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Curr Biol. 2016 Nov 21;26(22):3083-3089. doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2016.09.035. Epub 2016 Nov 3.

Molecular Genetic Contributions to Social Deprivation and Household Income in UK Biobank.

Author information

1
Centre for Cognitive Ageing and Cognitive Epidemiology, University of Edinburgh, 7 George Square, Edinburgh EH8 9JZ, UK; Department of Psychology, University of Edinburgh, 7 George Square, Edinburgh EH8 9JZ, UK. Electronic address: david.hill@ed.ac.uk.
2
Centre for Cognitive Ageing and Cognitive Epidemiology, University of Edinburgh, 7 George Square, Edinburgh EH8 9JZ, UK; Department of Psychology, University of Edinburgh, 7 George Square, Edinburgh EH8 9JZ, UK; Division of Psychiatry, University of Edinburgh, Morningside Terrace, Edinburgh EH10 5HF, UK.
3
Centre for Cognitive Ageing and Cognitive Epidemiology, University of Edinburgh, 7 George Square, Edinburgh EH8 9JZ, UK; Medical Genetics Section, University of Edinburgh Centre for Genomics and Experimental Medicine and MRC Institute of Genetics and Molecular Medicine, Western General Hospital, Crewe Road, Edinburgh EH4 2XU, UK; Queensland Brain Institute, The University of Queensland, St Lucia, Queensland 4072, Australia.
4
Centre for Cognitive Ageing and Cognitive Epidemiology, University of Edinburgh, 7 George Square, Edinburgh EH8 9JZ, UK; Medical Genetics Section, University of Edinburgh Centre for Genomics and Experimental Medicine and MRC Institute of Genetics and Molecular Medicine, Western General Hospital, Crewe Road, Edinburgh EH4 2XU, UK.
5
Centre for Cognitive Ageing and Cognitive Epidemiology, University of Edinburgh, 7 George Square, Edinburgh EH8 9JZ, UK; Department of Psychology, University of Edinburgh, 7 George Square, Edinburgh EH8 9JZ, UK.
6
Department of Applied Economics, Erasmus School of Economics, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Burgemeester Oudlaan 50, Rotterdam 3062 PA, the Netherlands; Department of Epidemiology, Erasmus Medical Center, Gravendijkwal 230, Rotterdam 3015 GE, the Netherlands; Erasmus University Rotterdam Institute for Behavior and Biology, Gravendijkwal 230, Rotterdam 3062 PA, the Netherlands.
7
Division of Psychiatry, University of Edinburgh, Morningside Terrace, Edinburgh EH10 5HF, UK.
8
Centre for Cognitive Ageing and Cognitive Epidemiology, University of Edinburgh, 7 George Square, Edinburgh EH8 9JZ, UK; Department of Psychology, University of Edinburgh, 7 George Square, Edinburgh EH8 9JZ, UK; MRC Lifecourse Epidemiology Unit, University of Southampton, Tremona Rd, Southampton SO16 6YD, UK.
9
Centre for Cognitive Ageing and Cognitive Epidemiology, University of Edinburgh, 7 George Square, Edinburgh EH8 9JZ, UK; Department of Psychology, University of Edinburgh, 7 George Square, Edinburgh EH8 9JZ, UK. Electronic address: ian.deary@ed.ac.uk.

Abstract

Individuals with lower socio-economic status (SES) are at increased risk of physical and mental illnesses and tend to die at an earlier age [1-3]. Explanations for the association between SES and health typically focus on factors that are environmental in origin [4]. However, common SNPs have been found collectively to explain around 18% of the phenotypic variance of an area-based social deprivation measure of SES [5]. Molecular genetic studies have also shown that common physical and psychiatric diseases are partly heritable [6]. It is possible that phenotypic associations between SES and health arise partly due to a shared genetic etiology. We conducted a genome-wide association study (GWAS) on social deprivation and on household income using 112,151 participants of UK Biobank. We find that common SNPs explain 21% of the variation in social deprivation and 11% of household income. Two independent loci attained genome-wide significance for household income, with the most significant SNP in each of these loci being rs187848990 on chromosome 2 and rs8100891 on chromosome 19. Genes in the regions of these SNPs have been associated with intellectual disabilities, schizophrenia, and synaptic plasticity. Extensive genetic correlations were found between both measures of SES and illnesses, anthropometric variables, psychiatric disorders, and cognitive ability. These findings suggest that some SNPs associated with SES are involved in the brain and central nervous system. The genetic associations with SES obviously do not reflect direct causal effects and are probably mediated via other partly heritable variables, including cognitive ability, personality, and health.

KEYWORDS:

GWAS; SES; UK Biobank; genetic correlation; genetics; income; social deprivation; socioeconomic status

PMID:
27818178
PMCID:
PMC5130721
DOI:
10.1016/j.cub.2016.09.035
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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