Genetic meta-analysis identifies four new genetic variants associated with Alzheimer’s disease

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A genome-wide association study of 94,000 individuals has identified four new genetic variants that play a role in the development of late-onset Alzheimer’s disease (AD).

Conducted by an international consortium of researchers led by the University of Miami’s Hussman Institute for Human Genomics, the study implicates genes within tau, amyloid beta, lipid and immunity pathways. This analysis follows the consortium’s first study published in 2013 that looked at 75,000 individuals and identified 11 new genetic variants associated with AD.

The study validates the role of amyloid beta in AD, which has recently been under debate following several clinical failures of amyloid beta-targeting drug candidates. The four new genetic variants identified in this study represent additional potential drug targets.

The study has been published in the peer-reviewed journal, Nature Genetics, which can be accessed here: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41588-019-0358-2.

Abby Hardy