Genome-wide association study and meta-analysis in multiple populations identifies new loci for peanut allergy and establishes C11orf30/EMSY as a genetic risk factor for food allergy

Yuka Asai, Aida Eslami, C. Dorien van Ginkel, Loubna Akhabir, Ming Wan, George Ellis, Moshe Ben-Shoshan, David Martino, Manuel A. Ferreira, Katrina Allen, Bruce Mazer, Hans de Groot, Nicolette W. de Jong, Roy N. Gerth van Wijk, Anthony E.J. Dubois, Rick Chin, Stephen Cheuk, Joshua Hoffman, Eric Jorgensen, John S. WitteRonald B. Melles, Xiumei Hong, Xiaobin Wang, Jennie Hui, Arthur W.(Bill) Musk, Michael Hunter, Alan L. James, Gerard H. Koppelman, Andrew J. Sandford, Ann E. Clarke, Denise Daley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


Background: Peanut allergy (PA) is a complex disease with both environmental and genetic risk factors. Previously, PA loci were identified in filaggrin (FLG) and HLA in candidate gene studies, and loci in HLA were identified in a genome-wide association study and meta-analysis. Objective: We sought to investigate genetic susceptibility to PA. Methods: Eight hundred fifty cases and 926 hyper-control subjects and more than 7.8 million genotyped and imputed single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were analyzed in a genome-wide association study to identify susceptibility variants for PA in the Canadian population. A meta-analysis of 2 phenotypes (PA and food allergy) was conducted by using 7 studies from the Canadian, American (n = 2), Australian, German, and Dutch (n = 2) populations. Results: An SNP near integrin α6 (ITGA6) reached genome-wide significance with PA (P = 1.80 × 10−8), whereas SNPs associated with Src kinase–associated phosphoprotein 1 (SKAP1), matrix metallopeptidase 12 (MMP12)/MMP13, catenin α3 (CTNNA3), rho GTPase–activating protein 24 (ARHGAP24), angiopoietin 4 (ANGPT4), chromosome 11 open reading frame (C11orf30/EMSY), and exocyst complex component 4 (EXOC4) reached a threshold suggestive of association (P ≤ 1.49 × 10−6). In the meta-analysis of PA, loci in or near ITGA6, ANGPT4, MMP12/MMP13, C11orf30, and EXOC4 were significant (P ≤ 1.49 × 10−6). When a phenotype of any food allergy was used for meta-analysis, the C11orf30 locus reached genome-wide significance (P = 7.50 × 10−11), whereas SNPs associated with ITGA6, ANGPT4, MMP12/MMP13, and EXOC4 and additional C11orf30 SNPs were suggestive (P ≤ 1.49 × 10−6). Functional annotation indicated that SKAP1 regulates expression of CBX1, which colocalizes with the EMSY protein coded by C11orf30. Conclusion: This study identifies multiple novel loci as risk factors for PA and food allergy and establishes C11orf30 as a risk locus for both PA and food allergy. Multiple genes (C11orf30/EMSY, SKAP1, and CTNNA3) identified by this study are involved in epigenetic regulation of gene expression.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)991-1001
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2018


  • C11orf30
  • EMSY
  • Peanut allergy
  • epigenetics
  • food allergy
  • genome-wide association study
  • meta-analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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