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Science. 2018 Jan 26;359(6374):424-428. doi: 10.1126/science.aan6877.

The nature of nurture: Effects of parental genotypes.

Author information

1
deCODE genetics/Amgen, 101 Reykjavik, Iceland. augustine.kong@bdi.ox.ac.uk kstefans@decode.is.
2
Big Data Institute, Li Ka Shing Centre for Health Information and Discovery, University of Oxford, Oxford OX3 7LF, UK.
3
School of Engineering and Natural Sciences, University of Iceland, 101 Reykjavik, Iceland.
4
deCODE genetics/Amgen, 101 Reykjavik, Iceland.
5
Bioinformatics Research Centre, Aarhus University, 8000 Aarhus, Denmark.
6
Department of Epidemiology, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA 02115, USA.
7
Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics, University of Oxford, Oxford OX3 7BN, UK.
8
Department of Anthropology, University of Iceland, 101 Reykjavik, Iceland.
9
Faculty of Medicine, University of Iceland, 101 Reykjavik, Iceland.

Abstract

Sequence variants in the parental genomes that are not transmitted to a child (the proband) are often ignored in genetic studies. Here we show that nontransmitted alleles can affect a child through their impacts on the parents and other relatives, a phenomenon we call "genetic nurture." Using results from a meta-analysis of educational attainment, we find that the polygenic score computed for the nontransmitted alleles of 21,637 probands with at least one parent genotyped has an estimated effect on the educational attainment of the proband that is 29.9% (P = 1.6 × 10-14) of that of the transmitted polygenic score. Genetic nurturing effects of this polygenic score extend to other traits. Paternal and maternal polygenic scores have similar effects on educational attainment, but mothers contribute more than fathers to nutrition- and heath-related traits.

Comment in

PMID:
29371463
DOI:
10.1126/science.aan6877
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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