Genetic Epidemiology, Psychiatric Genetics, Asthma Genetics and Statistical Genetics Laboratories investigate the pattern of disease in families, particularly identical and non-identical twins, to assess the relative importance of genes and environment in a variety of important health problems.
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PMID
29086770
TITLE
An epigenome-wide association study meta-analysis of educational attainment.
ABSTRACT
The epigenome is associated with biological factors, such as disease status, and environmental factors, such as smoking, alcohol consumption and body mass index. Although there is a widespread perception that environmental influences on the epigenome are pervasive and profound, there has been little evidence to date in humans with respect to environmental factors that are biologically distal. Here we provide evidence on the associations between epigenetic modifications-in our case, CpG methylation-and educational attainment (EA), a biologically distal environmental factor that is arguably among the most important life-shaping experiences for individuals. Specifically, we report the results of an epigenome-wide association study meta-analysis of EA based on data from 27 cohort studies with a total of 10 767 individuals. We find nine CpG probes significantly associated with EA. However, robustness analyses show that all nine probes have previously been found to be associated with smoking. Only two associations remain when we perform a sensitivity analysis in the subset of never-smokers, and these two probes are known to be strongly associated with maternal smoking during pregnancy, and thus their association with EA could be due to correlation between EA and maternal smoking. Moreover, the effect sizes of the associations with EA are far smaller than the known associations with the biologically proximal environmental factors alcohol consumption, body mass index, smoking and maternal smoking during pregnancy. Follow-up analyses that combine the effects of many probes also point to small methylation associations with EA that are highly correlated with the combined effects of smoking. If our findings regarding EA can be generalized to other biologically distal environmental factors, then they cast doubt on the hypothesis that such factors have large effects on the epigenome.Molecular Psychiatry advance online publication, 31 October 2017; doi:10.1038/mp.2017.210.
DATE PUBLISHED
2017 Oct 31
HISTORY
PUBSTATUS PUBSTATUSDATE
received 2017/03/07
revised 2017/08/16
accepted 2017/08/21
entrez 2017/11/01 06:00
pubmed 2017/11/01 06:00
medline 2017/11/01 06:00
AUTHORS
NAME COLLECTIVENAME LASTNAME FORENAME INITIALS AFFILIATION AFFILIATIONINFO
Karlsson Linnér R Karlsson Linnér R R Institute for Behavior and Biology, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.
Marioni RE Marioni R E RE Medical Genetics Section, Centre for Genomic and Experimental Medicine, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK.
Rietveld CA Rietveld C A CA Department of Epidemiology, Erasmus Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.
Simpkin AJ Simpkin A J AJ Insight Centre for Data Analytics, National University of Ireland, Galway, Ireland.
Davies NM Davies N M NM MRC Integrative Epidemiology Unit, Bristol Medical School (Population Health Sciences), University of Bristol, Bristol, UK.
Watanabe K Watanabe K K Department of Complex Trait Genetics, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Center for Neurogenomics and Cognitive Research, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Armstrong NJ Armstrong N J NJ Mathematics and Statistics, Murdoch University, Murdoch, WA, Australia.
Auro K Auro K K National Institute for Health and Welfare, Genomics and Biomarkers, Helsinki, Finland.
Baumbach C Baumbach C C Research Unit of Molecular Epidemiology (AME), Institute of Epidemiology II, Helmholtz Zentrum München, German Research Center for Environmental Health, Neuherberg, Germany.
Bonder MJ Bonder M J MJ Department of Genetics, University Medical Center Groningen, University of Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands.
Buchwald J Buchwald J J Institute for Molecular Medicine Finland (FIMM), University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland.
Fiorito G Fiorito G G Department of Medical Sciences, University of Torino, Turin, Italy.
Ismail K Ismail K K Institute for Molecular Medicine Finland (FIMM), University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland.
Iurato S Iurato S S Department Translational Research in Psychiatry, Max-Planck-Institute of Psychiatry, Munich, Germany.
Joensuu A Joensuu A A National Institute for Health and Welfare, Genomics and Biomarkers, Helsinki, Finland.
Karell P Karell P P Institute for Molecular Medicine Finland (FIMM), University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland.
Kasela S Kasela S S Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology, University of Tartu, Tartu, Estonia.
Lahti J Lahti J J Collegium for Advanced Studies, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland.
McRae AF McRae A F AF Institute for Molecular Bioscience, The University of Queensland, St Lucia, QLD, Australia.
Mandaviya PR Mandaviya P R PR Department of Internal Medicine, Erasmus University Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.
Seppälä I Seppälä I I Department of Clinical Chemistry, Faculty of Medicine and Life Sciences, University of Tampere, Tampere, Finland.
Wang Y Wang Y Y Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.
Baglietto L Baglietto L L Centre for Research in Epidemiology and Population Health, Inserm (Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale), Villejuif, France.
Binder EB Binder E B EB Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA, USA.
Harris SE Harris S E SE Medical Genetics Section, Centre for Genomic and Experimental Medicine, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK.
Hodge AM Hodge A M AM Centre for Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Population and Global Health, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, VIC, Australia.
Horvath S Horvath S S Human Genetics and Biostatistics, University of California Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA, USA.
Hurme M Hurme M M Fimlab Laboratories, Tampere, Finland.
Johannesson M Johannesson M M Department of Economics, Stockholm School of Economics, Stockholm, Sweden.
Latvala A Latvala A A Department of Public Health, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland.
