Gene-environment interactions and obesity traits among postmenopausal African-American and Hispanic women in the Women's Health Initiative SHARe Study.

Publication Type:

Journal Article


Human genetics (2012)


December 2012, Public Health Sciences Division


Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) of obesity measures have identified associations with single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). However, no large-scale evaluation of gene-environment interactions has been performed. We conducted a search of gene-environment (G × E) interactions in post-menopausal African-American and Hispanic women from the Women's Health Initiative SNP Health Association Resource GWAS study. Single SNP linear regression on body mass index (BMI) and waist-to-hip circumference ratio (WHR) adjusted for multidimensional-scaling-derived axes of ancestry and age was run in race-stratified data with 871,512 SNPs available from African-Americans (N = 8,203) and 786,776 SNPs from Hispanics (N = 3,484). Tests of G × E interaction at all SNPs for recreational physical activity (m h/week), dietary energy intake (kcal/day), alcohol intake (categorical), cigarette smoking years, and cigarette smoking (ever vs. never) were run in African-Americans and Hispanics adjusted for ancestry and age at interview, followed by meta-analysis of G × E interaction terms. The strongest evidence for concordant G × E interactions in African-Americans and Hispanics was for smoking and marker rs10133840 (Q statistic P = 0.70, beta = -0.01, P = 3.81 × 10(-7)) with BMI as the outcome. The strongest evidence for G × E interaction within a cohort was in African-Americans with WHR as outcome for dietary energy intake and rs9557704 (SNP × kcal = -0.04, P = 2.17 × 10(-7)). No results exceeded the Bonferroni-corrected statistical significance threshold.