The genetics of blood pressure regulation and its target organs from association studies in 342,415 individuals

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Georg B Ehret, Teresa Ferreira, Daniel I Chasman, Anne U Jackson, Ellen M Schmidt, Toby Johnson, Gudmar Thorleifsson, Jian'an Luan, Louise A Donnelly, Stavroula Kanoni, Ann-Kristin Petersen, Vasyl Pihur, Rona J Strawbridge, Dmitry Shungin, Maria F Hughes, Osorio Meirelles, Marika Kaakinen, Nabila Bouatia-Naji, Kati Kristiansson, Sonia Shah & 31 others Marcus E Kleber, Xiuqing Guo, Leo-Pekka Lyytikäinen, Cristiano Fava, Niclas Eriksson, Ilja M Nolte, Patrik K Magnusson, Elias L Salfati, Loukianos S Rallidis, Elizabeth Theusch, Andrew J P Smith, Lasse Folkersen, Kate Witkowska, Tune H Pers, Roby Joehanes, Stuart K Kim, Lazaros Lataniotis, Rick Jansen, Andrew D Johnson, Helen Warren, Young Jin Kim, Wei Zhao, Ying Wu, Bamidele O Tayo, Murielle Bochud, Devin Absher, Linda S Adair, Najaf Amin, Inger Njølstad, Peter E H Schwarz, CHARGE-EchoGen Consortium

To dissect the genetic architecture of blood pressure and assess effects on target organ damage, we analyzed 128,272 SNPs from targeted and genome-wide arrays in 201,529 individuals of European ancestry, and genotypes from an additional 140,886 individuals were used for validation. We identified 66 blood pressure-associated loci, of which 17 were new; 15 harbored multiple distinct association signals. The 66 index SNPs were enriched for cis-regulatory elements, particularly in vascular endothelial cells, consistent with a primary role in blood pressure control through modulation of vascular tone across multiple tissues. The 66 index SNPs combined in a risk score showed comparable effects in 64,421 individuals of non-European descent. The 66-SNP blood pressure risk score was significantly associated with target organ damage in multiple tissues but with minor effects in the kidney. Our findings expand current knowledge of blood pressure-related pathways and highlight tissues beyond the classical renal system in blood pressure regulation.

Original languageEnglish
JournalNature Genetics
Volume48
Issue number10
Pages (from-to)1171-1184
Number of pages14
ISSN1061-4036
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 12 Sep 2016

ID: 165941125