Mather KA Mather K A KA Centre for Healthy Brain Ageing, Psychiatry, UNSW Australia, Sydney, NSW, Australia.
Medland SE Medland S E SE Psychiatric Genetics, QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute, Herston, QLD, Australia.
Metspalu A Metspalu A A Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology, University of Tartu, Tartu, Estonia.
Milani L Milani L L Estonian Genome Center, University of Tartu, Tartu, Estonia.
Milne RL Milne R L RL Centre for Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Population and Global Health, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, VIC, Australia.
Pattie A Pattie A A Department of Psychology, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK.
Pedersen NL Pedersen N L NL Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.
Peters A Peters A A Research Unit of Molecular Epidemiology (AME), Institute of Epidemiology II, Helmholtz Zentrum München, German Research Center for Environmental Health, Neuherberg, Germany.
Polidoro S Polidoro S S Molecular and Genetic Epidemiology Unit, Italian Institute for Genomic Medicine (IIGM), Turin, Italy.
Räikkönen K Räikkönen K K Institute of Behavioural Studies, Siltavuorenpenger 1A, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland.
Severi G Severi G G Centre for Research in Epidemiology and Population Health (CESP UMR Inserm 1018), Université Paris-Saclay, UPS, UVSQ and Gustave Roussy, Villejuif, France.
Starr JM Starr J M JM Alzheimer Scotland Dementia Research Centre, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK.
Stolk L Stolk L L Netherlands Consortium for Healthy Ageing, Erasmus University Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.
Waldenberger M Waldenberger M M Research Unit of Molecular Epidemiology (AME), Institute of Epidemiology II, Helmholtz Zentrum München, German Research Center for Environmental Health, Neuherberg, Germany.
Eriksson JG Eriksson J G JG Folkhälsan Research Center, Helsinki, Finland.
Esko T Esko T T Program in Medical and Population Genetics, Broad Institute, Cambridge, MA, USA.
Franke L Franke L L Department of Genetics, University Medical Center Groningen, University of Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands.
Gieger C Gieger C C Research Unit of Molecular Epidemiology (AME), Institute of Epidemiology II, Helmholtz Zentrum München, German Research Center for Environmental Health, Neuherberg, Germany.
Giles GG Giles G G GG Centre for Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Population and Global Health, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, VIC, Australia.
Hägg S Hägg S S Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.
Jousilahti P Jousilahti P P National Institute for Health and Welfare, Genomics and Biomarkers, Helsinki, Finland.
Kaprio J Kaprio J J Department of Public Health, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland.
Kähönen M Kähönen M M Department of Clinical Physiology, Faculty of Medicine and Life Sciences, University of Tampere, Tampere, Finland.
Lehtimäki T Lehtimäki T T Department of Clinical Chemistry, Faculty of Medicine and Life Sciences, University of Tampere, Tampere, Finland.
Martin NG Martin N G NG Genetic Epidemiology, QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute, Herston, QLD, Australia.
van Meurs JBC van Meurs J B C JBC Netherlands Consortium for Healthy Ageing, Erasmus University Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.
Ollikainen M Ollikainen M M Department of Public Health, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland.
Perola M Perola M M National Institute for Health and Welfare, Genomics and Biomarkers, Helsinki, Finland.
Posthuma D Posthuma D D Department of Complex Trait Genetics, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Center for Neurogenomics and Cognitive Research, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Raitakari OT Raitakari O T OT Research Centre of Applied and Preventive Cardiovascular Medicine, University of Turku, Turku, Finland.
Sachdev PS Sachdev P S PS Neuropsychiatric Institute, Prince of Wales Hospital, Randiwick, NSW, Australia.
Taskesen E Taskesen E E Department of Neurology,VU University Medical Center (VUMC), Alzheimer Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Uitterlinden AG Uitterlinden A G AG Netherlands Consortium for Healthy Ageing, Erasmus University Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.
Vineis P Vineis P P MRC/PHE Centre for Environment and Health, School of Public Health, Imperial College London, London, UK.
Wijmenga C Wijmenga C C Department of Genetics, University Medical Center Groningen, University of Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands.
Wright MJ Wright M J MJ Queensland Brain Institute and Centre for Advanced Imaging, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, QLD, Australia.
Relton C Relton C C MRC Integrative Epidemiology Unit, Bristol Medical School (Population Health Sciences), University of Bristol, Bristol, UK.
Davey Smith G Davey Smith G G MRC Integrative Epidemiology Unit, Bristol Medical School (Population Health Sciences), University of Bristol, Bristol, UK.
Deary IJ Deary I J IJ Department of Psychology, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK.
Koellinger PD Koellinger P D PD Institute for Behavior and Biology, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.
Benjamin DJ Benjamin D J DJ Center for Economic and Social Research, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA.
INVESTIGATORS
JOURNAL
VOLUME:
ISSUE:
TITLE: Molecular psychiatry
ISOABBREVIATION: Mol. Psychiatry
YEAR: 2017
MONTH: Oct
DAY: 31
MEDLINEDATE:
SEASON:
CITEDMEDIUM: Internet
ISSN: 1476-5578
ISSNTYPE: Electronic
MEDLINE JOURNAL
MEDLINETA: Mol Psychiatry
COUNTRY: England
ISSNLINKING: 1359-4184
NLMUNIQUEID: 9607835
PUBLICATION TYPE
PUBLICATIONTYPE TEXT
Journal Article
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