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Japan COVID-19 Task Force: a nation-wide consortium to elucidate host genetics of COVID-19 pandemic in Japan [article]

Ho Namkoong, Ryuya Edahiro, Koichi Fukunaga, Yuya Shirai, Kyuto Sonehara, Hiromu Tanaka, Ho Lee, Takanori Hasegawa, Masahiro Kanai, Tatsuhiko Naito, Kenichi Yamamoto, Ryunosuke Saiki (+440 others)
2021 medRxiv   pre-print
To elucidate the host genetic loci affecting severity of SARS-CoV-2 infection, or Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), is an emerging issue in the face of the current devastating pandemic. Here, we report a genome-wide association study (GWAS) of COVID-19 in a Japanese population led by the Japan COVID-19 Task Force, as one of the initial discovery GWAS studies performed on a non-European population. Enrolling a total of 2,393 cases and 3,289 controls, we not only replicated previously reported
more » ... COVID-19 risk variants (e.g., LZTFL1, FOXP4, ABO, and IFNAR2), but also found a variant on 5p35 (rs60200309-A at DOCK2) that was significantly associated with severe COVID-19 in younger (<65 years of age) patients with a genome-wide significant p-value of 1.2 × 10-8 (odds ratio = 2.01, 95% confidence interval = 1.58-2.55). This risk allele was prevalent in East Asians, including Japanese (minor allele frequency [MAF] = 0.097), but rarely found in Europeans. Cross-population Mendelian randomization analysis made a causal inference of a number of complex human traits on COVID-19. In particular, obesity had a significant impact on severe COVID-19. The presence of the population-specific risk allele underscores the need of non-European studies of COVID-19 host genetics.
doi:10.1101/2021.05.17.21256513 fatcat:y72edbfkw5borbwmfjni2mktqm

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