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Am J Hum Genet. 2005 Sep;77(3):389-407. Epub 2005 Jul 26.

Susceptibility genes for age-related maculopathy on chromosome 10q26.

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Department of Biostatistics, Graduate School of Public Health, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA 15213, USA.


On the basis of genomewide linkage studies of families affected with age-related maculopathy (ARM), we previously identified a significant linkage peak on 10q26, which has been independently replicated by several groups. We performed a focused SNP genotyping study of our families and an additional control cohort. We identified a strong association signal overlying three genes, PLEKHA1, LOC387715, and PRSS11. All nonsynonymous SNPs in this critical region were genotyped, yielding a highly significant association (P < .00001) between PLEKHA1/LOC387715 and ARM. Although it is difficult to determine statistically which of these two genes is most important, SNPs in PLEKHA1 are more likely to account for the linkage signal in this region than are SNPs in LOC387715; thus, this gene and its alleles are implicated as an important risk factor for ARM. We also found weaker evidence supporting the possible involvement of the GRK5/RGS10 locus in ARM. These associations appear to be independent of the association of ARM with the Y402H allele of complement factor H, which has previously been reported as a major susceptibility factor for ARM. The combination of our analyses strongly implicates PLEKHA1/LOC387715 as primarily responsible for the evidence of linkage of ARM to the 10q26 locus and as a major contributor to ARM susceptibility. The association of either a single or a double copy of the high-risk allele within the PLEKHA1/LOC387715 locus accounts for an odds ratio of 5.0 (95% confidence interval 3.2-7.9) for ARM and a population attributable risk as high as 57%.

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