Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

Whole-Genome Sequence Analysis Sheds New Light on Genetics of Plasma Lipids

A whole-genome sequencing (WGS) analysis of blood lipid levels for tens of thousands of ancestrally diverse individuals is reported in Nature Communications this week. In the study, a team led by Harvard University scientists examined whole-genome sequences and harmonized lipids from 66,329 individuals across multiple ancestry groups including European, Asian, Black, Hispanic, and Samoa and associated 428 million variants with lipid levels, including roughly 400 million that had not previously been assessed in prior genetic analyses. They identify multiple lipid-related genes strongly associated with blood lipids through analysis of common and rare coding variants, and discover several associated rare non-coding variants, largely at Mendelian lipid genes. "Our systemic effort yields new insights for plasma lipids and provides a framework for population-based WGS analysis of complex traits," the study's authors write.

The Scan

Machine Learning Helps ID Molecular Mechanisms of Pancreatic Islet Beta Cell Subtypes in Type 2 Diabetes

The approach helps overcome limitations of previous studies that had investigated the molecular mechanisms of pancreatic islet beta cells, the authors write in their Nature Genetics paper.

Culture-Based Methods, Shotgun Sequencing Reveal Transmission of Bifidobacterium Strains From Mothers to Infants

In a Nature Communications study, culture-based approaches along with shotgun sequencing give a better picture of the microbial strains transmitted from mothers to infants.

Microbial Communities Can Help Trees Adapt to Changing Climates

Tree seedlings that were inoculated with microbes from dry, warm, or cold sites could better survive drought, heat, and cold stress, according to a study in Science.

A Combination of Genetics and Environment Causes Cleft Lip

In a study published in Nature Communications, researchers investigate what combination of genetic and environmental factors come into play to cause cleft lip/palate.