ARMS2/HTRA1 locus can confer differential susceptibility to the advanced subtypes of age-related macular degeneration

Lucia Sobrin, Robyn Reynolds, Yi Yu, Jesen Fagerness, Nicolas Leveziel, Paul S Bernstein, Eric H Souied, Mark J Daly, Johanna M Seddon
American Journal of Ophthalmology 2011, 151 (2): 345-52.e3

PURPOSE: To determine if genetic variants that have been associated with age-related macular degeneration (AMD) have a differential effect on the risk of choroidal neovascularization (CNV) and geographic atrophy.

DESIGN: Genetic association study.


SETTING: Multicenter study.

STUDY POPULATION: Seven hundred forty-nine participants with geographic atrophy and 3209 participants with CNV were derived from 4 AMD studies with similar procedures from Tufts Medical Center, the Age-Related Eye Disease Study, University of Utah, and Hopital Intercommunal de Creteil.

PROCEDURES: AMD grade was assigned based on fundus photography and examination using the clinical age-related maculopathy staging system. All samples were genotyped for single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) previously associated with AMD. Allele frequencies were compared between participants with CNV and geographic atrophy using PLINK within each cohort and Mantel-Haenszel meta-analysis was performed to combine odds ratios (OR).

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Differences in allele frequencies between participants with geographic atrophy and CNV.

RESULTS: The frequency of the T allele of ARMS2/HTRA1 rs10490924 was significantly higher in participants with CNV than in those with geographic atrophy (OR, 1.37; 95% confidence interval, 1.21-1.54; P value = 4.2 × 10(-7)). This result remained statistically significant when excluding individuals who had geographic atrophy in 1 eye and CNV in the contralateral eye (P = 2.2 × 10(-4)). None of the other SNPs showed a significant differential effect for CNV vs geographic atrophy, including CFH, C2/CFB, C3, CFI, LIPC, and TIMP3.

CONCLUSIONS: Genetic variation at the ARMS2/HTRA1 locus confers a differential risk for CNV vs geographic atrophy in a well-powered sample.

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