Autozygosity influences cardiometabolic disease-associated traits in the AWI-Gen sub-Saharan African study.
ABSTRACT: The analysis of the effects of autozygosity, measured as the change of the mean value of a trait among offspring of genetic relatives, reveals the existence of directional dominance or overdominance. In this study we detect evidence of the effect of autozygosity in 4 out of 13 cardiometabolic disease-associated traits using data from more than 10,000 sub-Saharan African individuals recruited from Ghana, Burkina Faso, Kenya and South Africa. The effect of autozygosity on these phenotypes is found to be sex-related, with inbreeding having a significant decreasing effect in men but a significant increasing effect in women for several traits (body mass index, subcutaneous adipose tissue, low-density lipoproteins and total cholesterol levels). Overall, the effect of inbreeding depression is more intense in men. Differential effects of inbreeding depression are also observed between study sites with different night-light intensity used as proxy for urban development. These results suggest a directional dominant genetic component mediated by environmental interactions and sex-specific differences in genetic architecture for these traits in the Africa Wits-INDEPTH partnership for Genomic Studies (AWI-Gen) cohort.
Project description:Inbreeding increases the risk of certain Mendelian disorders in humans but may also reduce fitness through its effects on complex traits and diseases. Such inbreeding depression is thought to occur due to increased homozygosity at causal variants that are recessive with respect to fitness. Until recently it has been difficult to amass large enough sample sizes to investigate the effects of inbreeding depression on complex traits using genome-wide single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) data in population-based samples. Further, it is difficult to infer causation in analyses that relate degree of inbreeding to complex traits because confounding variables (e.g., education) may influence both the likelihood for parents to outbreed and offspring trait values. The present study used runs of homozygosity in genome-wide SNP data in up to 400,000 individuals in the UK Biobank to estimate the proportion of the autosome that exists in autozygous tracts-stretches of the genome which are identical due to a shared common ancestor. After multiple testing corrections and controlling for possible sociodemographic confounders, we found significant relationships in the predicted direction between estimated autozygosity and three of the 26 traits we investigated: age at first sexual intercourse, fluid intelligence, and forced expiratory volume in 1 second. Our findings corroborate those of several published studies. These results may imply that these traits have been associated with Darwinian fitness over evolutionary time. However, some of the autozygosity-trait relationships were attenuated after controlling for background sociodemographic characteristics, suggesting that alternative explanations for these associations have not been eliminated. Care needs to be taken in the design and interpretation of ROH studies in order to glean reliable information about the genetic architecture and evolutionary history of complex traits.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The aim of this study was to assess genome-wide autozygosity in a Nellore cattle population and to characterize ROH patterns and autozygosity islands that may have occurred due to selection within its lineages. It attempts also to compare estimates of inbreeding calculated from ROH (FROH), genomic relationship matrix (FGRM), and pedigree-based coefficient (FPED). RESULTS:The average number of ROH per animal was 55.15?±?13.01 with an average size of 3.24 Mb. The Nellore genome is composed mostly by a high number of shorter segments accounting for 78% of all ROH, although the proportion of the genome covered by them was relatively small. The genome autozygosity proportion indicates moderate to high inbreeding levels for classical standards, with an average value of 7.15% (178.70 Mb). The average of FPED and FROH, and their correlations (-?0.05 to 0.26) were low. Estimates of correlation between FGRM-FPED was zero, while the correlation (-?0.01 to -?0.07) between FGRM-FROH decreased as a function of ROH length, except for FROH?>?8Mb (-?0.03). Overall, inbreeding coefficients were not high for the genotyped animals. Autozygosity islands were evident across the genome (n?=?62) and their genomic location did not largely differ within lineages. Enriched terms (p?<?0.01) associated with defense response to bacteria (GO:0042742), immune complex reaction (GO:0045647), pregnancy-associated glycoproteins genes (GO:0030163), and organism growth (GO:0040014) were described within the autozygotic islands. CONCLUSIONS:Low FPED-FROH correlation estimates indicate that FPED is not the most suitable method for capturing ancient inbreeding when the pedigree does not extend back many generations and FROH should be used instead. Enriched terms (p <?0.01) suggest a strong selection for immune response. Non-overlapping islands within the lineages greatly explain the mechanism underlying selection for functionally important traits in Nellore cattle.
Project description:Jinhua pig, a well-known Chinese indigenous breed, has evolved as a pig breed with excellent meat quality, greater disease resistance, and higher prolificacy. The reduction in the number of Jinhua pigs over the past years has raised concerns about inbreeding. Runs of homozygosity (ROH) along the genome have been applied to quantify individual autozygosity to improve the understanding of inbreeding depression and identify genes associated with traits of interest. Here, we investigated the occurrence and distribution of ROH using next-generation sequencing data to characterize autozygosity in 202 Jinhua pigs, as well as to identify the genomic regions with high ROH frequencies within individuals. The average inbreeding coefficient, based on ROH longer than 1 Mb, was 0.168 ± 0.052. In total, 18,690 ROH were identified in all individuals, among which shorter segments (1-5 Mb) predominated. Individual ROH autosome coverage ranged from 5.32 to 29.14% in the Jinhua population. On average, approximately 16.8% of the whole genome was covered by ROH segments, with the lowest coverage on SSC11 and the highest coverage on SSC17. A total of 824 SNPs (about 0.5%) and 11 ROH island regions were identified (occurring in over 45% of the samples). Genes associated with reproduction (HOXA3, HOXA7, HOXA10, and HOXA11), meat quality (MYOD1, LPIN3, and CTNNBL1), appetite (NUCB2) and disease resistance traits (MUC4, MUC13, MUC20, LMLN, ITGB5, HEG1, SLC12A8, and MYLK) were identified in ROH islands. Moreover, several quantitative trait loci for ham weight and ham fat thickness were detected. Genes in ROH islands suggested, at least partially, a selection for economic traits and environmental adaptation, and should be subject of future investigation. These findings contribute to the understanding of the effects of environmental and artificial selection in shaping the distribution of functional variants in the pig genome.
Project description:Background Studies on the determinants of carotid intima-media thickness ( CIMT ), a marker of sub-clinical atherosclerosis, mostly come from white, Asian, and diasporan black populations. We present CIMT data from sub-Saharan Africa, which is experiencing a rising burden of cardiovascular diseases and infectious diseases. Methods and Results The H3 (Human Hereditary and Health) in Africa's AWI-Gen (African-Wits-INDEPTH partnership for Genomic) study is a cross-sectional study conducted in adults aged 40 to 60 years from Burkina Faso, Kenya, Ghana, and South Africa. Cardiovascular disease risk and ultrasonography of the CIMT of right and left common carotids were measured. Multivariable linear and mixed-effect multilevel regression modeling was applied to determine factors related to CIMT. Data included 8872 adults (50.8% men), mean age of 50±6 years with age- and sex-adjusted mean (±SE) CIMT of 640±123μm. Participants from Ghana and Burkina Faso had higher CIMT compared with other sites. Age (β = 6.77, 95%CI [6.34-7.19]), body mass index (17.6[12.5-22.8]), systolic blood pressure (7.52[6.21-8.83]), low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (5.08[2.10-8.06]) and men (10.3[4.75- 15.9]) were associated with higher CIMT. Smoking was associated with higher CIMT in men. High-density lipoprotein cholesterol (-12.2 [-17.9- -6.41]), alcohol consumption (-13.5 [-19.1--7.91]) and HIV (-8.86 [-15.7--2.03]) were inversely associated with CIMT. Conclusions Given the rising prevalence of cardiovascular diseases risk factors in sub-Saharan Africa, atherosclerotic diseases may become a major pan-African epidemic unless preventive measures are taken particularly for prevention of hypertension, obesity, and smoking. HIV -specific studies are needed to fully understand the association between HIV and CIMT in sub-Saharan Africa.
