A first trial of retrospective collaboration for positional cloning in complex inheritance: Assay of the cytokine region on chromosome 5 by the Consortium on Asthma Genetics (COAG)

C. Lonjou, K. Barnes, H. Chen, W. O C M Cookson, K. A. Deichmann, I. P. Hall, J. W. Holloway, T. Laitinen, L. J. Palmer, M. Wjst, N. E. Morton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The central problem of complex inheritance is to map oligogenes for disease susceptibility, integrating linkage and association over samples that differ in several ways. Combination of evidence over multiple samples with 1,037 families supports loci contributing to asthma susceptibility in the cytokine region on 5q [maximum logarithm of odds (lod) = 2.61 near IL-4], but no evidence for atopy. The principal problems with retrospective collaboration on linkage appear to have been solved, providing far more information than a single study. A multipoint lod table evaluated at commonly agreed reference loci is required for both collaboration and metaanalysis, but variations in ascertainment, pedigree structure, phenotype definition, and marker selection are tolerated. These methods are invariant with statistical methods that increase the power of lods and are applicable to all diseases, motivating collaboration rather than competition. In contrast to linkage, positional cloning by allelic association has yet to be extended to multiple samples, a prerequisite for efficient combination with linkage and the greatest current challenge to genetic epidemiology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)10942-10947
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number20
Publication statusPublished - Sep 26 2000


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • General

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