms and rare variations in a single gene or genetic locus have been found to carry risk for conditions previously considered to be clinically and aetiologically distinct. Recent developments in the methods and tools available for studying complex NDDs have led to systematic and reliable genome-wide variant discovery. Both common as well as rare, and structural as well as sequence, genetic variations have been identified as contributing to NDDs. There are multiple examples in which the identical variant had been found to contribute to a wide range of formerly distinct diagnoses, including autism, schizophrenia, epilepsy, intellectual disability and language disorders. These include variations in chromosomal structure at 16p11.2, rare de novo point mutations at the gene SCN2A, and common single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) mapping near loci encoding the genes ITIH3, AS3MT, CACNA1C and CACNB2. These selected examples point to the challenges to current diagnostic approaches. Widely used categorical schema have been adequate to provide an entré into molecular mechanisms of NDDs, but there is a need to develop an alternative, more biologically-relevant nosology. Thus recent advances in gene discovery in the area of NDDs are leading to a re-conceptualization of diagnostic boundaries. Findings suggest that epidemiological samples may provide important new insights into the genetics and diagnosis of NDDs and that other areas of medicine may provide useful models for developing a new diagnostic nosology, one that simultaneously integrates categorical diagnoses, biomarkers and dimensional variables.
SCZ Keywordsschizophrenia
4Am. J. Med. Genet. B Neuropsychiatr. Genet. 2016 Mar -1: -1
TitleGenome-wide significant schizophrenia risk variation on chromosome 10q24 is associated with altered cis-regulation of BORCS7, AS3MT, and NT5C2 in the human brain.
AbstractChromosome 10q24.32-q24.33 is one of the most robustly supported risk loci to emerge from genome-wide association studies (GWAS) of schizophrenia. However, extensive linkage disequilibrium makes it difficult to distinguish the actual susceptibility gene(s) at the locus, limiting its value for improving biological understanding of the condition. In the absence of coding changes that can account for the association, risk is likely conferred by altered regulation of one or more genes in the region. We, therefore, used highly sensitive measures of allele-specific expression to assess cis-regulatory effects associated with the two best-supported schizophrenia risk variants (SNP rs11191419 and indel ch10_104957618_I/rs202213518) on the primary positional candidates BORCS7, AS3MT, CNNM2, and NT5C2 in the human brain. Heterozygosity at rs11191419 was associated with increased allelic expression of BORCS7 and AS3MT in the fetal and adult brain, and with reduced allelic expression of NT5C2 in the adult brain. Heterozygosity at ch10_104957618_I was associated with reduced allelic expression of NT5C2 in both the fetal and adult brain. Comparisons between cDNA ratios in heterozygotes and homozygotes for the risk alleles indicated that cis-effects on NT5C2 expression in the adult dorsolateral prefrontal cortex could be largely accounted for by genotype at these two risk variants. While not excluding effects on other genes in the region, this study implicates altered neural expression of BORCS7, AS3MT, and NT5C2 in susceptibility to schizophrenia arising from genetic variation at the chromosome 10q24 locus. © 2016 The Authors. American Journal of Medical Genetics Part B: Neuropsychiatric Genetics Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
SCZ Keywordsschizophrenia
5Nat. Med. 2016 May -1: -1
TitleA human-specific AS3MT isoform and BORCS7 are molecular risk factors in the 10q24.32 schizophrenia-associated locus.
AbstractGenome-wide association studies (GWASs) have reported many single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) associated with psychiatric disorders, but knowledge is lacking regarding molecular mechanisms. Here we show that risk alleles spanning multiple genes across the 10q24.32 schizophrenia-related locus are associated in the human brain selectively with an increase in the expression of both BLOC-1 related complex subunit 7 (BORCS7) and a previously uncharacterized, human-specific arsenite methyltransferase (AS3MT) isoform (AS3MT(d2d3)), which lacks arsenite methyltransferase activity and is more abundant in individuals with schizophrenia than in controls. Conditional-expression analysis suggests that BORCS7 and AS3MT(d2d3) signals are largely independent. GWAS risk SNPs across this region are linked with a variable number tandem repeat (VNTR) polymorphism in the first exon of AS3MT that is associated with the expression of AS3MT(d2d3) in samples from both Caucasians and African Americans. The VNTR genotype predicts promoter activity in luciferase assays, as well as DNA methylation within the AS3MT gene. Both AS3MT(d2d3) and BORCS7 are expressed in adult human neurons and astrocytes, and they are upregulated during human stem cell differentiation toward neuronal fates. Our results provide a molecular explanation for the prominent 10q24.32 locus association, including a novel and evolutionarily recent protein that is involved in early brain development and confers risk for psychiatric illness.
SCZ Keywordsschizophrenia