WEEKLY UPDATE: March 2, 2020
SUMMARY: Identification of 42 genetic regions associated with diverticular disease.
OVERVIEW: The colon, also known as the large intestine, squeezes water and nutrients out of the food we eat. Diverticular disease occurs when pressure causes small pouches to form in the colon, which can result in abdominal pain, intestinal bleeding, and diarrhea. Diverticular disease is very common, affecting around 35% of those under 50 and nearly 60% of individuals over 60, though not everyone experiences symptoms. Genetics is thought to explain over 50% of an individual’s risk of developing diverticular disease. To discover variants associated with diverticular disease, researchers examined the genetic information of over 430,000 individuals of European ancestry. The study identified 42 genomic regions, 39 of them novel, that are associated with the risk of diverticular disease. Some of the genes identified in this study are important for the functioning of smooth muscles, the type of muscles that allow intestines to contract. Other discovered genes play a role in transport of minerals in the colon.
DID YOU KNOW? Fiber intake is recommended for those at risk for diverticular disease because it can help soften stool and reduce pressure in the colon. Fiber-rich foods include beans, rice, oatmeal, and vegetables such as broccoli and carrots. [SOURCE]
ANALYZED VARIANTS: rs6734367, rs4333882, rs7609897, rs7086249, rs1802575, rs11667256, rs962369, rs6949391, rs61823192, rs9520344, rs7098322, rs10472291, rs582094, rs75434097, rs2280028, rs9856118, rs71472433, rs2131755, rs4839715, rs148376933, rs1381335, rs61814883, rs8074740, rs3113037, rs12293535, rs11619840, rs875107, rs3823878, rs10471645, rs1888693, rs4871180, rs2049865, rs1544387, rs11934833, rs2784255, rs10120333, rs12942267, rs62126581, rs115490395, rs2470653, rs10173528, rs72945112