Study Finds Genetic Similarities Between Europeans and non-Europeans For IBD Risk

Study Finds Genetic Similarities Between Europeans and non-Europeans For IBD Risk
In a recent study published in the journal Nature Genetics, a multi-site team of researchers conducted the first genetic study of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) including individuals from varied populations, revealing that the regions of the genome underlying the disease are similar around the world. The study supported by the International IBD Genetics Consortium and titled “Association analyses identify 38 susceptibility loci for inflammatory bowel disease and highlight shared genetic risk across populations” involved a total of 10,000 DNA samples from Indian, Iranian and East Asian descents and 86,640 DNA samples from individuals across North America, Oceania and Europe. Evidence shows that if the genetic effects on the risk of the disease are consistent across different populations indicates, then the biological cause of the disease is also consistent, which could have important implications for the development of treatments for IBD. "The prevalence of IBD has increased dramatically in Asia over the last 50 years, probably due to lifestyle changes brought about by economic growth," said Dr. Carl Anderson, a corresponding author from the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute. "We are now able to compare genetic risk profiles of IBD across diverse populations to find out how similar they are. Discovering differences can provide us with biological insights that would be missed if we were to focus our efforts on just a single population. In turn, this can lead to the identification of new drug targets." "In our study, we found little difference in the genetic risk of IBD across the populations we studied. This is a very important finding because it suggests that biological lessons learned by studying the genetics of IBD will be relevant globally." T
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