Insight gleaned from Qatari genome study
May 23 2019 01:34 AM

Dr Marwan-Abu Madi and Nadin Younes from the Department of Biomedical Sciences at the College of Health Sciences in Qatar University (QU), together with Dr Mohamed Harris from the Division of Translational Medicine of Sidra Medicine, have conducted the first genome wide association study on osteoporosis in Qatar, on 3,000 healthy, unrelated Qatari participants from Qatar Biobank, aged between 18 and 70.
This study successfully identified 19 significant single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP), six of which were replicated by UK Biobank, and the remaining 13 were novel among Qataris.
These SNPs were harboured in genes known to play a critical role in bone formation and remodeling, including the MALAT1, MRPL39, FASLG, FAM189A2, RP11-15A1.7, LSAMP, and BMPR1B genes.
The study provides new insights into the genetic architecture of osteoporosis, particularly in the Qatari population.
Furthermore, these risk loci could serve as targets for the development of better treatment of osteoporosis as well as genetic predictors, which could assist in the identification of individuals at risk of developing osteoporosis or bone fractures.
For future studies, the team will conduct “in silico” analysis on the functional and structural consequences of the novel identified SNPs, to find out its molecular mechanism in bone remodelling and osteogenesis process.
Osteoporosis is a global health burden characterised by low bone mineral density and increased fracture risk.
Despite the serious consequences of osteoporosis and the significant impact it can have on human health, it remains a neglected health priority in the Arab world.
The high prevalence of osteoporosis in the Qatari population places serious economic burden on patients, families, and nation.

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