Gene × environment interaction by a longitudinal epigenome-wide association study (LEWAS) overcomes limitations of genome-wide association study (GWAS)

Debomoy K. Lahiri, Bryan Maloney

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

The goal of genome-wide association studies is to identify SNPs unique to disease. It usually involves a single sampling from subjects lifetimes. While primary DNA sequence variation influences gene-expression levels, expression is also influenced by epigenetics, including the 'somatic epitype (GSE), an epigenotype acquired postnatally. While genes are inherited, and novel polymorphisms do not routinely appear, GSE is fluid. Furthermore, GSE could respond to environmental factors (such as heavy metals) and to differences in exercise, maternal care and dietary supplements - all of which postnatally modify oxidation or methylation of DNA, leading to altered gene expression. Change in epigenetic status may be critical for the development of many diseases. We propose a 'longitudinal epigenome-wide association study, wherein GSE are measured at multiple time points along with subjects histories. This Longitudinal epigenome-wide association study, based on the 'dynamic somatic epitype over the 'static genotype, merits further investigation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)685-699
Number of pages15
JournalEpigenomics
Volume4
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2012

Keywords

  • association study
  • environment
  • epigenetics
  • epigenomics
  • genomics
  • GWAS
  • LEWAS

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Cancer Research

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