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Large-scale pathway-specific polygenic risk, transcriptomic community networks and functional inferences in Parkinson disease

By S Bandres-Ciga, S Saez-Atienzar, JJ Kim, MB Makarious, Faraz Faghri, M Diez-Fairen, H Iwaki, H Leonard, J Botia, M Ryten, D Hernandez, JR Gibbs, J Ding, Z Gan-Or, A Noyce, L Pihlstrom, A Torkamani, SW Scholz, B Traynor, D Ehrlich, CR Scherzer, M Bookman, Mark R. Cookson, C Blauwendraat, MA Nalls, AB Singleton, on behalf of the International Parkinson Disease Genomics Consortium

Posted 06 May 2020
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/2020.05.05.079228

Polygenic inheritance plays a central role in Parkinson's disease (PD). A priority in elucidating PD etiology lies in defining the biological basis of genetic risk. Unraveling how risk leads to disruption will yield disease-modifying therapeutic targets that may be effective. Here, we utilized a high-throughput and hypothesis-free approach to determine biological pathways underlying PD using the largest currently available cohorts of genetic data and gene expression data from International Parkinson's Disease Genetics Consortium (IPDGC) and the Accelerating Medicines Partnership - Parkinson's disease initiative (AMP-PD), among other sources. We placed these insights into a cellular context. We applied large-scale pathway-specific polygenic risk score (PRS) analyses to assess the role of common variation on PD risk in a cohort of 457,110 individuals by focusing on a compilation of 2,199 publicly annotated gene sets representative of curated pathways, of which we nominate 46 pathways associated with PD risk. We assessed the impact of rare variation on PD risk in an independent cohort of whole-genome sequencing data, including 4,331 individuals. We explored enrichment linked to expression cell specificity patterns using single-cell gene expression data and demonstrated a significant risk pattern for adult dopaminergic neurons, serotonergic neurons, and radial glia. Subsequently, we created a novel way of building de novo pathways by constructing a network expression community map using transcriptomic data derived from the blood of 1,612 PD patients, which revealed 54 connecting networks associated with PD. Our analyses highlight several promising pathways and genes for functional prioritization and provide a cellular context in which such work should be done. ### Competing Interest Statement Financial Disclosures: Mike A. Nalls participation is supported by a consulting contract between Data Tecnica International and the National Institute on Aging, NIH, Bethesda, MD, USA, as a possible conflict of interest Dr. Nalls also consults for Neuron 23s Inc, Lysosomal Therapeutics Inc, and Illumina Inc among others. C.R.S. is named as co-inventor on a US patent application on sphingolipids biomarkers that is jointly held by Brigham & WomenÂ’s Hospital and Sanofi. C.R.S has consulted for Sanofi Inc.; has collaborated with Pfizer, Opko, and Proteome Sciences, and Genzyme Inc. No other disclosures were reported.

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