Causal mechanisms and balancing selection inferred from genetic associations with polycystic ovary syndrome
Nature Communications , Volume 6
Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is the most common reproductive disorder in women, yet there is little consensus regarding its aetiology. Here we perform a genome-wide association study of PCOS in up to 5,184 self-reported cases of White European ancestry and 82,759 controls, with follow-up in a further â 1/42,000 clinically validated cases and â 1/4100,000 controls. We identify six signals for PCOS at genome-wide statistical significance (P<5 × 10 â '8), in/near genes ERBB4/HER4, YAP1, THADA, FSHB, RAD50 and KRR1. Variants in/near three of the four epidermal growth factor receptor genes (ERBB2/HER2, ERBB3/HER3 and ERBB4/HER4) are associated with PCOS at or near genome-wide significance. Mendelian randomization analyses indicate causal roles in PCOS aetiology for higher BMI (P=2.5 × 10 â '9), higher insulin resistance (P=6 × 10 â '4) and lower serum sex hormone binding globulin concentrations (P=5 × 10 â '4). Furthermore, genetic susceptibility to later menopause is associated with higher PCOS risk (P=1.6 × 10 â '8) and PCOS-susceptibility alleles are associated with higher serum anti-Müllerian hormone concentrations in girls (P=8.9 × 10 â '5). This large-scale study implicates an aetiological role of the epidermal growth factor receptors, infers causal mechanisms relevant to clinical management and prevention, and suggests balancing selection mechanisms involved in PCOS risk.
|Organisation||Department of Internal Medicine|
Day, F.R, Hinds, D.A, Tung, J.Y, Stolk, L, Styrkarsdottir, U, Saxena, R, … Perry, J.R.B. (2015). Causal mechanisms and balancing selection inferred from genetic associations with polycystic ovary syndrome. Nature Communications, 6. doi:10.1038/ncomms9464