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Genetic analyses of the QT interval and its components in over 250K individuals identifies new loci and pathways affecting ventricular depolarization and repolarization

By William J Young, Najim Lahrouchi, Aaron Isaacs, ThuyVy Duong, Luisa Foco, Farah Ahmed, Jennifer A. Brody, Reem Salman, Raymond Noordam, Jan-Walter Benjamins, Jeffrey Haessler, Leo-Pekka Lyytikäinen, Linda Repetto, Maria Pina Concas, Marten E van den Berg, Stefan Weiss, Antoine R Baldassari, Traci M Bartz, James P Cook, Daniel S Evans, Rebecca Freudling, Oliver Hines, Jonas L Isaksen, Honghuang Lin, Hao Mei, Arden Moscati, Martina Müller-Nurasyid, Casia Nursyifa, Yong Qian, Anne Richmond, Carolina Roselli, Kathleen A Ryan, Eduardo Tarazona-Santos, Sebastien Theriault, Stefan van Duijvenboden, Helen R Warren, Jie Yao, Dania Raza, Stefanie Aeschbacher, Gustav Ahlberg, Alvaro Alonso, Laura Andreasen, Joshua C. Bis, Eric Boerwinkle, Archie Campbell, Eulalia Catamo, Massimiliano Cocca, Michael J Cutler, Dawood Darbar, Alessandro De Grandi, Antonio De Luca, Jun Ding, Christina Ellervik, Patrick T. Ellinor, Stephan B. Felix, Philippe Froguel, Christian Fuchsberger, Martin Gögele, Claus Graff, Mariaelisa Graff, Xiuqing Guo, Torben Hansen, Susan R Heckbert, Paul L. Huang, Heikki V Huikuri, Nina Hutri-Kähönen, M. Arfan Ikram, Rebecca D Jackson, Juhani Junttila, Maryam Kavousi, Jan A. Kors, Thiago P Leal, Rozenn N. Lemaitre, Henry J Lin, Lars Lind, Allan Linneberg, Simin Liu, Peter W MacFarlane, Massimo Mangino, Thomas Meitinger, Massimo Mezzavilla, Pashupati Mishra, Rebecca N. Mitchell, Nina Mononen, May E Montasser, Alanna C. Morrison, Matthias Nauck, Victor Nauffal, Pau Navarro, Kjell Nikus, Guillaume Pare, Kristen K Patton, Giulia Pelliccione, Alan Pittman, David J Porteous, Peter P Pramstaller, Michael H Preuss, Olli T Raitakari, Alexander P Reiner, Antonio Luiz P Ribeiro, Kenneth M Rice, Lorenz Risch, David Schlessinger, Ulrich Schotten, Claudia Schurmann, Xia Shen, M Benjamin Shoemaker, Gianfranco Sinagra, Moritz F Sinner, Elsayed Z Soliman, Monika Stoll, Konstantin Strauch, Kirill Tarasov, Kent D Taylor, Andrew Tinker, Stella Trompet, André Uitterlinden, Uwe Völker, Henry Völzke, Melanie Waldenberger, Lu-Chen Weng, Eric A Whitsel, James G Wilson, Christy L Avery, David Conen, Adolfo Correa, Francesco Cucca, Marcus Dörr, Sina A Gharib, Giorgia Girotto, Niels Grarup, Caroline Hayward, Yalda Jamshidi, Marjo-Riitta Järvelin, J. Wouter Jukema, Stefan Kääb, Mika Kähönen, Jørgen K Kanters, Charles Kooperberg, Terho Lehtimäki, Maria Fernanda Lima-Costa, Yongmei Liu, Ruth J. F. Loos, Steven Lubitz, Dennis O Mook-Kanamori, Andrew P Morris, Jeffrey R O'Connell, Morten Salling Olesen, Michele Orini, Sandosh Padmanabhan, Cristian Pattaro, Annette Peters, Bruce M Psaty, Jerome I. Rotter, Bruno Stricker, Pim Van der Harst, Cornelia M van Duijn, Niek Verweij, James F Wilson, Dan E Arking, Julia Ramírez, Pier D Lambiase, Nona Sotoodehnia, Borbala Mifsud, Christopher Newton-Cheh, Patricia B Munroe

Posted 04 Nov 2021
medRxiv DOI: 10.1101/2021.11.04.21265866

The QT interval is an electrocardiographic measure representing the sum of ventricular depolarization (QRS duration) and repolarization (JT interval). Abnormalities of the QT interval are associated with potentially fatal ventricular arrhythmia. We conducted genome-wide multi-ancestry analyses in >250,000 individuals and identified 177, 156 and 121 independent loci for QT, JT and QRS, respectively, including a male-specific X-chromosome locus. Using gene-based rare-variant methods, we identified associations with Mendelian disease genes. Enrichments were observed in established pathways for QT and JT, with new genes indicated in insulin-receptor signalling and cardiac energy metabolism. In contrast, connective tissue components and processes for cell growth and extracellular matrix interactions were significantly enriched for QRS. We demonstrate polygenic risk score associations with atrial fibrillation, conduction disease and sudden cardiac death. Prioritization of druggable genes highlighted potential therapeutic targets for arrhythmia. Together, these results substantially advance our understanding of the genetic architecture of ventricular depolarization and repolarization.

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