Abstract Introduction C-reactive protein (CRP) is a circulating biomarker indicative of systemic inflammation. We aimed to evaluate genetic associations with CRP levels among non-European-ancestry populations through discovery, fine-mapping, and conditional analyses. Methods 30,503 non-European-ancestry participants from six studies participating in the Population Architecture using Genomics and Epidemiology (PAGE) study had serum high-sensitivity CRP measurements and ∼200,000 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) genotyped on the Metabochip. We evaluated the association between each SNP and log-transformed CRP levels using multivariate linear regression, with additive genetic models adjusted for age, sex, the first 4 principal components of genetic ancestry, and study-specific factors. Differential linkage disequilibrium patterns between race/ethnicity groups were used to fine-map regions associated with CRP levels. Conditional analyses evaluated for multiple independent signals within genetic regions. Results 163 unique variants in 12 loci in overall or race/ethnicity-stratified Metabochip-wide scans reached a Bonferroni-corrected p-value <2.5e-7. Three loci have no (HACL1, OLFML2B) or only limited (PLA2G6) previous associations with CRP levels. Six loci had different top hits in race/ethnicity-specific versus overall analyses. Fine-mapping refined the signal in 6 loci, particularly in HNF1A. Conditional analyses provided evidence for secondary signals in LEPR, IL1RN, and HNF1A, and for multiple independent signals in CRP and APOE. Discussion We identified novel variants and loci associated with CRP levels, generalized known CRP associations to a multiethnic study population, refined association signals at several loci, and found evidence for multiple independent signals at several well-known loci. This study demonstrates the benefit of conducting inclusive genetic association studies in large multiethnic populations. © The Author(s) 2018. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: email@example.com This article is published and distributed under the terms of the Oxford University Press, Standard Journals Publication Model (https://academic.oup.com/journals/pages/about_us/legal/notices)
Human Molecular Genetics – Oxford University Press
Published: Jun 5, 2018
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