Navigation Links
Study suggests genetic connection between short stature and arthritis
Date:1/13/2008

ANN ARBOR, Mich.---Common genetic variants linked to arthritis may also play a role in human height, a new study shows.

The international study was co-led by the University of Michigan School of Public Health. The journal Nature Genetics will publish the findings online Jan. 13.

The new study confirms observations by health professionals of a connection between decreased height and increased risk of osteoarthritis, the most common form of arthritis. Researchers speculate that both extremes of height may be associated with osteoarthritis for different reasons. Shorter bones and/or less cartilage may render the joints more susceptible to damage, while longer bones may produce greater levels of damaging stress on the joints.

The findings are exciting for several reasons, said Gonalo Abecasis, assistant professor in the School of Public Health. For one, there are many genes that control height, but only a few associated with osteoarthritis, he said.

"In this case the gene we picked also is important in osteoarthritis and it's actually quite hard to find genes for osteoarthritis," said Abecasis, who co-directed the study with Karen Mohlke of the University of North Carolina. "One of the things we were excited about is you could study (height) in many people, and once you've done that you have a short list of genes that you can then study for what they do in terms of osteoarthritis."

The findings also add to the general understanding of height.

"It is useful to know all genes responsible for height variation, so we are reassured if our baby is shorter than others because he has a collection of "short" alleles on his DNA, and not because he has something wrong, like a metabolism disorder," said Serena Sanna, co-author who worked on the paper as a post-doctoral student in Abecasis' group and who is now at the National Research Council di Cagliari in Italy. Anne Jackson, a research specialist at U-M, is also a co-author.

To arrive at their findings, researchers from the United States and Europe analyzed the genomes of more than 35,000 people. If there were average height differences for individuals with certain genetic variants, this indicated that something in that genomic region containing the variants likely influenced height. In this particular study, researchers initially examined the effects of more than 2 million genetic variants.

The new variant accounts for less than 1 percent of the genetic basis of height, and is associated with an average difference in height of about 0.4 centimeters, or a little more than an eighth of an inch. The range went from 0.3 cm to 1.4 cm, depending on the population and whether an individual had one or two copies of the so-called taller version of the variant. A variety of factors, including genetics, diet and prenatal environment, interact to determine how tall someone grows. It is currently thought that genetic factors are responsible for at least 80 percent of the variation in height among people.

The variants most strongly associated with height lie in a region of the human genome thought to influence expression of a gene for growth differentiation factor 5, called GDF5, which is a protein involved in the development of cartilage in the legs and other long bones. Rare variants in the GDF5 gene have been associated with disorders of skeletal development, and more common variants recently have been tied to susceptibility to osteoarthritis of the hip and knees in Asian and European populations.

The completion of the map of human genetic variation, or HapMap, has fueled a surge in this type of genome-wide association study, with most of the growth coming in the past 10 months. Researchers around the globe have now associated more than 60 common DNA variants with the risk of more than 20 common diseases or related traits.


'/>"/>

Contact: Laura Bailey
baileylm@umich.edu
734-647-1848
University of Michigan
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Childhood obesity indicates greater risk of school absenteeism, Penn study reveals
2. A study by the MUHC and McGill University opens a new door to understanding cancer
3. Study begins to reveal clues to the cause and progression of sepsis
4. Clones on task serve greater good, evolutionary study shows
5. New study warns limited carbon market puts 20 percent of tropical forest at risk
6. New study examines how rearing environment can alter navigation
7. Study links cat disease to flame retardants in furniture and to pet food
8. New continent and species discovered in Atlantic study
9. Study shows link between alcohol consumption and hiv disease progression
10. Feeling hot, hot, hot: New study suggests ways to control fever-induced seizures
11. Study finds environmental tests help predict hospital-acquired Legionnaires disease risk
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/16/2016)... June 16, 2016 The ... expected to reach USD 1.83 billion by 2024, ... Research, Inc. Technological proliferation and increasing demand in ... expected to drive the market growth. ... The development of advanced multimodal techniques for ...
(Date:6/9/2016)... -- Paris Police Prefecture ... to ensure the safety of people and operations in several ... tournament Teleste, an international technology group specialised in ... that its video security solution will be utilised by ... safety across the country. The system roll-out is scheduled for ...
(Date:6/2/2016)... The Department of Transport Management (DOTM) of ... Dollar project, for the , Supply and Delivery ... IT Infrastructure , to Decatur ... Identity Management Solutions. Numerous renowned international vendors participated in the ... was selected for the most compliant and innovative solution. The ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... is pleased to announce the launch of their brand, UP4™ Probiotics, into Target ... over 35 years, is proud to add Target to its list of well-respected ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 Houston Methodist ... the Cy-Fair Sports Association to serve as their ... agreement, Houston Methodist Willowbrook will provide sponsorship support, ... connectivity with association coaches, volunteers, athletes and families. ... the Cy-Fair Sports Association and to bring Houston ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016   EpiBiome , a precision microbiome ... in debt financing from Silicon Valley Bank (SVB). The ... to advance its drug development efforts, as well as ... "SVB has been an incredible strategic partner to ... traditional bank would provide," said Dr. Aeron Tynes ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 Apellis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. today ... trials of its complement C3 inhibitor, APL-2. The ... ascending dose studies designed to assess the safety, ... injection in healthy adult volunteers. Forty ... a single dose (ranging from 45 to 1,440mg) ...
Breaking Biology Technology: