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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2007 May 29;104(22):9434-9. Epub 2007 May 21.

Common genetic variation within the low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 6 and late-onset Alzheimer's disease.

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  • 1Howard Hughes Medical Institute, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, WA 98195, USA.


Genome-wide linkage studies have defined a broad susceptibility region for late-onset Alzheimer's disease on chromosome 12, which contains the Low-Density Lipoprotein Receptor-Related Protein 6 (LRP6) gene, a coreceptor for Wnt signaling. Here, we report the association between common LRP6 variants and late-onset Alzheimer's disease in a multicenter case-control series as well as in a large family-based series ascertained by the National Institute of Mental Health-National Institute on Aging Genetics Initiative. As shown in the genome-wide linkage studies, our association depends mainly on apolipoprotein E-epsilon4 (APOE-epsilon4) carrier status. Haplotype tagging single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) with a set of seven allelic variants of LRP6 identified a putative risk haplotype, which includes a highly conserved coding sequence SNP: Ile-1062 --> Val. Functional analyses revealed that the associated allele Val-1062, an allele previously linked to low bone mass, has decreased beta-catenin signaling in HEK293T cells. Our study unveils a genetic relationship between LRP6 and APOE and supports the hypothesis that altered Wnt/beta-catenin signaling may be involved in this neurodegenerative disease.

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