Novel loci associated with PR interval in a genome-wide association study of 10 African American cohorts

Anne M. Butler, Xiaoyan Yin, Daniel S. Evans, Michael A. Nalls, Erin N. Smith, Toshiko Tanaka, Guo Li, Sarah G. Buxbaum, Eric A. Whitsel, Alvaro Alonso, Dan E. Arking, Emelia J. Benjamin, Gerald S. Berenson, Josh C. Bis, Wei Chen, Rajat Deo, Patrick T. Ellinor, Susan R. Heckbert, Gerardo Heiss, Wen Chi HsuehBrendan J. Keating, Kathleen F. Kerr, Yun Li, Marian C. Limacher, Yongmei Liu, Steven A. Lubitz, Kristin D. Marciante, Reena Mehra, Yan A. Meng, Anne B. Newman, Christopher Newton-Cheh, Kari E. North, Cameron D. Palmer, Bruce M. Psaty, P. Miguel Quibrera, Susan Redline, Alex P. Reiner, Jerome I. Rotter, Renate B. Schnabel, Nicholas J. Schork, Andrew B. Singleton, J. Gustav Smith, Elsayed Z. Soliman, Sathanur R. Srinivasan, Zhu Ming Zhang, Alan B. Zonderman, Luigi Ferrucci, Sarah S. Murray, Michele K. Evans, Nona Sotoodehnia, Jared W. Magnani, Christy L. Avery

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations


Background-The PR interval, as measured by the resting, standard 12-lead ECG, reflects the duration of atrial/atrioventricular nodal depolarization. Substantial evidence exists for a genetic contribution to PR, including genome-wide association studies that have identified common genetic variants at 9 loci influencing PR in populations of European and Asian descent. However, few studies have examined loci associated with PR in African Americans. Methods and Results-We present results from the largest genome-wide association study to date of PR in 13 415 adults of African descent from 10 cohorts. We tested for association between PR (ms) and ̃2.8 million genotyped and imputed single-nucleotide polymorphisms. Imputation was performed using HapMap 2 YRI and CEU panels. Study-specific results, adjusted for global ancestry and clinical correlates of PR, were meta-analyzed using the inverse variance method. Variation in genome-wide test statistic distributions was noted within studies (λ range: 0.9-1.1), although not after genomic control correction was applied to the overall meta-analysis (λ: 1.008). In addition to generalizing previously reported associations with MEIS1, SCN5A, ARHGAP24, CAV1, and TBX5 to African American populations at the genome-wide significance level (P<5.0×10-8), we also identified a novel locus: ITGA9, located in a region previously implicated in SCN5A expression. The 3p21 region harboring SCN5A also contained 2 additional independent secondary signals influencing PR (P<5.0×10-8). Conclusions-This study demonstrates the ability to map novel loci in African Americans as well as the generalizability of loci associated with PR across populations of African, European, and Asian descent.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)639-646
Number of pages8
JournalCirculation: Cardiovascular Genetics
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2012


  • Electrocardiography
  • Epidemiology
  • Genome-wide association study
  • PR interval
  • Single-nucleotide polymorphism genetics


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