Table_11_Heritability and Genome-Wide Association Study of Plasma Cholesterol in Chinese Adult Twins.DOCX

Dyslipidemia represents a strong and independent risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Plasma cholesterol, such as total cholesterol (TC), low density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), and high density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), is the common indicator of diagnosing dyslipidemia. Here based on 382 Chinese twin pairs, we explored the magnitude of genetic impact on TC, HDL-C, LDL-C variation and further searched for genetic susceptibility loci for them using genome-wide association study (GWAS). The ACE model was the best fit model with additive genetic parameter (A) accounting for 26.6%, common or shared environmental parameter (C) accounting for 47.8%, unique/non-shared environmental parameter (E) accounting for 25.6% for the variance in HDL-C. The AE model was the best fit model for TC (A: 61.4%; E: 38.6%) and LDL-C (A: 65.5%; E: 34.5%). While no SNPs reached the genome-wide significance level (P < 5 × 10−8), 8, 14, 9 SNPs exceeded the suggestive significance level (P < 1 × 10−5) for TC, HDL-C, LDL-C, respectively. The promising genetic regions for TC, HDL-C, LDL-C were on chromosome 11 around rs7107698, chromosome 5 around rs12518218, chromosome 2 around rs10490120, respectively. Gene-based analysis found 1038, 1033 and 1090 genes nominally associated with TC, HDL-C, LDL-C (P < 0.05), especially FAF1, KLKB1 for TC, KLKB1 for HDL-C, and NTRK1, FAF1, SNTB2 for LDL-C, respectively. The number of common related genes among TC, HDL-C and LDL-C was 71, including FAF1, KLKB1, etc. Pathway enrichment analysis discovered known related pathways-zinc transporters, metal ion SLC transporters for TC, cell adhesion molecules CAMs, IL-6 signaling for HDL, FC epsilon RI signaling pathway, NFAT pathway for LDL, respectively. In conclusion, the TC and LDL-C level is moderately heritable and the HDL-C level is lowly heritable in Chinese population. The genomic loci, functional genes and pathways are identified to account for the heritability of plasma cholesterol level. Our findings provide important insights into plasma cholesterol molecular physiology and expect future research to replicate and validate our results.