The impact of the human genome project on complex disease

Jessica N. Cooke Bailey, Margaret A. Pericak-Vance, Jonathan L. Haines

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

In the decade that has passed since the initial release of the Human Genome, numerous advancements in science and technology within and beyond genetics and genomics have been encouraged and enhanced by the availability of this vast and remarkable data resource. Progress in understanding three common, complex diseases: age-related macular degeneration (AMD), Alzheimer's disease (AD), and multiple sclerosis (MS), are three exemplars of the incredible impact on the elucidation of the genetic architecture of disease. The approaches used in these diseases have been successfully applied to numerous other complex diseases. For example, the heritability of AMD was confirmed upon the release of the first genome-wide association study (GWAS) along with confirmatory reports that supported the findings of that state-of-the art method, thus setting the foundation for future GWAS in other heritable diseases. Following this seminal discovery and applying it to other diseases including AD and MS, the genetic knowledge of AD expanded far beyond the well-known APOE locus and now includes more than 20 loci. MS genetics saw a similar increase beyond the HLA loci and now has more than 100 known risk loci. Ongoing and future efforts will seek to define the remaining heritability of these diseases; the next decade could very well hold the key to attaining this goal.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)518-535
Number of pages18
JournalGenes
Volume5
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2014

Keywords

  • Age-related macular degeneration
  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Genetics
  • Genome-wide association study
  • Genomics
  • Human genome project
  • Multiple sclerosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Genetics(clinical)

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