Largest GWAS of PTSD (N=20 070) yields genetic overlap with schizophrenia and sex differences in heritability.
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The Psychiatric Genomics Consortium-Posttraumatic Stress Disorder group (PGC-PTSD) combined genome-wide case-control molecular genetic data across 11 multiethnic studies to quantify PTSD heritability, to examine potential shared genetic risk with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and major depressive disorder and to identify risk loci for PTSD. Examining 20 730 individuals, we report a molecular genetics-based heritability estimate (h(2)SNP) for European-American females of 29% that is similar to h(2)SNP for schizophrenia and is substantially higher than h(2)SNP in European-American males (estimate not distinguishable from zero). We found strong evidence of overlapping genetic risk between PTSD and schizophrenia along with more modest evidence of overlap with bipolar and major depressive disorder. No single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) exceeded genome-wide significance in the transethnic (overall) meta-analysis and we do not replicate previously reported associations. Still, SNP-level summary statistics made available here afford the best-available molecular genetic index of PTSD-for both European- and African-American individuals-and can be used in polygenic risk prediction and genetic correlation studies of diverse phenotypes. Publication of summary statistics for ∼10 000 African Americans contributes to the broader goal of increased ancestral diversity in genomic data resources. In sum, the results demonstrate genetic influences on the development of PTSD, identify shared genetic risk between PTSD and other psychiatric disorders and highlight the importance of multiethnic/racial samples. As has been the case with schizophrenia and other complex genetic disorders, larger sample sizes are needed to identify specific risk loci.Molecular Psychiatry advance online publication, 25 April 2017; doi:10.1038/mp.2017.77.
Published Version (Please cite this version)10.1038/mp.2017.77
Publication InfoAiello, AE; Almli, LM; Amstadter, AB; Ashley-Koch, A; Baker, DG; Beckham, JC; ... Zhao, H (2017). Largest GWAS of PTSD (N=20 070) yields genetic overlap with schizophrenia and sex differences in heritability. Mol Psychiatry. 10.1038/mp.2017.77. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/14966.
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Professor in Medicine
One of my major research foci is in the genetic basis of psychiatric and neurological disorders. I am currently involved in studies to dissect the genetic etiology of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), autism, chiari type I malformations, essential tremor, and neural tube defects. Additional research foci include genetic modifiers of sickle cell disease, and genetic contributions to birth outcomes, particularly among African American women.
Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
Research in my lab is focused on brain changes associated with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), traumatic brain injury (TBI), and other neuropsychiatric disorders. We apply several advanced methods for understanding brain function including functional MRI, structural MRI, diffusion tensor imaging, and genetic effects.
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