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PLoS One. 2013;8(3):e60301. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0060301. Epub 2013 Mar 29.

Family-based association analysis confirms the role of the chromosome 9q21.32 locus in the susceptibility of diabetic nephropathy.

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  • 1Research Division, Joslin Diabetes Center, Boston, MA, USA.


A genome-wide association scan of type 1 diabetic patients from the GoKinD collections previously identified four novel diabetic nephropathy susceptibility loci that have subsequently been shown to be associated with diabetic nephropathy in unrelated patients with type 2 diabetes. To expand these findings, we examined whether single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) at these susceptibility loci were associated with diabetic nephropathy in patients from the Joslin Study of Genetics of Nephropathy in Type 2 Diabetes Family Collection. Six SNPs across the four loci identified in the GoKinD collections and 7 haplotype tagging SNPs, were genotyped in 66 extended families of European ancestry. Pedigrees from this collection contained an average of 18.5 members, including 2 to 14 members with type 2 diabetes. Among diabetic family members, the 9q21.32 locus approached statistical significance with advanced diabetic nephropathy (P = 0.037 [adjusted P = 0.222]). When we expanded our definition of diabetic nephropathy to include individuals with high microalbuminuria, the strength of this association improved significantly (P = 1.42×10(-3) [adjusted P = 0.009]). This same locus also trended toward statistical significance with variation in urinary albumin excretion in family members with type 2 diabetes (P = 0.032 [adjusted P = 0.192]) and in analyses expanded to include all relatives (P = 0.019 [adjusted P = 0.114]). These data increase support that SNPs identified in the GoKinD collections on chromosome 9q21.32 are true diabetic nephropathy susceptibility loci.

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