Project description:Inbreeding is often an inevitable outcome of strong directional artificial selection but on average it reduces population fitness with increased frequency of recessive deleterious alleles. Runs of homozygosity (ROH) representing genomic autozygosity that occur from mating between selected and genomically related individuals may be able to reveal the regions affecting fitness. To examine the influence of genomic autozygosity on fitness, we used a genome-wide association test to evaluate potential negative correlations between ROH and daughter pregnancy rate (DPR) or somatic cell score (SCS) in US Jersey cattle. In addition, relationships between changes of local ROH and inbreeding coefficients (F) were assessed to locate genomic regions with increased inbreeding. Despite finding some decreases in fertility associated with incremental increases in F, most emerging local ROH were not significantly associated with DPR or SCS. Furthermore, the analyses of ROH could be approximated with the most frequent haplotype(s), including the associations of ROH and F or traits. The analysis of the most frequent haplotype revealed that associations of ROH and fertility could be accounted for by the additive genetic effect on the trait. Thus, we suggest that a change of autozygosity is more likely to demonstrate footprints of selected haplotypes for production rather than highlight the possible increased local autozygosity of a recessive detrimental allele resulting from the mating between closely related animals in Jersey cattle.
Project description:Inbreeding depression refers to lower fitness among offspring of genetic relatives. This reduced fitness is caused by the inheritance of two identical chromosomal segments (autozygosity) across the genome, which may expose the effects of (partially) recessive deleterious mutations. Even among outbred populations, autozygosity can occur to varying degrees due to cryptic relatedness between parents. Using dense genome-wide single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) data, we examined the degree to which autozygosity associated with measured cognitive ability in an unselected sample of 4854 participants of European ancestry. We used runs of homozygosity-multiple homozygous SNPs in a row-to estimate autozygous tracts across the genome. We found that increased levels of autozygosity predicted lower general cognitive ability, and estimate a drop of 0.6 s.d. among the offspring of first cousins (P=0.003-0.02 depending on the model). This effect came predominantly from long and rare autozygous tracts, which theory predicts as more likely to be deleterious than short and common tracts. Association mapping of autozygous tracts did not reveal any specific regions that were predictive beyond chance after correcting for multiple testing genome wide. The observed effect size is consistent with studies of cognitive decline among offspring of known consanguineous relationships. These findings suggest a role for multiple recessive or partially recessive alleles in general cognitive ability, and that alleles decreasing general cognitive ability have been selected against over evolutionary time.
Project description:This research investigates the influence of demographic factors on human genetic sub-structure. In our discovery cohort, we show significant demographic trends for decreasing autozygosity associated with population variation in chronological age. Autozygosity, the genomic signature of consanguinity, is identifiable on a genome-wide level as extended tracts of homozygosity. We identified an average of 28.6 tracts of extended homozygosity greater than 1 Mb in length in a representative population of 809 unrelated North Americans of European descent ranging in chronological age from 19-99 years old. These homozygous tracts made up a population average of 42 Mb of the genome corresponding to 1.6% of the entire genome, with each homozygous tract an average of 1.5 Mb in length. Runs of homozygosity are steadily decreasing in size and frequency as time progresses (linear regression, p<0.05). We also calculated inbreeding coefficients and showed a significant trend for population-wide increasing heterozygosity outside of linkage disequilibrium. We successfully replicated these associations in a demographically similar cohort comprised of a subgroup of 477 Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging participants. We also constructed statistical models showing predicted declining rates of autozygosity spanning the 20th century. These predictive models suggest a 14.0% decrease in the frequency of these runs of homozygosity and a 24.3% decrease in the percent of the genome in runs of homozygosity, as well as a 30.5% decrease in excess homozygosity based on the linkage pruned inbreeding coefficients. The trend for decreasing autozygosity due to panmixia and larger effective population sizes will likely affect the frequency of rare recessive genetic diseases in the future. Autozygosity has declined, and it seems it will continue doing so.
