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Articles by M. H Chen
Total Records ( 10 ) for M. H Chen
  N. L Smith , M. H Chen , A Dehghan , D. P Strachan , S Basu , N Soranzo , C Hayward , I Rudan , M Sabater Lleal , J. C Bis , M. P. M de Maat , A Rumley , X Kong , Q Yang , F. M. K Williams , V Vitart , H Campbell , A Malarstig , K. L Wiggins , C. M Van Duijn , W. L McArdle , J. S Pankow , A. D Johnson , A Silveira , B McKnight , A. G Uitterlinden , Aleksic Wellcome Trust Case Control Consortium; , J. B Meigs , A Peters , W Koenig , M Cushman , S Kathiresan , J. I Rotter , E. G Bovill , A Hofman , E Boerwinkle , G. H Tofler , J. F Peden , B. M Psaty , F Leebeek , A. R Folsom , M. G Larson , T. D Spector , A. F Wright , J. F Wilson , A Hamsten , T Lumley , J. C. M Witteman , W Tang and C. J. O'Donnell

Background— Plasma levels of coagulation factors VII (FVII), VIII (FVIII), and von Willebrand factor (vWF) influence risk of hemorrhage and thrombosis. We conducted genome-wide association studies to identify new loci associated with plasma levels.

Methods and Results— The setting of the study included 5 community-based studies for discovery comprising 23 608 European-ancestry participants: Atherosclerosis Risk In Communities Study, Cardiovascular Health Study, British 1958 Birth Cohort, Framingham Heart Study, and Rotterdam Study. All subjects had genome-wide single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) scans and at least 1 phenotype measured: FVII activity/antigen, FVIII activity, and vWF antigen. Each study used its genotype data to impute to HapMap SNPs and independently conducted association analyses of hemostasis measures using an additive genetic model. Study findings were combined by meta-analysis. Replication was conducted in 7604 participants not in the discovery cohort. For FVII, 305 SNPs exceeded the genome-wide significance threshold of 5.0x10–8 and comprised 5 loci on 5 chromosomes: 2p23 (smallest P value 6.2x10–24), 4q25 (3.6x10–12), 11q12 (2.0x10–10), 13q34 (9.0x10–259), and 20q11.2 (5.7x10–37). Loci were within or near genes, including 4 new candidate genes and F7 (13q34). For vWF, 400 SNPs exceeded the threshold and marked 8 loci on 6 chromosomes: 6q24 (1.2x10–22), 8p21 (1.3x10–16), 9q34 (<5.0x10–324), 12p13 (1.7x10–32), 12q23 (7.3x10–10), 12q24.3 (3.8x10–11), 14q32 (2.3x10–10), and 19p13.2 (1.3x10–9). All loci were within genes, including 6 new candidate genes, as well as ABO (9q34) and VWF (12p13). For FVIII, 5 loci were identified and overlapped vWF findings. Nine of the 10 new findings were replicated.

Conclusions— New genetic associations were discovered outside previously known biological pathways and may point to novel prevention and treatment targets of hemostasis disorders.

  A Dehghan , Q Yang , A Peters , S Basu , J. C Bis , A. R Rudnicka , M Kavousi , M. H Chen , J Baumert , G. D.O Lowe , B McKnight , W Tang , M de Maat , M. G Larson , S Eyhermendy , W. L McArdle , T Lumley , J. S Pankow , A Hofman , J. M Massaro , F Rivadeneira , M Kolz , K. D Taylor , C. M van Duijn , S Kathiresan , T Illig , Y. S Aulchenko , K. A Volcik , A. D Johnson , A. G Uitterlinden , G. H Tofler , C Gieger , Psaty Wellcome Trust Case Control Consortium , D. J Couper , E Boerwinkle , W Koenig , C. J O`Donnell , J. C Witteman , D. P Strachan , N. L Smith and A. R. Folsom

Background— Fibrinogen is both central to blood coagulation and an acute-phase reactant. We aimed to identify common variants influencing circulation fibrinogen levels.

Methods and Results— We conducted a genome-wide association analysis on 6 population-based studies, the Rotterdam Study, the Framingham Heart Study, the Cardiovascular Health Study, the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities Study, the Monitoring of Trends and Determinants in Cardiovascular Disease/KORA Augsburg Study, and the British 1958 Birth Cohort Study, including 22 096 participants of European ancestry. Four loci were marked by 1 or more single-nucleotide polymorphisms that demonstrated genome-wide significance (P<5.0x10–8). These included a single-nucleotide polymorphism located in the fibrinogen β chain (FGB) gene and 3 single-nucleotide polymorphisms representing newly identified loci. The high-signal single-nucleotide polymorphisms were rs1800789 in exon 7 of FGB (P=1.8x10–30), rs2522056 downstream from the interferon regulatory factor 1 (IRF1) gene (P=1.3x10–15), rs511154 within intron 1 of the propionyl coenzyme A carboxylase (PCCB) gene (P=5.9x10–10), and rs1539019 on the NLR family pyrin domain containing 3 isoforms (NLRP3) gene (P=1.04x10–8).

Conclusions— Our findings highlight biological pathways that may be important in regulation of inflammation underlying cardiovascular disease.

  R. B Schnabel , K. L Lunetta , M. G Larson , J Dupuis , I Lipinska , J Rong , M. H Chen , Z Zhao , J. F Yamamoto , J. B Meigs , V Nicaud , C Perret , T Zeller , S Blankenberg , L Tiret , J. F Keaney , R. S Vasan and E. J. Benjamin

Background— Environmental and genetic correlates of inflammatory marker variability are incompletely understood. In the family-based Framingham Heart Study, we investigated heritability and candidate gene associations of systemic inflammatory biomarkers.

Methods and Results— In offspring participants (n=3710), we examined 11 inflammatory biomarkers (CD40 ligand, C-reactive protein, intercellular adhesion molecule-1, interleukin-6, urinary isoprostanes, monocyte chemoattractant protein-1, myeloperoxidase, P-selectin, tumor necrosis factor-, tumor necrosis factor receptor II, fibrinogen). Heritability and bivariate genetic and environmental correlations were assessed by Sequential Oligogenic Linkage Analysis routines in 1012 family members. We examined 1943 tagging single-nucleotide polymorphisms in 233 inflammatory pathway genes with ≥5 minor allele carriers using a general genetic linear model. Clinical correlates explained 2.4% (CD40 ligand) to 28.5% (C-reactive protein) of the variability in inflammatory biomarkers. Estimated heritability ranged from 10.9% (isoprostanes) to 44.8% (P-selectin). Most correlations between biomarkers were weak although statistically significant. A total of 45 single-nucleotide polymorphism-biomarker associations met the q-value threshold of 0.25. Novel top single-nucleotide polymorphisms were observed in ICAM1 gene in relation to intercellular adhesion molecule-1 concentrations (rs1799969, P=1.32x10–8) and MPO in relation to myeloperoxidase (rs28730837, P=1.9x10–5). Lowest P values for trans-acting single-nucleotide polymorphisms were observed for APCS with monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 concentrations (rs1374486, P=1.01x10–7) and confirmed for IL6R with interleukin-6 concentrations (rs8192284, P=3.36x10–5). Novel potential candidates (APCS, MPO) need to be replicated.

Conclusions— Our community-based data support the relevance of clinical and genetic factors for explaining variation in inflammatory biomarker traits.

  K Musunuru , G Lettre , T Young , D. N Farlow , J. P Pirruccello , K. G Ejebe , B. J Keating , Q Yang , M. H Chen , N Lapchyk , A Crenshaw , L Ziaugra , A Rachupka , E. J Benjamin , L. A Cupples , M Fornage , E. R Fox , S. R Heckbert , J. N Hirschhorn , C Newton Cheh , M. M Nizzari , D. N Paltoo , G. J Papanicolaou , S. R Patel , B. M Psaty , D. J Rader , S Redline , S. S Rich , J. I Rotter , H. A Taylor , R. P Tracy , R. S Vasan , J. G Wilson , S Kathiresan , R. R Fabsitz , E Boerwinkle , S. B Gabriel and for the NHLBI Candidate Gene Association Resource

The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute's Candidate Gene Association Resource (CARe), a planned cross-cohort analysis of genetic variation in cardiovascular, pulmonary, hematologic, and sleep-related traits, comprises >40 000 participants representing 4 ethnic groups in 9 community-based cohorts. The goals of CARe include the discovery of new variants associated with traits using a candidate gene approach and the discovery of new variants using the genome-wide association mapping approach specifically in African Americans.

Methods and Results—

CARe has assembled DNA samples for >40 000 individuals self-identified as European American, African American, Hispanic, or Chinese American, with accompanying data on hundreds of phenotypes that have been standardized and deposited in the CARe Phenotype Database. All participants were genotyped for 7 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) selected based on prior association evidence. We performed association analyses relating each of these SNPs to lipid traits, stratified by sex and ethnicity, and adjusted for age and age squared. In at least 2 of the ethnic groups, SNPs near CETP, LIPC, and LPL strongly replicated for association with high-density lipoprotein cholesterol concentrations, PCSK9 with low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels, and LPL and APOA5 with serum triglycerides. Notably, some SNPs showed varying effect sizes and significance of association in different ethnic groups.


The CARe Pilot Study validates the operational framework for phenotype collection, SNP genotyping, and analytic pipeline of the CARe project and validates the planned candidate gene study of 2000 biological candidate loci in all participants and genome-wide association study in 8000 African American participants. CARe will serve as a valuable resource for the scientific community.

  W Lieb , J. P Zachariah , V Xanthakis , R Safa , M. H Chen , L. M Sullivan , M. G Larson , H. M Smith , Q Yang , G. F Mitchell , J. A Vita , D. B Sawyer and R. S. Vasan

Experimental studies suggest that endothelial growth factors play an important role in angiogenesis and vascular remodeling. The clinical and genetic correlates of circulating angiopoietin-2 (Ang-2) and its soluble receptor/regulator Tie-2 (sTie-2) have not been determined in a community-based sample.

Methods and Results—

Serum Ang-2 and sTie-2 were assayed in 3778 third-generation cohort participants of the Framingham Heart Study (mean age, 40±9 years; 53% women). Clinical correlates and heritability of both biomarkers were assessed using generalized estimating equations and variance-component analyses. Ang-2 levels were higher and sTie-2 levels were lower in women than in men. Ang-2 was positively related to age, smoking, systolic blood pressure, hypertension treatment, and diabetes (P<0.05 for all) but was inversely associated with total cholesterol and diastolic blood pressure (P<0.0001 for both), and sTie-2 was positively associated with body mass index, diabetes, and triglycerides but was inversely related to age, alcohol consumption, and glomerular filtration rate (P<0.05 for all). Both Ang-2 and sTie-2 were higher in participants with metabolic syndrome (P<0.005), with stronger associations of Ang-2 with blood pressure traits and of sTie-2 with obesity-dyslipidemia components. Heritability estimates for Ang-2 and sTie-2 were 27% and 56%, respectively (P<0.0001). A region on chromosome 9 was significantly linked to circulating sTie-2 levels (logarithm of the odds score, 8.31).


Circulating levels of Ang-2 and sTie-2 are heritable traits associated with cardiovascular disease risk factors, including the metabolic syndrome. These observations are consistent with the notion that angiogenesis and vascular remodeling are determined in part by genetic influences and associated with metabolic risk factors.

  W Shi , Z Zhang , M. H Chen , J. F Angle and A. H. Matsumoto

C3H/HeJ (C3H) mice develop much smaller atherosclerotic lesions than C57BL/6 (B6) mice when deficient in apolipoprotein E (apoE–/–) or fed an atherogenic diet. The 2 strains differ in H2 haplotypes, with B6 having H2b and C3H having H2k. C3.SW-H2b/SnJ (C3.SW) is a congenic strain of C3H/HeJ in which H2k is replaced with H2b.

Methods and Results—

We performed bone marrow transplantation and found that atherosclerosis-resistant C3.SW.apoE–/– mice reconstituted with bone marrow from either C3.SW.apoE–/– or B6.apoE–/– mice after lethal irradiation had significantly larger atherosclerotic lesions than B6.apoE–/– mice receiving identical treatments and much larger lesions than C3H.apoE–/– mice reconstituted with syngeneic bone marrow. For syngeneic transplantation, C3.SW.apoE–/– mice exhibited a 21-fold increase in lesion size over C3H.apoE–/– mice (152 800±21 937 versus 7060±2290 µm2/section) and a near 4-fold increase over B6.apoE–/– mice (40 529±4675 µm2/section). C3.SW.apoE–/– mice reconstituted with syngeneic marrow exhibited enhanced lesion formation relative to those reconstituted with B6 marrow (152 800±21 937 versus 107 000±9374 µm2/section; P=0.067). Sublethal irradiation led to a 6-fold increase of lesion size in C3.SW.apoE–/– mice (9795±2804 versus 1550±607 µm2/section; P=0.008). Wild-type C3.SW mice reconstituted with apoE+/+ or apoE–/– bone marrow had significantly larger atherosclerotic lesions than C3H mice receiving identical treatments on an atherogenic diet.


These results indicate that gene(s) within the H2 region have a dramatic impact on radiation-enhanced atherosclerosis, and their effect is conveyed partially through bone marrow–derived cells.

  M. H Chen , C. W Wilson , Y. J Li , K. K. L Law , C. S Lu , R Gacayan , X Zhang , C. c Hui and P. T. Chuang

A central question in Hedgehog (Hh) signaling is how evolutionarily conserved components of the pathway might use the primary cilium in mammals but not fly. We focus on Suppressor of fused (Sufu), a major Hh regulator in mammals, and reveal that Sufu controls protein levels of full-length Gli transcription factors, thus affecting the production of Gli activators and repressors essential for graded Hh responses. Surprisingly, despite ciliary localization of most Hh pathway components, regulation of Gli protein levels by Sufu is cilium-independent. We propose that Sufu-dependent processes in Hh signaling are evolutionarily conserved. Consistent with this, Sufu regulates Gli protein levels by antagonizing the activity of Spop, a conserved Gli-degrading factor. Furthermore, addition of zebrafish or fly Sufu restores Gli protein function in Sufu-deficient mammalian cells. In contrast, fly Smo is unable to translocate to the primary cilium and activate the mammalian Hh pathway. We also uncover a novel positive role of Sufu in regulating Hh signaling, resulting from its control of both Gli activator and repressor function. Taken together, these studies delineate important aspects of cilium-dependent and cilium-independent Hh signal transduction and provide significant mechanistic insight into Hh signaling in diverse species.

  A. D Johnson , M Kavousi , A. V Smith , M. H Chen , A Dehghan , T Aspelund , J. P Lin , C. M van Duijn , T. B Harris , L. A Cupples , A. G Uitterlinden , L Launer , A Hofman , F Rivadeneira , B Stricker , Q Yang , C. J O'Donnell , V Gudnason and J. C. Witteman

Variation in serum bilirubin is associated with altered cardiovascular disease risk and drug metabolism. We aimed to identify genetic contributors to variability in serum bilirubin levels by combining results from three genome-wide association studies (Framingham heart study, n = 3424; Rotterdam study, n = 3847; Age, Gene, Environment and Susceptibility-Reykjavik, n = 2193). Meta-analysis showed strong replication for a genetic influence on serum bilirubin levels of the UGT1A1 locus (P < 5 x 10–324) and a 12p12.2 locus. The peak signal in the 12p12.2 region was a non-synonymous SNP in SLCO1B1 (rs4149056, P = 6.7 x 10–13), which gives rise to a valine to alanine amino acid change leading to reduced activity for a hepatic transporter with known affinity for bilirubin. There were also suggestive associations with several other loci. The top variants in UGT1A1 and SLCO1B1 explain ~18.0 and ~1.0% of the variation in total serum bilirubin levels, respectively. In a conditional analysis adjusted for individual genotypes for the top UGT1A1 variant, the top SLCO1B1 variant remained highly significant (P = 7.3 x 10–13), but no other variants achieved genome-wide significance. In one of the largest genetic studies of bilirubin to date (n = 9464), we confirm the substantial genetic influence of UGT1A1 variants, consistent with past linkage and association studies, and additionally provide strong evidence of a role for allelic variation in SLCO1B1. Given the involvement of bilirubin in a number of physiological and disease processes, and the roles for UGT1A1 and SLCO1B1 in drug metabolism, these genetic findings have potential clinical importance. In analyses for association with gallbladder disease or gallstones, top bilirubin SNPs in UGT1A1 and SLCO1B1 were not associated.

  T Chiba , C. Y Han , T Vaisar , K Shimokado , A Kargi , M. H Chen , S Wang , T. O McDonald , K. D O'Brien and J. W Heinecke

Adipose tissue secretes proteins like serum amyloid A (SAA), which plays important roles in local and systemic inflammation. Circulating SAA levels increase in obese humans, but the roles of adipose-derived SAA and hyperlipidemia in this process are unclear. We took advantage of the difference in the inducible isoforms of SAA secreted by adipose tissue (SAA3) and liver (SAA1 and 2) of mice to evaluate whether adipose tissue contributes to the circulating pool of SAA in obesity and hyperlipidemia. Genetically obese (ob/ob) mice, but not hyperlipidemic mice deficient in apolipoprotein E (Apoe–/–), had significantly higher circulating levels of SAA than their littermate controls. SAA1/2 mRNA expression in the liver and SAA3 mRNA expression in intra-abdominal fat were significantly higher in obese than thin mice, but they were not affected by hyperlipidemia in Apoe–/– mice. However, only SAA1/2 and the constitutive form of SAA (SAA4) could be detected in the circulation by mass spectrometric analysis of HDL, the major carrier of circulating SAA. In contrast, SAA3 could be detected in medium from cultured adipocytes. Our findings indicate that the expression of SAA3 in adipose tissue is upregulated by obesity, but it does not contribute to the circulating pool of SAA in mice.

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