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PLoS One. 2013;8(3):e58472. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0058472. Epub 2013 Mar 26.

Association analysis of dyslipidemia-related genes in diabetic nephropathy.

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  • 1Nephrology Research Group, Centre for Public Health, Queen's University Belfast, Belfast, United Kingdom.


Type 1 diabetes (T1D) increases risk of the development of microvascular complications and cardiovascular disease (CVD). Dyslipidemia is a common risk factor in the pathogenesis of both CVD and diabetic nephropathy (DN), with CVD identified as the primary cause of death in patients with DN. In light of this commonality, we assessed single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in thirty-seven key genetic loci previously associated with dyslipidemia in a T1D cohort using a case-control design. SNPs (n = 53) were genotyped using Sequenom in 1467 individuals with T1D (718 cases with proteinuric nephropathy and 749 controls without nephropathy i.e. normal albumin excretion). Cases and controls were white and recruited from the UK and Ireland. Association analyses were performed using PLINK to compare allele frequencies in cases and controls. In a sensitivity analysis, samples from control individuals with reduced renal function (estimated glomerular filtration rate<60 ml/min/1.73 m(2)) were excluded. Correction for multiple testing was performed by permutation testing. A total of 1394 samples passed quality control filters. Following regression analysis adjusted by collection center, gender, duration of diabetes, and average HbA1c, two SNPs were significantly associated with DN. rs4420638 in the APOC1 region (odds ratio [OR] = 1.51; confidence intervals [CI]: 1.19-1.91; P = 0.001) and rs1532624 in CETP (OR = 0.82; CI: 0.69-0.99; P = 0.034); rs4420638 was also significantly associated in a sensitivity analysis (P = 0.016) together with rs7679 (P = 0.027). However, no association was significant following correction for multiple testing. Subgroup analysis of end-stage renal disease status failed to reveal any association. Our results suggest common variants associated with dyslipidemia are not strongly associated with DN in T1D among white individuals. Our findings, cannot entirely exclude these key genes which are central to the process of dyslipidemia, from involvement in DN pathogenesis as our study had limited power to detect variants of small effect size. Analysis in larger independent cohorts is required.

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