Project description:Genomic regions of autozygosity (ROA) arise when an individual is homozygous for haplotypes inherited identical-by-descent from ancestors shared by both parents. Over the past decade, they have gained importance for understanding evolutionary history and the genetic basis of complex diseases and traits. However, methods to infer ROA in dense genotype data have not evolved in step with advances in genome technology that now enable us to rapidly create large high-resolution genotype datasets, limiting our ability to investigate their constituent ROA patterns.We report a weighted likelihood approach for inferring ROA in dense genotype data that accounts for autocorrelation among genotyped positions and the possibilities of unobserved mutation and recombination events, and variability in the confidence of individual genotype calls in whole genome sequence (WGS) data.Forward-time genetic simulations under two demographic scenarios that reflect situations where inbreeding and its effect on fitness are of interest suggest this approach is better powered than existing state-of-the-art methods to infer ROA at marker densities consistent with WGS and popular microarray genotyping platforms used in human and non-human studies. Moreover, we present evidence that suggests this approach is able to distinguish ROA arising via consanguinity from ROA arising via endogamy. Using subsets of The 1000 Genomes Project Phase 3 data we show that, relative to WGS, intermediate and long ROA are captured robustly with popular microarray platforms, while detection of short ROA is more variable and improves with marker density. Worldwide ROA patterns inferred from WGS data are found to accord well with those previously reported on the basis of microarray genotype data. Finally, we highlight the potential of this approach to detect genomic regions enriched for autozygosity signals in one group relative to another based upon comparisons of per-individual autozygosity likelihoods instead of inferred ROA frequencies.This weighted likelihood ROA inference approach can assist population- and disease-geneticists working with a wide variety of data types and species to explore ROA patterns and to identify genomic regions with differential ROA signals among groups, thereby advancing our understanding of evolutionary history and the role of recessive variation in phenotypic variation and disease.
Project description:Autozygosity occurs when two chromosomal segments that are identical from a common ancestor are inherited from each parent. This occurs at high rates in the offspring of mates who are closely related (inbreeding), but also occurs at lower levels among the offspring of distantly related mates. Here, we use runs of homozygosity in genome-wide SNP data to estimate the proportion of the autosome that exists in autozygous tracts in 9,388 cases with schizophrenia and 12,456 controls. We estimate that the odds of schizophrenia increase by ~17% for every 1% increase in genome-wide autozygosity. This association is not due to one or a few regions, but results from many autozygous segments spread throughout the genome, and is consistent with a role for multiple recessive or partially recessive alleles in the etiology of schizophrenia. Such a bias towards recessivity suggests that alleles that increase the risk of schizophrenia have been selected against over evolutionary time.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Despite increasing obesity in South African adults, data on the prevalence and determinants of body mass index (BMI) from rural communities, home to a significant proportion of the population, are scarce. OBJECTIVES:To investigate overall and sex-specific determinants of BMI in a rural adult South African population undergoing rapid social and epidemiological transitions. METHODS:Baseline cross-sectional demographic, socioeconomic, anthropometric, clinical and behavioural data were collected between 2015 and 2016 from 1388 individuals aged 40-60 years and resident in the Agincourt sub-district of Mpumalanga province, a setting typical of rural northeast South Africa. A Health and Socio-Demographic Surveillance System (HDSS) underpins the sub-district and contributes to the Africa Wits-INDEPTH partnership for Genomic Studies (AWI-Gen). Linear regression was used to investigate univariate associations between log-transformed BMI and individual variables and multiple linear regression was used to investigate independent predictors of BMI overall and in sex-stratified analyses. RESULTS:Median BMI was significantly higher in females (28.7 kg/m2[95% CI 24.2-33.2] vs 23.0 kg/m2[95% CI 20.3-26.8];p < 0.001) with male sex associated with 17% lower BMI. In sex-stratified multiple linear regression models, compared to those never married, BMI was 7% higher in currently married males and 6% in currently married females. Current smoking in men and former smoking in women were associated with reductions in BMI of 13% and 26% respectively, compared with non-smokers. Higher educational attainment in women and higher socioeconomic status in men were both associated with higher BMI, while being HIV-positive and alcohol consumption in women were associated lower BMI. CONCLUSIONS:Female sex strongly predicts higher BMI in this rural African population. While some predictors of higher BMI differ by sex, married individuals in both sexes had a higher BMI, suggesting that, in addition to developing sex-specific interventions to combat overweight and obesity, targeting married couples may result in reduction in population BMI.