Parkinson disease polygenic risk score is associated with Parkinson disease status and age at onset but not with alpha-synuclein cerebrospinal fluid levels

Laura Ibanez, Umber Dube, Benjamin Saef, John Budde, Kathleen Black, Alexandra Medvedeva, Jorge L. Del-Aguila, Albert A. Davis, Joel S. Perlmutter, Oscar Harari, Bruno A. Benitez and Carlos Cruchaga: BMC Neurology, Volume 17, Issue 1, 15 November 2017, Article number 198 Read More


Background: The genetic architecture of Parkinson’s Disease (PD) is complex and not completely understood. Multiple genetic studies to date have identified multiple causal genes and risk loci. Nevertheless, most of the expected genetic heritability remains unexplained. Polygenic risk scores (PRS) may provide greater statistical power and inform about the genetic architecture of multiple phenotypes. The aim of this study was to test the association between PRS and PD risk, age at onset and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) biomarkers (α-synuclein, Aβ1-42, t-tau and p-tau). Methods: The weighted PRS was created using the genome-wide loci from Nalls et al., 2014 PD GWAs meta-analysis. The PRS was tested for association with PD status, age at onset and CSF biomarker levels in 829 cases and 432 controls of European ancestry. Results: The PRS was associated with PD status (p = 5.83×10-08) and age at onset (p = 5.70×10-07). The CSF t-tau levels showed a nominal association with the PRS (p = 0.02). However, CSF α-synuclein, amyloid beta and phosphorylated tau were not found to be associated with the PRS. Conclusion: Our study suggests that there is an overlap in the genetic architecture of PD risk and onset, although the different loci present different weights for those phenotypes. In our dataset we found a marginal association of the PRS with CSF t-tau but not with α-synuclein CSF levels, suggesting that the genetic architecture for the CSF biomarker levels is different from that of PD risk. © 2017 The Author(s).

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Posted on November 15, 2017
Posted in: HPAN, Lysosome, Neurodegeneration, Neurogenetics & Transcriptomics, Publications Authors: ,