Dataset Information


Genome-wide variation of cytosine modifications between European and African populations and the implications for complex traits

ABSTRACT: Elucidating cytosine modification difference between human populations can enhance our understanding of ethnic specificity in complex traits such as disease predisposition and drug response. In this study, cytosine modification levels in 133 HapMap lymphoblastoid cell lines (LCLs) derived from individuals of European or African ancestry were profiled using the Illumina HumanMethylation450 BeadChip. Approximately 13% of the analyzed CpG sites showed differential modification between the two populations at false discovery rate (FDR) of 1%. CpG sites with greater modification levels in European descents were enriched in the proximal regulatory regions, while those greater in African descents were biased toward gene bodies. More than half of the detected population-specific cytosine modifications could be explained by genetic variation. A substantial proportion of local modification quantitative trait loci (mQTL) exhibited population-specific effects, suggesting that genetic epistasis and/or genotype × environment interaction could be common. Distinct inter-individual correlations were observed between gene expression and cytosine modifications in both proximal promoters and gene bodies, demonstrating a regulatory role of inter-individual variation in cytosine modification. Furthermore, a number of SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphisms) previously identified for complex traits with known racial disparities could be annotated as mQTLs for population-specific CpGs. Our findings revealed abundant population-specific cytosine modifications and the underlying genetic basis, as well as the relatively independent contribution of genetic and epigenetic variations to population differences in gene expression. Overall design: 60 unrelated CEU and 73 unrelated YRI samples from the HapMap Project were profiled for cytosine modification levels.

INSTRUMENT(S): Illumina HumanMethylation450 BeadChip (HumanMethylation450_15017482)

ORGANISM(S): Homo sapiens  

SUBMITTER: Wei Zhang  




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