Display Settings:

Format

Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Am J Clin Nutr. 2012 Mar;95(3):539-47. doi: 10.3945/ajcn.111.015545. Epub 2012 Feb 1.

Measuring alcohol consumption for genomic meta-analyses of alcohol intake: opportunities and challenges.

Author information

  • 1Department of Psychiatry, Washington University School of Medicine, St Louis, MO 63110, USA. arpana@wustl.edu

Abstract

Whereas moderate drinking may have health benefits, excessive alcohol consumption causes many important acute and chronic diseases and is the third leading contributor to preventable death in the United States. Twin studies suggest that alcohol-consumption patterns are heritable (50%); however, multiple genetic variants of modest effect size are likely to contribute to this heritable variation. Genome-wide association studies provide a tool for discovering genetic loci that contribute to variations in alcohol consumption. Opportunities exist to identify susceptibility loci with modest effect by meta-analyzing together multiple studies. However, existing studies assessed many different aspects of alcohol use, such as typical compared with heavy drinking, and these different assessments can be difficult to reconcile. In addition, many studies lack the ability to distinguish between lifetime and recent abstention or to assess the pattern of drinking during the week, and a variety of such concerns surround the appropriateness of developing a common summary measure of alcohol intake. Combining such measures of alcohol intake can cause heterogeneity and exposure misclassification, cause a reduction in power, and affect the magnitude of genetic association signals. In this review, we discuss the challenges associated with harmonizing alcohol-consumption data from studies with widely different assessment instruments, with a particular focus on large-scale genetic studies.

PMID:
22301922
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3278237
Free PMC Article

Images from this publication.See all images (2)Free text

FIGURE 1.
FIGURE 2.

Publication Types, MeSH Terms, Grant Support

Publication Types

MeSH Terms

Grant Support

PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk