Genome-wide association studies identify DNA variants influencing eyebrow thickness variation in Europeans and across continental populations

Peng, Fuduan; Xiong, Ziyi; Zhu, Gu; Hysi, Pirro G.; Eller, Ryan J.; Wu, Sijie; Adhikari, Kaustubh; Chen, Yan; Li, Yi; Gonzalez-José, Rolando; Schüler-Faccini, Lavinia; Bortolini, Maria-Cátira; Acuña-Alonzo, Victor; Canizales-Quinteros, Samuel; Gallo, Carla; Poletti, Giovanni; Bedoya, Gabriel; Rothhammer, Francisco; Uitterlinden, André G.; Ikram, M. Arfan; Nijsten, Tamar; Ruiz-Linares, Andrés; Wang, Sijia; Walsh, Susan; Spector, Timothy D.; Martin, Nicholas G.; Kayser, Manfred and Liu, Fan (2022). Genome-wide association studies identify DNA variants influencing eyebrow thickness variation in Europeans and across continental populations. Journal of Investigative Dermatology, 143(7) pp. 1317–1322.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jid.2022.11.026

Abstract

Natural variation in eyebrow thickness (ET) is one of the most conspicuous facial features. Understanding its genetic basis is of broad interest and has implications for dermatology and other fields. Two genome-wide association studies (GWASs) for ET have been reported thus far. In 2,457 Latin Americans from the CANDELA cohort, Adhikari et al. identified 3q22.3 harboring FOXL2 (Adhikari et al., 2016). In 2,961 Han Chinese from the TZL cohort, Wu et al. discovered 3q26.33 harboring SOX2 and 5q13.2 harboring FOXD1 and by meta-analysis of CANDELA and TZL 2q12.3 harboring EDAR (Wu et al., 2018). Thus, four ET-associated loci have been established thus far, all in non-Europeans. As no European ET GWAS had been reported, it remains unknown whether the genetic ET effects described in non-Europeans persist in Europeans, or whether there are European-specific genetic loci involved in ET, or both.

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