Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Large European study finds gene variant is no strong risk factor for osteoporosis

21.02.2006


Variations in a number of different genes and environmental factors affect an individual’s risk for osteoporosis. Several gene variants have been linked to osteoporosis, but few have stood the test of time. The GENOMOS study, a large European collaboration led by Andre Uitterlinden (Erasmus University Medical Center), John Ioannidis (University of Ioannina), and Stuart Ralston (University of Edinburgh), now shows that a top candidate gene plays a role in osteoporosis, but with effects that are less marked than those described in previous studies.



The so-called Sp1 polymorphism in the COL1A1 gene is a plausible candidate: the gene contains the genetic information to make type 1 collagen, a major component of bone, and preclinical studies suggested that one of the two variants (the T version) led to weaker bones. Earlier genetic studies had found an association between the T variant and low bone mineral density (BMD) and fractures, prompting some scientists to suggest that genetic testing of people for this variant could help in assessing fracture risk. The GENOMOS study was done to evaluate how good the COL1A1 genetic test was at predicting fractures and to determine if it was associated with osteoporosis.

Over 20,000 people took part in GENOMOS, and the number of fractures reported was five times greater than in all previous studies combined. The researchers conducted genetic testing for the COL1A1 variation in participants and measured bone mineral density in all of them. The link between the T variant and osteoporosis was less impressive than that found in many earlier studies. The Sp1 polymorphism in COL1A1 was associated with reduced BMD, but the effects were small and limited to people who carried two copies of the T variant. The investigators found an association between the T variant and spine (vertebral) fractures, but there was no association with non-spine fractures. Overall, the researchers estimate that the presence of the T allele would explain at most 10% of the risk of vertebral fractures for women.


From these results, it seems clear that genetic testing for the COLIA1 variant in isolation would be premature and would not be sufficient to accurately identify people at risk of fractures. It is likely that researchers will need to develop tests that involve studying the variants in several genes (and possibly other variants in the COL1A1 gene) and use them in combination with standard methods of risk assessment such as BMD measurements, before they can usefully predict a substantial fraction of an individual’s risk for osteoporosis.

Andrew Hyde | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.plosmedicine.org

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht The personality factor: How to foster the sharing of research data
06.09.2017 | ZBW – Leibniz-Informationszentrum Wirtschaft

nachricht Europe’s Demographic Future. Where the Regions Are Heading after a Decade of Crises
10.08.2017 | Berlin-Institut für Bevölkerung und Entwicklung

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: The pyrenoid is a carbon-fixing liquid droplet

Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.

A warming planet

Im Focus: Highly precise wiring in the Cerebral Cortex

Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.

The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...

Im Focus: Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

New technique promises tunable laser devices

Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...

Im Focus: Ultrafast snapshots of relaxing electrons in solids

Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!

When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...

Im Focus: Quantum Sensors Decipher Magnetic Ordering in a New Semiconducting Material

For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.

Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

“Lasers in Composites Symposium” in Aachen – from Science to Application

19.09.2017 | Event News

I-ESA 2018 – Call for Papers

12.09.2017 | Event News

EMBO at Basel Life, a new conference on current and emerging life science research

06.09.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Rainbow colors reveal cell history: Uncovering β-cell heterogeneity

22.09.2017 | Life Sciences

Penn first in world to treat patient with new radiation technology

22.09.2017 | Medical Engineering

Calculating quietness

22.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>