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Jean M
10-14-2014, 09:10 AM
http://www.geneticarchaeology.com/research/GIANT_study_reveals_giant_number_of_genes_linked_t o_height.asp

The largest genome-wide association study (GWAS) to date, involving more than 300 institutions and more than 250,000 subjects, roughly doubles the number of known gene regions influencing height to more than 400. The study, from the international Genetic Investigation of Anthropometric Traits (GIANT) Consortium, provides a better glimpse at the biology of height and offers a model for investigating traits and diseases caused by many common gene changes acting together. Findings were published online October 5 by Nature Genetics.

"Height is almost completely determined by genetics, but our earlier studies were only able to explain about 10 percent of this genetic influence," says Joel Hirschhorn, MD, PhD, of Boston Children's Hospital and the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, leader of the GIANT Consortium and co-senior investigator on the study. "Now, by doubling the number of people in our study, we have a much more complete picture of how common genetic variants affect height-how many of them there are and how much they contribute."

The GIANT investigators, numbering in the hundreds, shared and analyzed data from the genomes of 253,288 people. They checked about two million common genetic variants (those that showed up in at least 5 percent of their subjects). From this pool, they pinned down 697 (in 424 gene regions) as being related to height, the largest number to date associated with any trait or disease.

"We can now explain about 20 percent of the heritability of height, up from about 12 percent where we were before," says co-first author Tonu Esko, PhD, of Boston Children's Hospital, the Broad Institute and the University of Tartu (Estonia).

Jean M
10-14-2014, 09:13 AM
Here is the actual paper: http://www.nature.com/ng/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/ng.3097.html

Andrew R Wood et al., Defining the role of common variation in the genomic and biological architecture of adult human height, Nature Genetics , Published online 05 October 2014



Using genome-wide data from 253,288 individuals, we identified 697 variants at genome-wide significance that together explained one-fifth of the heritability for adult height. By testing different numbers of variants in independent studies, we show that the most strongly associated ~2,000, ~3,700 and ~9,500 SNPs explained ~21%, ~24% and ~29% of phenotypic variance. Furthermore, all common variants together captured 60% of heritability. The 697 variants clustered in 423 loci were enriched for genes, pathways and tissue types known to be involved in growth and together implicated genes and pathways not highlighted in earlier efforts, such as signaling by fibroblast growth factors, WNT/β-catenin and chondroitin sulfate–related genes. We identified several genes and pathways not previously connected with human skeletal growth, including mTOR, osteoglycin and binding of hyaluronic acid. Our results indicate a genetic architecture for human height that is characterized by a very large but finite number (thousands) of causal variants.

GTC
10-14-2014, 10:08 AM
"We can now explain about 20 percent of the heritability of height, up from about 12 percent where we were before, ..."

I guess 20% is a big deal for that team over the previous 12%, but it's still a long way from 100%. As Ringo sang, it don't come easy.

Jusarius
10-18-2014, 01:05 AM
I guess 20% is a big deal for that team over the previous 12%, but it's still a long way from 100%. As Ringo sang, it don't come easy.Yeah, it has taken surprisingly long given the fact that the trait is mostly genetically determined. I guess it hasn't been studied that much compared with diseases.