Genome wide association study and genomic risk prediction of age related macular degeneration in Israel

Michelle Grunin, Daria Triffon, Gala Beykin, Elior Rahmani, Regev Schweiger, Liran Tiosano, Samer Khateb, Shira Hagbi-Levi, Batya Rinsky, Refael Munitz, Thomas W. Winkler, Iris M. Heid, Eran Halperin, Shai Carmi*, Itay Chowers*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The risk of developing age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is influenced by genetic background. In 2016, the International AMD Genomics Consortium (IAMDGC) identified 52 risk variants in 34 loci, and a polygenic risk score (PRS) from these variants was associated with AMD. The Israeli population has a unique genetic composition: Ashkenazi Jewish (AJ), Jewish non-Ashkenazi, and Arab sub-populations. We aimed to perform a genome-wide association study (GWAS) for AMD in Israel, and to evaluate PRSs for AMD. Our discovery set recruited 403 AMD patients and 256 controls at Hadassah Medical Center. We genotyped individuals via custom exome chip. We imputed non-typed variants using cosmopolitan and AJ reference panels. We recruited additional 155 cases and 69 controls for validation. To evaluate predictive power of PRSs for AMD, we used IAMDGC summary-statistics excluding our study and developed PRSs via clumping/thresholding or LDpred2. In our discovery set, 31/34 loci reported by IAMDGC were AMD-associated (P < 0.05). Of those, all effects were directionally consistent with IAMDGC and 11 loci had a P-value under Bonferroni-corrected threshold (0.05/34 = 0.0015). At a 5 × 10−5 threshold, we discovered four suggestive associations in FAM189A1, IGDCC4, C7orf50, and CNTNAP4. Only the FAM189A1 variant was AMD-associated in the replication cohort after Bonferroni-correction. A prediction model including LDpred2-based PRS + covariates had an AUC of 0.82 (95% CI 0.79–0.85) and performed better than covariates-only model (P = 5.1 × 10−9). Therefore, previously reported AMD-associated loci were nominally associated with AMD in Israel. A PRS developed based on a large international study is predictive in Israeli populations.

Original languageEnglish
Article number13034
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2024

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