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J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2011 Oct;128(4):753-760.e11. doi: 10.1016/j.jaci.2011.04.058. Epub 2011 Jun 22.

Identification of ATPAF1 as a novel candidate gene for asthma in children.

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  • 1Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI, USA.



Asthma is a common disease of children with a complex genetic origin. Understanding the genetic basis of asthma susceptibility will allow disease prediction and risk stratification.


We sought to identify asthma susceptibility genes in children.


A nested case-control genetic association study of children of Caucasian European ancestry from a birth cohort was conducted. Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs, n = 116,024) were genotyped in pools of DNA samples from cohort children with physician-diagnosed asthma (n = 112) and normal controls (n = 165). A genomic region containing the ATPAF1 gene was found to be significantly associated with asthma. Additional SNPs within this region were genotyped in individual samples from the same children and in 8 independent study populations of Caucasian, African American, Hispanic, or other ancestries. SNPs were also genotyped or imputed in 2 consortia control populations. ATPAF1 expression was measured in bronchial biopsies from asthmatic patients and controls.


Asthma was found to be associated with a cluster of SNPs and SNP haplotypes containing the ATPAF1 gene, with 2 SNPs achieving significance at a genome-wide level (P = 2.26 × 10(-5) to 2.2 × 10(-8)). Asthma severity was also found to be associated with SNPs and SNP haplotypes in the primary population. SNP and/or gene-level associations were confirmed in the 4 non-Hispanic populations. Haplotype associations were also confirmed in the non-Hispanic populations (P = .045-.0009). ATPAF1 total RNA expression was significantly (P < .01) higher in bronchial biopsies from asthmatic patients than from controls.


Genetic variation in the ATPAF1 gene predisposes children of different ancestries to asthma.

Published by Mosby, Inc.

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